Castles and heritage sites

Satisfy your curiosity, become the king of the castle or simply escape to another age for the day with a stop at one of Bude’s castles or ancient heritage sites. Perhaps you might like to see the bones of an ancient Hill Fort, or get a glimpse of the region’s intriguing history? All of our selected locations are both interesting but also inexpensive places to visit, in many cases representing free days out in Cornwall.

Bude Castle (EX23 8LG)
This distinctive looking site offers plenty to guests whatever the weather. Free to enter and packed with things to discover, you can expect quirky local history and eye-catching art on display. Whether you seek answers on local wildlife, Bude heritage or geology the exhibits and galleries here are a treasury of information. Highlights include wonderful railway nostalgia, along with naval and military history. Antique pistols and figureheads from wrecked ships will appeal to your inner pirate, while the top notch coffee and homemade cakes are also worth investigation. Especially welcome as a rainy day attraction in Bude. More Info at: or call 01288 353576

Did you know? Bude inventor Sir Goldsworthy Gurney created the original and striking “Bude Light” for his residence, Bude Castle. Brilliant brightness was achieved by injecting a stream of oxygen into an oil flame, while mirrors and prisms reflected light around the interior. His system was used by the Houses of Parliament for sixty years prior to electricity. Today you can still see a replica Bude Light in London’s Trafalgar Square, while you’ll also find an interpretive sculpture opposite Bude Castle, built to mark the millennium.

Helsbury Castle, Michaelstow, Bude (SX 0838 7959) An Iron Age hill fort, comprising a single bank and external ditch.

Kilkhampton Castle (aka Penstowe Castle), Kilkhampton, nr. Bude (SS 24314 11584) What these Cornish castle remains lack in size, they makes up for in intrigue. Dating back to Norman times, it is certainly worth a look as part of a local walk.

Warbstow Bury Hill Fort, Warbstow, nr Bude (SX 202 907) This large, double ringed hill fort is the second largest such site in the county and probably the best preserved. Splendid views and plenty of intrigue.


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