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Windsor Castle

Castle / Fort

Add Windsor Castle to your Itinerary

Windsor Castle.  Royal Collection Trust / © Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2014.

Address/Location

Windsor
Berkshire
SL4 1NJ

Contact

Tel: +44 020 7766 7304

Fax: +44 020 7930 9625

No trip to Windsor could possibly be complete without a visit to amazing Windsor Castle, the family home to British kings and queens for over 1,000 years.

The size of the Castle (5 hectares/13 acres) is breath taking, in fact it is the largest and oldest occupied Castle in the world and it’s where Her Majesty The Queen chooses to spend most of her private weekends..

You might even time your visit when she is in residence! Look at the flag flying from the Castle’s Round Tower; if it’s the Royal Standard The Queen will be there too.

Windsor Castle offers something for everyone, and with so many areas to explore please allow at least 2.5 to 3 hours to see it all.

 

WHAT TO SEE AND DO (all included in your ticket price):

Visit the magnificent State Apartments furnished with some of the finest works of art from the Royal Collection, including paintings by Rembrandt, Rubens and Canaletto.

Take in the splendour of St George's Chapel, the burial place of 10 monarchs including Henry VIII and Charles I, and one of the finest examples of Gothic architecture in England. Please note, worshippers are welcome to attend the Sunday services at St George's Chapel but the chapel is closed to general visitors on Sundays.

Be amazed at Queen Mary's Dolls’ House, the largest, most beautiful and most famous dolls’ house in the world, created in the 1920s and filled with thousands of objects made by leading craftsmen, artists and designers of the time.

Join a free Precinct Tour with one of the Castle’s wardens when you first arrive and get the most out of your visit to Windsor Castle.

Imagine being entertained by royalty in the Semi-State Rooms, the spectacular private apartments open to visitors in the winter months. Richly decorated, they are used by The Queen for hosting her guests. The additional five rooms that make up the Semi-State Rooms are open to the public from 17 September 2016.

Learn more in the Drawings Gallery, displaying changing exhibitions of material from the Royal Collection (see below for current exhibition).

Stand to attention whilst watching the Changing of the Guard!  A colourful spectacle of British Pageantry (see below for schedule).

The East End of the North Terrace will be open to the public until 25 September - visitors will get a great view of the East Terrace Garden.

 

TOP TIP

With so much to see and do in Windsor Castle, visitors wishing to leave the Castle for refreshments and shopping in the town centre may obtain re-entry permits from the Castle shops or the audio return point.

 

CONQUER THE TOWER

This add-on tour takes visitors to the height of 65.5m above the River Thames to enjoy breathtaking views of the Castle and Windsor Great Park, the Thames Valley and the London skyline.  See www.royalcollection.org.uk for more information.  Until 30  September 2016.

 

THE GREAT KITCHEN

This add-on tour of the Great Kitchen offers a fascinating insight into the behind-the-scenes life of the Castle.  See www.royalcollection.org.uk for more information.  Until 30 September 2016.

 

THE MOAT GARDEN

The Moat Garden will be open each Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Monday during August, with all proceeds donated to charity.  Normal Castle opening times apply.

 

DRAWINGS GALLERY

Shakespeare in the Royal Library, 13 February 2016 – 11 December 2016

2016 marks the 400th anniversary of the death of William Shakespeare.

Shakespeare in the Royal Library will show how generations of monarchs since Elizabeth I have enjoyed the work of Britain's greatest playwright, whether acquiring copies of Shakespeare's work or producing art inspired by his plays.

On display for the first time will be Shakespeare's First Folio acquired by George IV when Prince of Wales.  Published seven years after Shakespeare's death by his friends and fellow actors, John Heminges and Henry Condell, it brought his plays together in a single volume for the first time and included a number of previously unpublished works.

A manuscript dated 1607 shows views of Windsor Castle and the surrounding area as Shakespeare would have known it.  Created for Henry, Prince of Wales (eldest son of James I), The Description of the Honor of Windesor is one of only two copies and includes locations and landmarks mentioned in 'The Merry Wives of Windsor' and which still exist today.

 

FASHIONING A REIGN: 90 YEARS OF STYLE FROM THE QUEEN'S WARDROBE

This new exhibition marks the 90th birthday of Her Majesty The Queen through a display of fashionable dress, spanning the period from The Queen's childhood in the 1930s to the present day.  The exhibition will run from 17 September until 8 January 2017.

 

CHRISTMAS AT WINDSOR CASTLE

From 25 November, the State Apartments at Windsor Castle will be transformed to celebrate Christmas with festive decorations and glittering Christmas trees.

 

CHANGING THE GUARD

The privilege of guarding the Sovereign has been carried out since 1660. Weather permitting, the ceremony begins at 11am and lasts approximately 30 minutes.

Please check the Royal Collection Trust website for latest information.  There is a link to the British Army website from here too with confirmation of the full schedule.

August 2016: even days in August (2, 4, 6, etc), excluding Sundays.  Weather permitting.
September 2016: odd days in September (1, 3, 5, etc), excluding Sundays. Weather permitting.

 

FAMILY ACTIVITIES AT WINDSOR CASTLE

• Free family multimedia tour (for children aged 7-11)
• Free family Activity Trail
• Family Saturdays and school holiday events and activities.

Windsor Castle offers an exciting family programme every Saturday throughout the year, linked to the amazing history of the Castle, the magnificent art on display and the royal residents past and present who have lived here.

