The Series

Hever Castle Triathlon

The UK’s second biggest triathlon, the world’s largest children’s triathlon and the finale of both the Castle Tri Series and the UK triathlon season.

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Hever Castle Triathlon

Saturday 28th and Sunday 29th September 2019

Hever Castle Triathlon has established itself as an essential destination for British and international triathletes and the mainstream media, for its picture postcard venue, elite action, age-group choice and festival atmosphere. Put simply, instant classic doesn’t do the Hever Castle Triathlon justice.

Sibling bonding, friendship and sporting camaraderie are the theme at the Hever Castle Triathlon. The World’s largest children’s triathlon continues the Brownlee spirit, with a festival of sport at the historical Kentish and iconic venue.

As in previous years, the children’s races are split over two days (8-10 year olds on Saturday afternoon and 11-15 year olds on Sunday afternoon).

The Half Iron Gauntlet’s unique swim loop around the River Eden and Sixteen-acre island was hailed as one of the best open water swim routes on the UK circuit. The iconic long-distance Bastion is returning to Hever Castle on Sunday 7 July 2019.

The races will again commence with an open-water swim in the spectacular 38 acre Hever Castle Lake and River Eden, transitioning into the undulating cycle that takes athletes around a circuit through the High Weald of Kent, an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, and up to the stunning Ashdown forest for the longer distance races. The largely off-road run circumnavigates the estate as well as taking runners through land owned by the Bellhurst Nature Conservation Trust (the majority of this section is not on public rights of way), then returning to the award-winning castle grounds before athletes make the dash to the tree-lined finishing chute beside the lake.

Hever Castle Triathlon 2015/2016 - Stunning course for all levels of triathletes

About Hever Castle

Famous for its links with the Tudors, particularly Henry VIII, there have been three main periods in the construction of this historic castle.

The oldest part of the castle dates to 1270 and consisted of the gatehouse and a walled bailey. In the early 1500s the Bullen family acquired the castle and added a Tudor dwelling within the walls. Hever Castle was also the childhood home of Anne Boleyn, the mother of Queen Elizabeth I.

In 1903, William Waldorf Astor restored Hever Castle, building the Tudor Village and creating the gardens and Hever Castle Lake, which plays host to the swim section of the triathlon and took 800 men to dig by hand and took two years to construct.

Since 1983, the castle has been owned by Broadland Properties and is now open to the public. The castle itself houses historic 16th Century Tudor portraits, furniture and tapestries, and two magnificent prayer books inscribed by Anne Boleyn.

Film buffs will note that Hever Castle provides the a backdrop to 1987’s fairytale comedy classic The Princess Bride, starring Cary Elwes and Robin Wright, and 2008’s Inkheart with Brendan Fraser.

Go long for the Gauntlet

The 2018 Hever Castle event witnessed hundreds of hardy triathletes taking on the exciting Gauntlet, a middle-distance race that pushed competitors to their limit via a 1.9km swim, 90km bike ride and 21km run.

The race distance had a hugely successful launch in 2013 at the Chateau de Chantilly and Hever Castle Triathlons, with hardened triathletes and newcomers to the triathlon and middle-distance racing side-by-side on the start line.

Hever Castle Swim in association with Outdoor Swimmer magazine

Saturday 28th September 2019

The swim only event provides the choice of three different distances: 5km 2.5km and 1mile (see price table below) and boasts a unique and stunning swim route, which takes in the Castle Lake and River Eden and circumnavigates 16 Acre Island. View swim course here.

The swim described by many triathletes as the ‘best open water swim ever completed’ will now be open to outdoor swimmers as an event in its own right.

All swimmers will be provided with timing chips and the races categorised into wetsuits and non-wetsuits. Prizes will be awarded for the top three male and female competitors in each distance.

One mile leisure and family swim


Enjoy the beautiful setting of Hever Castle at your own pace. Swim any stroke you like (breaststroke encouraged), swim and chat with friends as you go around. Don’t worry about how long it takes (however time limit set at 90 minutes), just enjoy it. Under 16s welcome if accompanied throughout by a competent responsible adult.

Hever Castle Night Swim


We have an exciting end of season finale event for you as part of our 10-year anniversary celebrations! On Saturday 22nd September, during the Hever Castle Triathlon weekend, we will host our first ‘Night Swim’. The new Night Swim promises an atmospheric and unique opportunity to swim under the stars in the iconic Hever Castle lake and river Eden.

Starting at 7.30pm, swimmers can enjoy one of three distances all untimed; 400m, 750m or 1500m. Accompanied by atmospheric lighting and classical music the event is a perfect accompaniment to a weekend triathlon, run or swim and will be a spectacle for spectators and participants alike.

All swimmers will receive a swim hat, glow-sticks and medal. Warm refreshments will be available along with a licensed bar for post-race warm down. The swimmers event village, set on the Italian lawn by the loggia, will be set up with a heated changing room and bag drop area.

Why not book a campsite plot and make a weekend of it? The campsite is within easy walking distance to the swim start and is set in the stunning castle grounds.

Find out more about the Castle Swim Series.


Night Swim Offerings and Approximate Timings:

400m (8+) – 7.30pm

750m (16+) – 7.45pm

1500m (16+) – 8.00pm

The 400m swim route is suitable for 8-year-old children, accompanied by an adult, and will start half way around the 16 Acre Island providing families with a wonderful chance to swim not only in the lake, but in the river, with crowds waving from the crossing bridges.

