Beautiful Bamburgh is at Northumberland’s historical core, a charming coastal town celebrated for its rich heritage and fascinating local legends that have delighted visitors for 100s of years.
Perhaps start with a guided walk or hiking tour along the Northumberland Coast, an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, in the Northumberland National Park to get your bearings and find your way to Bamburgh’s pride and joy, its beloved castle that’s starred in favourite flicks from The BFG to Macbeth.
An iconic ancient building, at 150 feet above sea level and spanning nine acres, Bamburgh Castle was once the royal seat of the Kings of Northumbria and is believed to be the inspiration for Sir Lancelot’s castle. Dominating Bamburgh’s coastline for more than 1,400 years, it’s believed that this historical site has been inhabited in one way or another for over 10,000 years and has many tales to tell.
One of the biggest occupied castles in the UK with 14 stunning rooms on display to the public, Bamburgh offers everything from legends of dragons and accounts of bloody battles that are sure to thrill history-buffs of all ages. Let’s hope you see the Crows of Bamburgh while you’re here, folklore tells that once the crows (which are in fact rooks) leave Bamburgh the village will be no more! That’s something to mull over while you enjoy a light meal and a local beer in the Clock Tower Cafeteria.
A visit to the Bamburgh Castle is rich in breath-taking views out to the nearby Farne Islands (National Trust) and Lindisfarne (English Heritage). Be sure to take a boat trip to the Farne Islands, a stronghold for puffins – those characterful birds with the colourful bills – from April to July. It’s also a favourite haunt for a variety of other seabirds including nesting eider ducks and guillemots as well as a popular haul-out site for grey seals. The Holy Island of Lindisfarne meanwhile, which is a short drive from Bamburgh, can be reached by foot at low-tide and offers rugged coastal beauty and tales of an eventful past.
Did you know that Bamburgh Castle was also the world’s first lifeboat station? Nearby, you’ll find The RNLI Grace Darling Museum, which chronicles the life of a celebrated national heroine who risked life and limb to save nine survivors from the wreck of SS Forfarshire in 1838. You’ll get the opportunity to dive straight in to yesteryear with an audio-visual exhibition including a splendid model of the Longstone lighthouse.
Let us light your way to an ocean of lovely Bamburgh holiday cottages, any of which could be your travellers’ retreat while you experience all that Northumberland has to offer.