LEEDS CASTLE

Old Mar 19th, 2005, 06:46 PM
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LEEDS CASTLE

Hi Leaving for London in 2 days, yet still have WAY too much planned for the 5 days we'll be there. Has anyone gone out to Leeds Castle in just half a day? It looks worth seeing, and DH does want to see a castle... but would it be possible to take a bus or train there from near the London Eye and be back in only 5 hours? Thanks so much.
Sue
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Old Mar 19th, 2005, 06:58 PM
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No, it isn't worth seeing. The grounds are nice but the castle itself is boring.

What was it about Leeds in particular that interested your DH? There are lots of places around London that you can visit for half a day. If you tell us what you're interested in, you'll get lots of suggestions.
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Old Mar 19th, 2005, 07:06 PM
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Thanks rickmav. DH just wants to see a castle, so any castle that is conveniently located (we'll have no car) is OK. I'd rather go to Warwick but it would take longer I think. We went to Ireland last year, and the one castle we get to in our schedule, was closed just for that week! So, time to try again. He's a runner and is registered for a race along the Serpentine, but next on his list is a castle. Any ideas?
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Old Mar 19th, 2005, 07:14 PM
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Well - for one, the Tower of London is a castle.

Hampton Court Palace isn't a "castle" - but is well worth a 1/2 day. And of course there is Windsor Castle . . . . .

I agree - Leeds is really not much. It is very popular - but that is because it markets itself EVERYWHERE - in travel magazines, in every tube escalator, all over.

The grounds are lovely - but as castles go it is pretty much 3rd rate.
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Old Mar 19th, 2005, 07:33 PM
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Stick with the Tower of London, it retains most of the things you would expect to see in a Castle. Ramparts, battlements, merlons, portcullis, instruments of torchure, prison, towers, stone spiral staircases, arrow loops,chapel, places of execution and the Crown Jewels to boot.
Sadly Leeds Castle lost most of its fortifications centuries ago so like many former castles and abbeys (that still retain their original title) they feel and look more akin to a private house than the former status bestowed on them.
Warwick is 'castle shaped' that is why people rate it above some other locations, it is also alot of fun thanks to the input of Madame Tussauds. It hasn't distracted attention away from the structure as the wax exhibits are low key displays in areas of the castle built at a later period.
By the way, Leeds Castle has a better maze than Hampton Court, because the Grotto at the end is so much more of a reward of completion than a simple gap in a hedge.
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Old Mar 19th, 2005, 07:55 PM
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If time is a big factor, I would pick Windsor Castle over Leeds Castle. As mentioned, the grounds at Leeds Castle are beautiful, but in March they won't be at their best anyway.

If DH is interested in the fortification aspects of a castle, the Tower of London would fit the bill moreso than either Leeds Castle or Windsor Castle.

Windsor Castle is about a 40 minute train trip from Waterloo Station (near the London Eye.)
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