U.S. Tourists Search for 'Downton Abbey'
Visitors to the real-world Downton get remarkable access, especially since it still operates as a proper home. With admission from about $22, visitors enter the actual castle and see the recognizable drawing rooms, grand foyer and famous oak stairway above the main center saloon where Downton's most dramatic scenes are filmed. Available for private events including destination weddings, Highclere is also home to an Egyptian artifacts museum from the Fifth Earl of Carnarvon, who along with archaeologist Howard Carter discovered the Tomb of Tutankhamun in 1922. While much of his collection was sold off to the Metropolitan Museum of New York after his death in 1923, antiquities rediscovered within the castle in 1987 join other offerings gathered back from museum loans throughout the U.K.