The British Staycation – Part Two Northumberland - Hadrian’s Wall

Updated: Jun 8

Hadrian’s Wall - Acomb, Northumberland

Our next destination was Acomb just near Hexham and Hadrian’s Wall.

We were sad to say good bye to Kielder but we were ready to explore a new part of Northumberland. We chose this spot so that we could go into Newcastle easily, explore Roman ruins, Hadrian’s Wall and two Abbeys.

First up, a visit to a market on our very roundabout, long loop from Acomb, Tynemouth, Lindisfarne and back. If it weren’t for the seals our children would have divorced us!

Northumberland – Hadrian’s Wall & the surrounding area

  1. Day One – Market, Lighthouse & Lindisfarne

  2. Tynemouth Market & surrounding area

  3. St Mary’s Lighthouse

  4. The Holy Island of Lindisfarne

  5. Day Two – Newcastle-Upon-Tyne

  6. Day Three – Hadrian’s Wall

  7. Hadrian’s Wall

  8. Vindolanda

  9. Day Four - Down time

  10. Day Five – Romain Ruins

  11. Chesters

  12. Corbridge

  13. Day six – Whitby, an Abbey & a tale of two men?

  14. Whitby and the Abbey

  15. Count Dracula

  16. Captain Cook Museum

  17. Accommodation

  18. Conclusion & Top Tips

Day One – Market, Lighthouse & Lindisfarne

Tynemouth Sunday Market & surrounding area

After a discussion about who wanted to do what, and with the weather looking to turn a bit rainy this week, we had two things on the agenda for Sunday.

First, the coastal town of Tynemouth. It has a very nice Arts & Craft market in the train station with food stalls. No seating due to COVID-19, so we had lunch standing up in the courtyard. We spent a very nice few hours gazing at all the lovely crafts. I even bought a ring made from sea glass.

Sea Glass

I really love sea glass and it can be found in many coastal areas, it is the salty sea water and the sand that creates this weathered frosted glass finish. Well, that and time, plenty of time. Something beautiful from our rubbish for a change!

If you like the idea of sea glass and want to go scavenging for some, here's a top tip, head to the beach in the town of Seaham, just south of Tynemouth. Seaham once had the largest glass bottle works in Britain.

Unfortunately, we had to save this for another trip. As always there was a decision to be made and we had decided to go North from Tynemouth, so North we went.

King Edwards Bay

On our way out of Tynemouth we had a quick walk around the beautiful King Edwards Bay.

This was a lovely walk along the sea. We admired the ruin on the hill – Tynemouth Priory and Castle.

We watched an intrepid swimmer with their red hat, float tied to their back and full wet suit head out to sea, or so it seemed to us, then back in the car to drive on to our next stop.

St Mary’s Lighthouse

Located on the northern end of Whitley Bay is the gorgeous St Mary’s Lighthouse, built on St Mary's Island. I do love a lighthouse, something magical about them. I couldn't resist putting in a few of my images. The small rocky tidal island on which the lighthouse stands is linked to the mainland by a short concrete causeway which is submerged at high tide.

If you want to go across, you can walk, there is a car park on the mainland side. You will need to look up the tide table so you arrival when the tide is out. But even if you miss the timing it is beautiful to stand on the shore opposite looking across the causeway. As you can see from my photos we didn't quite make it in time!

The Holy Island of Lindisfarne

Lindisfarne Priory, Holy Island, Lindisfarne Castle, band (no wait, that is something else again), about an hour and half by car from St Mary’s Lighthouse, is another amazing place and really a must-see spot. You will have to check the tides for this trip as well, the Holy Island can only be reached by a causeway submerged at high tide.

It was once one of the most important centers of early Christianity, with strong links to Ireland, in Anglo-Saxon England and was home to the famous Lindisfarne Gospels now located in the British Library. Below is a photo of the Lindisfarne Castle (my own) and one of the Priory - courtesy of English Heritage.

Founded by St Aidan (from Iona) in AD635, the site owes its fame to St Cuthbert, the greatest of Northumbrian holy men, who lived and died there. Stroll around the Monastic buildings which formed the living quarters of the monks, the remote setting adds to the unique atmosphere of the Priory.