The UK is covered with castles in all shapes and sizes and there are a surprising number of independent hostels and bunkhouses within walking distance of a castle.
Who doesn’t love a castle? Their antiquity seems to have power over us and draws us to them. The UK is covered with castles in all shapes and sizes and there are a surprising number of independent hostels and bunkhouses within walking distance of a castle. Some, like
Totters in Caernarfon, are literally next door nestling in the shadows of the historic castle walls, others like Castle Rock Hostel in Edinburgh are a mere street away and the majestic view of the castle greets you from the windows and as you leave the front door. While Craig Y Nos Castle in the Brecon Beacons National Park has a hostel on its grounds and hostel guests are welcome into the castle for hearty meals, cosy evenings by the wood-burning stoves and a free history tour. Castle Rock Hostel with Edinburgh Castle just down the road Why visit a Castle
Castles spark the imagination in everyone. The thick walls and narrow stone stairways instantly transport you to medieval times. The era of knights in shining armour. Children love nothing better than to explore the ancient rooms, race around the ruins and see the weapons on display. Overseas visitors are often overwhelmed by the sheer age, number and variety of castles we have in the UK. Surely one of the best social media posts is one of you in front of an iconic castle. One of the firm favourites is Alnwick Castle in Northumberland which was Hogwarts in the Harry Potter Films and Brancaster Castle in Downton Abbey. With
Alnwick Youth Hostel a few minutes walk from the castle, offering family-friendly 4* self-catering accommodation, there is no excuse not to visit. Alnwick Castle, Northumberland with Alnwick Youth Hostel just 8 minutes walk away.
There are so many iconic castles with independent hostel accommodation nearby. Independent hostels provide great value, self-catering accommodation for individuals, families and groups. With communal kitchens, dining and relaxing areas they are great places for meeting people and are wonderfully flexible as there is normally no minimum length of stay. Why not plan your tour of castles and stay in independent hostels along the way?
Some examples from our network Totters hostel in a 200-year-old 5 floored town house next to Caernarfon Castle, Wales Craig Y Nos Castle Hostel and B&B in the Brecon Beacons National Park, Wales. With a hostel on the grounds, guests are welcome into the castle for hearty meals, cosy evenings by the wood-burning stoves and a free history tour.
If you’re travelling to the Brecon Beacons from the midlands you can divert to the market town of Ledbury. The home of the impressive Eastnor Castle. The castle has plenty to do for everyone and like Craig Y Nos, is a 19th-century revival castle.
Inveraray Castle, on the western shore of Loch Fyne, Argyll, Scotland is just a 7 minute walk from
Inveraray Hostel. This cosy hostel sleeps 22 across 10 rooms and is just one and a half hours drive from Glasgow airport.
While you’re visiting Scottish castles you might want to include visiting the ruins of Muness castle on the Isle of Unst. Unst is the most northerly of the Shetland Isles. Self-catering hostel accommodation can be found at
Gardiesfauld Hostel which is just 1.5 miles away.
The iconic Bamburgh Castle on the Northumberland coast has
Seahouses Hostel close by.
While the majestic ruins of 800 year old Kendal Castle in the Lake District are just 15 minutes walk from Kendal Hostel (currently closed).
The stunning Urquhart Castle on the shores of Loch Ness is the third most visited castle in Scotland. The closest accommodation is
Loch Ness Backpackers Lodge
Tretower Court & Castle in the Brecon Beacons National Park, Wales is a short drive or a scenic walk of 3 miles away from
If it’s a visit to a Royal castle you are dreaming of,
Ballater Hostel and Braemar Lodge Bunkhouse are just a short scenic drive to the Queen’s Scottish residence at Balmoral.
These are just a few ideas. Listed below are all the hostels and bunkhouses in the independent hostel network that are close to a castle. If you love visiting castles, try staying at independent hostels for great value, and friendly, self catering accommodation.
Accommodation near Castles
Fore Street, Tintagel, Cornwall, PL34 0DB
Just a short walk to Tintagel Castle and a 10 min walk to the South West Coast Path, you couldn't want for a better location. Dolphins Backpackers is hosted by John, Leah and their dog Reggie, and you are sure of a super warm welcome. Tintagel offers beautiful beaches close by, plenty of pubs and restaurants and the mystic tale of King Arthur.
