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Alchemy, Safaris & Star Gazing: Half Term in Northumberland Castles - & a FREE Third Night’s Glamping

September 12, 2018

Northumberland is truly magical this half term, and many events take place in historic castles, from alchemy and broomstick flying at Alnwick Castle to wildlife safaris at Kielder Castle, all within a short drive of Hang My Hat country cottages we have available for half term week (from 26th October). And best of all, Dark Sky Glamping is offering a FREE third night for a stay when you book two in October, with bushcrafting to come!


Forest Wildlife Safari at Kielder Castle Visitors’ Centre, Saturday 3rd November


Discover the secret life of the forest: join professional naturalist, Bruce Ferguson and explore the tracks, trails and signs left behind by its foraging inhabitants from red squirrels and deer to bird and insect life. Find out how these animals live and interact with their woodland environment and the challenges they face in their everyday lives.


Beautiful Barrasford Cottage



Half an hour’s scenic drive away from Kielder Castle is pretty Barrasford Cottage. Barrasford is a gorgeous country village - with its very own gastropub, the Barrasford Arms. It is available for half term week at £339 and sleeps three.


Browse Barrasford Cottage


Alchemy at Alnwick Castle


Alnwick Castle, ‘Home to Hogwarts,’ was the setting for the Hogwarts scenes of the Harry Potter films. 


From 22nd to 28th October, you can meet Doctor John Greene, the (allegedly...) celebrated medieval alchemist, with peculiar apparatus and bizarre materials! The 9th Earl of Northumberland (1585-1632) was particularly fascinated by alchemy, the study of how to turn base materials into gold and the pursuit of the creation of the Philosopher's Stone. This is a superb event for kids and grown up kids who love the Harry Potter films - Alnwick Castle itself is a must-see.


Broomstick training is also available at Alnwick Castle, until 28th October.


Owl Apartment


Owl Apartment in beautiful Rothbury is a mere twenty minute drive to Alnwick Castle and costs just £350 in half term week for up to four people. Rothbury itself, home to Cragside Country House, is a beautiful small market town, with lots to explore, including the banks of the clear River Coquet.


Book Owl Apartment


Kielder Castle, Surf the Dark Skies, 29th October


Our holiday cottages are in the heartland of Northumberland’s Dark Skies area. This event at Kielder Castle starts with an introductory indoor session using an amazing software programme that allows you to view all the wonders of the night sky in real time. Afterwards, weather permitting, you will go out and using the naked eye, binoculars and telescope, view some of the wonders of the universe with activity leader and super star gazer, Bruce Ferguson. 


GLAMP - Third Night Free and Bushcrafting to Come


Bring your binoculars to Hadrian’s Wall and stay at the Glamping Village there with Dark Sky Glamping (who also have bushcraft sessions planned later in autumn). Bell tents are £130 for a 2 night stay and tipis £165 (per couple) - third night FREE in October.


Book Dark Sky Glamping


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