Directions for how to get to Warwick Castle from London using public transportation
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Year Visited: 2022
Time of Year: May
We only visited a few castles during our trip to the UK, but Warwick (pronounced War-ick) was definitely the most fun to visit. They’ve done a really good job making it a tourist attraction that teaches the history and shows what life was like in the castle. And the views from the tower are beautiful. You can even come for a medieval dinner and stay overnight in the castle!
At less than a 2 hr. train ride from London, you can easily visit Warwick on a day trip from London, or you can travel here from London to stay overnight in Warwick. It’s also very close to Birmingham, so the castle makes a good day trip from that city as well.
If you do not have a car and will be traveling by public transportation, I am going to tell you how to get to Warwick Castle from London via train. I have also created a guide to answer all your questions about visiting Warwick Castle.
About Warwick Castle
Where is Warwick Castle?
Warwick Castle is basically in the center of England. It is in the town of Warwick, a 1 1/2 hour train ride northeast from London’s Marylebone Station, and a 30 minute train ride southwest from Birmingham’s Moor Street Station.
History of Warwick Castle
Warwick Castle has one of the most fascinating and dramatic histories of any British castle! I highly recommend watching the Warwick Castle episode of the Netflix series “Secrets of Great British Castles” before visiting, for the full run-down of all the secret plots, murders, and scandals that went on within its walls.
The castle was first built as a military base by William the Conqueror during Norman Conquest in 1068. Because of its central location in England the castle was very strategically important.
William left the trusted Beauchamp family in charge of the castle, who, being close to the king and successful in battle, grew very wealthy and powerful. Richard Beauchamp, one of the richest men of all time, expanded the castle, building walls and towers that still stand today.
From there the story continues, with the Earls of Warwick who were close to the king and successful in battle being rich and expanding or rebuilding the castle, and those who were not… being crushed by the cost of running the castle, or even being killed (moral of the story, don’t keep the king captive in your castle and try to run the country yourself!).
During the English Civil War, the castle was once again used as a military garrison. There are carvings on the walls of names and symbols where prisoners were held here during the war (even an ancestor of Walt Disney!).
After the Civil War, the Greville family, who now owned the castle, turned it into a luxury destination for England’s finest. But the money that they earned from war was no longer pouring in, so the castle started to become a burden to maintain.
A few generations later, the last Earl of Warwick (also known as the Duke of Hollywood) was starring in movies to try cover the massive cost of running the castle (and he wasn’t making enough!). He sold off the heirlooms, the armor, and eventually the castle.
It is now owned by the Merlin Entertainment Group, who have turned it into the public attraction that it is today.
Why Visit Warwick Castle
Warwick Castle is now owned by an entertainment group, which means it is a really fun castle to visit! The history and integrity of the castle is well maintained, but everything is set up in a way to make it fun and interesting to learn the history of Warwick Castle.
It is also one of the best preserved castles still standing in England today.
There are a lot of events going on throughout the year that make it well worth a visit. Or you can even stay overnight in the castle! So yes, Warwick Castle is definitely worth visiting!
Warwick castle is open every day except for Christmas.
The castle is open 10 am-4 pm on most days, but some days it is open until 5 pm. Check the opening hours calendar for more information.
Warwick Castle Frequently Asked Questions
How long do you need at Warwick Castle?
We spent 1 1/2 hrs. here, but there was more to see. We did not visit the castle dungeons (which cost extra), or watch any of the seasonal shows. If you want to experience everything, you can take up to 3 hrs. here, but be sure to pay attention to the show times on their website so that you don’t finish everything and have an hour to wait till the show you want to watch.
Do you have a set time to visit Warwick Castle?
You do not have to book tickets ahead of time, although it is always a good idea, and I would suggest doing that.
The castle is generally open from 10 am-4 pm, although some days it is open until 5 pm.
Your ticket does not have a timed entry, it is just good for that day. So you can book your ticket for the day, and come and go at your leisure.
Is Warwick Castle a good place to bring kids?
Absolutely! Warwick is a very kid-friendly attraction. If you’re there during the school year, you will likely see groups of students on a class trip.
That being said, it is a great attraction for all ages, so whether you are bringing your spouse, your family, or just yourself, you will have a great day at Warwick.