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Penbryn Reception, Aberystwyth University, Penbryn, Penglais, SY23 3BY
Aberystwyth University Bunkhouse is on the Wales Coast Path, close to beaches, dramatic walking and white knuckle mountain biking. Aberystwyth has all the attractions of a Victorian seaside town with the added adventure of an ancient castle and thriving nightlife. Accommodation is in single rooms with shared self-catering kitchens and bathrooms. Meals available. Ideal for education trips, conferences or those looking for a base for an outdoor group trip.
Coiltie Farmhouse, East Lewiston, Drumnadrochit, Inverness, IV63 6UJ
This former Highland farmhouse provides warm & friendly hostel accommodation. Ideally situated within walking distance of Loch Ness, Urquhart Castle and the Great Glen Way & with pubs, restaurants & supermarket close by. Residents-only bar. Hiking tours, fishing, watersports, mountain biking can be arranged locally. Whisky & beer tasting by arrangement. Catering for groups of 10+. Pet-friendly by arrangement.
Plas Porth Yr Aur, 2 High Street, Caernarfon, Gwynedd, LL55 1RN
Totters is practically built into the historic castle walls. In the games room of the cellar you will see medieval arches that are part of the castle walls
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24 Richmond Road, Richmond, North Yorkshire, DL10 7HE
Located on a small working farm, just 3 miles east of Richmond, Yorkshire. Brompton on Swale Bunkbarn offers a welcome break from walking or cycling the Coast to Coast. A pot of tea for weary walkers upon arrival and safe storage for bikes makes this bunkhouse especially welcoming. Close to the Yorkshire Dales, Swaledale, Wensleydale, Easby Abbey, Richmond Castle & Ellerton Lakes.
Dogs welcome (on a lead as there are ducks, hens and geese.)
Uyeasound, Unst, Shetland, ZE2 9DW
Gardiesfauld Hostel is on Unst, the most northerly of the Shetland Isles with spectacular cliffs sculpted by the Atlantic Ocean on the west and secluded, sandy beaches on the east with rocky outcrops where seals and otters appear.On the picturesque shore at Uyeasound, this refurbished hostel has good facilities and a relaxed atmosphere. There is a kitchen, dining room, lounge, conservatory and rooms with en suite facilities as well as a garden where you can pitch a tent or park your caravan.
West Mains House, Beal, Berwick upon Tweed, TD15 2PD
Perfectly located for visiting Lindisfarne and the castles and beaches of the North Northumberland coast, Eat & Sleep Lindisfarne sleeps 28 across 5 rooms, one of which is accessible. Eat at the on-site bistro or self-cater in the bunkhouse kitchen. Situated close to St Cuthberts & St Oswalds Way and directly on the Sandstone Way and the Coast and Castles route. There’s secure cycle storage, a drying room & laundry facilities, comfy beds & piping hot showers for the weary adventurers.
Dalmally Road, Inveraray, Argyll, PA32 8XD
This cosy hostel, sleeps 22 across 10 rooms and is just one and a half hour’s drive from Glasgow airport.
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The Hall, Milden, Lavenham, Sudbury, Suffolk CO10 9NY
Comfy, farm stay self-catering in rural, but train-accessible, Suffolk. Sleeps 22 in five bedrooms, including a restored Shepherd’s Hut. Mix of oak bunks & beds. Relax in cosy sitting room; croquet, BBQ, ping-pong & badminton; explore the farm, picnic in a meadow. 20 bikes included in hire or kayak down the River Stour. Go Ape, visit castles, coast, historic towns. Larger groups can also book the Tudor Barn (also in this guide).
In secluded, ancient woodland on the eastern edge of Dartmoor, Blytheswood offers two cosy & peaceful self-catering spaces. The Nest sleeps two in a double bed & The Cabin sleeps two in a double bed + 1 child (2 at a squeeze) for two+ nights. Walk straight from the door to Heltor & Blackingstone Rock or along the River Teign valley to Fingle Bridge & Castle Drogo. Cross stepping stones to Dunsford village. Near Moretonhampstead & Exeter, 30 minutes from beaches & the open moor.
Church Place, Findhorn, Forres, Moray, IV36 3YR
Findhorn Village Hostel is right by the beautiful Moray Coast. Great wildlife sites & the Speyside distilleries are within reach. It provides self-catering accommodation for groups or individuals. It has shared bunkrooms, a two-person room & an en-suite family room. Large communal kitchen/ dining/ living area. A self-contained studio (6 beds) has a small kitchenette & en-suite shower.