The programme includes storytelling and dressing up in replica historic costume and armour, and art and craft workshops where families can get creative together.

27 August art and craft activities will be taking place in the Moat Room. 

Family Saturdays from September: complementing the Fashioning a Reign exhibition, Family Saturdays will look at centuries of royal fashion, with dressing up, talks and crafts.

For more details and a full list of family activities visit https://www.royalcollection.org.uk/whatson/windsorcastle?type=2187

 

SUMMER PERFORMANCES ON THE BANDSTAND IN THE JUBILEE GARDEN

What could be nicer than the sound of a band playing on a summer's afternoon?

Enjoy the following bands, performing on the bandstand in the Jubilee Garden, whilst you visit Windsor Castle:

Afternoon of 28 August: The Marlow Town Band

 

ADULT LEARNING

There is more to Windsor Castle than just a visit! Find out more about Royal Collection Trust's Adult Study Days and Lectures. http://view.digipage.net/00000959/00020677/00093726/
 

OPENING ARRANGEMENTS

Windsor Castle is a working royal palace so opening arrangements may change at short notice.

To avoid the disappointment of finding part or all of Windsor Castle closed, please check before planning a visit by checking the Provisional Closure Dates below, by visiting http://www.royalcollection.org.uk/visit/windsorcastle/plan-your-visit or by telephoning the Ticket Sales and Information Office on +44 (0)20 7766 7304.

PLEASE NOTE THAT THE CASTLE CLOSES 1 HOUR 15 MINUTES AFTER LAST ENTRY TIME SHOWN BELOW:

March to October 09:30-17:15 (last admission 16:00), November to February 09:45-16:15 (last admission 15:00).

 

PROVISIONAL CLOSURE DATES 2016

SEPTEMBER 2016

2 Last admission to Castle at 15:00

12 Last admission to Castle at 14:30

OCTOBER 2016

6 Last admission to Castle at 15:00

7 State Apartments closed

12 St George's Chapel closes at 12:30

13 Last admission to Castle at 15:00

14 Semi-State Rooms closed

NOVEMBER 2016

18 Semi-State Rooms closed

25 Semi-State Rooms closed

DECEMBER 2016

2 State Apartments closed

5 Semi-State Rooms closed

12 Semi-State Rooms closed

23 St George’s Chapel closes at 13:00

24 St George’s Chapel closed to visitors but open for services

25-26 CASTLE CLOSED (St George’s Chapel open for services)

 

SPECIAL TOURS FOR PRE-BOOKED GROUPS

Download the Group Visits and Private Tours 2016 Brochure.

These tours are available to pre-booked groups on selected dates ONLY by appointment with the Ticket Sales and Information Office at Buckingham Palace on 020 7766 7322.

From Great Kitchen to State Apartments - An introduction to the history of royal dining, past and present followed by a guided visit to the Great Kitchen and medieval Undercroft, neither of which are normally open to the public.

Private Evening Tours - In the company of an expert guide, guests will enjoy an exclusive 'behind-the-ropes' experience in the magnificent State Apartments. The tour ends with a glass of Champagne.

Exhibition Talk - the tour begins in the Castle's Winchester Tower with refreshments and an introduction to the special exhibition in the Castle's Drawings Gallery.

The Military Knights' Tale - This brand new group tour offers a personal insight into the ancient and noble institution of the Military Knights of Windsor presented by a serving Military Knight.Windsor Castle is the oldest and largest occupied castle in the world and the Official Residence of Her Majesty The Queen. Its rich history spans almost 1000 years.

Opening Times

Open New Year
Open (1 Mar 2016 - 31 Oct 2016)
DayTimes
Monday09:3017:15*
Tuesday09:3017:15*
Wednesday09:3017:15*
Thursday09:3017:15*
Friday09:3017:15*
Saturday09:3017:15*
Sunday09:3017:15*
Open (1 Nov 2016 - 28 Feb 2017)
DayTimes
Monday09:4516:15*
Tuesday09:4516:15*
Wednesday09:4516:15*
Thursday09:4516:15*
Friday09:4516:15*
Saturday09:4516:15*
Sunday09:4516:15*

* Last admission 75 minutes before closing.

Dates and times marked with a '*' are provisional and may be subject to change

TripAdvisor

TripAdvisor
  • Certificate of Excellence 2016

TripAdvisor Traveller Rating:

  • Excellent
    5098
  • Very Good
    1646
  • Average
    273
  • Poor
    66
  • Terrible
    32

Recent Reviews:

  • geordieboy645
    Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom
    Trip Type:
    Couples
    Visit if you can
    5 of 5 stars
    Thursday, 25th August 2016
    My wife had never been to see Windsor castle so as we were staying in the area we decided to go and were not disappointed. The admission charge for over 60's is £18.20 each and a guide book £4.95... Read full review
  • Inoku
    Melbourne, Australia
    Trip Type:
    Solo travel
    MUST GO IN!
    5 of 5 stars
    Thursday, 25th August 2016
    A must see in UK! Loved the atmosphere walking through a castle, and if you've the chance to walk in and see the many many rooms -> DO IT ! The artwork, interior design, armor/weapons on display is... Read full review
  • retiredsunshine
    Province of Alicante, Spain
    Trip Type:
    Family
    History for children
    5 of 5 stars
    Thursday, 25th August 2016
    Great experience, well worth the entry fees. A lot of walking involved but worth the backache. My 2 grandchildren loved the history and we teased them that they may be able to shake hands with the... Read full review

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