Lumley Castle & Durham
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Experience Durham on this five-night break based at the majestic Lumley Castle in the heart of this alluring county. Discover some of the region's other beautiful castles and visit the Beamish Museum.
Your tour begins in Durham as you meet your Tour Manager at the train station. From here, transfer to your home for five nights, the elegant Lumley Castle.
Return to Durham for a fascinating guided tour this morning. Take in this beautiful city's top sights, including its impressive Romanesque cathedral and 11th century castle, the only castle in the United Kingdom never to have suffered a breach. Today, Durham's Castle and Cathedral complex, a UNESCO World Heritage site, is recognised for its historic importance and as some of the finest surviving Norman architecture in Europe.
Your afternoon is at leisure. Take some time to stroll along the cobbled streets of Durham's compact city centre - a designated conservation area - which are lined with historic and listed buildings. This vibrant university city offers many more attractions including an excellent indoor market; a selection of unique speciality shops; a diversity of art galleries and museums and some delightful public gardens in which to relax and enjoy the views of this remarkable city.
Today, discover Raby Castle, one of the finest medieval castles in England. Built by John Neville, 3rd Baron Neville de Raby in the 14th century, Raby Castle is in remarkably immaculate condition. Enjoy a guided tour of the castle and its parkland grounds, which include a 200-acre deer park, taking in the grand state rooms as well as the striking, verdant gardens.
Continue to the charming market town of Barnard Castle, where you have time at leisure to explore.
Explore the most Northerly region of England today. Take a coach to the historic market town of Hexham and enjoy a guided tour of ancient Hexham Abbey, a remarkable church which was originally built in 674 AD.
After lunch you join the Hadrian's Wall Country Line for a return journey between Hexham and Carlisle. The railway passes through pretty former Roman towns and villages, and skirts the edge of the beautiful Northumberland National Park
Take a step back in time to 1913 as you enjoy an excursion to splendid Beamish Museum, a world famous open-air museum unlike any other. Opened in 1972, and occupying three hundred acres of Durham's countryside, Beamish was England's first open-air museum. In the last four decades, this authentic recreation of everyday life in a north-eastern industrial community during the Victorian/Edwardian era has won a host of awards and become famous worldwide.
Beamish features life-sized replicas of period locations which are accurate to the finest detail. The Edwardian Town, for example, contains many authentic structures reclaimed from towns and villages throughout north-east England, and features recreations of a typical inn, Co-operative store, sweet shop, bank, dentist and other businesses as they were at the beginning of the twentieth century.
After plenty of time to explore this fascinating museum, you return to your hotel this evening, where you enjoy a magnificent farewell dinner. Dinner is in the form of an elaborate Elizabethan banquet, and includes wine and mead, as well as entertainment and a disco afterwards, a fitting end to your adventure.
After breakfast, you leave Lumley Castle behind and transfer to Durham by coach. You are free to make your way home or perhaps continue exploring the city further.
Why not visit the Oriental Museum before making your way home? With collections featuring artworks and historic artefacts from China, Ancient Egypt, Japan, India and Tibet, the Middle East and South East Asia and amounting to more than 23,000 exhibits, Durham's Oriental Museum is one of the finest of its kind.
Please note that while every departure of this tour features the same excursions, they may not necessarily be in the order listed above.
This tour may be suitable for reduced mobility passengers, please call for further information.
Lumley Castle, County Durham and excursions