Wild coasts and violent histories in Northumberland
  1. Lindisfarne – medieval haze still seems to linger over lonely island with dramatic histories
  2. Flodden  - the geography of rolling pastures made sense of the terrible battle that sealed Scottish subjugation to the English
  3. Etal and Ford – emblematic sites of the horrific conflicts of the border reivers
  4. The Farnes –rugged, low lying islands, exposed to the elements, and a dreadful trap for shipping over centuries
  5. Berwick – sturdy but elegant border town, torn even now between England and Scotland, with wonderful wild beaches to the south

Magnificent, vast beachscapes, with shapely castles and islands in the mists, stir the imagination. The sea looks wonderful but you need a special bravery to swim in it. The lofty Cheviot range provides a parallel backdrop inland. Many reminders occur of an unruly, brutal past when rival clans invented terrorism and national Crowns played tug-of-war across the Tweed. Visually enticing and historically intriguing. Only the islands and the remote hills now offer tranquillity unspoilt by traffic – but they are very special.
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