7 of the Best Castles in Massachusetts

Looking to be King (or Queen) of the Castle for a day? Massachusetts might not have ancient fortresses or Renaissance chateaux, but it does have some excellent castles worth visiting. Don’t believe us? From Barrington to Ipswich, we’ve cherry-picked seven of the best castles in Massachusetts.

Where are the best castles in Massachusetts?

1. Hammond Castle, Gloucester

Hammond Castle looks like it’s been plucked straight out of an old fairytale. Inventor John Hays Hammond, known as the “Father of Radio Control”, built the medieval-inspired castle in 1929. Influenced by both Europe’s most famous Gothic cathedrals and a medieval French village, the castle comes complete with drawbridges, turrets and courtyards. He incorporated the castle as a museum in 1930. Today, visitors can explore the Great Hall, inventions exhibitions, library and War Room, as well as a more unusual inner courtyard that doubles up as a personal rainforest.

best castles in Massachusetts

2. Bancroft Tower Castle, Worcester

This teeny tiny feudal castle honours George Bancroft, the former US Secretary of the Navy and founder of the US Naval Academy. The son of his childhood pal Stephen Salisbury II built the monument in 1900, using horses and carriages to transport the huge stones up Prospect Hill. Set in the heart of he park, the castle rises to 56-ft tall.

Throughout the 1980s the tower became a party hotspot and haven for illicit activities, so it closed to the public for years. Nowadays, thanks to the efforts of Park Spirit, you can visit on select Sundays in October.

Worcester Massachusetts USA – December 23, 2018: The Bancroft Tower on a sunny morning. The Tower is a 56-foot-high (17 m) natural stone and granite tower, which looks like a miniature feudal castle.

3. Winnekenni Castle, Haverhill

Completed in 1875, Winnekenni Castle was the brainchild of Dr. James R Nichols, a brilliant chemist. After taking a trip to England and Scotland, he decided to built a summer home inspired castles he’d seen there. He used boulders and rocks to give it a patchwork effect which, when combined with its views overlooking Kenzoa Lake, make for some exceptionally good looking views. Fittingly, Winnekenni means “very beautiful” in Algonquin Native American. The castle is often open for community events, like concerts and historical tours.

4. Searles Castle, Great Barrington 

This postcard-perfect French chateau style palace features turrets, seven storeys and a dungeon basement. Stanford White designed the 45,246 sq. ft mansion in the 1880s for Mark Hopkins, one of the founders of the Central Pacific Railroad, and his wife Mary. Inside, there’s an eye-watering 40 rooms and 36 fireplaces, as well as one of the country’s first-ever water coolers. After Hopkins’ death, the castle became a private girls’ school for 30 years, then served as a training centre, another boarding school and a country club. You can now hire out the castle for weddings and other special events.

5. Castle Hill on the Crane Estate, Ipswich

This seaside estate is the stuff of all your most regal fantasies. Chicago industrialist Richard T. Crane Jr and his wife Florence Higinbotham Crane purchased a picturesque rambling cottage here and transformed it into a European-inspired country estate in the 1910s. After a fire, architect David Adler transformed it into an epic 59-room Stuart-style castle.

These days you can take a tour around the manicured gardens and castle interiors. Keep an eye on their calendar of special events too, there’s usually always something exciting going on.

6. Herreshoff Castle, Marblehead

This charming castle was inspired by Wrik the Red’s Viking property located in Greenland. E. Waldo Ballard built the castle in 1920, then sold it to Francis Herreshoff in 1945. Climbing plants cover almost all of the castle’s stony walls and, in true fairytale style, there are turrets, arched windows and huge wooden doors too.

7.  Usen Castle, Waltham 

This Medieval-inspired castle is considerably younger than it looks. Built in 1928 on top of Boston Rock, it comprises six sections around an enclosed courtyard. It also features all the trappings of a proper fairytale castle, complete with turrets, towers, crenellations and pinnacles. Dr John Hall Smith, founder of Middlesex College of Medicine and Surgery, built the castle in the early 20th century and it’s been used as student accommodation since the 1950s. Incidentally, it’s one of the highest points of the Brandeis campus, so it offers some cracking views to.

best castles in massachusetts
Mike Lovett, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
Allie D'Almo

Allie is a passionate traveller with a hearty interest in great food and stories. She likes to travel slowly, particularly to underrated and underloved places. She’s lived in Italy and is now based in London, where she spends most of her time either plotting her next trip or writing about her last one.

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