After reaching for one too many snacks over half term I was keen to get out and enjoy some exercise with the family. The walk from Craster to Dunstanburgh Castle is one of our favourites but not one we have ever attempted with the kids so we thought we'd give it a go.
There is only one car park in Craster (you can't miss it - it's well signposted just before you enter the village) and parking is £2 all day. Make sure you visit the loos here as there aren't any available at the castle.
We were lucky with the weather and although it was breezy we were blessed with gorgeous blue skies. If you include a walk around the castle walls, it is around 4 miles from Craster car park to Dunstanburgh Castle and back (2 miles each way). It is difficult to get lost - just follow to coast line.
The walk is flat (although a little rocky in places) and easy for little legs. There are a few places you can get right up to the sea and pause to throw a few stones/look for treasure.
Harry was delighted to find some washed up animal bones on the shore!
Dunstanburgh Castle dates back to 1313 and I personally think it is well worth a visit. It is free to enter for both English Heritage and National Trust members or from £2.20 if not (see here for prices and opening times).
We stopped for a drink and snack (which we had packed in advance) on one of the picnic tables before taking a walk around the castle walls. There were ample chances to spot lots of wildlife from nesting birds to fields full of butterflies and some very hairy caterpillars!
The views of the coastline really are breathtaking and some of the best in Northumberland (actually make that the world!). If you are a keen photographer there are plenty of places to take some snaps.
The kids had fun running from the sea, searching for wildlife and playing games with each other - again, I am sure being inside a castle really inspired their imaginations.
The views out to Low Newton were particularly stunning and Steve and I are keen to go further next time and will try the Craster to Low Newton walk (6 miles) after the summer. I think this may be pushing it if we take our 5 year old along.
There was time to climb to the top of the castle tower and check out the views and castle features. Big Stevie Cool pointed out various points in the castle wall where hot oil would have been poured onto any intruders.
We headed back to Craster and I was DYING for a drink. A proper drink I mean. We wanted to head to The Jolly Fisherman but unfortunately as it was a bright day there was no room for our party of 8. Instead, we walked into the village and set up camp in the park which overlooks the sea front. Grannie and Grandad popped to the Shoreline Cafe for some take out sandwiches but unfortunately there was a bit of a wait. Next time we really need to be more prepared and pack a picnic!
We headed home with our lungs full of fresh air and slightly tired legs. It wasn't long before H, H and J were asleep in the car - always a sign of a good day out!