We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Interesting Partly Restored Castle”
Review of Bolton Castle

Bolton Castle
Book In Advance
More Info
and up
Private Group Yorkshire Dales Day Trip from York
More Info
and up
The Yorkshire Dales Tour from Windermere
More Info
and up
Yorkshire Dales Day Trip from York
Ranked #1 of 17 things to do in Leyburn
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
Owner description: Now one of the country’s best preserved medieval castles, Bolton was originally built, by Sir Richard Le Scrope, to rival the finest and most luxurious homes in the land. Completed in 1399, its scars bear testament to over 600 years of fascinating history including involvement in the Pilgrimage of Grace, Mary Queen of Scot’s imprisonment and a Civil War siege. Bolton Castle was a luxurious family home as well as a defensive fortress and, despite being partially ‘slighted’ by Cromwell’s’ men during the Civil War, the Castle is preserved in outstanding condition with many interesting rooms and features to discover including the Old Kitchens, Dungeon, Solar, Nursery, Armory, Great Chamber and Mary Queen of Scots’ bedroom. About one third of the rooms are fully intact and the rest of the Castle is almost completely accessible giving visitors great insight into its turbulent past. You will find a raft of sights, sounds and smells which bring the castle to life and make for a truly memorable visit. There is something for everyone to enjoy as you discover what life was really like during the Castle’s heyday through our authentic room displays, wonderful falconry experience, archery demonstrations, children’s trails and costumes and hands on medieval games and activities. Daily Activities 11.30: Bird of Prey Display 13.45: Archery Display 15.00: Bird of Prey Display 16.00: Wild Boar Feeding Time Tea Room Situated in the beautiful and atmospheric Guest Hall, our tea room serves a selection of homemade and locally produced hot meals, soups, sandwiches, snacks and freshly baked cakes. Afternoon tea is served from 2.30pm and our Yorkshire Tapas board is always a popular choice with visitors. Experience a friendly welcome and excellent service in the castle’s impressive Guest Hall, where visitors have enjoyed hospitality for over six hundred years. Gardens The Castle gardens have been restored along medieval lines and include a well-stocked herb garden, rose garden, walled vineyard, bowling green and maze as well as the birds of prey on their weathering ground and our bee observation hive (seasonal). Children will love finding the centre of the maze or trying our Garden activity trails.
Manchester, United Kingdom
Level 3 Contributor
13 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Interesting Partly Restored Castle”
Reviewed 5 May 2014

We visited the castle in early May 2014 for an afternoon. The castle is an imposing building even from a distance and once your inside from the courtyard you really get a feel for just how big it would have been.

Exploring the castle can be done at your own pace and without any set routes you can just wander around and take it all in snapping pictures as you go. Each room/area has informative signs and information posters explaining there use and history and it is both interesting and educational.

A must see is the view from the top of the castle though not for those who don't like heights. The view of the rolling hills seems to go on forever and is a great photo opportunity.

My wife and I ate in the cafe and the food was good quality, with a good service and the prices were reasonable. After paying a visit to the gift shop I felt it is mostly geared towards children with some quirky items though a little over priced for some of the goods.

We didn't visit the gardens or bird shows but did see the pigs and thought how the kids would enjoy these aspects the most.

Visited May 2014
1 Thank Thomas B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Write a Review

740 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Polish first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Sudbury, Canada
Level 6 Contributor
134 reviews
34 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 101 helpful votes
“Enjoyed our self tour.....”
Reviewed 2 May 2014

We enjoyed our self tour of the castle and the birds of prey demo, but I did not appreciate the public chastising that I received from the bird handler for attempting to do a video. A pre-show mention would have solved the problem. We did not eat or drink here so cannot comment on that.

Visited October 2013
Thank SpitfireLC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Mature traveller
Level 5 Contributor
51 reviews
21 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
“History coming alive.”
Reviewed 27 April 2014 via mobile

Myself and my husband have just visited here and what a great place. You can feel the history of it as you walk around. Even in the half ruined parts you are able to see what it would have looked like. The surrounding gardens are well tended also. We didn't go to the tea rooms so can't comment on them, but all in all a good half day out..

Visited April 2014
Thank alicia_isthree
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hull, England
Level 4 Contributor
35 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
“A little bit of history”
Reviewed 26 April 2014

A morning spent at Bolton Castle was enjoyed by all.The children aged 3 and 5 enjoyed exploring the castle. My grandson particularly enjoyed the archery. The birds were spectacular if a little naughty. Cafeteria very pricey take a picnic, Would recommend a visit

Visited April 2014
1 Thank Pam F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Pickering, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
36 reviews
14 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 31 helpful votes
“Good beyond my expectations”
Reviewed 23 April 2014

We visited Bolton castle on a recent trip to the dales. We live in Pickering which has a castle which is basically a ruin so when we parked up I was expecting the kids to run around the place in about half an hour then moan they were bored. I couldn't have been more wrong.

There were some special Easter based events on so we had two trails to do - one which forced us to thoroughly explore the whole castle and one which meant we had to do the whole maze.

There were some other activities on and the children quite happily spent 20 minutes making crowns.

We took a picnic lunch which we ate in the car park but we had hot drinks and cakes at the end of our visit. The cake was lovely.

There were also a number of demonstrations on through the day so we got to see an excellent falconry display and also a talk about archery. Special mention must go to Lindsay the falconer whose passion for her topic was infectious.

Visited April 2014
Thank heppers
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

Travellers who viewed Bolton Castle also viewed

Middleham, North Yorkshire
Aysgarth, Yorkshire Dales National Park
Leyburn, North Yorkshire

Been to Bolton Castle? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Owners: What's your side of the story?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing