Mevagissey harbour  Visiting Cornwall Logo - background is part of Bodmin Moor as seen from Jamaica Inn at Altarnun. The road in the picture is the main A30 through Cornwall. Flag of St Piran, the patron saint of Cornwall 

Guide to Castles in the County of Cornwall which are open to the public

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  Cromwell's Castle, Tresco, Isles of Scilly English Heritage)
Standing on a rocky promontory guarding the lovely anchorage between Bryher and Tresco, this round tower is one of the few surviving Cromwellian fortifications in Britain, built after the conquest of the Royalist Scillies in 1651.
  King Charles's Castle, (English Heritage), Tresco, Isles of Scilly
The ruins of a mid 16th century coastal artillery fort, later garrisoned by Civil War Royalists.
  Pendennis Castle (English Heritage) Overlooking Falmouth, with superb views across the Fal Estuary. Throughout its 450 year history Pendennis Castle has played a vital role in protecting these shores from invasion. Today, visitors can see how the Castle developed from the days of Henry VIII to the coastal defences of the Second World War. At noon in July and August the noonday gun is fired. Secret defences, include the Second World War Half Moon Battery. Explore the underground magazines and tunnels.

  Launceston Castle (English Heritage) Launceston Castle is set on the high motte of a stronghold built soon after the Norman Conquest. It is not only an imposing fortress dominating the main routes to Cornwall, but was famously used as a jail for George Fox, founder of the Quaker movement, during the reign of Charles II. Visit the exhibition which traces its 1,000-year history, featuring fascinating finds from excavations at the castle. As the venue for the County Assizes and Jail, the castle witnessed the trials and hangings of numerous criminals, with the last execution recorded in 1821.

  Restormel Castle near Lostwithiel (English Heritage) Surrounded by a deep moat and perched on a high mound, the huge circular shell-keep of this Norman castle survives in remarkably good condition. Built as a symbol of wealth and status, and once home to Edward, the Black Prince, it offers splendid views over the surrounding countryside and the River Fowey. It last saw military action during the English Civil War in 1644. The castle grounds make a marvellous picnic spot.

  St Catherine's Castle (English Heritage), St Catherine's Point, Fowey.
One of a pair of small artillery forts built by Henry VIII in the 1530s to defend Fowey Harbour, consisting of two storeys with gun ports at ground level.
  St Mawes Castle (English Heritage) Dating from 1545, St Mawes Castle is the most perfectly preserved of Henry VIII's coastal fortresses. It was built to counter the invasion threat from Europe, working in partnership with its twin castle, Pendennis, across the other side of the River Fal. The castle quickly fell to a land based attack from Parliamentarian forces in 1646 and was not properly refortified until the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

  St.Michaels Mount in Mount's Bay opposite Marazion. The jewel in Cornwall's crown, this magical island has a church, a medieval castle (home of the St Aubyn family for over 300 years), an exotic garden clinging to the steep flanks, and an ancient harbour where you will find shops, restaurants and an audio-visual presentation on the history of the Mount.
Access from Marazion is by foot along the causeway, or by ferry at high water. Sensible footwear is recommended.
St Michael's Mount viewed from the east 
  Tintagel Castle (English Heritage) In a spectacular location on the edge of one of England's most dramatic coastlines, Tintagel is one of the most awe-inspiring and romantic spots in Britain. It is also a place of legends; Merlin and King Arthur, Tristan and Isolde.
Joined to the mainland by a narrow neck of land, Tintagel Island faces the full force of the Atlantic. On the mainland itself, the gaunt remains of the medieval castle, thought to date from the second quarter of the 13th century, represent only one phase in a long history of occupation. Even before Richard, Earl of Cornwall, built his castle, Tintagel had come to be associated with King Arthur, as the great legendary warrior leader's birthplace. The legend, depicted in Geoffrey of Monmouth's fabulous History, written around 1139, has lived on. The connection was later renewed by Alfred Lord Tennyson, in his Idylls of the King.


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