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Home to royalty and 1,000 years of royal history
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Windsor Castle is the oldest and largest inhabited castle in the world. It has been the family home of British kings and queens for almost 1,000 years and is today one of the official residences of Her Majesty The Queen.
Occupying over 10.5 hectares, the Castle offers a varied day out for visitors, including a visit to the magnificent State Apartments and St George's Chapel.
The Castle's State Apartments are furnished with some of the finest works from the Royal Collection, reflecting the changing tastes of the Castle's royal occupants, particularly those of Charles II and George IV. Among the masterpieces on display are paintings by Holbein, Rubens and Van Dyck, Sèvres porcelain and exquisite English and French furniture. Many of the works of art are still in the historic settings for which they were first collected or commissioned by the kings and queens who have lived at Windsor.
The fifteenth-century St. George's Chapel, one of the most ecclesiastical buildings in England, is the burial place of ten sovereigns and and the setting of recent royal weddings and funerals.
From 25 November 2021 until Monday, 31 January 2022, visitors will have the rare opportunity to see the colourful ‘pantomime pictures’, which are on display in the Castle’s Waterloo Chamber. These 16 paintings of fairy tale characters, usually concealed beneath portraits from the Royal Collection, were created during the Second World War, when The Queen (then Princess Elizabeth) and her sister Princess Margaret performed pantomimes in the Waterloo Chamber.
To celebrate The Queen’s historic Platinum Jubilee, a special exhibition Platinum Jubilee: The Queen’s Coronation (7 July - 26 September 2022) will centre around the magnificent Coronation Dress and Robe of Estate worn by The Queen for her Coronation at Westminster Abbey on 2 June 1953.
Designed by the British couturier Sir Norman Hartnell, the dress was created in the finest white duchesse satin, richly embroidered with national and Commonwealth floral emblems in gold and silver thread and encrusted with seed pearls, sequins and crystals. Her Majesty’s Robe of Estate was made by the royal robe-makers Ede and Ravenscroft of purple silk velvet and was embroidered at the Royal School of Needlework. The intricate embroidery design features wheat ears and olive branches, symbolising prosperity and peace, surrounding the EIIR cipher. It took 12 embroideresses, using 18 different types of gold thread, more than 3,500 hours to complete the robe.
From September to March, visitors can also walk through the sumptuous Semi-State Apartments, which served as the private rooms of George IV in the 19th century.
Refreshments can be enjoyed in the Undercroft Café, situated in one of the Castle’s oldest spaces, which opened in 2020.
Families can take part in workshops and activities in the Castle’s newly created Learning Centre.
Visitors can take a self-guided tour of the Castle with a free multimedia audio tour.
Average visiting time is 2-3 hours
June 25th, 2021
December 31st, 2022
Children are aged between 5-17 years • Children under 4 are FREE
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