Information Update from Highclere Castle July 2nd 2020

As with Royal Palaces and other Great Houses, Highclere closed on March 23rd. We are now, however, very much looking forward welcoming guests who have booked tickets for our Mid-Summer Guided Tours on the 7th & 9th of July and the start of our Public Opening Summer Season starting the 12th July. Please do see our Summer welcome information

Many thanks to all of you who have transferred your tickets to a future date or accepted vouchers on your Highclere Castle account. We are very grateful for your support and look forward to seeing you in the future. The health of all our staff and visitors is very important to us and Highclere's team is beginning to return to prepare the Castle for visitors.

We will continue to update our website and social media as per government advice. 

During the autumn we will have a series of tours and events every weekend and through the week which we are continually adding to. Please see here for further information.

We wish you well,

The Earl and Countess of Carnarvon


The first written records of the estate date back to 749 when an Anglo-Saxon King granted the estate to the Bishops of Winchester. Bishop William of Wykeham built a beautiful medieval palace and gardens in the park. Later on, the palace was rebuilt as Highclere Place House in 1679 when it was purchased by Sir Robert Sawyer, the direct ancestor of the current Earl of Carnarvon.  In 1842, Sir Charles Barry, who also designed the Houses of Parliament, transformed Highclere House into the present day Highclere Castle.

During the First World War, Highclere Castle was converted into a hospital for wounded soldiers run by the 5th Countess of Carnarvon. Throughout the Second World War, Highclere Castle was home to  children evacuated from London.

There are between 250 and 300 rooms in the Castle Saloon and during your tour you will explore the main state rooms so familiar from "Downton Abbey". You will see some of the bedrooms after which you will follow the stairs down to the cellars and old staff quarters where you will find the Egyptian Exhibition, celebrating the 5th Earl of Carnarvon's discovery of the tomb of Tutankhamun.