A family visit to Bodiam Castle

Child exploring Bodiam Castles spiral staircases

Bodiam Castle is just the kind of castle that your child would paint or draw and it's great to explore in all seasons.

Family visits

With its massive towers and broad moat, Bodiam Castle is a great place for children to explore and imagine themselves as a bold knight or genteel princess coming across the bridge for a magnificent feast in the great hall. 

There are plenty of medieval features to spot and explore, including the murder holes above the entrances where all kinds of gruesome treats would have rained down on unwelcome visitors. For those families with a head for heights you can climb up the spiral staircase in the postern tower and marvel at the view across the Rother Valley below and don't forget to take a peek into the well room and ponder what the water in the well would have been used for?

Murder holes, Bodiam Castle
Murder holes in the gatehouse at Bodiam Castle in East Sussex
Murder holes, Bodiam Castle


Explore the grounds

Enjoy a wander around the grounds and see if your fearsome crusaders can find the wooden statue of Sir Edward in the woods at the top of the hill. If it's wet you may need some wellies as the grounds and paths can get wet and muddy.

Ducks on the slopes of Bodiam Castle
Bodiam castle in the background with ducks infront
Ducks on the slopes of Bodiam Castle

Download a copy of our property map and you can discover some of the old features of Sir Edward's estate which are not so obvious nowadays.

Visitor map of Bodiam Castle and grounds (PDF / 1,2MB) download

Our wildlife residents

The castle ducks will be very pleased to see you and will welcome you with a quacking chorus. We prefer the ducks to forage naturally for their food but if you want to feed them please only give them grain or seeds and they'll welcome the odd, small piece of lettuce too. These foods are more akin to their natural diet and helps to keep their gut healthy. Bread and other processed foods are not good for them. 

Carp and ducks on Bodiam Castle moat
carp and ducks in the moat of Bodiam Castle
Carp and ducks on Bodiam Castle moat

If you're lucky you may catch a glimpse of one of the fish in the moat. The fish are carp.

To help you find some of the other wildlife in the grounds, we have a Winter I-Spy trail. Download this trail from the link below and discover some of the great habitats and wildlife secrets within the grounds.

Bodiam Castle Winter I-Spy trail (PDF / 1.65234375MB) download

Feeling peckish?

When you've finished exploring, stop by the Wharf tea-room (takeaway only), by the car park or the Castle-view café (takeaway only), up by the castle, and enjoy a warming mug of hot chocolate, a tasty scone or a light lunch. 

Treat yourself to a tasty mug of hot chocolate
A girl drinking a mug of hot chocolate with cream and marshmallows
Treat yourself to a tasty mug of hot chocolate

Bring a picnic

The café and tea-room can get very busy at peak times, so why not escape the crowds and find a quiet spot with a picnic in the beautiful grounds around the castle.

Bring a blanket

Why not pick up one of our picnic blankets from the shop from as little as £15 that you can lay out on the grass for more comfort.

Stop for supplies

There are plenty of tasty things to takeaway in the café and tea-room, should you want to make your own picnic. Feel free to ask for your drinks to go in one of our takeaway cups, and there are a whole range of snacks and rolls so you can grab and go. For the children, there's even kids lunchboxes available.

Good to know

  • Baby changing facilities can be found in the accessible toilet near to visitor reception, in the car park.
  • High chairs are available in the Wharf tea-room.
  • If you fancy a picnic, you’re welcome to picnic in the grounds.  

Are you a member?

If you’re not already a National Trust member, why not enjoy the benefits of family membership? You’ll be able to explore over 500 special places like Bodiam Castle for free and if you join as part of your visit to Bodiam, you’ll have helped support the conservation of this incredible place.

Now all you need to decide on is when you're visiting us at Bodiam Castle!