Perched in an ideal defensive location atop a cliff above a crook in the river, the town castle was built to ward off the marauding Welsh – or to enforce the English expansion into Wales, perspective depending. Founded after the Norman conquest, the castle was dramatically expanded in the 14th century.
The Norman chapel in the inner bailey is one of the few surviving round chapels in England, and the sturdy keep (built around 1090) offers wonderful views over the hills.
The cafe has atmospheric indoor dining spaces in the castle's original kitchen and study, and outdoor seating in fine weather.
Within the castle walls are three self-catering apartments sleeping up to four people; rates start at £615 for three nights (the minimum stay).