Venue: Windsor, Berkshire SL4 1NJ. Tel: 020 7766 7304 |
Access: March-October 09:45-17:15 (last admission 16:00)
November-February 09:45-16:15 (last admission 15:00)
Entire Castle Closed: 25-26 December.
St Georges Chapel is open to worshippers at public divine services but closed to visitors.
Windsor Castle is a working royal palace and residence, used by The Queen for state banquets and entertaining, and Her summer residence during Ascot Week and other royal events at Windsor. Castle and State Apartment opening times may therefore change at short notice. Check the Royal Collection website . for these dates.
Tickets: 16.50, (Concessions). Includes a free self guided audio tour that lasts around 2 hours and is full of all the information you need to know about this royal residence. Entry is free with London Pass .
London Transport: Rail: London Waterloo or London Paddington to Windsor. Approx. 30 minutes. (National Rail Enquiries Service 08457 484950). Road: M4 to Exit 6. M3 to Exit 3. Special Coach from London hotels. Check out Offtolondon Touring for this and other interesting all-in London coach tour options.
Wheelchair Accessibility: Yes. Manual wheelchairs are available to borrow free of charge for the duration of a visit. Adapted Toilets: Yes. Check out the Detailed accessibility guide .
Windsor Castle with Burlington Bertie .
Windsor Castle is the official residence of The Queen. Founded over 900 years ago by William the Conqueror to guard the western approaches to London, the castle, with its Round Tower dominating the Thames and countryside, has been enlarged and enriched by successive sovereigns over the centuries and is now the oldest and largest occupied castle in the world. It contains within its castellated walls a magnificent royal palace, the royal St. George's Chapel, together with the homes and workplaces of some 500 courtiers and staff.
Changing the Guard takes place at 11:00 daily other than Sundays at Windsor Castle from April until the end of July and on alternate days for the rest of the year, weather permitting. The Guard is mounted by a detachment from one of the Guard regiments that do similar duties at Buckingham Palace and the Tower of London.
The State Apartments
These are lavishly furnished with some of the finest works of art and artifacts from the Royal Collection, including works by Rubens, Holbein, Brueghel, Rembrandt, Van Dyck, Canaletto and Gainsborough.
From 24 September, 2011, visitors can enjoy the richly decorated private apartments (the Semi-State Rooms) of George IV, whose ebullient taste in furnishings and décor inspired an era.
The East Terrace is open to visitors during August and September. Overlooking Home Park and the rose garden created for George IV in the 1820s, it offers views of the East façade of the Castle, not normally visible to the public.
The 15th century St George's Chapel is considered to be one of the supreme achievements English Perpendicular Gothic architecture in England. It is the spiritual home of the Order of the Garter, the senior order of British Chivalry established in 1348 by Edward III, who also made the castle his chivalric setting for his now defunct Order of the Knights of the Round Table.
The Chapel is used by the monarch for royal weddings and funerals, as well as the annual Garter Ceremony each June. Within the chapel are the tombs of ten sovereigns, including Henry VIII and his third wife Jane Seymour, who died after giving birth to his only son King Edward VI; Charles I, who was interred here after his beheading by Cromwell; Queen Elizabeth, the late Queen Mother; and Princess Margaret, The Queen's younger sister.
The Round Tower
If you are energetic, you may climb to the embattled top of the Round Tower during August and September. From this vantage point you can enjoy the breathtaking views of the Castle and Windsor Great Park, the Thames Valley and the London skyline.
Queen Mary's Dolls' House
Among the highlights of a visit to Windsor is Queen Mary's Dolls' House , the most famous dolls' house in the world. Designed in the early 1920s by architect Sir Edwin Lutyens, it is over 3ft tall and took three years to complete with the help of 1,500 craftsmen, artists and authors. The house has electric lighting, hot and cold running water, and even flushing lavatories.
The castle and its Great Park are surrounded by some 1000 acres of Royal Landscape which are open to the public. These are notably Savill Gardens, Valley Gardens, and Virginia Water.
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