A Word A Week: Castle

The Word  from Word A Week Challenges this week is Castle.

I love castles but have lost many of my castle photos; including those taken on a trip down the Loire valley in France viewing and photographing castles. The ones shown here were taken in more recent years.

Building of castles started around year 1066 when the Normans won the Battle of Hastings, it continued for approximately 500 years until the Tudor era (1485). It seems that castles are not as common in the Orient. Instead, stone protection walls  (for instance, the Great Wall of China) were built; protection buildings were usually separately built in timber on or behind the walls.

At Lithuania, we stumbled across this sleepy small town of Trakai, which is surrounded by lake Galve. The Trakai castle has a stunning setting. Originally built in the 14th century, it looks like it came out from a fairy tale.DSC_0276

Walking across the bridge towards the castle, we were stunned by the beauty.

The view was so picturesque that we felt like we were part of a postcard. . . . . . . . . .

Travelling north in the UK to Scotland, we came across this surreal Stlker castle sitting out there in solitude on an island.Scan10010

Heading back south, we were delighted to visit Leeds castle, which claims to be the most romantic castle in Europe. The castle is in Kent, England, 5 miles from Maidstone. Built in 1119 by Robert de Crevecoeur as a Norman stronghold, Leeds Castle descended through the de Crevecoeur family until the 1260s. What form this first castle took is uncertain because it was rebuilt and transformed in the following centuries. The castle was opened to the public since 1976.2

Our trip took us to Budapest. While we enjoyed the views of the Heroes’ Square, we were stunned by the view of the Vajdahunyad Castle nearby. It was built between 1896 and 1908 as part of the Millennial Exhibition which celebrated the 1000 years of Hungary since the Hungarian Conquest of the Carpathian Basin in 895.DSCF0152

I am a fan of castles. Sometimes, it is not grand castles that attract us. This little castle in Prague have always come to my memory.My beautiful picture

Heading south east, we found ourselves on the Hvar island of Croatia. We enjoyed walking up the steep paths on the island towards the Spanish Castle. The view from the castle towards the sea was breathtaking.DSCF0560

From Hvar, we crossed over by sea to the southern part of Croatia and reached Dubrovnik. There are numerous fortress towers within the confines of the Dubrovnik walls; it was indeed a feast for the eyes (if you so wish, please see my earlier posts on Dubrovnik). Here is a causal view of what one might expect while there.DSCF0909

Heading even further south, down under in Queensland, we were amazed at the efforts of someone trying to build a Spanish castle in Australia. This is the Paronella castle / park in Cairns.

Paronella Park was built in the 1930s by Jose Paronella, a Spanish immigrant.  José Paronella built facilities, including tennis courts and a cinema and a ballroom inspired by Spanish castles, to provide entertainment for the public.CIMG0579

We were much delighted by the tranquil garden and fountains of the castle.CIMG0603A

After all these tiring trips, we headed north and was happy to be back to our own castle . . . . . . . .  our home 🙂