Dorset is a county that is known for its historical significance, especially with its Jurassic Coast, but its castles are also something to keep in mind.

A few are noteworthy in being involved in some key points in British history or housing some well-known figures of their day.

If you fancy a day out exploring some of the finest that the county has to offer, here are a few that you can visit.

5 of the best castles to visit in Dorset

Corfe Castle

Bridport and Lyme Regis News: Corfe CastleCorfe Castle (Image: Tripadvisor)

Arguably one of Dorset's most famous and most visited historical sites, Corfe Castle is definitely one to visit if you haven't already.

Having been built shortly after the Norman conquest in 1066 it became a favourite of King John a couple of centuries later before being privately owned by Sir Christopher Hatton in 1572.

It later came into the hands of the Bankes family who took the side of King Charles I in the English Civil War, and it was sieged by Oliver Cromwell's Roundheads as a result.

An Act of Parliament was passed at Wareham to destroy Corfe Castle due to this, with gunpowder causing the unique gaps and angles that we see today.

The castle was eventually handed back to the Bankes family who then gave it to the National Trust in 1982.

Nowadays you can spend visit the castle and the surrounding village, learning about its extensive history and taking in the grand views of the surrounding area.

On Tripadvisor the site has been well-received, earning a score of 4.5/5 from 2,984 reviews.

Lulworth Castle

Bridport and Lyme Regis News: Lulworth CastleLulworth Castle (Image: Tripadvisor)

Described as being a "magnificent building" that is "steeped in history" on its website Lulworth Castle will likely make for a good day out.

The website adds: "Originally built as a hunting lodge to entertain aristocracy and royalty, it was for centuries the family seat of the Weld family, the current owners of the Lulworth Estate.

"Ravaged by fire in 1929, it has been partly restored in a pioneering partnership with English Heritage."

You can learn about its extensive history as well as enjoy a walk around its spacious grounds and have some refreshments at the castle tearooms. 

On Tripadvisor, it has received a 4/5 score from 455 reviews.

Sherborne Castle

Built by Sir Walter Raleigh in 1594, Sherborne Castle is well-known for its significant collection of art and furniture as well as its Grade I listed garden and lake.

On its website, it says: "Visitors from all over the world have been attracted to its outstanding collections of art and furniture, connection to Sir Walter Raleigh and to admire Capability Brown’s landscape. Sherborne Castle remains the family home of the Wingfield Digby Family."

It has earnt a score of 4.5/5 on Tripadvisor from 588 reviews and you can book tickets to visit the castle at their website here.

Highcliffe Castle

Nearby to Christchurch is Highcliffe Castle which is described as "an important example of the Romantic and Picturesque style of architecture" on its website.

It adds: "Discover for yourself the fascinating story of how this once lavish home was destroyed by fires, left to ruin, and subsequently brought back to life."

The castle has a Grade I listed status and there are also many acres of woodland and gardens to explore.

Portland Castle

Described as "one of Henry VIII's finest coastal forts" Portland Castle was built in the early 1540s to protect against French and Spanish invasion.

On the English Heritage website, it says: "Today it provides a great day out for visitors and its audio tour, included in the admission price, tells of the castle's 450 year history and the part it played in the First and Second World Wars.

"Portland Castle offers lots to do for families and couples alike, and only four miles from Weymouth, this historic adventure can easily be combined with some more contemporary seaside fun."

From the gun platforms, you'll be able to take in great sea views of Portland Harbour as well as see the cannons up close yourself.

You'll also be able to see visit the Tudor kitchen and armoury as well as go on a free audio tour of the castle.