What’s New in Northumberland
The time has come… The British Travel Awards voting is open (click here to vote) and excitement is lingering for yet another year while we wait to find out if Northumberland has grabbed the gold award. The anticipation is stronger than ever this year, after Northumberland stole the show and won the title of The Best UK Holiday Destination in 2018.
Since the big win, a whole host of exciting new events, eateries, activities and awards have come to Northumberland, giving you even more of a reason to vote this year. Here is our list of top 10 new additions to Northumberland:
1) Bamburgh Castle became open fur all
This year, Bamburgh Castle opened its doors to your beloved canine friends, so dogs can now enter the castle grounds and join you on your exploration. This offers the perfect opportunity to walk your dog along beautiful Bamburgh Beach, and make it one big, doggy day out.
2) The Alnwick Garden had a food makeover
The renowned caterer Searcys, founded in 1847 by John Searcy who was the confectioner and chef to the Duke of Northumberland, have returned to Northumberland after 180 years. They are now the official caterer for The Alnwick Garden and Treehouse, bringing re-vamped menus and new evening dining in The Pavilion Kitchen.
3) Kielder were on a roll
Calvert Kielder announced the arrival of their new roller coaster zipwire, The AvatarOne ™. The technology mimics the twists and turns of a roller coaster, and has thrill-seekers gliding through the trees at 20mph in a secure harness. The ride, like everything Calvert does, is fully accessible, so visitors with a disability can enjoy the ride.
4) Beadnell Towers gained a new, luxury lease of life
Beadnell Towers has received a £3M refurbishment, and now all we want to do is spend the night there. Trust us, you will too when you see the pictures, as the hotel has been revived and transformed into an elegant, luxury, boutique haven. A lounge with a crackling open fire, freestanding copper bath tubs and lavish décor are just a few elements that make this hotel a complete knock-out, and even pampered pooches can stay here as some of the rooms are dog friendly.
5) Bamburgh won its own award
Photo credit Darren Chapman
We felt like proud parents when Bamburgh was voted The Best UK Seaside Destination by Which? magazine. Splashed across many media outlets for its crowning glory, we were not at all surprised to see the sweeping beach with its dramatic castle and wild dunes at the top of the list.
6) THREE of our castles wore the crown
Just to add to Bamburgh’s glory, Bamburgh Castle made the list of Rough Guides’ top 15 castles. In fact, out of all the castles in the UK, Northumberland clinched three of the top spots, with Alnwick Castle and Warkworth Castle also receiving some well-deserved attention in the press.
7) A brand new, dog friendly hotel came to town
The Amble Inn, a cosy hotel and pub that now sits in the waterfront town of Amble, opened its doors in January. The dog friendly bedrooms have a door that gives you direct access to outside, so you can easily let your dog out to do its business or have a run around. Not only this, but they have fully accessible rooms, so any guests with a disability don’t have to worry about awkward narrow corridors or troublesome room layouts.
8) Chef James Martin came to film our seafood
We don’t know how, we don’t know why, but chef James Martin was up to something on our coast this June! Snapped in The Old Boathouse in Amble, we are excited to see what he was filming in our excellent seafood restaurants.
9) Winter came to Northumberland (in May)…
Lundgren Tours hosted their first ever Game of Thrones Tour, where you can traverse Hadrian’s Wall with Jon Snow himself (well, a very convincing actor in Jon Snow’s clothing). The wall inspired James R R Martin to write his novels, although we are sure he doesn’t really think of anyone that lives north of the wall as Wildlings and White Walkers. This fantastic day out combines history with Game of Thrones and is perfect for super fans, anyone interested in the wall’s heritage and anyone who enjoys a good walk.
10) Our flowers were blooming beautiful
Photo Credit Sophie Pearce, ThirdEyeTraveller
Maybe we’re cheating with number 10, as this happens every year, but we can’t resist mentioning our stunning flauna that bloomed once again. Daffodils surrounded Warkworth castle, the largest collection of Taihaku cherry blossoms fluttered in The Alnwick Garden, and an abundance of rhododendrons added bursts of colour to captivating Cragside Gardens (National Trust).
So go on, spend a minute submitting your vote here and support Northumberland for the second year running.
Main photo credit of Bamburgh Beach to wearenico in Instagram