Finding the best colleges that look like castles is fantastic if you are looking for a way to study in a school you won’t soon forget. With remarkable architecture that includes turrets, rotundas, and classical brick and stone styling, you will always be overwhelmed by its beauty.
Luckily, there are tons of different university and college campuses with castle-inspired elements that are sure to impress.
In this guide, we will explore 10 top-ranked institutions that also feature castle-like campus buildings and embellishments. Each of these schools meets the following criteria:
- An average annual cost of no more than $37,000
- A median starting salary no lower than $30,000
- Accredited programs by recognized bodies
That said, aside from choosing colleges with beautifully-styled campuses, we also took academics into account. Many of the schools on this list have high-ranked and competitive programs for you to enjoy.
Whether you want to study the arts or engineering, you will not run out of fantastic opportunities to consider.
10 Best Colleges That Look Like Castles
1. University of Michigan
4 Year; Ann Arbor, MI
Average Annual Cost: $14,878
The University of Michigan is one of the best colleges in the northern United States. Adding to its charm are the gothic-inspired structures that will take your breath away. Its architecture is one of the largest selling features of the campus, making you feel like you are studying amongst royalty.
There are numerous buildings designed by Albert Kahn, who is currently one of the world’s most notable 20th-century architects. You will also find another uniquely designed building, the Allan F. and Alene Smith Library, which features even more castle-like embellishments.
Its stunning reflective glass facade brings more light to the building, offering spectacular interior and exterior views. Although this building was built in the 1980s, it lends itself well to the more traditionalist style of the rest of the campus.
2. Yale University
4 Year; New Haven, CT
Average Annual Cost: $15,296
Yale University is home to some of the most recognizable university buildings in all of Connecticut. The campus is spectacular, with more than 300 years of preserved architecture for you to take in and appreciate.
You will find buildings designed by famous architects like Philip Johnson and Frank Gehry, as well as a James Gamble Rogers-designed garden. Each of the buildings on campus has its allure, including 15-floor cathedral-style exteriors and stained glass windows.
In addition, you’ll be able to enjoy the Sterling Memorial Library, filled with two complete art galleries with pieces from Picasso and Monet. The 216-foot Harkness Tower brings the entire campus together, screaming antiquated castle architecture every student will love.
When on campus, it is a fantastic idea to visit the Yale School of Music, Grace Hopper College, and Yale Law School buildings. Each has many remarkable features that are sure to take your breath away.
3. Rosemont College
4 Year; Rosemont, PA
Average Annual Cost: $17,825
The main building at Rosemont College is its most castle-like contribution to the campus, and it surely doesn’t disappoint. Like many of the other uniquely designed buildings on this list, the architecture is something that makes the campus one of a kind.
The main building was initially designed as the primary residence of Joseph Sinnott. As one of the United States’ most prosperous rye distillery owners, the building was initially created in the 1920s and is now home to administrative staff.
Students and staff also refer to this building as “Rathalla,” which is Gaelic for “Home of the chieftain upon the highest hill.”
Even at first glance, it is easy to see how this building is a stunning combination of fortress and castle elements. Its unique architecture is comprised of balconies, cupolas, spanning eaves, dormers, gables, and more.
4. Kansas State University (Nichols Hall)
4 Year; Manhattan, KS
Average Annual Cost: $18,433
Kansas State University is a fantastic school with numerous programs for students to explore. In fact, it is among the few universities that offer in-state tuition to students from out of state.
Uniquely, it is also home to some of the most castle-inspired buildings you will find in a college or university in the United States.
Nichols Hall is one building, in particular, that is sure to quench your need for old-world architecture for you to enjoy. It is home to the theatre, dance, computer information, and communication studies departments.
It has plenty of interesting features, but unfortunately, none of the interior features are original, only the exterior. In 1968, there was a large fire in the building that gutted the entirety of the interior, only leaving the exterior undamaged.
That said, Nichols Hall was rebuilt in 1986 but still maintains the natural castle aesthetic you have been searching for. You will find battlements, stone and rigid symmetry, and square towers that give you plenty to write home about.
5. Berry College
4 Year; Mount Berry, GA
Average Annual Cost: $22,410
Berry College has everything we could ever dream of having on a stunning campus that not only has castle buildings but plenty of activities.
Most administrative buildings on campus boast a unique English gothic-inspired flair. You’ll have an eye-catching reflecting pool, a massive clock tower, and other amazing features displayed in the Ford Auditorium.
Regarding the Mount Berry campus itself, there’s plenty for students to enjoy. You’ll be on 27,000 acres of mountains, forest, and woods, perfect for outdoor enthusiasts. There are also foot trails, horse trails, bicycle paths, and archery competitions and hunts in the fall.
If you are looking for a post-secondary experience as close to living in a genuine castle as possible, Berry College is a fantastic choice. It is ranked as one of the best private colleges in the United States, with over 90% of its students living on campus.
Although the buildings are more old-fashioned and traditional, you will find the on-campus resources for students are remarkable. You’ll have access to a fitness center, different dining options, a post office, a bookstore, and more.
