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Sharon Cain
Time for Life Correspondent
4:10 AM 12th June 2021
lifestyle

Weekend Away: Northumberland: Where Ewe’ll Be Warmly Welcomed!

The challenges, soaring costs and constant changes to overseas travel restrictions are prompting more people to seek out the beauty of the British Isles to recharge their batteries.

Our Time for Life Correspondent, Sharon Cain, highlights why Northumberland’s diverse offerings and sensory delights will ignite, inspire imaginations and satiate appetites.
Northumberland boasts more castles than any other county. Images by Steve Hare.
Northumberland boasts more castles than any other county. Images by Steve Hare.

Captivating Castles

Northumberland - soon to be our new home - is a mesmerising magnet for lovers of the great outdoors.
The area boasts 70 castles, more than any other county, situated in stunning locations. They include Alnwick Castle which was built in the 11th century and of strategic importance in controlling and protecting the border.
A media star in its own right, the iconic castle has appeared in Harry Potter films, Transformers: The Last Knight, Downton Abbey and Elizabeth and Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves.

International fame: Bamburgh Castle.
International fame: Bamburgh Castle.
Sand Dune Trysts

Stars of stage and screen that have also been ‘wowed’ by Northumberland’s jewels include legends Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton. They were renowned for engaging in romantic trysts in between filming in the sand dunes - the gateway to Bamburgh Castle - when he filmed Becket with Peter O’Toole in 1964.
Reigning over the beautiful coastline for over 1,400 years with beautiful views stretching to The Farne Islands, Bamburgh Castle is the former royal seat of Northumbrian Kings.

Within the grandeur of its walls its rich legacy of knights and Kings is intertwined with ghostly tales. Reports of paranormal activities include a crying baby, a piano playing and dark eerie shadows lurking in castle corridors.

A tour of the fourteen splendid State Rooms featuring over three thousand objects including paintings by past masters, gorgeous furniture, weapons and porcelain is a must.

Stunning stained glass window in the King’s Hall.
Stunning stained glass window in the King’s Hall.
The opulence of the King’s Hall, a 19th Century masterpiece, reflects the high quality and standards of Victorian craftsmanship and materials. The ceiling and walls are produced from Siamese teak and minstrels gallery enhanced with a stunning stained glass window.

Lancastrian Stronghold

Dramatically located on a remote headland just a short walk from the picturesque village of Craster is Dunstanburgh Castle - a Lancastrian stronghold with a turbulent past.

Dunstanburgh Castle is home to flocks of local seabirds.
Dunstanburgh Castle is home to flocks of local seabirds.
Witnessing violent battles during the Wars of the Roses, it was besieged and captured twice by the House of York armies and later lapsed into decay. Managed by the National Trust, highlights include the twin tower keep, seabirds and stunning scenery.

Home to flocks of local seabirds including guillemots, razorbills, kittiwakes, fulmars, shags - puffins feed in the water below and Peregrine falcons are spotted on the castle’s cliffs.

Picture Postcard

Pastel-painted beach huts: Amble Marina.
Pastel-painted beach huts: Amble Marina.
The coast’s wealth of towns and villages include Amble village on estuary of the River Coquet. Affectionately referred to as ‘England's Kindliest Port', its harbour features pastel-painted beach huts and seafood eateries.

Scrumptious: seafood is widely available
Scrumptious: seafood is widely available
The fishing harbour of Craster is among the delights of the area and known globally for its Craster kippers which are still smoked in the traditional manner using oak chippings and salt.

Steeped in tradition, the harbour dates back centuries when fishermen braved the fierce elements to pull their boats onto the shore. It was built by the Craster family in 1906 to mark the loss of Captain John Craster who was killed while campaigning in Tibet in 1904. The remains of his memorial can be seen on the harbour wall.

The fishing harbour of Craster is among the delights of the area and known globally for its Craster kippers which are still smoked in the traditional manner using oak chippings and salt.

Steeped in tradition, the harbour dates back centuries when fishermen braved the fierce elements to pull their boats onto the shore. It was built by the Craster family in 1906 to mark the loss of Captain John Craster who was killed while campaigning in Tibet in 1904. The remains of his memorial can be seen on the harbour wall.

Steeped in tradition: Craster harbour
Steeped in tradition: Craster harbour
Magnificent Coastline

Northumberland’s sensational coastline - a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty - stretches 64 km from the River Coquet estuary to Berwick-Upon-Tweed.
In the countdown to moving to this stunning area, our plans include walking the coastal path which sets off from Cresswell at the southern end of Druridge Bay.

The fabulous route includes Amble and the villages of Warkworth, Alnmouth, Craster, Seahouses before reaching Bamburgh and its awe-inspiring castle.

The prospect of exploring this land of legends and landmarks - which include Hadrian’s Wall World Heritage Site, the Holy Island of Lindisfarne, and fascinating forests - is exhilarating.

We can’t wait to share its treasures with you.




You can also follow Sharon and Steve’s eclectic adventures at leaveworktotravel.com