Auchlishie Farm, Kirriemuir, Angus DD8 4LS
Outstanding, new, architect-designed bunkhouse situated outside Kirriemuir, at the gateway to the Angus Glens.Perfect for outdoor enthusiasts to experience and enjoy the proximity to the Cairngorms National Park. This eco bunkhouse, with solar panels & air source heat pumps, provides top-quality accommodation for up to 24. The bunkhouse sleeps 20 in one large dorm plus there’s a self-contained flat which sleeps 4 in 2 twin/king-sized double rooms.
Coble Quay, Amble, Northumberland. NE65 0FB
Radcliffes Lodge is a purpose-built hostel overlooking the Marina in the vibrant harbour town of Amble on the Northumberland Coast. It sleeps 48 across 9 en suite rooms, has a large open-plan communal area & oozes quality & style. With the Coast & Castles cycle route & the Northumberland Coastal Path on the doorstep, the Lodge is perfect for walkers, cyclists, & groups of friends & families.
Pyllau Gloewon Farm, Tal-y-Bont, Conwy, Gwynedd, LL32 8YX
Conwy Valley Backpackers is situated on a peaceful organic farm in the heart of the beautiful Conwy Valley, with excellent access to Snowdonia.Centrally heated with a fully equipped self-catering kitchen, log fires and hot showers. Bike/canoe storage and tourist information are available. Local activities include fishing, hiking, white water rafting and mountain biking. Surf Snowdonia is within walking distance and Zip World is a short drive.
2 Queens Road, Dunbar, East Lothian EH42 1JZ
The Dolphin Inn is situated in the centre of the historic seaside town of Dunbar. Just a short walk to the beach and the High Street and with the possibility of trying out a whole range of outdoor activities close by, the hostel is perfect for weekend breaks and family holidays. This characterful hostel sleeps 27 across 11 rooms. Dogs are welcome by arrangement.
Old Red Lion, Bailey Street, Castle Acre, Norfolk, PE32 2AG
Castle Acre has a very special atmosphere and an historic hostel with a peaceful welcome. The village of Castle Acre was an important Norman Town and you still pass through the medieval wall via the bailey gate to reach the village green with its pub, cafe and shop.
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8 Blackfriars St., Edinburgh, EH1 1NE
The High Street Hostel is one of Europe’s best regarded and most atmospheric hostels. It is hugely popular with world travellers. Located just off the historic Royal Mile in a 470 year old building, it is your perfect base for exploring all the city’s many attractions and of course its wonderful nightlife.Providing excellence in location, ambience and facilities, the hostel is highly recommended by more than ten of the world’s top backpacker travel guides. Come along and see for yourself!
Cobbler’s Lane, Swanage, Dorset, BH19 2PX
Cumulus Outdoor Residential Centre is situated in the small seaside town of Swanage on Dorset’s Jurassic Coast. The purpose built centre sits in 6 acres of private grounds and has 4 separate accommodation units sleeping 16,32,32 or 47 which can be hired individually or together. The centre is popular with groups of friends/families, schools, youth groups, DofE & corporate groups. A whole range of outdoor activities are available for your group if required. Dogs welcome with prior arrangement.
Ballater Hostel, Bridge Square, Ballater, AB35 5QJ
Ballater Hostel lies in the centre of Ballater, near Balmoral, on the east side of the Cairngorms National Park. Traditional dorms & private rooms, along with a large open plan kitchen/dining/communal area make a great space to relax . Drying room and cycle storage available. Either book the whole hostel, a room or just a bed with no minimum stay. Excellent facilities, comfortable beds and a warm and friendly welcome awaits you - the kettle is always on!
118-120 Highgate, Kendal, LA9 4HE
Kendal Hostel is situated close to Kendal’s town centre. It is available for exclusive hire only and provides comfortable and affordable accommodation for groups of outdoor enthusiasts, friends, and family.Kendal Hostel provides your group with 40 beds in eleven bedrooms, well-equipped self-catering facilities, a large comfy lounge with log burner, secure bike storage, and a drying room. At the gateway to the Lake District National Park, close to the Dales Way and LEJOG.
Glenbeg, Grantown-on-Spey, Moray, PH26 3NT
Glenbeg Bunkhouse & Bothy are part of the award-winning Cairngorms Activities Centre, situated just outside Grantown-on-Spey in the Cairngorms National Park. The well-equipped bunkhouse sleeps 25 in 3 bedrooms, while the cosy bothy sleeps 6 in one bunkroom.Outdoor activities are available. Aviemore, Speyside Way, Dava Way & the River Spey are all close by.
