Exploring Northumbria: A Road Trip Adventure
Exploring Northumbria: A Road Trip Adventure

Exploring Northumbria: A Road Trip Adventure

Northumbria, with its rugged coastlines, historic castles, and breathtaking landscapes, beckons adventurers to embark on an unforgettable road trip. In this journey, we’ll delve into the highlights, best times to visit, key stops, route details, and places to stay with your RV or campervan. Get ready to immerse yourself in the beauty and history of Northumbria on this epic road trip adventure.

Highlights of Northumbria

Northumberland Coast Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB)

Stretching for 64 miles, the Northumberland Coast AONB boasts stunning beaches, dramatic cliffs, and picturesque villages. Be sure to visit Bamburgh Castle, perched atop a rocky outcrop overlooking the North Sea, and Holy Island, accessible by a causeway at low tide. Explore the coastal paths for breathtaking views and encounters with diverse wildlife.

Hadrian’s Wall

A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Hadrian’s Wall is an iconic landmark that once marked the northern frontier of the Roman Empire. Take a journey through time as you walk along the wall, visiting Roman forts, museums, and archaeological sites along the way. Sycamore Gap, with its lone tree nestled in a dramatic dip, is a must-see spot for photographers. However, the tree was recently cut down in an act of Vandalism.

Northumberland National Park

Covering over 400 square miles of stunning wilderness, Northumberland National Park offers endless opportunities for outdoor adventures. Hike to the summit of Cheviot, the highest peak in the park, or explore the remote valleys and moorlands. Keep an eye out for rare wildlife, including red squirrels, otters, and wild goats.

Best Time to Visit Northumbria

The best time to embark on a road trip through Northumbria is during the late spring to early autumn months. From May to September, you’ll enjoy milder weather, longer days, and blooming wildflowers. However, keep in mind that Northumbria’s weather can be unpredictable, so be prepared for sudden changes and pack accordingly.

Key Stops Along the Way

Alnwick Castle and Gardens

Known as the “Windsor of the North,” Alnwick Castle is one of the largest inhabited castles in England. Explore its lavish interiors, including the State Rooms and the medieval dungeon, before strolling through the beautiful gardens, which have been featured in several films and TV shows, including Harry Potter.

Lindisfarne Priory

Perched on Holy Island, Lindisfarne Priory is a historic monastery dating back to the 7th century. Explore the ruins of this once-important religious site and learn about its role in the spread of Christianity in England. Don’t forget to visit the nearby Lindisfarne Castle for stunning views of the coast.

Kielder Water and Forest Park

Escape to the tranquility of Kielder Water and Forest Park, home to the largest man-made lake in Northern Europe. Explore the forest trails by foot or bike, or take to the water for kayaking, sailing, or fishing. At night, marvel at the dark skies and spot constellations in one of the best stargazing locations in the UK.

Route Details

Starting Point: Newcastle upon Tyne

Begin your road trip in the vibrant city of Newcastle upon Tyne, where you can explore historic landmarks such as Newcastle Castle and the iconic Tyne Bridge. Stock up on supplies and fuel before hitting the road north towards the coast.

Coastal Route: Newcastle to Berwick-upon-Tweed

Follow the scenic coastal route from Newcastle to Berwick-upon-Tweed, stopping at picturesque villages and historic sites along the way. Take the A1068 and A1 roads for a leisurely drive with stunning sea views.

Inland Route: Berwick-upon-Tweed to Kielder

For a more rural experience, take the inland route from Berwick-upon-Tweed to Kielder, passing through the rolling hills and countryside of Northumberland. Follow the A698 and B6357 roads for a scenic journey through charming villages and pastoral landscapes.

Combined Coastal and Inland Route: Newcastle to Kielder

For a diverse and scenic road trip experience, consider combining elements of both the coastal and inland routes as you make your way from Newcastle to Kielder. This itinerary offers a mix of coastal charm, historic sites, and rural landscapes, providing a comprehensive overview of Northumbria’s natural and cultural attractions.

Day 1: Newcastle upon Tyne to Alnwick

  • Depart from Newcastle upon Tyne and head north on the A1 road towards Alnwick.
  • Along the way, consider making a detour to visit the charming village of Warkworth, home to Warkworth Castle, a medieval fortress with stunning views over the River Coquet.
  • Continue on to Alnwick and spend the afternoon exploring Alnwick Castle and Gardens, where you can discover the castle’s rich history and stroll through its beautifully landscaped gardens.
  • Spend the night at a campsite or caravan park near Alnwick.

Day 2: Alnwick to Bamburgh

  • Depart from Alnwick and head north towards Bamburgh along the scenic coastal route.
  • Make a stop at Seahouses, a bustling seaside village known for its charming harbor and seafood restaurants. Consider taking a boat trip to the nearby Farne Islands, home to a variety of seabirds and seals.
  • Continue on to Bamburgh and visit Bamburgh Castle, one of the most iconic landmarks on the Northumberland coast. Explore the castle’s impressive interiors and enjoy panoramic views of the surrounding coastline.
  • Spend the night at a campsite or caravan park near Bamburgh.

Day 3: Bamburgh to Kielder

  • Depart from Bamburgh and head southwest towards Kielder along the inland route.
  • Along the way, consider making a stop at Rothbury, a picturesque market town nestled in the heart of the Northumberland countryside. Explore the town’s quaint streets, visit the historic church of St. Oswald, and perhaps enjoy a leisurely stroll along the River Coquet.
  • Continue on to Kielder and spend the afternoon exploring Kielder Water and Forest Park. Take a walk or bike ride along one of the park’s scenic trails, enjoy a picnic by the lakeshore, or simply relax and soak in the tranquility of nature.
  • Spend the night at a campsite or caravan park within the park or in the surrounding area.

Places to Stay with Your RV or Campervan

Wild Camping

Northumbria offers plenty of opportunities for wild camping, with designated areas in the national park and along the coast. Keep in mind that wild camping regulations vary, so be sure to check local guidelines and obtain any necessary permits.

Campsites and Caravan Parks

For a more comfortable stay, consider staying at one of the many campsites and caravan parks scattered throughout Northumbria. From basic facilities to luxury amenities, you’ll find a range of options to suit your preferences and budget.

Stay on a Farm

Experience rural life firsthand by staying on a farm campsite in Northumbria. Wake up to stunning views of the countryside, and perhaps even help out with daily chores or meet the resident animals. Many farms offer spacious pitches and facilities for RVs and campervans.


Embarking on a road trip through Northumbria is a journey through time and nature, where every twist and turn reveals new wonders and adventures. Whether you’re exploring ancient castles, hiking along rugged coastlines, or stargazing under dark skies, you’re sure to create memories that will last a lifetime. So pack your bags, hit the road, and let the beauty of Northumbria unfold before you.

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