Newcastle upon Tyne Journals

Newcastle and Northumberland: England at the Edge of the World

A March 2006 trip to Newcastle upon Tyne by justin121883

Dunstanburgh Castle Photo, Northumberland, England More Photos
Quote: Spring Break in Northumbrerland? Two American college students take the advice of a professor and traipse through history in England's bleak and beautiful North—stopping, of course, to eat, drink, and try to "marra" the locals in a bout of "Newcastle Hospitality."

Newcastle and Northumberland: England at the Edge of the World

Overview

Justin Photo, Northumberland, England
Quote:
History meets hospitality in England's rugged North. Whether you fancy Roman hill forts, medieval castles, hip culture and nightlife, or just old-fashioned English brews, Northumberland has something for everyone to love. Newcastle, as the region's cultural capital and transportation hub, is an ideal base for forays into Northumberland's rugged landscape--and, at the same time, into its long, rich past. From there, day trips or overnights to the outlying towns offer priceless glimpses of England past, while Newcastle, with its urban-renewal boom, gives a taste of England to come. Quick Tips: Visitor Information Centers (VIC; also TIC, for "Tourist Information Centers") will be your most inval...Read More

Crown Posada

Restaurant | "The Crown Posada"

Quote:
This no-frills (and no-food) Victorian-era pub is England at its finest. If you only drink one pint in Newcastle, this is the place to drink it. The staff was treating us like regulars by the second night of our stay; by the end of the first night, we'd made some friends and were buying each other drinks. The Crown Posada is a hophead's heaven, boasting a substantial selection of cask-conditioned, hand-pulled real ales in addition to the standard British nitro-cask fare. Full bar, too. Happy hour from 5 to 7 daily.

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on March 31, 2006

Crown Posada
1, The Side
Newcastle upon Tyne, England
+44 0191 2321269

Hadrian's Wall

Best Of IgoUgo

Attraction | "Hadrian's Wall (Housesteads Roman Fort)"

Hadrian's Wall Photo, Newcastle upon Tyne, England
Quote:
Housesteads Roman Fort is only one of dozens of Roman sites along the length of Hadrian's Wall—but it's one of the best. Tucked up in the hills and moors outside of Haltwhistle, Housesteads is also the easiest site to get to in the off-season, when the cleverly-named AD 122 Hadrian's Wall Route (bus, from Newcastle) only runs on Sundays. Regular trains run between Haltwhistle and Newcastle, and regular buses run between Haltwhistle and the Wall. The site itself is wonderfully kitsch-less—just the ruined foundations of the hilltop fort and the wall, dotted by informational signs in multiple languages, accompanied by a small museum housing more archaeological and architectural detail. The bus drops you ...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on March 23, 2006

Hadrian's Wall
Northumberland, England
Newcastle, England

Dunstanburgh Castle

Best Of IgoUgo

Attraction

Dunstanburgh Castle Photo, Northumberland, England
Quote:
Elemental, imposing, beautiful, and grim. It's hard to come up with the right words for this place—Nana described it as a walk through the ruins of a Gothic novel. This English Heritage site was once one of the largest fortifications in England: erected in 1313 by the Earl of Lancaster (and later occupied by the famous John of Gaunt), Dunstanburgh's position on top of a promontory jutting out into the North Sea dominated this entire stretch of coastline as well as the rolling inland moors. Even after centuries of weathering, the ruins are still enormous: along the approach from Craster, especially, the castle's southern curtain wall dominates the horizon. Dunstanburgh demands a full day, b...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on March 23, 2006

Dunstanburgh Castle
Craster
Alnwick, Northumberland, England NE66 3TT
+44 1665 576231

The Alnwick Garden

Best Of IgoUgo

Attraction | "Alnwick Castle Gardens"

The Alnwick Garden Photo, Alnwick, England
Quote:
The gardens are really designed as a summer attraction, and are only worth a visit if there's fresh snow. That said, in the snow, the place is simply magical. The heated fountains and water sculptures run year-round, and the sparse backdrop of evergreen shrubbery and snow can only highlight the waterworks' austere beauty. The bare trellises and the sculpted walks look like something out of a fairytale in the snow. Photo opportunities abound.

Member Rating 2 out of 5 on March 31, 2006

The Alnwick Garden
Denwick Lane
Alnwick, Northumberland
+44 (0)1665 511350

Barter Books

Attraction

Quote:
Book lovers and souvenir hunters will find Barter Books well worth an afternoon; indeed, Barter itself is almost worth the trip to Alnwick. One of England's largest second-hand bookstores, Barter occupies the entirety of the town's old train station--including the well-appointed waiting room, where you can kick back by a hot fire with a cup of tea and a good book. The selection is enormous, and includes a sizable collection of local books that make great gifts or souvenirs: old treatises on the Northumberland dialect, for instance, or anthologies of local folk tales. All in all, a wonderful place to lose track of a day, especially if the weather isn't being friendly. For more information, visit http:/...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on April 21, 2006

Barter Books
Alnwick Station
Alnwick, Northumberland
+44 (0)1665 604888

Quote:
Problem: With their great combination of affordability and hospitality, B&Bs in England are the way to go, but many don't have websites, and most don't book online. Small-town accommodations are especially hard to book from overseas.Solution: Book a bunch of nights in Newcastle in one of the big centrally located hotels (think Travelodge or Premier Inn). Most of these hotels will let you cancel your reservation free of charge if you do so before noon the day prior, so when you get to Newcastle and get settled, go to the VIC and book some cheaper, homier rooms, possibly in some more out-of-the-way locations.Caution: Many B&Bs will only accept cash, so be sure to check beforehand to s...Read More