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Visiting Muncaster Castle

There are so many reasons to visit Muncaster Castle that we can’t list them all in a short article, but here are a few of the diverse attractions on view. First, the castle sits in the middle of England’s loveliest countryside, the Lake District. You will find unbelievable views and glorious gardens that are marvelous at any time of the year, but go in Spring for what could be the most beautiful sights you have ever beheld.

The amazing diversity of flora results in part from the nature of climate, soil and geography, and partly from the introduction of seeds and plantings from the Far East and other areas, gathered by travellers and brought to the UK where they have flourished in this virtual Garden of Eden. In the woods surrounding the castle wildlife also flourishes, with many species that are endangered and rarely seen anywhere else in the country.

From the 1840’s when rhododendrons were first introduced here, they have become one of the natural wonders of the UK. They vie with camellias, magnolias and daffodils in a riot of color that is not confined to neat beds, but cascades down ravines and hills with wild abandon. From mid-April until mid-May you will find Bluebell heaven in the high woods above the castle.

Plan to walk and marvel at the vibrant colours and breathtaking views, and be aware that some of the trails are quite rugged, though a good number can be negotiated by wheelchairs. Be sure to visit the Himalayan Gardens, where you’re standing almost at sea level but can easily imagine that you’re 3,350 metres up on a mountainside halfway across the world.

The interior of Muncaster Castle is regarded as a treasury of art and antiques, complete with its own legends and ghosts; it’s said to be the the most haunted castle in England. In fact if your visit happens between 27 October and 3 November, Halloween week is frightfully delightful for kids – and there’s a Scary Maze so scary it’s not recommended for anyone under twelve.

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