When is the best time of year to visit Warwick?
The castle is open all year long, except Christmas. However, Warwick is much better to visit in the warmer months because it will be more fun to climb up the towers and see the scenery, and they have seasonal shows available.
Check the shows and entertainment section on their website for descriptions of all the shows, and dates of when the shows are on.
If there is a show you want to see, or if you want to stay in the Knight’s Village, you will probably want to come during the summer months.
Otherwise, the best time to come would be on a weekday in May or September, when school is still in session. We were here on a weekday in May, and it was absolutely wonderful. There were some people here, but it was not at all crowded.
Is there a guided tour of Warwick Castle?
Yes, there were free guided tours available at certain times during the day. We went through the castle on our own, and did not stay for a guided tour, because the next one didn’t start for an hour when we were ready to leave.
There will be a sign out front of the main castle with times for guided tours.
Can you eat at Warwick Castle?
Yes, there are several options for eating at the castle.
There were a lot of food trucks set up outside the castle and around the grounds, but when we were there in May, the majority of them were closed (a few were open though). If you visit during the summer, you will have more options.
There is a small cafe in the castle basement (not to be confused with the dungeons!). They had some sandwiches and savory pies, though there was not a lot of assortment.
If you fancy a tea or ice cream, wander across the fields and through the castle gardens to The Conservatory Tea House, or book an afternoon tea.
You can also bring your own food in for a picnic at Warwick Castle. There are lots of picnic tables available, or you can find a nice spot in the castle grounds for a picnic.
Can you take pictures at Warwick Castle?
Yes, you can take pictures at Warwick Castle! You can also take your bags inside with you. Some of the places we visited in the UK did not allow large backpacks inside, so you do not accidentally run into any of the old artifacts with your large bag, but we were allowed at Warwick.
Can you stay at Warwick Castle?
Yes, you can stay at Warwick Castle! You can stay in either a tent in the Knight’s Village, a lodge in the Knight’s Village, or in the castle itself!
How to Get to Warwick Castle
Now that we have our trip to Warwick all planned, it’s time to get there! You can travel by train from either London or Birmingham, and then walk from the train station up to the castle. It’s about a 15-25 minute walk, depending on how fast you walk.
I am going to tell you how to get to Warwick from London, and how to get to Warwick Castle from the train station:
How to get to Warwick from London:
You can book rail tickets from London (or Birmingham) to Warwick on Trainline.com. You can also book tickets at the rail station if you want, but since there is such great variety in the prices based on the time of day, it is better to book them ahead of time. If you can be flexible in your times, you can choose the cheapest ticket.
From London you are going to take a train from the Marylebone Rail Station. You can take the tube from wherever you are staying in London to Marylebone, then make your way up to the rail station to catch your train.
More information on taking the tube, rail journeys, and traveling around London.
You can get a direct train from London Marylebone to Warwick, or you might have to make one change. Our train took us to one station past Warwick (it didn’t stop in Warwick), and then we had to switch platforms and catch a 2 minute train back in the other direction. You can see if your train is going to be direct or have a change when you are booking it.
If you do have to change, and you are not sure which platform to go to, just ask one of the employees at the rail station.
Make sure you are booking your train for Warwick, not Warwick Parkway.
If you book an open return, check the times of the trains back to London ahead of time, so you have an idea of when to head back from the castle. You don’t want to show up at the station 10 minutes after the train left and have to wait 50 minutes for the next one!
How to get to Warwick Castle from the Rail Station:
It is a fairly easy walk to get to Warwick Castle from the rail station, about 15-25 minutes. You will have a bit of an uphill climb, but it is not too strenuous.
When you first arrive at the rail station, follow the signs for the exit, and then follow the crosswalk to the left. This will take you to the map of Warwick, and a sidewalk that will lead you into the city.
When you come out of the station parking lot, you will turn right up toward the town of Warwick. You will start to see signs pointing toward the castle and other attractions in the town.
Tip: Even if you don’t have data that works in England, you can still bring up Google Maps on your phone and follow your progress. Just in case you pass the castle because you think the prominent church steeple at the top of the hill is obviously part of the castle and accidentally aim for that…
Keep following the sidewalk until you come to a V. You want to take the left crosswalk, toward the half timbered buildings. There should be another sign post here pointing toward the castle. The road you are going to go up is Smith St.
