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Alnwick Castle | Just A Perfect Day Out With Your Kids in Northumberland!

Alnwick Castle | Just A Perfect Day Out With Your Kids in Northumberland!

From the vast open expanses of Mid Wales, to the peaks of the North Yorks Moors, it’s amazing what you can find behind the wheel of any European Roadtrip. Whether you love the chocolate box beauty of French Villages or the undulating alpine passes of the Austrian Tyrol, you’ll not find many better places than the amazing route alongside Northumberland’s coastline to Alnwick!  But could Alnwick Castle offer the perfect day out with your kids too?

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Alnwick Castle – a family adventure awaits….

Adults and children alike are understandably spellbound by Alnwick Castle from the moment you enter past the gigantic treehouse and series of books that offer useful information for the day ahead. Each day spent here feels both educational and fun with plentiful guided tours to enhance your experience.

 

Closer to Scotland than Newcastle (30miles), Britain’s second largest inhabited castle is set in a charming wooded river valley within the pretty Northumberland village of Alnwick. It attracts almost a million visitors each year and the building is so large that the roof is measured in acres! Yet the motte and bailey design still reflects its Norman ancestry dating back to the times of William de Percy in 1066.

 

‘harry potter themed’ wizarding week to remember

Alnwick Castle is now best known for its prominent role in the series of Harry Potter films (hence its Harry Potter themed week from 27 August to 2 September). But perhaps it should also be remembered for its importance across the centuries of ownership by the Percy family who still inhabit the magnificent inner castle. As an example, the castle played a pivotal role in the War of the Roses (on the red side!) and is still the seat of the Duke of Northumberland…

 

As a family who enjoy the creative genius of JK Rowling, we’ve been lucky enough to see Porto’s book shop that inspired Dumbledore’s study, walked in the footsteps of Harry Potter and explored the wonders of the wizarding world at the Warner Bros Studio Tour in London. So the chance of spending a Roadschooling day at Alnwick Castle’s Harry Potter week was just too good an opportunity to miss!

 

As a family who enjoy the creative genius of JK Rowling, we’ve been lucky enough to see Porto’s book shop that inspired Dumbledore’s study, walked in the footsteps of Harry Potter and explored the wonders of the wizarding world at the Warner Bros Studio Tour in London. So the chance of spending a Roadschooling day at Alnwick Castle’s Harry Potter week was just too good an opportunity to miss!

 

For those who’ve been lucky enough to have seen the gardens at Chateau Villandry in the Loire Valley or the Savill Gardens in Great Windsor Park near London… you’ll know just how interactive these ‘senses’ gardens can be for young children.

Test your skills in the Labyrinth or get wet in the serpents garden

Long gone are the days of unending rows of flowers and immaculately mown grass… the future of gardens allow children the freedom to explore and interact with the garden… and Alnwick manages this perfectly! From the family friendly water garden within the Serpent Garden to the Bamboo Labyrinth… the gardens seem to offer something for all ages to enjoy

 

So whilst you stroll the easily marked pathways, you can stop and enjoy the rose gardens and find your favourite specimen (ours is the Charlotte variant) or stare down the symmetrically aligned cascading fountains… or even grab your camera and find some of the abundant wildlife  that also enjoy the ornamental garden (like Lottie’s butterfly picture)
For those with slightly more daring children, they’ll love the bouncy treetop walkways that allow access to the awe-inspiring treehouse that sits outside the main gates…. Or you can even take one of the Poison Garden Tours (every 30mins)… Delving into closely supervised gardens to find Hemlock or Bella Donna. Just keep your fingers to yourself!!! Whilst others will love the Fairy Tale Trails through the gladed woods to the lake where you’ll find the imaginatively created ‘Owl and the Pussy Cat’ scene.

So what did our girls enjoy the most at alnwick gardens?

Well, they were royally entertained by the resident garden musicians/artists but loved the fun and games they found in the serpents garden (just remember to bring a change of clothes!) But if pushed, they’d tell you that it was a combination of it all that just seemed to work!
Just imagine a day full of laughter with engaged children learning about the history of castles, the world wars and even some botanical learning… and you’ll get a flavour for a day at Alnwick Castle. But don’t take our word for it, it’s worth every second of the journey along the Northumberland Coastline to get there too…

alnwick castle

motorhoming advice

..There’s plenty of scenic routes along the coast, where you can grab a fantastic choice of campsites (see here for more info). Not mentioning the great parking options in Alnwick itself. But we’d favour overnight accommodation near Bamburgh Castle or Beadnell Bay or in one of the smaller CL options nearby (like this one below). Try Rashercap Farm, Fowberry Farm or Low Hedgeley Farm….

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About The Author

Richard

Ever wanted to pack your bags, just jump in a motorhome and go off and explore Europe as a family? Well, that’s exactly what my family has done since September 2015. Visiting 35 European countries, travelling over 54,000 miles and grabbing over 450 family experiences on the way… enjoying Bobsleigh in Norway, Climbing into Mt Etna in Sicily or Kayaking the River Dordogne.

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