Things to Do at Beeston Castle
There’s more to Beeston Castle than just touring the ruins. Surrounded by 40 acres of woodland park, the entire family can enjoy the day here – and you can bring your four-legged friend, too. Group visits are also available, and the castle hosts special school visits as well.
Woodland Walks with the Family
Beeston Castle may sit high atop the Cheshire plains, but you’ll find walking paths that lead you down and around the hill. Walks around the nearby woodlands are a great way for the family to explore nature and the wildlife nearby.
An Enchanting Walk to Peckforton
If you’re feeling adventurous, you can take the Sandstone Trail to Peckforton Castle, which is about 14.5 km long. The entire walk takes approximately four hours, but leads you through breathtaking landscapes. The path will take you to the summit of Bulkeley Hill, which offers spectacular views that nearly rival those at Beeston. From here, the trail leads you back to Beeston. Along the way, be on the lookout for goldcrests and chestnut trees, which soar high into the sky and offer some much-welcomed shade in the summer.
Dog Walking in the Park
With acres of woodland in the area, Beeston Castle is the perfect place for dog walking. Pets are welcome on the castle grounds, provided they are on a lead.
Wildlife and Bird Watching
The woodlands are the perfect place for bird watching and to catch a glimpse of the local wildlife. Be sure to bring the children and have them identify the creatures you see along the way. For bird watching, don’t forget to bring your binoculars. A variety of Cheshire birds can be seen on the Sandstone Trail, including owls, sparrow hawks, buzzards, kestrels, wrens, woodpeckers and more.
Picnics on the Castle Grounds
All along the castle grounds, you’ll find grassy areas that are ideal for picnicking, particularly on a sunny day. In addition to the grassy areas, there are also picnic tables available, which offer a comfortable place for the family to enjoy lunch or an afternoon snack.
Shopping and Dining
While you won’t find a formal sit-down restaurant at Beeston Castle, you will find The Sandstone Café. The café offers outdoor seating and serves a wide range of hot and cold drinks as well as snacks. Among the café’s specialties are bacon sandwiches and ice cream – the perfect way to cool off on a hot summer day. Before leaving, make it a point to stop by the castle gift shop. The shop offers a wide range of gifts and souvenirs to commemorate your trip to Beeston.
Group visits are a fun way to explore the castle and its woodland with your friends and family. A 15% discount is offered for groups of 11 or more. Free entry is provided for tour leaders and coach drivers. Plan to spend a little over an hour on the group tour.
The Mighty Castle of the Rock
For groups who want to tour the castle with a guide, the Mighty Castle of the Rock guided tour is available. The one-hour tour will walk you through the history of the castle and hill fort before Beeston was constructed. All group members must wear stout shoes for the tour and must be able to walk steep slopes. No wheelchair access is provided. The guided tour is included with your group admission price, but you will need to book your tour at least one month in advance.
Beeston Castle School Tours
Beeston also offers special school tours and programs aimed at educating children on the history of the castle and the surrounding area. Expert led school visits can accommodate groups of up to 30. The following programs are available:
KS1-3: The Fortress Castle
In this expert-led visit, students will travel back in time and search for evidence in the castle remains. During their 1.5-hour adventure, students will uncover key important events and learn more about daily life for those living in the castle.
KS2: Prehistoric Settlers at Beeston
In this hands-on Discovery Visit, students explore the remains of a hill fort that dates back to the Bronze Age and Iron Age. Guided by an expert, students will search the nearby landscape for clues about Beeston’s prehistoric history. After exploring the outdoors, children are taken back to the museum to take part in crafts using traditional tools and replica costumes.
Many events also take place throughout the year that everyday guests can take part in. From holiday-themed adventures, like the Halloween-themed Autumn Adventures, to crafts and educational workshops, English Heritage hosts many special events all throughout the year. There’s much to see and explore at the castle remains, particularly in the 40 acres of woodlands that surround the property. Miles of paths are available, allowing you to truly immerse yourself in nature. Friends and family could easily make a day of their visit to Beeston Castle.