The historic Hearst Castle is only an hour’s drive from the Lexington Inn. The 165-roomed estate is truly an American Castle, fit for a King. It encompasses 127 acres of land, creating lush gardens and pools. The Castle holds two pools, a private airstrip, a gigantic wine cellar, and what was once the world’s largest private zoo.

Hearst Castle had a humble beginning. Originally, there was just the wealthy George Hearst, who purchased 40,000 acres of land across California in 1865. By the time his son, William Randolph Hearst, inherited the land, it had grown to 250,000 acres. William Hearst then teamed up with the esteemed architect Julia Morgan in 1919 to create the Castle as it stands today.

Tickets for adults are $25, while tickets for children are $12. The tours of the “Enchanted Hill” vary by season, as the castle envelopes a new personality as the seasons change. There is also a Hearst Castle App, available on both the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store.

There are many different tours for the Hearst Castle. There are group tours available to businesses, schools, or families, as well as private tours that are limited to groups of six. They also offer Accessibly Designed Tours, as the regular tour involves a lot of stair-climbing. The Accessibly Designed Tour is wheelchair-accessible, and includes touch-based exploration for the visually impaired and American Sign Language interpreters for the hearing impaired. Service animals are allowed inside Hearst Castle, however it is preferred if you call in advance to allow the staff to be prepared.

For more information about Hearst Castle, visit their website here.

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