10K and Half Marathon

Sunday 29th September 2019

Competitors undertake this stunning off road spectator friendly estate loop (1 lap for the 10K, 2 laps for the Half Marathon).Starting a few yards from the main castle drawbridge competitors will head off around the formal gardens of the estate before handrailing the lake for 0.5K and then heading up through Park Wood towards a corner of the estate called Thresher’s Field and the first of two well stocked Feed Stations.  A brief road section to Lockskinners is followed by a stunning country section of interconnected paths and tracks taking in the high point of the course at Stocks Wood and a water station in the strictly private Belhurst Nature Conservation Trust woodland area.  A couple of woods and fields later competitors arrive at the hamlet of Hill Hoath and shortly afterwards the picture post card National Trust owned village of Chiddingstone where, just inside the gates of the castle by the same name, they will find the 2nd of the two Feed Stations.  A brief trot across the frontage of Chiddingstone Castle, a small road section and then a gorgeous woodland gallop sees participants regain the Hever estate from where they left it at Threshers Field and the 1st Feed Station.  Finally, a 2K circumnavigation of the Hever Lake and a brief traverse of the formal gardens will see runner complete their first lap. After a further lap runners turn right into the finishing straight and cross the finish line with the castle as a backdrop, to receive their medal and the now famous finishing line banquet!

NEW! Half marathon and 10K at all our venues (UK, Ireland and France) in 2019. Set on the most iconic and stunning off road, spectator friendly courses. Come join us for the Series.

I absolutely LOVED the new swim course! That was a fab alteration, and made the swim so much more interesting than most of the other swims you get at UK events. Will definitely be back to race next season, I think I may even take on the Iron distance event early season... We\'ll see!
Eli Thorogood

All Hever race distances and pricing

To compete in the Hever Castle Triathlon you can enter either as an individual, a relay team of two, or a relay team of three. The Junior and Children’s races follow the same format. Relay entries can be all male, all female or mixed.

Saturday 28th September 2019

Race Name
Race Distance
(Individual / Relay)
Start time
Sprint Plus - Henry VIII
£95.00 / 140.00
Super Sprint - Anne Boleyn
£85.00 / 130.00
Starter Tri - Castle Tri
£70.00 / 110.00
Hever Outdoor Swimmer
Hever Outdoor Swimmer
Hever Outdoor Swimmer
1 mile
Children (8-10 yrs)
£33.00 / 55.00
Night Swim 400m
Night Swim 750m
Night Swim 1500m

Sunday 29th September 2019

Race Name
(Individual / Relay)
Start time
Half Iron / Middle Distance - The Gauntlet
£220.00 / 270.00
Olympic / Standard - The Hever
£110.00 / 150.00
HALF Marathon
10 km
Junior (13-15 yrs) - Elizabeth 1st
£44.00 / 55.00
Children (11-12 yrs) - Elizabeth 1st
£39.00 / 55.00

*Start times are approximate and shown here as a general guide. These are subject to change.  Depending on numbers, there will be multiple waves for each race distance, usually separated by 15 to 20 minutes.

Entrants will be notified of their wave time via email 2 weeks prior to the event.  We advise that entrants arrive at least 1 – 1.5 hours before their wave time.  There’s an option to request specific waves during registration.  Relays go off in the final wave of their distance.

Course maps

Please take a moment to study these in details.

Hever Castle Triathlon is an exciting and busy event with lots of different courses taking place throughout the weekend. There will be a full brief before your race start but it’s a good idea to familiarise yourself with the course and in particular any key junctions to ensure you take the correct route.

Hever Castle Speakers Tent

For the first time at Hever Castle Triathlon we’re thrilled to bring you a Speaker’s Tent with celebrities, industry experts and event professionals talking about their passions – from training tips to getting your mind ready to take on a triathlon challenge.

Each session will include a short talk and the chance to ask the experts about their subject in a ‘campfire’ style Q&A Session.


Find your 2018 race time results here.

Useful information

Race licence

The Castle Triathlon Series UK events are governed by the British Triathlon Federation and their technical officials will provide guidance on the day and in the run up to the event.

On race day, all participants involved in a multi-discipline sport are required to produce a valid triathlon governing body membership card or purchase a Day Licence. The Day Licence fee is £5 Adult £1 Child and can be purchased at Registration on event day.  More information here

Spectator Offering

The spectator experience at the Castle Triathlon Series has become almost as famous as the spectacular backdrops and classic courses, and has made passing time before your loved ones finish the race a thing of the past.

Travel, accommodation and directions to the venue

Click the link below to find out everything you need to know about all of our venues.

Trophies, prize money and medals

All competitors in all races will receive a medal on completion of their race.

Each 1st place winner will also receive a suitably themed trophy, and sponsor’s prizes for 2nd and 3rd place. There is a significant prize pot on offer for the Olympic and Gauntlet race distances.

Click below to find out more about what we have on offer.

Rules and Terms and Conditions

Please read and understand the general rules, in particular the cut-off times, before competing to ensure a fantastic race for you and everyone else.

Water quality

Please see the latest water quality tests for Hever Castle lake. All tests are undertaken using the EU Water Bathing Directive as the benchmark.

Water temperature

This will be taken nearer the Event, and posted on the Race Admin page.

Race distances

Race distances

For the absolute beginners and children to the professional triathletes, the Castle Triathlon Series offers a wealth of race distances to suit all levels.

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Hosted at a selection of stunning and iconic castles across the UK, Ireland and France, the Castle Triathlon Series events all promise an inspirational and memorable race experience.

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Take part

We pride ourselves on offering a bespoke and tailored offering for all those wishing to take part and grateful for all those who want to be involved on the day.

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We would always recommend training in preparation for any event, but how much you do, and the style you take is down to you.

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