Truthfully, the campus is like its own little town, allowing students to invest their time in numerous ways to stay connected to campus life. Along with activities, there are tons of student-led events to participate in, including Mountain Day, a well-known Berry tradition.
6. Flagler College
4 Year; Saint Augustine, FL
Average Annual Cost: $24,981
Flagler College is much different than the other castle-like campuses on this list. It doesn’t have traditional gothic-inspired architecture; instead, it boasts a Spanish renaissance flair that is sure to impress.
Each of its buildings is massive, featuring pointed arches, authentic roof tiling, and stunning window displays. Not only that, but the campus is located in the perfect area, giving students access to palm trees, ocean views, and an outdoor swimming pool.
One of the most notable areas students must see when visiting campus is the Ponce de Leon building, which is home to one of the residence halls. This building is an authentic Spanish renaissance revivalist structure with a deep history.
Initially, the Ponce de Leon was a hotel in 1988 and features a rotunda, marble staircase, and even turrets as you would see on a castle. Today, it’s one of the most popular residence halls for numerous students.
7. Mount Holyoke College
4 Year; South Hadley, MA
Average Annual Cost: $28,724
It is well known that most women’s colleges in the United States have some of the most beautiful architecture compared to other universities. Mount Holyoke College is no different, especially as it’s one of the most prominent all-women schools in Massachusetts.
This college has the perfect combination of all the features you’d expect from a New England college, including gothic-inspired buildings. You’ll find giant stone offices, massive wrought iron gates, and plenty of natural growth that breathes some life into the campus.
If there is one thing to be said about Mount Holyoke College, it is that it looks more like a castle than a college campus. That’s especially true thanks to its arboretum, lakes, and waterfall.
Students will also be able to explore a greenhouse, an outdoor amphitheater, and an on-campus running path.
One must-see building on this campus is the Mary Lyon Hall. It looks just like a castle building you’d see at Hogwarts and is the library, which means it is accessible to all students.
8. Boston University (The Castle)
4 Year; Boston, MA
Average Annual Cost: $30,395
Boston University is another school home to a specific building sure to impress old architecture lovers.
The Castle is an authentic Tudor revival mansion built in 1915 and gifted to the University. It was initially built as a private residence for William Lindsey but is now an event building that students frequent on the Boston University campus.
Aside from being rented out for receptions, concerts, and other special events, there is a pub located in the basement for staff and students.
It has some of the most beautiful architecture out of the other buildings on campus, featuring bay windows, gables, balconies, and unforgettable ivy.
Another fascinating feature of the building is the fact that it is placed perfectly next to the Charles River. Here, you can watch the Boston University Rowing Crew Team during practice.
9. University of Notre Dame
4 Year; Notre Dame, IN
Average Annual Cost: $31,101
The University of Notre Dame is one of the most famed schools in the entire United States. Its buildings are a sight to be seen, as is the 19-foot-tall statue of the Virgin Mary and the Sacred Heart Basilica’s steeple.
With its deep roots in religion and history, the University of Notre Dame is home to some of the most iconic architecture you will set your sights on.
One of the most notable aspects of the campus is the massive gilded golden dome on the university’s main building. It’s said to be visible from the roads leading to and from Indianapolis and Chicago, as well as from anywhere on campus.
It is a remarkable landmark that makes Notre Dame even more unique in architecture than its old-world castle buildings.
There are a ton of fantastic locations you can visit on campus that will make you feel like you are studying alongside kings and queens.
The Grotto of Our Lady of Lourdes, built in 1858, is where masses are celebrated, while the Basilica of the Sacred Heart hosts weekly masses. Be sure to explore the main building, which contains classrooms, as it was built in 1879 and has many castle-inspired features.
10. Kenyon College
4 Year; Gambier, OH
Average Annual Cost: $36,374
Kenyon College not only has stunning castle-like architecture to take in, but it is also the former home of President Rutherford B. Hayes and Paul Newman.
All of the buildings on campus have an iconic European-inspired gothic flair that makes it one of the best options for castle lovers. You’ll be able to spend plenty of time taking in all of the unique architecture while studying on a campus that feels like you’re walking the halls of Oxford or Hogwarts.
Old Kenyon is one of the top castle-like buildings you must visit when attending Kenyon College. It is the most notable structure, built in 1829, with spire towers that span well above the treetops on campus.
Aside from its architecture, Kenyon College is a small liberal arts school, offering plenty of studying opportunities with smaller class sizes for students to enjoy. In fact, it is tagged one of the most beautiful small college campuses in America, with many unforgettable buildings.
You can explore over 3,000 acres of woods and greenlands, as well as historic stone halls and glass-windowed structures. Some of the most stunning buildings you have to visit if you’re ever on campus include:
- Ascension Hall: Resembles a stately stone castle
- Science Quad: Castle-like features with spanning glass windows with unforgettable natural light
- Finn House: Home to the Kenyon Review, the school’s paper
Study At a Castle Campus Today!
Undoubtedly, finding the best colleges that look like castles can help you have a one-of-a-kind experience you won’t soon forget. You will study alongside remarkable history while taking in authentic architecture dating back far further than you’d expect.
So, what are you waiting for? There is no better time than now to enroll in a college with castle architecture and competitive top-ranked programs.