Northumberland’s answer to the NC500

Looking down the road towards Bamburgh

Ever since Scotland launched the North Coast 500 and saw its popularity take off, long-distance road trips have been popping up all over the UK.

The latest is the Northumberland 250, which takes in the beaches, castles and rolling hills of England’s most northerly county.

There are four itineraries to choose from, each one focusing on a different feature that Northumberland is famous for.

Set off from Alnwick with your caravan or motorhome and enjoy the 36 miles of the Coast route, ending up on the tidal island of Lindisfarne.

Along the way, you can stop off in Bamburgh with its imposing castle, pick up a secondhand novel at Barter Books and indulge in a plate of fish and chips at Seahouses.

The Borderlands route covers 68 miles from Berwick-upon-Tweed to Carter Bar, and experience an area with a fascinating history.

Discover the 28 arches of the Royal Border Bridge, Norham Castle and the picture-perfect villages of Ford and Etal.

Alternatively, stargazers will want to travel the Dark Skies route across 102 miles from Kielder to Derwent Reservoir.

Northumberland has some of the darkest skies in Europe, making a trip to Kielder Observatory an absolute must for budding astronomers.

This route also includes the iconic Sycamore Gap, Hadrian’s Wall and the village of Blanchland, which can trace its origins back to medieval times.

Finally, you could opt for the Country route, which runs for 48 miles from Corbridge to Rothbury and takes in more of inland Northumberland.

Wander the Simonside Hills; visit Cragside, the Victorian country house that was the first in the world to be powered by hydroelectricity; and explore the Roman town of Corbridge.

There are resources on the Northumberland 250 website to help navigate these routes and if you’d like to extend your caravan or motorhome holiday you could combine the sections to fully explore the county.


Photo credit: Unsplash/Guy Downes