Alnwick town centre

Alnwick Northumberland

Discover Alnwick
From broomsticks to bookshops, tree houses to cherry blossoms, and jousts to dragons, you can't miss the magic of the cobbled market town of Alnwick when you visit Northumberland.

Feel the magic in Alnwick

Visiting Alnwick, pronounced to sound like ‘anick’, is like stepping into a fairytale town, where you can dine in the twinkling treetops of one of the world’s largest treehouse restaurants, fly a broomstick at Alnwick Castle, and discover the intrigue of the poison garden at The Alnwick Garden.

Alnwick Castle is (quite literally) spellbinding, discover the magic of Harry Potter, and the starring role that the castle played in the Harry Potter movies as Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Spot Harry Potter wand-ering the corridors, have a guided tour led by Ron Weasley, and take a broomstick lesson on the very spot where Harry, Ron and Hermione learned to fly. Enjoy the beautiful castle grounds where you can discover local wildlife, learn more about ‘Capability’ Brown landscape design, as well as immerse yourself in the local history and the castle's medieval architecture, the opulent Italianate State Rooms and the fine and decorative art collections, and the historic artefacts in the castle’s museums. Home to the Percy family for over 900 years, Alnwick Castle is the second largest inhabited castle in the UK, and remains a family home to the Duke and Duchess of Northumberland.

Combine your visit with a trip to The Alnwick Garden, one of the most spectacular gardens in the UK. This enchanting site holds 4000 different plants, a Grand Cascade, a mysterious Poison Garden full of deadly plants and a seasonal cherry orchard. In Spring, from the end of April to early May, the largest collection of Japanese Taihaku cherry blossoms in the world blooms here, so perch on one of the swinging benches and watch the delicate petals flutter in the breeze. Explore The Alnwick Treehouse, where indoor branches are intertwined with sparkling fairy lights and a flickering open fire takes centre stage. Those who are a little more adventurous can reach the restaurant via a wobbly bridge that becomes even more spectacular at night as fairy lights line the outdoor area. Looking for more captivating activities on your visit to Alnwick? Visit The Alnwick Garden and their village of play, Lilidorei, where you're in for a treat with their wide range of events and magical days out! Find a National Trust property such as Cragside House and Gardens and learn about the region’s past or escape to Holy Island and discover the iconic Lindisfarne Castle.

Don't miss Bailiffgate Museum & Gallery, which holds over 10,000 years of history in its charming stone walls. Based in Alnwick's Castle Quarter, it was previously a church, meaning you can admire its beautiful architecture while you discover artefacts, photographs and audio visual displays that showcase fascinating stories and culture through time. A museum not to miss on your visit to Alnwick!

Just a short walk through Alnwick’s winding cobbled streets and past the archway of Bondgate Tower, the only remaining chunk of the town walls, will take you to Barter Books. Settle into an armchair by the open fire and grab yourself a coffee as you immerse yourself in the literary world while toy trains chug above you.

Alnwick farmers market takes place on the last Friday of each month in Alnwick market square. You'll find a mouth watering selection of food from local producers including cakes, artisan breads, Northumbrian meats and fish. Alnwick's traditional stone buildings house a wide range of shops, cafes and restaurants; you'll be spoilt for choice.

Burn off those calories with a walk round Hulne Park, once the hunting grounds of the Percy family, there are now a range of circular walks with clearly marked paths ranging from 4 to 6 miles in length.

After a long day exploring all that Alnwick has to offer, you will need a comfy place to rest your head. Alnwick has accommodation options to suit you, whether you prefer the comfort of a hotel or bed and breakfast, want to camp under Northumberland’s dark skies, or relax in a charming self-catered cottage.

Situated close to the Northumberland Coast, Alnwick is a great base and place to stay to explore the surrounding areas and other great attractions, such as Embleton Bay and Howick Hall, the home of earl grey tea.

Within 5 miles of Alnwick lies the picturesque village of Alnmouth. With its huge sandy bay and fascinating history, it is worth a visit to experience another natural wonder of Northumberland. For a true coast and countryside experience set aside a day to head inland to the Northumberland National Park.

Alnwick FAQs

To fit in with the locals as you explore the town and pronounce Alnwick how they do, the way Alnwick is spoken is ‘anick’. Think Alnwick rhymes with panic.

Market days in Alnwick are every Thursday and Saturday with a selection of fresh local produce, arts and crafts. A monthly Friday market is held of the last Friday of the month. You can find out more on our Alnwick farmers market page.

Alnwick Castle is not part of the National Trust and is therefore not free to National Trust members. Admission applies to visit the castle and enjoy learning all about its history, its role in Harry Potter and other television and film throughout the years, as well as the Percy family who still reside in the castle today.

Alnwick Castle and The Alnwick Gardens are seperate visitor attractions. They have their own admission charges, policies and arrangments.

Alnwick Castle closes at the end of October until the end of March, whilst the castle and its collections undergo cleaning and conservation work. Over the winter months the Duke and Duchess of Northumberland reside in the castle, celebrating Christmas in the castle. The Alnwick Garden is open all year round, so can be enjoyed come rain or shine.

Only assistance dogs are allowed into both Alnwick Castle and the Alnwick Garden. You can find out more information on accessible attractions on our accessibility page.

The Alnwick Garden and Alnwick Castle car park is off Denwick Lane (B1340). The postcode for the car park is NE66 1YU (parking charge is £3.00 per car per day). Payment is by card only.

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