When someone tells you that there is a random castle in the mountains that a man has spent the last 40 years building by hand, it doesn’t matter how exhausted you are or how much you really want to get home, you go visit that castle because, Hogwarts. Real life Hogwarts people.
Our weekend road trip was an emotional rollercoaster. Our car broke down out of state, we attended a funeral all while our house was put on the market and immediately had offers we needed to decide on. So many decisions and emotions combined with over 24 hours in a car with a binky tossing toddler and you have a recipe for, well, let’s just say I am surprised my husband and I are on speaking terms and my sister-in-law who rode with us hasn’t disowned us.
So Bishop’s Castle…
It’s located about 30 miles outside of Rye, Colorado. The castle has a drawbridge, ballroom, and even a dragon standing guard. The stained glass windows are stunning, as is the metalwork that is throughout. Ruevo was in heaven, as I am sure any six year old would be.
The views of the Colorado mountains from the castle are incredible and I am sure they are even more amazing from the top. I didn’t make it too far up with little Rose because the protective mom in me started to have a heart attack when I saw that some of the railings were still unfinished. Many of the balconies are made of rod iron, which for us who have a fear of falling, can be problematic. I don’t really like to be able to see the ground through the floor I am standing on.
Things to Know
- Its free, but donations are accepted.
- This is an ongoing project so it is basically and active construction site. This can be problematic if you have toddlers who are in the “sprint away from mom stage” like mine is.
- Although we didn’t see Jim Bishop, the man who built the castle, I was told he is pretty opinionated. I think the article on roadsideamerica.com summed it up best by saying: Bishop’s Castle may look like Hogwarts, but Jim Bishop is no cuddly Dumbledore. He’s a tough-talking man with strong beliefs, and sometimes he expresses them bluntly and loudly. If you or your children want to avoid potentially offensive rants (involving politics and race), you may want to steer clear.
- If you head up in winter, bundle up!
I wish I could say that I visited it longer, but both the cold January air and my fear that Rose would find a way to run right off some of the gaps in the railing led me back down to the car sooner than the others in my group. Revuo can’t stop talking about the Colorado Castle and hopefully her comparing all of our potential future houses to the castle won’t end up being too problematic!
*Thanks to my awesome sister-in-law who provided the picture of the dragon on the castle!