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Blenheim vs Warwick or both?

After a few days in London, my family (2 adults, 2 kids ages 10 and 9) plan to spend a few days touring south England. We plan to go to Stonehenge/Avebury, Cotswolds/Stratford-u-A, and Iron Gorge before we head back to London to fly out. We're trying to trim the sightseeing list to something manageble. Blenheim and Warwick are both on the list as of now. Are these castles different enough to both merit a visit? Are they both interesting to kids? Thanks!

Posted by
356 posts

I'd say Warwick if there are kids involved. I think kids prefer castles to stately homes. I loved Warwick when I was a kid.

I also find Blenheim a bit too pricey these days. I went about 15 years ago and you paid one price and got to see lots of things (including a boat ride on the lake). Now you seem to get a lot less for your money.

Posted by
11507 posts

I took my 14yr old son to Warwick a few years ago,, he loved it. I loved it too. They had a jousting tournement on ,, the horses all done up in the fancey horse armour, the "knights" in full gear too,, tents set up around the field to sit under, bannners flying,, it was great. They also did a catapault demonstration that the kids loved.
The castle had different sections too,, the newer and older sections were shown,, the dungeons and ramparts, to the more modern( relatively speaking) water wheel power plant set up in side, and some lovely rooms done up in more palace like display from more modern inhabitation( 1800 s )

My son was bored stiff in Stratford on Avon,, it just seemed like a touristy area with lots of shops selling Shakespear chocolates etc,, LOL We spent maybe 2 hours there.

Posted by
255 posts

Highly recommend Warwick Castle. Lots of "hands on" type things that your kids will enjoy. We took our 16 year old daughter several years ago and she loved the place as much as we did.

Posted by
72 posts

Both! Both!

However, if you can only visit one--and with kids--I'd go with Warwick.

Posted by
38 posts

Thanks all! We'll try for both Blenheim and Warwick. Our trip is rather badly timed - it seems things are hopping in London (gearing up for holiday season) but many sights in the country are closed or limited. Lucky for us Blenheim is open the day we'll be there, but many of Warwick's fun "kid stuff" runs summer only. Will try for the cathedral in Salisbury, a play in Stratford (my geeky family likes Shakespeare) and have fun wandering in the Cotswolds. Thanks again for all the inspiring input!

Posted by
2023 posts

We also liked both places. The wax figures at Warwick (Tussard) are amazing. Blenheim Palace has a maze in the garden which kids love.

Posted by
1819 posts

If you are going to Stonehenge, add on Salisbury for its beautiful cathedral which also has a copy of the Magna Carta on display. Another interesting spot is Kenilworth Castle, very close to Warwick (which our son, age 13 at the time, also loved.) It's interesting to contrast ruined Kenilworth with completely restored Warwick.

Posted by
518 posts

Try to work in Avebury. I would do it at the expense of seeing Stonehenge. As another poster stated, Avebury is magical. Eat at the Red Lion Pub. A man at the antique store across the street from the pub told us about living there as a child. He remembered the day the Americans came into town during WWII when the build-up for D day was occurring. He said even as a child he appreciated the hope that the Americans gave to their country. He said the GI's gave the children all of their chocolate. It had been so long since it was available in England that he only knew what it was from others' stories. So that was the first chocolate he ever ate. Great place.

Posted by
38 posts

Hi again, We're just flying out of the UK today. Had a great time. Did Blenheim, Warwick, AND Avebury. We really needed a few months here to see everything. We'll have to come back. Thanks for all the great input!