Mont Orgueil Castle, set into its rocky outcrop has been standing guard above the beautiful fishing village of Gorey sine 1212
Also known as Gorey Castle, this back-in-the-day state-of-the-art stronghold has an intriguing 800-year history in which Sir Walter Raleigh saved it from demolition, enemies of King Charles I met their death, it was seized in the German occupation (1940-1945) and visited by Queen Victoria and Albert in 1846. The castle has see life as a prison, spy station, seat of government and is an icon for Jersey Pride and independence.
Once past the ticket entrance, you'll reach a very impressive set of doors and drawbridge. Upon entering, you will be granted your first view of the castle's interior. From here, open up the beautiful grounds featuring well-kept garden areas and a steep staircase leading to the next door known as the Queen’s Gate.
As you enter deeper into the castle, its gruesome history comes alive. Descend into the dungeons to experience the ‘witchcraft’ exhibition and see the infamous ‘dance of death’ statue, then climb the turrets to find the medieval 'wheel of urine'.
Outside and high on the battlements, with a commanding view of the surrounding hillsides and distant French coast, you can stand shoulder to shoulder with wooden soldiers who ‘guard’ the Castle and represent the fate that could befall those fighting to save the castle and gardens from invasion.
Back to modern times, the castle is also home to several exhibitions, including ‘The Queen’ by light artist Chris Levine and holographer Rob Munday, which features, ‘Equanimity’, a world-renowned holographic portrait of Her Majesty commissioned as part of Jersey’s celebrations of its 800-year-old relationship with the monarchy.
Many events are still staged here today, from Halloween parties to Shakespeare’s plays, where families can spend a fun afternoon with children dressed as knights and princesses making it one of the most popular attractions in Jersey.
The castle’s surroundings are equally appealing with Gorey harbour at its feet, a pretty pier and village where cafés, bars and restaurants are ready to welcome you. One to try is the Jersey Crab Shack - an inviting eatery perched up high next to one of the best-known Jersey Royal potato cotîls with views right over Gorey Castle, the French coast and the Royal Bay of Grouville.