Alnwick Castle

Alnwick Castle, rooted in the Norman period and intimately tied to the Percy family since 1309, has a multifaceted history as the second-largest inhabited castle in the UK. Transcending its medieval origins, the castle stands as a testament to evolving centuries, serving as a military outpost, teaching college, refuge for evacuees, film set, and, most significantly, a family home.

Restored by Anthony Salvin in the mid-19th century, the exterior boasts medieval splendor, while the interior reveals lavish state rooms adorned with an exceptional collection of Italian old masters and sculpture. Set within a Capability Brown landscaped park, Alnwick Castle invites exploration of its extraordinary history, ranging from kingmakers and the gunpowder plot to its captivating architecture and private art collection.

Alnwick Castle, different from other historical sites, remains a family home. Behind its iconic walls lie opulent State Rooms filled with a stunning array of art and furniture collected over the years by the Percy family. The art collection includes works by Canaletto, Titian, and Van Dyck, complemented by impressive displays of Meissen, Chelsea, and Paris porcelain.

Beyond the historical allure, Alnwick Castle offers immersive experiences. In Knight’s Quest, become the knight who slays the dragon or the castle's princess. Dive into medieval life with swordplay, games, and traditional crafts. The castle, renowned as the set for Harry Potter films, Downton Abbey, and The Transformers, adds a cinematic dimension to its rich history.

Harry Potter at Alnwick Castle

Alnwick Castle, steeped in magical history, made its debut as Hogwarts in the autumn of 2000 for Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone. The enchantment continued the following year with the filming of Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets.

Key areas within Alnwick Castle featured in the Harry Potter films include the Outer Bailey, where Harry, Ron, and Hermione had their first broomstick lesson, and where Harry learned the rules of Quidditch. The Inner Bailey witnessed the dramatic crash of the Weasley’s flying car. The iconic Lion Arch served as Hogwarts' entrance and exit, guiding Harry toward the Forbidden Forest and Hagrid’s cabin. The various courtyards provided familiar settings for scenes featuring students and professors traversing to and from Hogwarts classes.

For an extra touch of magic, visitors are encouraged to dress as their favorite characters, from Harry and Hermione to Ron and Professor Dumbledore. Whether clad in full Hogwarts robes or sporting house-colored ties in Ravenclaw, Gryffindor, Hufflepuff, or Slytherin, the choice is yours. Young wizards can even bring magic wands to cast spells or don a red and yellow scarf a la Harry Potter.

To enhance the Hogwarts experience, a re-watch of the first two Harry Potter films before the visit is recommended. One of the highlights at Alnwick Castle is the daily broomstick training classes held in the Outer Bailey, the very site where Harry learned to fly. Under the guidance of a resident wizarding professor, aspiring wizards and witches can learn mounting, dismounting, acceleration, and cornering. After mastering the basics, families can capture the magical moment with a photo opportunity of soaring through the air.

Included with admission to Alnwick Castle, broomstick training slots are available on a first-come, first-served basis. To secure your spot, it's recommended to book your slot upon arrival, ensuring a whimsical and enchanting experience for all.

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