There are few kids that would balk at the chance to explore a mighty medieval castle during their summer holidays. Berkeley Castle, with its captivating history and daily summer holiday activities makes a perfect family day out, just half an hour from central Bristol. 

Here are 6 reasons why Berkeley Castle has summer holidays sorted for families:

Berkeley Castle summer holidays

Image - summer holidays at Berkeley Castle

Discover amazing historical facts

Within Berkeley Castle’s ancient stone walls lie tales of intrigue, bloodthirsty royal murder, regal visitors, dungeons, extraordinary people and dramatically significant historical events.

See the cell where Edward II was imprisoned and murdered in 1327 and shiver at the stinking dungeon hole in which prisoners were kept. Walk in the footsteps of royalty - King Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn honeymooned here after their secret marriage and Queen Elizabeth 1 was also a guest, albeit most probably an unpopular one as she shot many of the Earl’s prize stags whilst she was at the Castle.

The Berkeley family have lived here for almost 900 years, so there are plenty of stories to tell!

Berkeley Castle

Image - Berkeley Castle

Fuel young imaginations

Outside in the exquisite gardens, children can play make-believe as medieval heroines and heroes of old with have-a-go archery, sword-fighting displays and a period costume dressing-up area.  Youngsters can also join in with free arts and crafts workshops, traditional outdoor games, falconry, jester circus skills, a treasure hunt and story-telling. You may even spot King Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn wandering around! All are included in the ticket price. 

Check the Castle’s ‘What’s On’ page to find out more...

Berkeley Castle archery

Image - archery at Berkeley Castle

Explore the extensive grounds

Let little ones go wild with a good old run around in the gardens.   Pick up a Jester Dragon Hunt quiz sheet and help the jester to find eight baby dragons hidden around the grounds, don’t forget to pick up your chocolate treat once you’ve found them all. 

Go exploring and discover the Rose Walk, Lily Pond, The Grove and truly delightful tropical butterfly house. Inside the jungle-like oasis, it’s teeming with around 42 species of butterflies and moths – if you’re lucky, one might land on you!

Berkeley Castle lilypond

Image - Berkeley Castle lilypond, credit Angharad Paull

Get great value for families

With the sheer number of activities on offer, plus the enchanting appeal of the place and costing only £30 for a family of four, Berkeley Castle is something of a sight-seeing bargain. Gift aid your admission for no additional charge and return for free for up to one year – a no-brainer if you are based locally, or a great excuse to return to the area if you are just visiting. Grandparents also get free entry with a paying grandchild every Monday throughout the school holidays. So what’s stopping you?!

Berkeley Castle grandparents

Image - exploring Berkeley Castle

Take afternoon tea in a Yurt

With all that adventuring, you’ll want to replenish energy levels. A pretty tea room set in a Yurt within the stunning Walled Garden serves coffee, light lunches, children’s meals and afternoon tea.

Yurt tea room

Image - Yurt tea room, Berkeley Castle

Easy to get to

If travelling by car, the castle is only 10 minutes away from junction 14 of the M5 and only 30 minutes from central Bristol. Direct trains go from Bristol Temple Meads and Bristol Parkway to Cam and Dursley station and take 33 minutes, then it’s around a 10-15 minute taxi ride to the castle. Or you can hop on the number 88 bus from Bristol Bus Station –it’s roughly 30 mins to Berkeley village, then just a gentle ten-minute walk to the castle.

Berkeley Castle_panoramic

Image - Berkeley Castle


Berkeley Castle
Aerial shot of Berkeley Castle Bristol

Berkeley Castle is a beautiful and historic Castle, begun in 1117 and still remains the home of the Berkeley family. It is a great day-out for all the family, hosting special events on bank holidays and during school holidays