The history, lore and love for palaces and estates have always been a huge interest of mine while I travel. Visiting Castle Howard was one of those extraordinary stately homes, with 300 years of history that is located in North Yorkshire, England. Although it is not a fortified structure, the word “castle” is often used in the name of an English country manor, which was built on a former castle.
Castle Howard has been a private residence and home to the Carlisle branch of the Howard family for over 300 years. The house took over 100 years to build, construction started in 1701 and was completed in 1811, in the English Baroque style. This stately home is a ‘Listed Building – Grade 1’ by Historic England, as well as on the National Register of Historic Parks and Gardens.
Exploring the magnificent interiors of Castle Howard was awe-inspiring and enchanting. Every Baroque detail was not spared – the majestic Dome, the Antique Passage, the bedrooms and other formal rooms.
The Dome of Castle Howard, which was completed in 1706, is the most impressive feature of the home. From the exterior, it is the central showpiece when looking upon the house. From the interior and when standing underneath the dome, is when one can truly appreciate its breathtaking Baroque design and architecture. The Dome itself is 70 feet in height and stands above the Great Hall.
At the meeting of the columns, which supports the great Dome are four large painted figures that represent the four elements of Water, Air, Fire and Earth. The extravagant artwork painted on the dome tells the story of the son of Apollo, Phaeton, who plummets to earth from his father’s chariot.
There are several extraordinary rooms inside Castle Howard that are open to the public. All designed with timeless wall coverings, antique furnishings and an impressive art collection that hangs from the walls. Many of the handsome furnishings were designed by John Linnell, and there are several paintings by British Artists, Joshua Reynolds and Gainsborough.
Exploring a stately home or palace’s gardens and grounds, has always been a highlight for me when I visit one. Castle Howard is well known for its glorious grounds and gardens. There are 1,000 acres of parkland to wander, which are peaceful and calming with lakes, fountains, temples, gardens and lovely woodland walks. Taking the additional time to explore the grounds really completes the visit of Castle Howard.
There were so many features and aspects of Castle Howard that fascinated me. The Dining Room and the Turquoise Room were a couple of my favorites, although the Dome and the Antique Passage were both unforgettable spaces inside the home. All of Castle Howard is captivating and geniusly designed from the Baroque architecture to the lavish interior, to the glorious garden grounds. Built over 300 years ago it has maintained its air of aristocracy and acts as a reminder of an elegant past of British stately homes.
For more information and ticketing, please visit – Castle Howard
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