If you’re as obsessed with the British royal family as we are, then be sure to add Windsor Castle to your travel itinerary for your next trip to London. Less busy than the iconic Buckingham Palace but equally as rich in history and design, Windsor Castle is the perfect place to marvel at the magnificence of the British Royal Family. With less restricted access than the much-coveted Buckingham Palace, visitors to Windsor Castle are welcome to explore the opulent corridors of this royal residence. Join your expert, English-speaking guide when you take a Windsor Castle tour from London with us. Until then, enjoy this post where we’re uncovering the weird and wonderful facts about Windsor Castle.
Built in the 11th century, England’s Windsor Castle is the world’s oldest and largest occupied castle. This castle has been home to over 30 monarchs over the course of the last 900 years. It’s also been used as a venue for royal ceremonies and weddings. We all remember the glamorous nuptials of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, right?
It’s Home to the Queen’s Diary
Who else thinks that reveling in the Queen’s deepest, darkest secrets would be simply fascinating? Well believe it or not, now you can. Queen Victoria’s juicy journals and the private letters of King George III are tucked away in the Royal Library and Archives of Windsor Castle. With over 200,000 items, including the private book collections or some of history’s favorite monarchs, this library is truly fit for a queen. Peruse the library’s precious collections when you enjoy a tour to Windsor Castle.
2. It Has the World’s Largest Dollhouse
Everything about Windsor Castle oozes grandeur and opulence, and Queen Mary’s royal dollhouse is no different. Built in the 1920s, the dollhouse that resides at Windsor Castle is the largest and most elaborate miniature homes in the world. The house boasts a sophisticated running water system, flushing toilets, electricity and elevators. It even has a fully stocked wine cellar, housing 20,000 mini wine and beer bottles. As if that’s not enough, this gigantic dollhouse has its own library with original stories handwritten by acclaimed authors such as Rudyard Kipling. It took more than 1,500 handymen, artists and craftsmen to build this magnificent dollhouse. If only our Barbies had been lucky enough to reside in a home this glamorous.
3. It Employs Some Unusual Professions
Like all royal residences, Windsor castle is home to a lot more ordinary people than royalty. In fact, there are approximately 150 staff residing in the castle. Their job? Upholding this prestigious fortress and family that call it home. Of course, there are librarians, chefs, cleaners and historians residing beyond the palace gates, but there some quirkier professions working there too. The castle is home to a resident fendersmith, who is tasked with maintaining the castle’s 300 fireplaces. It also has a resident horologist, who looks after the 379 timepieces within the castle walls.
4. Adolf Hitler Loved It
While Nazi troops were attacking other British royal and governmental buildings of note during World War II, Windsor Castle was never bombed. It is believed that Hitler wanted to preserve this beautiful palace so that he could use it as his British home. The royal family took advantage of this fact and sought sanctuary in the castle during the war. As to not raise suspicion, they blacked out the windows, took down its chandeliers and reinforced the castle’s walls. Princes Margaret and the future Queen Elizabeth II would sleep in the palace’s dungeon for optimum protection.
5. It’s A Haven for Corgis
We all know that the Queen of England is crazy about corgis. So crazy in fact, that she was one of the longest running Pembroke corgi breeders in the world. And guess where she ran her corgi breeding program from? Why Windsor Castle, of course. The breeding program was in operation for 70 years before coming to an end in 2015.
6. It’s Always Wine O’ Clock There
Windsor Castle and wine go hand-in-hand. The royal cellar of Windsor houses about 18,000 bottles of wine. However, if you’re in the mood for fine wine you better look elsewhere. Surprisingly enough, some of the Queen’s wines aren’t so fancy with many of them costing between $5 and $10! Between Buckingham Palace and Windsor Castle, the royal family host over 300 events every year. That’s a lot of wine. So, while many guests to these royal events believe they are getting treated to luxury drinks at the castle, they are actually drinking some of the low-cost bottle from the local supermarket.
A cellar full of wine, the most elaborate dollhouse in the world and a puppy breeding ground, a tour of Windsor Castle sounds like the perfect day out to us. If you’re interested in learning more about Windsor Castle tours from London be sure to check out our website. If your looking to add even more royalty to your London vacation then be sure to join us for a Buckingham Palace tour as well.