Norham Castle in Northumberland

History and Heritage

As the buffer between England and Scotland, Northumberland’s location has shaped a history of iconic battles and conflict. Roman invasions and Viking attacks have resulted in stunning castles and landmarks for you to feast your eyes on.

It’s all in our history

Every inch of Northumberland hides a piece of history and heritage. The buffer between England and Scotland, Northumberland’s very geographic location has shaped a history of violence and conflict.

The legacy of Northumberland’s embattled past can still be seen today through the region’s historic sites. From the incredible architecture of ancient castles, to 73-miles of Hadrian’s Wall, the county’s heritage sites are a reminder of the many conflicts that have been and gone.

From the Roman invasion 2,000 years ago, Northumberland has witnessed plundering Viking attacks, seen Anglo Saxon kings fight to the death protecting their kingdom and set the scene for murderous raids by the notorious Border Reivers. There have been territorial battles between England and Scotland which saw the border town of Berwick-upon-Tweed change sides 13 times.

The legacy of Northumberland’s embattled past can still be seen today. There are more castles than any other county in England within its boundaries. The Roman megastructure of Hadrian’s Wall snakes for 73-miles across high volcanic ridges while the forts and pele towers peppered throughout Northumberland’s now peaceful and scenic countryside are a reminder of centuries-old carnage.

The past is everywhere you look in Northumberland. The best way to discover it is to explore its ancient sites, battlefields, castles, museums and stately homes.

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Housesteads Roman Fort

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Corbridge Roman Town (Hadrian's Wall)

Visitors to Corbridge Roman Town can walk along the main street of this Roman garrison town, flanked by the remains of granaries, a fountain house, markets, workshops and temples.
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Alnwick Castle

The second largest inhabited castle in the UK, home to the Percy family for 700 years and filming location.
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Roman Army Museum (Carvoran) Hadrian's Wall

Lying in magnificent countryside next to a sweeping section of Hadrian's Wall and based at the site of Carvoran Roman Fort.
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Dunstanburgh Castle Sponsored
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Dunstanburgh Castle

Built on the most magnificent scale, Dunstanburgh Castle stands on a remote headland in Northumberland.
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Birdoswald Roman Fort

Delve into the story of the most famous Roman frontier with a new exhibition in the visitor centre.
© English Heritage Sponsored
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Lindisfarne Priory

Experience the serenity of Lindisfarne Priory, cross the dramatic causeway to reach the island of Lindisfarne, on a journey that will stay in your memory forever.
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Cragend Farm Historic Farm Tours

Experience a tour in one of the finest purpose built eco-agricultural buildings. Winners of The Custodian Prize 2023, and runners up in The Collection Award with Historic Houses.
Tynemouth Priory Sponsored
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Tynemouth Priory

Tynemouth Castle and Priory on the coast of North East England was once one of the largest fortified areas in England.
Kielder Castle Visitor Centre Sponsored
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Kielder Castle Visitor Centre

Please note: Kielder Castle is currently closed due to major renovation works. The Street Diner, information point and Zog Trail are now open.
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Family walk in Northumberland
Couple enjoying a boat trip
Hadrian's Wall
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