Self Drive in UK : Windsor Castle – Home for Her Majesty, the Queen Elizabeth II

I know I have been to a few castles during my stay in UK but I am still not bored of castles.  Each castles is unique in it’s own way.  The next castle we are going to visit is Windsor Castle!

After parking our car, we needed to walk a little up slope to reach the entrance of Windsor Castle.

As usual, stay away from the green lawn.  No stepping on them.

Windsor Castle

How far is Windsor Castle?

It is slightly less than an hour drive from London.  If you are coming from London by train, the fastest way to get to Windsor is from London Paddington to Windsor Central Station and walk a little you will see Windsor Castle.  We were coming from Oxford, took us about an hour to reach here.

Windsor Town

Some shopping arcade just opposite of Windsor Castle, there are few cafes and restaurants also.

Windsor Town

Windsor Castle 

Windsor Castle is a historical castle, a royal palace and a family home. It is  the oldest and largest inhabited castle in the world and has been the family home of British kings and queens for almost 1,000 years!  Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II owns the castle and lives in Windsor Castle, especially during weekends.

Windsor Castle

If you are lucky, you may have a chance to see the Queen and she may do her signature “waving” back to you.  There is a guard at the gate, you can try peep through and see if you can catch a glimpse of the Queen?

Windsor Castle

The Queen’s residence covering about 13 acres of land, first built by William, the conqueror in 11th century.  Windsor Castle has since been home for 39 monarchs.

Normally it is very crowded especially during summer but we were lucky and we did not have to queue long to get our tickets to enter.

Iconic Round Tower in Windsor Castle

The Norman Gate, built by Edward III and remodelled in the 19th century

The Norman Gate in Windsor Castle

Panoramic view from the state apartment in the upper ward

The State Apartments are furnished with some of the finest works of art from the Royal Collection, including paintings by Rembrandt, Rubens and Canaletto. Today Windsor’s State Apartments are frequently used by members of the Royal Family for events and functions.

Iconic Round Tower in Windsor Castle

Windsor Castle

There is a way to know whether the Queen is staying in the castle, there is a flag flies up at the top of the round tower. When you see the Royal standard flag it mean the Queen is in Windsor Castle and if you see the union flag means she is not.

Royal Standard vs Union Flag

Royal Standard Flag on the right and Union flag on the left. (Photo credits from the web)

Windsor Castle

Lower Ward

Windsor Castle

Windsor Castle

Changing of the Guard ceremony

Changing of guard ceremony is a fun tradition to watch during summer ( Apr-Jul), don’t miss this!

St. George’s Chapel

This is an example of Gothic architecture which is also the final resting place of 10 Kings and Queens plus some other royals aristocrats. This chapel has also hosted many royal weddings.

Wedding of Charles and Camilla Parker Bowles took place in St George’s Chapel.

Queen Mary’s Dolls House

This dolls house is the largest and most intricate in the world, built in early 1920’s for Queen Mary. The scale is tiny, at 1:12. Don’t miss this miniature dolls house in Windsor Castle as this is one of the highlight.

The Horseshoe Cloister built in 1480

The Curfew Tower

The Curfew Tower, part of the Lower Ward, built under Henry III and remodelled in the 19th century!

Where to park in Windsor Castle?

There are quite a lot of parking areas around Windsor Castle, only one thing to note, bring lots of GBP 1.00 coins as most places only accept coins

Admission to Windsor Castle :

  • Adult : GBP 20.50
  • Child : GBP 12.00
  • If you have a London pass, you can use it to enter!
  • Operating hour : 9.30 am – 5.30 pm.

Highlights of Windsor Castle

  1. Iconic Round Tower 
  2. Norman Gate
  3. State Apartment
  4. St. George’s Chapel
  5. Queen Mary’s Dolls House
  6. The Horseshoe Cloister
  7. Changing of Guard
  8. The Curfew Tower

Chic Fashion theme : Explore kimono & flower print

Kimono, normally people wear it closed with an “obi”/broad sash worn round your waist. However I prefer to wear it open without an “obi”. Be bold, nothing is right or wrong – no rules! I like the long silk covering my shoulders when the weather get a bit windy at Windsor Castle. An awesome feeling especially when the wind blow on these silky material 🙂

If you like to read more about other castle in UK, please click here :

Castle in Europe, please click here :

Castle in Japan, please click here :

You may like :

Complete UK Self Drive Guide – Itinerary Covering England, Wales & Scotland, the entire Great Britain!


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