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Luxury one-bedroom holiday apartment with log fireThis early nineteenth century property was once a Victorian School House but has been a dwelling for over a hundred years. In 2015 the property was renovated and no expense has been spared on this tastefully furnished apartment. There is a beautiful log-burner in the living room fireplace - with fuel provided - so the apartment is truly a cosy space even with its modern, light and airy open-plan aesthetic.
The Byre, Bog Mill AlnwickVisit England Gold Award cottage. The Byre at Bog Mill, Alnwick is situated down a quarter mile private track and overlooks the River Aln, on the outskirts of Alnwick and three miles from beach. A spacious self contained cottage for two with double bedroom. Open plan living area with feature arched windows overlooking the garden. Safe parking is adjacent to the cottage and secure storage for bicycles is available. WiFi is free of charge within the cottage. No smoking. No pets.
Lovely 2 bedroom cottage in Lesbury2 The Square is a lovely two bedroom period cottage in a row of cottages set back form the main road in the quiet village of Lesbury, Northumberland. Access is via a gravel track from the main road and you have your own parking space outside the front door. Lesbury is located close to historic Alnwick, and Alnmouth Beach is an easy 30min walk away, or 5 mins in the car. Alnmouth has numerous places to eat and drink and the pub in Lesbury is hoping to open in June 2021.
First things first: You don’t pronounce the L, or even the W. Alnwick, which rhymes with “panic,” looks straight out of a medieval fairytale, its ancient buildings and cobbled alleyways once filled with inns serving the merchants and messengers who used this Northumberland town as a staging post between the port of Newcastle and the Scottish border. Its marketplace is still lined with family businesses (and hosts a monthly farmers’ market), and the Bailiffgate Museum charts a history stretching back to the Saxons. But it’s Alnwick Castle that’s the real showstopper.
Perched in the centre of town, its turreted 14th-century walls and towers are perfectly preserved, along with splendid state rooms and elegant Capability Brown-landscaped grounds. You can get a great view of it from the Ratcheugh Observatory just out of town, whose viewing tower is worth a visit to look out over the unspoilt surrounding countryside. With the Cheviot Hills to the west of town, and a sandy coast to the east, Alnwick is ideally positioned for exploring Northumberland’s natural beauty.
The nearest airport is Newcastle International (NCL), 26 miles away, although it has limited flight routes and the closest major hub is Edinburgh Airport (EDI). Alnwick doesn’t have a train station, but Alnmouth, which sits on the coast a 10-minute drive or bus journey away, takes only an hour and five minutes by train from central Edinburgh. You don’t need a car to get around the tiny town — the castle is only a five-minute walk from the marketplace — but it is useful if you want to see more of the surrounding countryside, although there are local bus services connecting to nearby villages and points of interest. There are taxi services, but rideshare options may be limited.
The northeast of England can get pretty chilly at any time of the year, but especially in winter, when the winds whip off the North Sea. Summer is the most pleasant time weatherwise, and the castle certainly looks good under a clear blue sky; there are a number of events throughout June, July, and August, including outdoor theatre shows and the Alnwick International Music Festival. But spring and autumn can have their warm days too, and if you bring layers (and waterproofs) you’ll be well equipped for the changeable weather. With so many beautiful stately homes and gardens in the area, spring has a lot to offer; many private residences open their gardens in the spring, and in the Alnwick Garden a huge collection of Japanese cherry trees bursts into blossom near the end of April.
Next to the castle, but separate from it, is this breathtaking 12-acre plot full of horticultural delights. From its ornamental gardens to its rose-trailed walkways, its Grand Cascade to a treehouse with its own restaurant, the Alnwick Garden has a grace and scale that makes you feel you’re walking in a dream, or the pages of a novel. There’s even a Poison Garden full of toxic plants.
Alnwick’s disused Victorian train station lives on in the guise of this magical secondhand bookshop, one of the largest in England. Tens of thousands of volumes fill the space, made cosy by an open fire and armchairs where you’re encouraged to sit and read — there’s a café on the old platform — while a model train chuffs around the bookstacks.
A 30-minute drive west of Alnwick, the region’s natural splendour is on full display at Northumberland National Park. Easy-to-access hiking and cycling paths cross its more than 400 square miles, from the Cheviot Hills in the north to the ruins of Hadrian’s Wall in the south, including the vast reservoir of Kielder Water, surrounded by one of England’s largest forests.