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Village Farm and Town Foot Farm Holiday Cottages, Northumberland

Historical Holidays: Northumberland Castles

10th January 2022

Did you know that Northumberland boasts over 70 castle sites? That's more than any other county in the UK!

Boasting stunning scenery and rich heritage, Northumberland is a truly beautiful place to visit. The county acts as the buffer between England and Scotland, and so has seen its fair share of bloody battles and fierce fights. From small, secluded ruins to fantastic fortresses perched upon the hilltops, Northumberland is a truly history lover's dream.

One thing is for certain; a trip to Northumberland is the only time you'll want your holiday to end in ruins...

Holidays with History: Castles in Northumberland

The Amazing Alnwick Castle

Witness history on a grand scale at the amazing Alnwick Castle. Nicknamed 'the Windsor of the North', Alnwick Castle is the second largest inhabited castle in the whole of the UK, serving as the Duke of Northumberland's family home for over 700 years. Originally built as a motte and bailey castle, Alnwick boasts commanding views over the meandering river Aln.

With a history of drama and intrigue, Alnwick Castle combines marvellous medieval architecture with Italian style State Rooms. It has starred in several large-scale film and TV productions, standing in as Brancaster Castle on Downton Abbey and Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry in the early Harry Potter films.

The Brilliant Bamburgh Castle

Step inside England's finest coastal fortress and rediscover centuries of fascinating history. Bamburgh Castle has stood tall (over 150 feet, in fact) above the rugged Northumberland coastline for the last 1400 years, offering panoramic views of the Farne Islands, Holy Island and Bamburgh village.

Bamburgh Castle was once the royal seat to the Kings of Northumbria, as well as capturing the heart and soul of William George Armstrong: one of the Victorian era's greatest inventors. It has also played a starring role in film and TV, most notably featuring in Transformers: The Last Knight, Netflix's Frontier and The Last Kingdom.

The Dramatic Dunstanburgh Castle

The dramatic ruins of the 14th Century Dunstanburgh Castle tower over the Northumberland coast, making for a truly impressive sight. The castle ruins are remote and secluded, accessible only via a beautiful walk from the idyllic village of Craster - meandering along the rugged coastline across working farmland and pretty countryside.

Dunstanburgh has witnessed its fair share of battles over the years, including the bloody War of the Roses. Visitors can wander around the crumbling castle ruins, exploring the great gatehouse and even climb to the top of the imposing Lilburn Tower - providing stunning northerly views towards Bamburgh Castle.

The Wonderful Warkworth Castle

Become King or Queen for the day at this mighty Northumberland fortress. Perched upon the hilltop overlooking the idyllic River Coquet, visitors can discover how the Duke of Northumberland's family once lived, as well as the castle keep's key role in the long-standing war between England and Scotland.

Dating back to around 1200, Warkworth Castle boasts majestic medieval architecture, with its virtually complete cross-shaped keep making for the most spectacular sight. Venture into the remains of the great hall, chapel, and gatehouse, and rediscover a fine example of medieval British life.

The Creepy Chillingham Castle

Chillingham Castle has been dubbed as Britain's most haunted castle and is best known for its connections to the spirit world. Dating back to the 13th Century, this castle has received a lot of attention over the years - and not just from the living! If you take a walk through the dungeons and torture chambers, you'll soon see why...

Explore the Elizabethan Great Hall, admire the relics in the State Rooms, wander around the haunted courtyard and venture deep into the dungeons for a truly unforgettable day out. If you're feeling especially brave, you can even take a ghost tour around the grounds - with plenty of scares guaranteed!

The Lovely Lindisfarne Castle

The remote and secluded location of Lindisfarne Castle has intrigued and inspired many. This small, aesthetically appealing fortress is situated on Holy Island, off the Northumberland Coast. Visiting times depend upon the tide crossings, so make sure to check before you travel!

This 16th Century Tudor stronghold was built to defend the Holy Island Harbour and was mainly used as temporary housing for soldiers, before being transformed into a holiday home around 1901. Perched upon a rocky outcrop, you can't get much more isolated - or better protected - than Lindisfarne.