NORTHUMBERLAND – I think it’s something in the air. I think the Government have been bombing this region of the UK secretly since the 1970s with a potent neurotoxic aphrodisiac. You see, ever since I visited Northumberland last December, I’ve yearned with a physical pain to go back.

I’m hooked. I’m meth-ed up to the eyeballs on the irrepressible beauty of this part of the world. It is just so magnificent. So wild. So raw.

“Heck, it is like putting your ear against the enormous chest of a giant and being struck dizzy by the fierce beating of his colossal heart.”

Which is why I could not wait to return to Northumberland for the long weekend and to my favourite little Northumbrian apartment in Beadnell.

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We’re all about Wild Spirit in Northumberland. Where else would you find wild landscapes, wild history and wild nights out (stargazing!), but it is hard to think of anywhere with more of all of this than the Scottish Borders.  If you’re thinking of discovering for yourself, the VisitNland office has come up with three of their favourite things to do and see up there to inspire your trip!

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Ever wondered what secrets lie beneath the sands at Bamburgh? Ever wondered if there is more to Amble than meets the eye?

Literary tourism allows you to do just that and here at the booktrail, it’s what we love to do – explore a region via its books. You get to see places in a whole new light! Through the eyes of authors and of course the characters within the story.

Take Mari Hannah and Ann Cleeves. Two great North East writers who have helped to showcase some of the most iconic Northumberland sites…

Just take a look at Bamburgh castle for a moment…..stunning, majestic, an historic imposing outpost…

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When someone tells you they have opened an Inn on the site of an old hospital and asylum no less, the first thought isn’t one of tranquillity, style or friendliness, but St Mary’s Inn near Stannington has all of those traits and more…

Named after the Stannington parish church, the Inn sits just over 2 miles outside the village; if your satnav still hasn’t registered its brand new postcode you can navigate the old fashioned way by following the brown signs. The new luxury housing estate that is springing up around the Inn is a work in progress but those who have already moved in have made St Mary’s a regular part of their routine (as much of the Inn is dog friendly it is an ideal place to end up after walking your four legged friends!) and join the staff in giving you a warm welcome.

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