15 Johnston Terrace, Edinburgh, EH1 2PW
Relax and socialize in the comfort of Castle Rock Hostel.
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34 - 38 Green Batt, Alnwick, Northumberland, NE66 1TU
The interesting Northumberland town of Alnwick is waiting to be explored and has lots of attractions for the whole family.
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45 Ford Street, Moretonhampstead, Dartmoor, Devon, TQ13 8LN
A small, friendly eco-hostel in the centre of Moretonhampstead, Dartmoor National Park. Popular with cyclists, hikers, bikers, wild swimmers, artists and photographers, A beautifully converted stone stable with hot showers, kitchen, courtyard, BBQ & secure bike shed.High open moorland, rocky tors, ancient burial sites, stone circles, woods and clear rivers close by. Moretonhampstead has shops, cafés, art galleries and pubs. On the Cicerone LEJOG, Dartmoor Way and CTC routes.
4-6 Eldon Chambers, Wheeler Gate, Nottingham, NG1 2NS
Off Market Square, right in the centre of Nottingham, Igloo Hybrid offers great value and comfort. With dorms, singles, doubles, triples, and family quarters as well as our posh en suite Shed digs. Rooms and communal areas feature up-cycled furniture and street art murals, with a self-catering kitchen, WiFi, power showers, lockers, lounge & courtyard.
Pantyrathro International Hostel, Llansteffan, Carmarthen, SA33 5AJ
Explore the local culture with your dog at the dog friendly Pantyrathro International Hostel !
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Y Cefn, Ffestiniog, Gwynedd, LL41 4PS
Stay 900 feet above sea level, among the rugged rocks and rural grassland of the Snowdonia mountain tops, that collage together to create a landscape as picturesque as it if was an oil painting...
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The Hall, Milden, Lavenham, Sudbury, Suffolk CO10 9NY
The Tudor Barn offers atmospheric group accommodation on an environmentally friendly working farm in rural Suffolk. Sleeping 25+ (singles/doubles/4 posters) in 4 private rooms plus the huge space of the Tudor Barn where you also feast & relax. The perfect base for group celebrations, reunions or activity breaks. Bikes & Tudor costumes are included. Larger parties can also hire the Old Brooder Bunkhouse (sleeping 22) 100m down the track (also in this guide).
17 Tregrehan Mills, St. Austell, Cornwall, PL25 3TL
Edens Yard takes inspiration from the Camino; even the most self-sufficient traveller needs a recharge and TLC.Need a basecamp for your Cornish adventure? No problem: we are a short leafy lane from the Eden Project and buses that will take you to St Austell’s onward travel hub.Head out with friends, chill out with family. Come find our hostel in the strange landscape and clay trails of mid Cornwall.
Joiners Cottage, Preston, Chathill, Northumberland. NE67 5ES
Nestled in the hamlet of Preston, The Joiners Shop Bunkhouse is just 5 miles from the Northumberland coastline & 7 miles from Alnwick famed for its Castle & Gardens. The charming 19th century building takes groups of up to 18 with one double bed and 16 single pine bunks arranged in sections of 3’s & 5’s. Fully equipped kitchen, spacious dining area, lounge with fire & hot showers.Close to NCN Route 1, Seahouses, Beadnell and the famous coastal castles.
10-14 Castle St, Swansea SA1 1JF
Cwtsh hostel is new, exciting and trend-setting. Situated in the heart of Swansea City Centre, overlooking Castle Gardens, Cwtsh Hostel provides a modern and unique base to explore the city and surrounding areas.Choose from pod-bunk or private accommodation. Electric bike hire and introductory Welsh classes - bendigedig available. Backpackers, explorers, families, party-goers, schools and freelancers are all welcomed.
105 High Street, Edinburgh, EH1 1SG
Royal Mile Backpackers is a small and cosy hostel with its own special character! Perfectly located on the Royal Mile, the most famous street in Edinburgh, Royal Mile Backpackers is the ideal place to stay for the independent traveller.The comfortable beds and cosy common areas will make you feel at home and the friendly staff are always on hand to help you make the most of your time in Edinburgh.
Lower Hardingsdown Farm, Llangennith, Gower, Swansea, SA3 1HT
Overlooking the salt marshes, just 5 miles from Hardingdowns Bunkhouse, this solitary castle is perfect for a peaceful picnic.
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LLanmadoc, Gower, Swansea, SA3 1DE.
