Sunday, October 15, 2006

Highcliffe Castle

Highcliffe Castle, Dorset

Highcliffe Castle is a Grade I listed building which was built between 1831 and 1835 by Lord Stuart de Rothesay. It has been described as "the most important remaining example of the Romantic and Picturesque style of architecture."

The castle is open daily from 1 February to 23 December.Inside the castle there are 5 partially restored staterooms housing a gift shop, visitor centre and galleries featuring a changing programme of exhibitions. The Great Hall is very atmospheric. Guided tours of the un-restored parts of the building run at 2pm every Saturday, Sunday and Tuesday.

There is a tea room with a wide range of light lunches and snacks, including scrummy cakes.

The best part is the grounds which sit above the cliffs giving fine views over Christchurch Bay and the Isle of Wight. There are a number of routes down to Highcliffe Castle beach, including a gently graded zigzag. The beach is a mixture of sand and pebbles, shelving gently into the sea.
Highcliffe Castle, Rothesay Drive, Highcliffe, Dorset BH23 4LE, Tel: 01425 278807