The castle is used today for student housing and other University activities, so tourists can only view a small portion of it by hourly guided tours. Tickets can be purchased at the World Heritage center and are reasonably priced. Our tour guide was energetic and knowledgeable, but the group was a little too large to squeeze into some of the smaller spaces.
Along with the cathedral, the castle is the main site at the center of historic Durham, but because you can only see about four rooms (two chapels, a hallway, and the main hall), the tour is a little underwhelming. Certainly worth doing if you are visiting Durham... but don't expect a full castle experience like you have at some of Britain's large rural estates.
So no complaints about the experience, but the castle itself is only modestly interesting. If you are waiting for your tour to start, check out the free exhibits inside the university's library.
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