5 incredible real-life castles you can actually stay in

Ashford Castle in Ireland. (Aervisions)

When we think of castles, we often think of royalty, or maybe even some fairytale Disney movie -- but always some extravagant place, and certainly not one in which we’d be able to stay.

Except now, there are plenty of castles around the world where you can stay.

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Take a peek at just a handful of them, listed below.

1. Kasteel Engelenburg, in the Netherlands

It is documented that as far back as 1591, royalty has stayed here, though the building had already been there for a couple decades prior.

It was then destroyed during the 80-year war (1568-1648) but was rebuilt by 1641, and the most extensive changes, to date, took place in 1828.

It was in 1910 when the new owner, Earl van Citters, was appointed Governor of the Province by Her Majesty the Queen. He made the homestead suitable for offices and it served in official functions, as well.

In April 1945, just before the end of WWII, prisoners were kept there. Germans then occupied the house for some time, but beginning in the 1970s, the house stood empty for more than 10 years.

It wasn’t until 1988 when the private residence was refurbished and converted into a country hotel, restaurant and golf course.

It now offers 41 en suite bedrooms, along with gardens, dining, golfing and more on a sprawling estate.

Learn more about it, or book a room, by clicking here.

2. Amberley Castle, in England

The land on which the castle stands was gifted to Bishop Wilfrid in 683 AD, according to the castle’s website, and its current buildings owe its origins to a hunting lodge built in 1103.

Talk about some history.

Over the next several centuries, the lodge transformed and exchanged hands many times. King Charles II was even involved at one point.

In 1989, the castle was converted to a hotel. If you enjoy history, read the castle’s full story here.

Now, there are only 19 bedrooms, but each is unique in design, furnished with antiques and fine fabrics.

Check out the hotel’s beautiful gallery here.

You can learn more about the castle and all it has to offer by clicking or tapping here.

3. Castello di Pavone, in Italy

This ancient fortress dates back to the ninth century, but the castle itself dates from the 14th century, when it served as protection from invasions from the north, according to Castle and Palace Hotels.

It’s worth noting that in 850, a Romanesque church was built in the inner courtyard.

It has been owned by King Arduino and the Bishop of Ivrea, among others.

It was restored at the end of the 19th century and eventually transformed into a hotel.

It now accommodates 300 guests and has restaurants, beautiful gardens and views -- and did we mention that some claim the castle is lucky?

According to the Castello di Pavone website, it is said that it “transmits luck, love and prosperity to all those who stay there, even if for a short time.”

That sounds enticing, doesn’t It?

Learn more about staying at the castle by clicking here.

4. Ashford Castle, in Ireland

This 800-year-old castle is quite remarkable, and once was the home of the Guinness family.

It has changed hands many times over the years, but in the last decade, the castle has been refurbished to bring back its former glory.

It has been voted not only one of the best hotels in Ireland, but one of the the top 50 resort properties in Europe. And it has recently been recognized as a Forbes five-star hotel, the only one with such a status in Ireland, according to the Ashford Castle website.

The castle is located on 350 acres of manicured gardens, with access to forests and woodland with birdlife, all overlooking the Lough Corrib, the largest lake within the Republic of Ireland.

There are 83 rooms, suites and Hideaway Cottage at the castle, as well as restaurants, a wellness spa, shopping and more.

Click here to learn more or to book lodging.

5. Ruthin Castle, in Wales

The (documented) history of this castle goes back to 1277, according to the Ruthin Castle website.

If you feel like diving into some history on the castle, there are some incredibly interesting stories here that involve names you might recognize -- we’ll totally name-drop Anne Boleyn, Henry VIII and Mary I, aka Bloody Mary.

Rest assured, it has seen some things in its days.

Now, the castle that has gone through much, is a hotel and spa for anyone and everyone to enjoy.

It consists of 54 elegant bedrooms, fascinating grounds and gardens to explore, a spa, gym and much more. Dogs are also welcome to stay at the hotel, in permitted rooms.

Click here to learn more about the staying inside this storied castle.

Have you stayed in a castle before? Which one? Was it amazing or lackluster? We’d love to hear about it in the comment section below.

About the Author

Dawn Jorgenson, Graham Media Group Branded Content Managing Editor, began working with the group in April 2013. She graduated from Texas State University with a degree in electronic media.

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