Stretching from the edge of the Cheviots to the east coast, and from Berwick-upon-Tweed in the north to the River Blyth in the south, east Northumberland is an area of quiet villages and small market towns, majestic castles and what many people consider to be the finest coastline in England. Designated as the North Northumberland Heritage Coast, the area boasts a wealth of historical attractions such as Bamburgh Castle, Lindisfarne and the Farne Islands.
For all its beauty, it’s a quiet coastline, and you can walk for miles along the dunes and beaches without meeting another soul. No deck chairs or noisy ice cream vans here – just a quietness broken occasionally by the screeching of gulls. Coquet Island is a renowned bird sanctuary where the visitor can see puffins, roseate terns, razorbills, cormorants and eiders.
Lindisfarne, a small island lying between Bamburgh and Berwick, is perhaps the most evocative place of all on the coast. It was to here that St Aidan and a small community of Irish monks came from Iona in AD635 to found a monastery from which missionaries set out to convert northern England to Christianity. The region has withstood a tempestuous past and has been the focus of fierce fighting, nowhere more so than the border town of Berwick, whose strategic location made it a prime target in the endless skirmishes between the English and the Scots. The Border Reivers, or mosstroopers, rustled, pillaged and fought among themselves, incurring the wrath of both English and Scottish kings.
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