Nearly 900 years after the King Henry’s first footsteps
Rochester Castle from the bottom of Boley Hill
Passing by Rochester Castle
Kent coastal road trip
Empowering the Archbishop
Ensuring that Rochester Castle was kept in safe hands, King Henry I (William the Conqueror’s fourth son) permanently entrusted the castle to the priesthood.
Rochester Castle from the river
Rochester Castle still stands after 900 years
Strolling up to the approach of Rochester Castle is astonishing. The tranquil grounds surrounding the Norman Tower are free to enter, and if you wish can just admire the castle from the outside.
The Keep from the grounds
Visit some of Kent’s Historic Towns, Villages & Cities
The skies the limit
Immediately you’ll notice the interior floors have all since disappeared. Way above, you can see birds soaring in the sky beyond the ramparts.
The interior walls within the tower have stood since the 17th-century. You can still make out the rooms’ layout and what they were potentially used for centuries ago.
Rochester Castle is one of over 400 historic places with free access to English Heritage members.
If you're planning on visiting the area then it's well worth considering, as Upnor Castle is only a few miles away.
Can you imagine the scurrying footsteps?
We encompass the whole castle, winding our way up, higher and higher within the fortress and head out onto the battlements to the wall-walk.
I’m not too sure if I would like to be here on my own after dark….
As history has previously told us, relationships between the monarchy and the Archbishops of Canterbury have been a bit turbulent at times. Particularly with Henry II and the then Archbishop of Canterbury, Thomas Becket, who was executed in Canterbury Cathedral by four of the King’s knights.
Kent rural road trip
The 1215 siege of Rochester Castle
However, in the early 13th-century new disputes between King John and the Archbishop culminated in the famous siege of 1215.
Rebels had taken control of Rochester Castle, and the King wanted it back. He therefore, laid siege to Rochester Castle with his army and continually bombarded them.
The round tower
An interesting read
If you're intrigued by Kent's weird and wonderful history, or all unusual stories around the county, then take a peek at "Kent's Strangest Tales".
You won't be able to put it down, you can pick it up for your Kindle or in good old paperback.
Head to the rooftop of Rochester Castle
Although you can no longer tread upon the floorboards of former Kings, you can certainly climb the turrets and enjoy the fantastic views across the River Medway.
Wind your way up and up through the spiralling towers stepping upon the ancient stones that lead you to the rooftop. The views across Rochester and beyond are incredible.
Rochester Castle Keep is the tallest building of its kind in Europe and stands at 125ft (38 metres) high.
As you spiral around the towers and keep popping out at each level, take a stroll around, you’ll appreciate how the castle layout would have been centuries ago.
Discover more in Rochester
Inside Rochester Castle
Map, guides and more
When you’re nurturing the seed of a road trip, plotting your destinations across a paper map just brings the adventure to life. Whether it’s the touchy-feely aspect of the map or the rustling sound of mastering the art of origami while trying to fold it away, I’m not too sure. Nonetheless, the good old Ordnance Survey guys and gals always come up trumps.
Take a look at the vast array of maps you can choose from.
Strolling Rochester Castle ramparts
The River Medway
How to get there
Discover Rochester Castle gardens
Rochester Castle from the moat
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