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10 Unique Castles

Leeds Castle in Kent, England
Leeds Castle in Kent, England
© iStockphoto/Jbroadwater

­Castles captivate us with their long, exciting histories of war and fortune and the influential people who graced their grounds. Many of them started as military strongholds and ended up as tourist hot spots in bustling modern towns. While there are hundreds of palaces around the world, some are more moving than others -- and all for different reasons. From sprawling family estates throughout Europe to Asian fortresses built for battle, castles take us back in time and pay tribute to the victors and the defeated souls of the past. Here are 10 that earn top marks for not only grandeur but also their inherent uniqueness.

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