A Mini Tour of Northumberland

A Mini Tour of Northumberland

Whilst staying in Newcastle a few weeks back, G and I spent a Saturday having a mini road trip along the Northumberland coastline. If you’ve never been, Northumberland is a gorgeous area of the UK and you absolutely should be adding it to your bucket list. If only for that glorious coastline.

We set off from Newcastle, our bellies full of brunch, and drove the hour or so to Alnwick Castle, now famous for being used as one of the filming locations in the Harry Potter films (and, I think, Downton Abbey). It’s the second biggest castle in England and has been home to the Dukes of Northumberland for over 700 years. It’s actually still used as a family home but not like any family home you’ve ever seen cos, you know, these people very rich. It’s seriously lavish with silk walls, glamourous furniture and elaborate carved ceilings. Plus the double-level library with beautiful bound books packed onto every shelf. Oh mumma, how do I get my own library eh?

We had a wander round the rooms and the exhibitions which were interesting. Although, is it just me that finds it seriously weird that you can just wander round somewhere that people still live in? Like, it feels like a stately home but oh wait, there’s a tv remote and family photos. Huh.

Anyway, for me, it’s the outside of the castle that makes it feel like a magical place. I mean, you really could be in Hogwarts. There’s courtyards and dungeons and endless countryside stretching out as far as the eye can see. There’s also ‘broomstick training’ if that sorta thing floats your boat (running around on the ground with a broom in between your legs; personally I’d prefer to actually fly on a broomstick but whatever).

Then there’s the gardens, full of the weird and wonderful. Magical twisted iron gates; secret, star-covered doors, grand water features, fairy sculptures, hill-top swings; getting lost amongst the grounds is enough to keep you entertained for hours.

The real treasure though? The Treehouse restaurant. Which is exactly what it says on the tin. You can see it peeking out of the trees as you head towards it but it’s only once you’re there, up amongst the trees, does it feel like you’re properly in a fairy tale. I think I’ll leave the below pictures to describe this one, as I won’t do it justice. We only had chance to have a quick wander round this time but I ate here on another visit a few years back and can confirm the food is really good.

After we’d finished pretending we lived amongst the treetops, we jumped back in the car and drove further up the coast to Bamburgh Castle. As spectacular as it looks, we were more there for Bamburgh’s endless beach which, let’s be honest, wouldn’t look out of place somewhere in the Caribbean.

Although the water’s a lot colder.

And I can confirm that because I was persuaded to whip off my shoes and socks and tip my tootsies into the North Sea.

We paddled and wandered, and sat amongst the sand dunes. And then, when we eventually managed to pull our eyes away form that endless beach view, we drove about a mile up the road to eat freshly made fish n chips on the cliff top.

Cos did you even go to the beach if you didn’t eat fish n chips whilst staring out to sea?

With salty hair, sandy toes and greasy fingers, I reluctantly accepted we had to leave and we headed back to the car for a sunset drive back down the coastline to Newcastle.

A Mini Tour of Northumberland

A Mini Tour of Northumberland

A Mini Tour of Northumberland

A Mini Tour of Northumberland

A Mini Tour of Northumberland

A Mini Tour of Northumberland

A Mini Tour of Northumberland

A Mini Tour of Northumberland

A Mini Tour of Northumberland

A Mini Tour of Northumberland

A Mini Tour of Northumberland

A Mini Tour of Northumberland

A Mini Tour of Northumberland

A Mini Tour of Northumberland

A Mini Tour of Northumberland

A Mini Tour of Northumberland

A Mini Tour of Northumberland

A Mini Tour of Northumberland

A Mini Tour of Northumberland


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