visiting ludlow castle and town

Visiting Ludlow Castle and exploring the market town

After our Tenby holiday, we detoured to Ludlow on the way home. N had wanted to visit Ludlow Kitchen and farm shop, hence the stop there. It meant we had some time to eat out there and explore the town. Ludlow Castle was on our list to visit.

visiting ludlow castle and town

We’d already popped into Ludlow the evening before to get our bearings and worked out where we wanted to explore properly in the morning. The castle walls looked gorgeous as the sun was heading down.

outside ludlow castle with sunset over the walls

After an early breakfast at the hotel, we headed into Ludlow for a walk around. The market was on Fridays so we had a mooch, then checked out some of the houses and architecture.

The buildings are beautiful, from different eras.  There are lots of blue plaques so we spent some time walking around finding out about the history 

black and white tudor front buildings in ludlow
tudor frontages of shops at ludlow
ludlow museum and tudor frontages
georgian brick house in ludlow market square
gates and history sign at Dinham House

We also went on a walk around the back of the castle, meeting some dog walkers who’d been all the way down to the river. It looked like a steep walk back up, and after a few days of a lot of walking, we decided to leave that walk. Looking down from the castle tower, we were able to see the views though, and quite a nice looking playground. So if you’ve got more time to spend, it might be worth walking along down to the river.

bluebells outside ludlow castle
outer castle walls

Ludlow Castle

Once the castle opened we were in. We had a simple map provided, but decided against paying for a more detailed guide (there is also a 50p summary guide too as well as the full one). I know that N wouldn’t give me time to read everything as we were going round. There are some information boards as you go round so that was plenty for us.

ludlow castle board
the inner court information board at ludlow castle

I hadn’t realised it would be so large, but it’s worth an hour or so of your time.  We enjoyed walking around, and finding our way up inside the narrow spiral staircases in the towers to oversee every direction.

castle overlooking the dry moat at ludlow castle
going over the drawbridge at ludlow castle
old ruined walls of the inner bailey at ludlow castle

There’s plenty of places to see and find out about with history from different ages since the castle was first built in Medieval times, although it’s now in ruins.

After Walter De Lacy arrived with William the Conqueror’s army in 1066, his sons started building the castle. The crown held the castle between 16th and 17th centuries apart from during the Englist Civil war.  It then became more of a stately home than royal castle.

The Judge’s lodgings were interesting to read about, and how the legalities of the town were fixed and ruled. There’s also the interesting history of the circular Chapel of St Mary Magdalene.

overlooking ludlow castle from the tower
circular chapel ruins at ludlow castle
ludlow castle tower through an archway
climbing to the top of a tower
view over the river thime

We spent a surprising 1 1/2 hours at Ludlow Castle, which was more than N anticipated. He enjoys finding out about history, so there was plenty to imagine and find out while there.

sitting on a giant wooden throne at ludlow castle

Facilities at Ludlow Castle

The toilets were clean and fine, there’s also a small gift shop where we were able to look up our surname and find out a bit more about it for free with the help of the lady in the shop (I do love finding out about that kind of thing).

We didn’t stop to get a drink but there’s a small cafe, and an art gallery.  You can also stay in one of the 3 apartments.

There’s picnic benches or plenty of grass to have a picnic if you want, and for younger children they have seasonal trails (an Easter one was on when we were there), and there’s a castle style play area near the entrance.

playground at ludlow castle

If you’re in the area, Ludlow Castle is definitely worth a visit for all ages. We paid £12 to go into the castle, and a family entrance is only £21.

There’s plenty of parking in Ludlow, although on market day the car parks get busy. We parked near the library which is only 50p per hour pay and display. If you need to park closer, there’s also a small car park just off the marketplace.

Have you ever been? What other castles would you recommend visiting?

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