About

Hello! I’m Jonny and welcome to Guide to Castles.

a guide to castles around the world

As you’re visiting a site with the term ‘castles’ in it I will have to assume that, like me, you have an interest in castles.

Well, in my case, it’s a big interest!

Let me tell you more about myself to explain this fascination with castles that have ultimately led me to start a website dedicated to exploring castles, fortresses, and palaces, around the world.

First of all, I should say that I’m what you would call a ‘professional travel blogger’. I have been traveling the world as an adult since 1997 and have visited almost 100 countries in that time and have blogged about it as well as doing freelance writing for travel guides like Lonely Planet, Fodor’s, Bradt Travel Guides, CNN Travel, and many more.

One of my main passions when visiting new places is, after finding a good coffee to drink, to head out and explore the historical things to see in the area. If there is a castle, fortress, or palace, then that is always the first place I will head to.

Explaining castle stuff!

I realised that I should have a separate website just about guides to castles as that’s my main interest. And so here it is, the aptly named: Guide to Castles.

During my travels since 1997, I have seen castles in The Netherlands (where I lived for 13 years), Belgium, Germany, Austria, Spain, crusader castles in Syria and the Levantine Coast, old fortresses along the Silk Road in Central Asia, ancient Chinese Castles, many castles in Japan, castles, and forts all over India, emperors’ castles in the remote highlands of Ethiopia, and so much more.

At Kumamoto Castle in Japan.

I’m from the U.K. although I have lived most of my life growing up and living in other countries.

The area of the U.K. my father’s side of the family is from is a small group of islands called the Isles of Scilly just off the coast of Cornwall. The first memory I have of seeing a castle is there on the islands when visiting family and exploring around the Star Castle and the garrison walls.

Throughout my childhood my parents would take me to see other castles, the most notable being Rochester Castle and Corfe Castle, and with school trips to Dover Castle, and more.

I always loved going to castles from a young age.

As a teenager, I went to Scotland for the first time at 15 years old to stay with a friend near the Kyle of Lochalsh and went to see the nearby Eilean Donan Castle, one of the most famous castles in Scotland. It was beyond enchanting.

As an adult, I have since been back to explore other castles in Scotland such as Edinburgh Castle, Stirling Castle, and others.

These days my wife joins me on these castle excursions and also loves the stories behind them. In fact, we even got married in a castle!

With my wife on a castle wall.

I wouldn’t call myself a castle expert in the professional sense as I have no qualifications for that, but I have a passion for the subject, have read a lot about them over the years of my life, and have been to so many I have lost count. I’m always searching online for new castles I didn’t know about and reading up on them: the stories, history, legends, etc.

And now I will share everything I know here to help guide others with an interest in castles.

I hope you will enjoy what I write and find it helpful for planning a journey to see them or simply with getting more information on castles.

Storm the castle!

Jonny