Warkworth Castle and Hermitage

Things to see and do

View of the cross-shaped keep at Warkworth Castle

Cross-shaped keep

View the awe-inspiring keep as you wander around the nearly intact circuit of towered walls at this spectacular medieval castle.

The great tower or keep is almost complete, though it was built by the first Earl of Northumberland over 600 years ago. Warkworth was besieged by the Scots in 1327 and played a key role in the long-running war between England and Scotland.

Pick up a free audio tour to find out more about this fascinating fortress.

The Percys

Look out for the lion badge carved throughout the castle as you explore. This was the badge of the powerful Percy family who wielded almost kingly power in the north. They owned Warkworth and nearby Alnwick Castle, where their descendants still live today.

Percy fame and fortunes were at their height under Henry Percy, the first Earl of Northumberland. His son 'Harry Hotspur,' was memorably captured by Shakespeare in Henry IV, Part I. His rebellion against the king led to the Percys losing Warkworth Castle, though it was later restored to them.

Hermitage

Continue your adventure by taking a walk half a mile up river followed by a boat trip to discover the Hermitage, a religious building carved out of the rock.

Enjoy the peaceful setting of this hidden gem, which was probably built as a private chapel for the first Earl of Northumberland.

The Hermitage is open on certain days. Check Hermitage opening times.

The Duke's Rooms

Experience the lavish lifestyle of the Percys for yourself with a visit to the Duke's Rooms.

These rooms were restored by Algernon Percy in the 1850s, ready for the family's return to the castle. The walls were lined with expensive gold-patterned leather, some of which remains today, and decorated with uniquely-designed furniture.

The Duke's Rooms are open on Sunday, Monday and Bank Holidays from 1 April to 30 September.

Plan your visit to Warkworth Castle and Hermitage.

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