The castle in Rochester is literally across the street from the cathedral, and their histories are linked. It is a Norman castle, established shortly after the Norman conquest of 1066, although the current keep and fortifications were built by Bishop Guldulf (same guy who built the current cathedral building — he was busy!) in the late Twelfth Century. Historians consider it one of the best preserved, biggest, and oldest castle keeps in all of England (and France!). Pretty cool.
The walls no longer go all the way around as they once did, so it is easy to just walk up the road and into the castle grounds. There are houses on one side, where the fortified wall used to be.
We went into the keep, which is run by English Heritage. Just up a few stairs (with the stroller….) and in we went.
I had all kinds of vertigo whilst climbing around the stairs and walkways inside!
I certainly can’t imagine scaling this wall…
The inside was chock-a-block with Norman arches. And pigeons.
And narrow passageways.
There was one tower with a makeshift roof set on top. Inside was an exhibit about the history of the castle.
We had lovely views from each level as we climbed and climbed.
But especially from the top!
The kids did great with all the stairs, and the heights didn’t seem to bother them at all. They never complained about having to climb, and were excited to see all the different parts of the castle. They were a bit disappointed that we didn’t find a dragon, though. So we got them some ice cream when we got back to the castle grounds below the keep.