The home to the Dukes of Northumberland and famously used as the location for Hogwarts School in Harry Potter, Alnwick Castle is a fantastic place to visit. One of Europe’s finest Castle homes, Alnwick looks is a 14th century medieval fortress on the outside disguising a grand stately home on the inside with Italianate staterooms, extensive library and chapel, all of which can be explored.
The castle stands within a grass Bailey surrounded by the Ramparts and towers. The 15th century Barbican entrance offered strong defence from invading military and a tour through the Knight’s Quest arena and Dragon Quest experience is not to be missed.
Next door to the castle is the world-renowned Alnwick Garden, several acres of beautiful parks, 120-jet fountain, the world’s largest treehouse, woodland walks and the Poison Garden.
Alnwick has strong connections to Scottish and English history that can be discovered on tour here. Typically we spend around 2 hours at Alnwick Castle.
Approaching Lindisfarne we first have to cross a dramatic, tidal causeway that is underwater during high tide.
Lindisfarne Castle is much more recent, having originally been constructed around 1550 and home to a garrison of soldiers, providing defence to a potential attack on the English coast from sea.
In 1903 Edward Hudson commissioned extensive changes to the castle in 1903 when he and architect Lutyens renovated the castle into an Edwardian family home. Lindisfarne Castle underwent a significant renovation between 2015 and 2019 and many of the original features have been lovingly restored by the National Trust.
Lindisfarne has been an important religious site since Christian missionaries arrived around 520AD and is often referred to as ‘Holy Island’. The Priory was built nearly 1,400 years ago in 635 and is situated within the wild coastal beauty of Holy Island. The Museum at Lindisfarne Priory tells of the history, Viking raids, the cult of St Cuthbert, and the medieval Lindisfarne Gospels.
Accessible only by foot through a tunnel dug in 1752, Cove Harbour is an idilic location well off the tourist trail. Made famous locally by a series of Bank of Scotland adverts, there has been a fishing harbour at Cove since as long as records have existed. In 1881 Cove was hit by the East Coast Fishing Disaster and a memorial has recently been erected in memory of the tragic loss of life.
To make best use of your time on tour and to ensure safe passage across the causeway at Lindisfarne, we may reverse the tour itinerary. Note that Alnwick Castle is closed until 27th March 2020.