The Northumberland Coast is a stretch of quaint seaside towns, stunning, uninterrupted beaches, history and great pubs and restaurants. No part of the coastline represents this more than Bamburgh! As a child I went to Bamburgh Castle and had a fab time exploring the craggy castle by the dunes, but I’ve returned to the town several times as an adult and have really come to appreciate how close to perfection it really is.
Bamburgh is famous for its breath-taking castle, coastal views and walking trails, and I’ve decided to draw up a suggested itinerary for you to enjoy all of these things, based on what I’ve done in my time in the coastal town. To explore all that this Northumberland gem has to offer, I’d definitely say take a whole day at least and enjoy your time there, as well as trying to fit all the sight-seeing in.
One of the great things about Bamburgh is that all of the main attractions and local traders are spread across one main street (Front Street) and the streets emerging from it (Church Street etc). You can have breakfast in one of the cosy tearooms, visit the RNLI’s Grace Darling Museum, as well as her family home and resting place at the simply beautiful St. Aidan’s Church all before lunch!
Speaking of lunch, having stayed at The Victoria Hotel on Front Street for my 21st birthday last year, I can vouch for the fact that it is a really lovely place which serves tasty food and has a great bar. The sharing platters were an absolute hit with my friends and I, which we enjoyed with a gin cocktail made up of Edinburgh Gin’s Rhubarb and Ginger Gin Liqueur, topped up with prosecco. If you’re there on a Friday be sure to take advantage of The Victoria’s ‘Fizzy Fridays’ offer!
No visit to Bamburgh is complete without a trip to the majestic Bamburgh Castle overlooking the whole of the town, as well as a golden, sandy beach reaching out into the North Sea. There is no missing the castle, you can see it from pretty much any point in the town and it is conveniently a very short walk from The Victoria Hotel. ‘The King of Castles’ is well worth the £10.85 admission fee for adults or £5 for children older than 5 years old. It is host to some great exhibitions, beautiful interiors and word-famous views. I can think of no better place to enjoy an afternoon and discover the intriguing Anglo-Saxon history of the area than this iconic landmark of the North East.
By this point it’ll be getting late in the day, but don’t forget to pop into the local shops along Front Street for some ice cream and other artisanal delights. I personally love any town or village that still has a traditional butcher’s shop!
The Wynding Inn at The Lord Crewe Hotel, also on Front Street, is perfect for a pre-dinner drink in a homely pub with a great beer garden. For my 21st birthday meal in Bamburgh, my family took me to what is now one of my favourite restaurants: The Mizen Head. If you’re looking for somewhere a bit sophisticated to enjoy some of the freshest, most delicious seafood you’ll probably ever eat, then this is the place for you to end your day in Bamburgh. I’ll never forget my meal at The Mizen Head for several reasons: the elegant yet intimate and warm décor, the beautiful oysters and mussels I had there, and the first time I was introduced to a strawberry gin called Sikkim Fraise Gin, which is now my tipple of choice!
Bamburgh is most certainly a North-Eastern jewel in the necklace of precious stones that is the Northumberland coastline. It is my favourite place in the area to escape to for a day and even though I was only there last week, I already can’t wait to return and sample even more of Bamburgh’s delights! (Watch this space for a review of The Potted Lobster and much more!)