The rich and fierce history of Northumberland has blessed the county with a wealth of ancient landmarks. Natural beauty also abounds as the county is home to one of England's most beloved national parks and 100 miles of dramatic coastline that stretches from Berwick upon Tweed in the north to the village of Tynemouth in the south. Despite being a sparsely populated county, there is a wide selection of holiday cottages in Northumberland to choose from when visiting the region. Each self-catering property provides the perfect base for exploring the many famous sights of the region, as well as a cosy place to retire after outdoor pursuits such as walking, climbing and windsurfing.
Imposing hilltop fortresses and medieval castles can be seen reaching into Northumberland's skyline throughout the region. In fact, you will find more castles in Northumberland than in any other English county thanks to its location on the border of Scotland, which made it the site of many famous historical battles. Families staying in a holiday cottage in Northumberland often visit Alnwick Castle, which was used as Hogwarts in the Harry Potter films! Holy Island Castle which was built as a defence fortress in Tudor times is another highlight of the region. The Holy Island which the castle perches on is only accessible over a three mile causeway during low tide (twice daily).
Many people who stay atholiday cottages in Northumberlandvisit the region's most famous landmark – Hadrian's Wall. The UNESCO World Heritage Site was originally built by the Romans, over eight years beginning in 120 AD. Some of the best stretches of unbroken wall can be found in the county, as well as five of the walls eight excavated forts. As well as walking along the Hadrian's Wall Trail Path, guests staying in holiday cottages in Northumberland during summer may catch re-enactments of Roman battles at the Chesters, Housesteads, Corbridge and Vindolanda forts. There is also a Hadrian's Wall bus which journeys between Newcastle and Carlisle in summer, visiting tourist attractions and villages along the way.
A selection of holiday cottages in Northumberland offer views of the region's inspirational Northumberland National Park, which is the crowning gem of the county. Unspoilt upland moors, lush forests and clear streams make the park one of the most beautiful in the UK. The park includes 405 scenic square miles of protected landscape, reaching from Hadrian's Wall in the south to the majestic Cheviots on the Scottish border. Rural villages and charming farmhouses are scattered throughout the park, along with plenty of relics dating from the Iron Age to the Industrial Revolution. Many guests in holiday cottages in Northumberland visit the park for rock climbing, mountain biking, horse riding and walking. Routes and hire information can be found from the Local Tourist Information Offices.
A wide variety of flora and fauna can be found in the park, making it ideal for bird watching and nature walks. The air is often filled with bird music and during a visit be sure to keep your ears pricked for the distinctive cry of the curlew, a moorland bird that is the emblem of the National Park. Red squirrel, the rare black grouse and roe deer are just three of the many other species that inhabit the ancient woodlands and moors of the park. Wildlife lovers who holiday in cottages in Northumberland should also try to visit The Farne Islands, where seal pups can be seen on boat trips between October and December.
The dramatic coastline of the region draws visitors to holiday cottages in Northumberland throughout the year. There is an array of sights and attractions on the designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, with many seaside resorts such as Bamburgh, Whitley Bay and Seahouses. Each settlement along the coast has a lively mixture of boutiques, cafés, sights and fish and chip shops, meaning that families have plenty of ways of entertaining themselves on a day trip. Holiday cottages on the Northumberland coast are also popular with avid walkers who wish to tackle the famous Northumberland Coast Path, which is split into six stages. The coast is also popular for horse riding, sea canoeing, river kayaking, sailing and windsurfing.