Heritage coast & beaches
Please don't tell everyone. The coast of Northumberland is stunning.
Beautiful, deserted sandy beaches, littered with ancient castles.
There are umpteen walks and beaches, but we'll just list our favourites from north to south:
Holy Island (Lindisfarne)
Accessible only at low tide along a long causeway. Worth a visit for the weighty atmosphere of it's Christian history, but a popular stop on the international tourist trail.
Not really a beach, more of a vast mud flat. Was actually a port 800 years ago but has long since silted up. Budle Bay is not unattractive but not breathtakingly beautiful either. This is a walk for the keen birdwatcher as the bay is home to many rare resident and visiting waders.
The iconic image of Northumberland and a very impressive sight too. No wonder we chose a picture of Bamburgh Castle for the homepage of our website. A must see. The beach is fairly exposed and runs all the way down to Seahouses - great for blowing the cobwebs away on a winter's day.
In our honest opinion Seahouses is just the place where you catch the boat out to the Farne Islands. You do get a great view of the Farne Islands from the beach, but best to go to Bamburgh to get away from the masses. All of the boat trips from Seahouses are very informative and you are guaranteed to get up close to a large grey seal colony, as well as thousands of puffins, guillemots, razorbills and gannets which live in this important sea bird sanctuary. You may see a dolphin or two if you're lucky.
You don't have to be big on walking to get to Low Newton. There is a large car park close by, with a 5 minute walk down to the village square right next to the beach. The Ship Inn is in a corner of the square, and is a must for lunch out one day. Cosy in the winter, benches outside in the summer, a beautiful view of Newton Pool (the tiny bay), the freshest crab sandwiches and tangiest kipper pate, washed down with a choice of real ale - perfect!
Craster is a quaint fishing village where you can buy some of the famous 'Craster kippers' or a range of fresh fish from the fish shop. First of all you may like to walk along the coast to Dunstanburgh Castle which is rather dramatic.
Not many people in the north east know about the three adjoining sheltered coves at Sugar Sands, and visitors never find it because it is not signposted or promoted anywhere. If it is a hot sunny day and you just want to sit on a sheltered beach to play with the children or read a book, far from the madding crowd - this is the place to go. No-one knows about it and yet it is the closest beach to Burnfoot.
There are plenty of other beautiful beaches further south and if you are a beach fanatic we hope you explore them, but the above are our favourites.