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7 Spectacular Castles in New York

7 Spectacular Castles in New York

You don’t have to go far outside the city to take in the stunning castles in New York. 

The Hudson Valley is home to historic buildings, fairy-tale weddings, and mansions you’ve seen in movies. 

What are they like, and can you visit them? 

Let’s check them out!

Boldt Castle in the distance.
New York is host to many stunning castles.

Boldt Castle

Boldt Castle is part of the Thousand Islands region in the St. Lawrence River. Millionaire George Boldt built the castle on Heart Island in 1900.

The castle opens to tourists each spring and is only accessible via a tour boat. You’ll find a list of operators on their website. Because of its location, it draws both Canadian and American visitors. 

The castle tour is currently $11, and you can pay an additional fee to tour the historical boats at the nearby Yacht House. The island is entirely ADA accessible, and you’ll want to allow around three hours to tour the castle. 

Please check their website for current rates and policies. It’s good to check out their policies anyway because some may surprise you. For instance, by visiting Boldt Castle, you consent to be photographed or recorded without your direct permission (for use in their ads.)

Their Castle Cafe and Hot Dog Stand (and what says “castle” more than a hot dog stand?) serve casual lunches and snacks. There’s nowhere to eat inside the castle. However, you may eat purchased food (or bring your own) at picnic tables or elsewhere on the grounds. 

Lyndhurst Mansion – Top New York Castle Pick

Lyndhurst Mansion is a Gothic Revival house in Tarrytown, New York, and it shows the best of 1838 design and landscaping. You’ll see an art installation in the ruins of a swimming pool, a bowling alley created in 1894, a stunning arboretum, and more. This castle was home to the 2021 Westminster Kennel Club dog show, and it’s used often in movies. 

Guided tours of the mansion are available daily on the hour, and they ask that visitors pre-purchase tickets. In addition, you must be able to stand for an hour and a half during this tour. 

They also offer tours of the grounds and hold special holiday events. Prices range from $10-$25, but no parking pass is required if you’re touring the mansion. However, if you want to do a self-guided tour, you must pre-purchase a Grounds Pass to park. Those are $10 and do not allow you to enter the mansion.

The gift shop sells snacks, and picnics are allowed. There are nearby restaurants as well.

Pro Tip: While castle hunting in New York, take some time to explore these 7 Best Small Towns in New York.

Wing’s Castle

Located upstate from NYC in Millbrook, Wing’s Castle is the creation and home of a couple of artists. The artists built the Medieval Castle, filing it with an eclectic collection of antiques and memorabilia. 

You can book a stay in the B&B there, and that comes with a tour. Tours are $12 otherwise. Please check on visiting policies in advance; they close reservations intermittently. Tours take an hour or less.

There’s no dining on the premises, aside from breakfast for overnight guests. However, restaurants and the Millbrook Winery are nearby.

Wing’s Castle is not ADA compliant and has a lot of stairs.

Bannerman Castle

This New York castle was built in 1901 by Frank Bannerman to store surplus military supplies. He designed the site to resemble his native Scotland. 

Tours take 2.5 hours and include a ferry ride to and from the island, where you can purchase snacks. Tickets are currently $40 for adults, but please check ahead for visiting policies. You can also take your own canoe or kayak to the island and do a 20-minute tour. Bannerman Castle also hosts live music and movie nights.

They don’t have dining, but you can purchase snacks on the boat and the island. Please note that they only take credit cards, so come prepared.

The grounds portion features some rough terrain, and there are a lot of steps on the tour. It’s not ADA compliant, and dogs and strollers are prohibited. 

Sand Castle

European chateaux inspire Long Island’s Sand Castle, which includes decorative pieces in marble, mahogany, and brass.

The castle is strictly a wedding venue, so you must be in a wedding or attending one to see it. Its outdoor facilities include a waterfall and a grand staircase descending into a gazebo. Indoors, you’ll find a ballroom and bridal suites.

They only host one wedding at a time, and their chefs can accommodate all cuisines. 

Singer Castle

Constructed in 1905 by Singer sewing machine company president Frederick Bourne, Singer Castle is a gothic castle in the New York’s Hudson Valley. Bourne built it as a hunting lodge, and the tower has an incredible 47 stories.

Inside, you’ll see Medieval decor with wrought iron chandeliers and hand-carved furniture. Best of all, there are mysterious secret passages and a secret dungeon. Outside, you’ll find three boathouses, a squash court, and a rose garden.

Guests can stay overnight in the royal suite, which sleeps up to six, and offers views of Canada as well as the US. 

Guides lead all the tours, which last 45 minutes. They’re not ADA compliant, though. You can arrive at the island via shuttle boat, tour boat, or your own watercraft. Their website lists tour boat companies you can try.

Pro Tip: Looking for somewhere to stay while exploring New York? We found the 5 Best Free Camping Spots in New York.

Highlands Castle

Highlands Castle is a private rental property hosting vacationers, weddings, and photoshoots. There are three buildings available, and the suites in all three are very formal.

The three medieval-inspired buildings are on a mountain top overlooking the lake and river. Yet, restaurants, hiking, shopping, and boating are all nearby. The area also has family-friendly events like mini-golf and laser tag. 

Bonus New York Castle – Castle Gould and Hempstead House

Two mansions of the Guggenheim Estate sit at Sands Point Conservancy.

Castle Gould houses the visitor’s center, great hall, and a large soundstage named the Black Box. The castle is not open for tours; however, the welcome center and gift shop are open to the public. Additionally, it offers fitness classes and cultural events in the great hall, which can also be rented for private events.

Hempstead House was the summer residence of Daniel and Florence Guggenheim. It’s a 50,000 square foot Tudor-style limestone mansion with opulent decor. Hempstead has been the setting for movies from “Malcolm X” to “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.” It’s available for private events and filming. 

Tour tickets are currently $10 to be bought on-site, and there is limited access for disabled visitors. Please check current visiting policies before arriving. 

Sands Point sits on over 200 acres, including six hiking trails as well as a beach and rose garden with over 1,500 red rose bushes. It also offers a woodland playground featuring a custom cedar play-castle, 75’ zip line, and climbable geodesic dome.

New York’s Castles Provide Marvelous Options

The castles in New York offer incredible beauty and serve a range of purposes. Whether you’re getting married, in love with landscaping, or simply adore architecture, New York has a castle for you. Probably several. Have you visited any of these? Tell us about your favorite.

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  1. Julie Gant says:

    Gorgeous! They make me want to do a castle tour of New York!