Harlech Castle

World Heritage Site en Accredited Attraction - Wales
  • Harlech Castle

    Harlech Castle

  • Harlech Castle

    Harlech Castle 

  • Harlech Castle

    Harlech Castle

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  • Harlech Castle

    Harlech Castle

  • Harlech Castle visitor centre

    Harlech Castle visitor centre

  • Harlech Castle

    Harlech Castle

Harlech’s battlements spring out of a near-vertical cliff-face.

'Men of Harlech.' The nation’s unofficial anthem, loved by rugby fans and regimental bands alike, is said to describe the siege which took place here during the War of the Roses, wherein a handful of men held out against a besieging army of thousands. Edward’s tried and tested ‘walls within walls’ model was put together in super-fast time between 1283 and 1295 by an army of nearly a thousand skilled craftsmen and labourers.

Edward liked to use only the best masons from Savoy and England’s finest carpenters and blacksmiths. At the time this was one of the cheapest of Edward’s castles. A snip at a mere £8,190.

The structure, overseen by Master of the King’s Works, James of St George, boasts two rings of walls and towers, with an immensely strong east gatehouse. It was impregnable from almost every angle. Its secret weapon was a 200-foot (61m) long stairway which still leads from the castle to the cliff base.

Access via the stairway to the sea and crucial supplies kept the castle’s besieged inhabitants fed and watered. When it was first built, a channel would have connected the castle and the sea. You could have sailed a boat up to the moat. Seven hundred years later, the sea has receded and you could say the castle appears almost stranded, waiting for the tide to turn once more.

The newly installed ‘floating’ bridge at Harlech Castle makes access to the castle truly available for all. The bridge connects the castle with the brand new visitor centre in the former Castle Hotel building. The development also includes five new luxury apartments that are let by Menai Holiday Cottages. To book your stay, please visit the Menai Holday Cottages website.

Along with Caernarfon Castle, Conwy Castle and Beaumaris Castle, this monument has been part of the Castles and Town Walls of Edward 1 World Heritage Site since 1986.

Events at Harlech Castle

View all events here

Opening times

1 September - 31 October 2016


Daily 9.30am - 5.00pm  

Last admission 30 minutes before closing

Admission costs

Adult - £6.00
Family - £16.20*
Senior citizens, students and children under 16 - £4.20
Disabled and companion - Am ddim/Free

*Admits 2 adults and up to 3 children under 16

All children under 5 receive free entry.

Facilities and information

Cycle stands Exhibition Gift shop No smoking Charging car park Portable induction loop Refreshments Toilets
  • HarlechCastle@wales.gsi.gov.uk    
  • Under 16s must be accompanied by an adult
  • Prices valid until March 2017
  • Dogs on leads welcome
  • No smoking
  • Cadw do not allow drone flying from or over its guardianship sites, except by contractors commissioned for a specific purpose, who satisfy stringent CAA criteria, have the correct insurances and are operating under controlled conditions.

View all visitor information
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Postcode LL46 2YH

Car Road A496 from Barmouth, A487/A496 from Porthmadog.

Rail Rail 200m/220yards, Shrewsbury-Machynlleth/Pwllheli route.

???locationMapDirections.directions.bus.image_alt??? Bus 150m/170yards, route No 38, Barmouth-Harlech/Blaenau Ffestiniog.

???locationMapDirections.directions.bike.image_alt??? Bike NCN Route No.8 On route.

For further information, please contact: Traveline Cymru on 0871 200 2233 or National Rail Enquiries on 08457 48 49 50.