Situated on the Gower Peninsular, St Madoc Centre offer superb facilities for groups of between 40 and 81. Set in 76 acres of fields, woodland, headland and coastline, with tennis & volleyball courts, playing fields and a campfire area, it is ideally suited to schools, youth & church groups, corporate events, weddings and friends & family get-togethers. Optional outdoor activities and catered packages available for school groups.
4 Culduthel Road, Inverness. IV2 4AB
An award-wining hostel in the centre of Inverness. Beautifully refurbished with a modern friendly vibe Bazpackers offers travellers & adventurers a choice of small dorms (some female only), private twin/doubles and a self catering family apartment. All linen & towels provided.Fab, kitchen, lounge and garden with BBQ, seating and stunning views.
13 Beaufort Square, Chepstow, NP16 5EP (Car park NP16 5LL)
The Green Man offers reasonable priced rooms, self catering kitchen, bar and communal lounge in a fabulously renovated historic building with the oldest part dating back to 1290!
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6 - 8 Culduthel Road, Inverness, IV2 4AB
The cosy and friendly Student Hotel enjoys panoramic views of the town and the mountains beyond. Your perfect place to unwind, just yards from the city’s varied night-life and a few mins’ walk from bus and train stations. Relax in the fabulous lounge with real log fire and drink as much free tea, coffee & hot chocolate as you like. Visit the beautiful ancient pine forest of Glen Affric or the Culloden Battlefield. Famous Loch Ness lies just a few miles upstream and of course has its own special wild animal.
Gilsland, Brampton, Cumbria, CA8 7DB
Slack House Farm is an organic dairy farm overlooking Birdoswald Roman Fort on Hadrian’s Wall. It is on the NCN 72 cycle trail and close to Hadrian’s Wall National Trail. The bunk-barn has 3 en suite bedrooms of 3,5 and 8 beds. A wood pellet-fired stove gives a warm heart to the kitchen/lounge and provides under-floor heating throughout the barn.Book a bed, a private room or sole use of the whole bunkhouse.
Brecon Road, Penycae, Powys, SA9 1GL
Walk among the ghosts of the past, through the hallways that once inhabited the children of the TB sanatorium, and continue onward into the past as you gaze into the faded grandeur of the famous diva Adalina Patti's elaborate architectural style!
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14 Charlton Street, Llandudno, LL30 2AA
Llandudno Hostel is a Victorian 4* boutique, award-winning hostel where individuals, families & groups (including schools) are welcome all year. Set in the heart of the Victorian seaside town of Llandudno, it’s your perfect base for shopping & exploring many local attractions, including blue flag beaches, dry slope skiing, Zip World, Surf Snowdonia, bronze age copper mine, traditional pier, museums & fishing trips.
Heddon-on-the-Wall, Northumberland, NE15 0EZ
Houghton North Farm, partly built with stones from Hadrian’s Wall is in the beautiful Northumberland countryside right on the Hadrian’s Wall trail, 15 miles from the start. This spacious new build is perfect for groups, individuals or families. The bunkrooms are located around the central courtyard. There is a self-catering kitchen (continental breakfast included). The TV lounge has a log fire and WiFi. Long-term parking, baggage transfer and packed lunches are available on request.
Upper Neeston Farm, Dale Road, Herbrandston, Milford Haven, SA73 3RY
Environmentally sensitive barn conversions close to the Milford Haven Waterway in the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park. Ideal for divers, climbers, walkers or family get-togethers. The four independent 5* lodges have fully fitted kitchens and have access to garden/patio, laundry/drying room, secure storage and ample parking.
9 Gyllyngvase Terrace, Falmouth, Cornwall, TR11 4DL
Relaxed, friendly and clean, Falmouth Lodge is just two minutes’ walk from the Blue Flag Gyllyngvase beach and the South West Coast Path. Only eight minutes’ walk into town with its exotic gardens, art galleries, Maritime Museum, Pendennis Castle and the harbour. Free parking and WiFi. Complimentary tea and coffee. Well-equipped kitchen, lovely dining room and cosy lounge.
Eastern Slade Farm, Oxwich, Gower, Swansea, SA3 1NA
Eastern Slade Barn is a luxury farmhouse conversion on a working farm on the Gower Peninsula. The Gower has glorious beaches, castles and traffic free lanes. The coast path passes through the farm. Port Eynon seaside village is a 30 min walk, while Oxwich Bay with its castle, beach & hotel serving tasty meals is just 20 mins walk. Camping available and weddings/birthdays welcome.