How many floors is Warwick Castle

20 of the most beautiful castles in the UK

There are hundreds of palaces and castles in Britain - from huge fortresses overlooking the coast to royal residences that are still inhabited today, they are reminiscent of the island's eventful past. We present 20 of the most beautiful castles and palaces here.

West of London is the oldest and largest inhabited castle in the world, which has been used as a royal residence for around 950 years. Windsor Castle was constructed by William the Conqueror in the 11th century. Today the castle is used regularly by Queen Elizabeth II as a weekend residence as well as for state events and royal weddings. A round tower dominates the skyline and sits enthroned on the oldest part of the castle. In St George’s Chapel you will find the Order of the Garter - an order of knights dating back to the reign of Edward III. going back in 1348.

Warwick Castle, an imposing 1,100 year old fortress in the heart of the Midlands, offers a taste of medieval British life. Here you can drive under the impressive portcullis of the castle, stroll along the fortress walls, view the archery exhibitions and explore the 26 hectare landscaped gardens. Children can step back in time in the Horrible Histories Labyrinth or book Castle Dungeon to unlock some of Warwick's darkest secrets with the help of live actors and special effects.

Once a royal residence and notorious prison, the Tower of London is a 1,000 year old World Heritage Site. The imposing fortress now houses a collection of more than 23,000 dazzling gemstones - the crown jewels! In addition, the Yeoman Warders, often known as Beefeaters, have guarded the tower since the Tudor period.

Highclere Castle in Hampshire, known from Downton Abbey, provided the setting for four seasons of the show as well as the hit movie. Originally a medieval palace, Highclere was rebuilt by Sir Charles Barry in the mid-19th century. In addition to guided tours of the numerous rooms, including the setting that is in the film Downton Abbey