North East England

Dunstanburgh Light. (Photo: Jonathan Combe)

Possibly England’s most overlooked region and by far its smallest, the North East offers some of the liveliest English nightlife in Newcastle, oldest cities in Durham with its famous castle and cathedral, and finest world heritage sites with Hadrian’s Wall, dating back to 122AD. The Northumberland coastline is dotted with ancient, windswept castles. They were raised to defend the coastline, often ineffectively, first against marauding bands of Vikings, and later by Vikings to defend themselves against other aggressors. From the towering citadel of Bamburgh to the isolated Lindisfarne Castle, the North East has the highest concentration of castles in the country. The Cheviot Hills on the Scottish border mark the northern end of the Pennine Mountains and are popular with all aficionados of the great outdoors.