You will come to an old section of the wall, at a weird intersection. You have two choices here. You can cross to the left, where Smith St. continues, and then just up ahead on the right will be Castle Lane. This is actually the quickest (and correct) way to go.
However, there are no more signs pointing to the castle (that I saw), and since I was convinced the church on the top of the hill was actually the castle, I kept going straight, up Jury St (also because I wanted to walk through the cool section of the wall!).
So, you can turn left here and continue on Smith St. to Castle Lane on the right, or if you don’t want to cross, you can keep going up Jury St, where you can turn left onto Castle St. at the Visitor Information Centre (which is what we did).
Castle St. runs into Castle Lane, but you will come to an entrance that is further up the street than if you had turned onto Castle Lane earlier.
See the intersection in Google Street View.
If you turned left and then right onto Castle Lane, just ahead there will be a parking lot on the left for Warwick Castle. Turn into the parking lot and walk ahead to the main entrance.
If you kept going straight up Jury St, when you see the Visitor Information Centre on the left, turn left here. This is Castle St.
You can stop to use the public restrooms at the information center, but it’s a better idea to just wait until you get to the castle. They have toilets right in the entrance, and they are nicer than the ones at the visitor center.
When you turn down Castle St, you will keep to the left where it runs into Castle Lane. This will take you to the back side of the main entrance for Warwick Castle.
If you missed your turn into the parking lot coming up Castle Lane from the other direction, you can also turn up here into the back entrance.
You will go through a little gate in the wall, so it is a fun entrance to walk through.
So that is how to get to Warwick Castle from the train station!
They have nice restrooms and a small gift shop available at the entrance, and you can also purchase tickets if you don’t already have them (although it is always a good idea to book ahead).
From the entrance you can pick up a map and follow the path into the grounds and the main gate to the castle. The main gift shop is located here, just inside the main gate. You will also find the Dungeon Tours next to the gift shop.
Where to Eat in Warwick
The easiest place to eat when you are visiting Warwick Castle from London is right at the castle itself. They have food trucks, a cafe, and afternoon tea.
Thomas Oken Tearooms
You could also have afternoon tea (or lunch, or breakfast) at the Thomas Oken Tearooms, the adorable half-timbered building pictured above! They offer eat in from 10 am-5 pm, or take away, from 10:30 am-4 pm.
They’re located just outside of the castle walls. If you want, you could order take away and take it onto the castle grounds for a picnic.
The Rose & Crown
The Rose & Crown is a classic English pub with a varying seasonal menu, located near the Market Hall Museum. I give it bonus points as well, because I’m a sucker for cutesy names.
You can also rent a room here, if you want to stay overnight in Warwick.
Other Things to Do in Warwick
If you are spending the day in Warwick, here are some other things to do besides the castle:
Lord Leycester Hospital
The Lord Leycester Hospital in Warwick, England is one of the best preserved buildings with medieval architecture in all of Britain! It is absolutely stunning, both inside and out, and will definitely inspire ideas of gallant knights and fairytale stories.
The Lord Leycester Hospital is currently closed for renovations. It is set to open in September 2023.
St Mary’s Church
This is the church that we were accidentally aiming for when we missed the castle… St Mary’s is a beautiful church, and a central viewpoint in the town of Warwick. It also houses the extravagant tomb of Richard Beauchamp, 13th Earl of Warwick, and one of the richest men in all of history!
Market Hall Museum
The charming Market Hall Museum tells the history of the local area and displays the unique collection of the Warwickshire Natural History and Archaeological Society of the 1800’s.
What to Watch
I always love watching something to get me hyped up before I go somewhere. Unfortunately, I found this Netflix show after I got back from England… but then I could shout out “I’ve been there!” when I recognized a place. And that’s fun too!
Secrets of Great British Castles
Season 1, Episode 3
This show has two seasons on Netflix. There are a lot of different castles you can learn about, but if you’re coming to Warwick, definitely watch the episode on Warwick Castle before you come. It shows the fascinating history of the place, as well as the gorgeous views you’re going to see when you get here!
Any more questions?
If you have any more questions about how to get to Warwick Castle or visiting the castle, feel free to comment below or send me an email!
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