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1-Day Alnwick Castle, Holy Island & Scottish Borders Tour

Follow the footsteps of kings, vikings and Harry Potter

Quick Details

Explore the castles of the rugged ‘Viking Coast’ within Berwickshire and Northumberland as you cross the Border between Scotland and England. Step back in time at the spectacular Alnwick Castle – the real Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry! Enjoy the beautiful rolling hills of Sir Walter Scott’s Borders countryside and allow your Guide to immerse you in Scotland’s history with tales of Robert the Bruce, the ‘Outlaw King’.

This tour is ideal for both fans of Harry Potter and history buffs alike, looking to explore a more of Scotland and into Northern England.

FROM (seasonal prices)
Adults From 18 years old
£55
Children From 7 to 17 years old
£45
NHS Valid ID Required
£45
Students Valid ID Required
£45

Visit Alnwick Castle from Edinburgh with The Hairy Coo!

This trip is essential for those who have read the Harry Potter books, seen the movies or ever dreamed of becoming a wizard

DEPARTURE

Check-In 8:00 AM

Tour Departs 8:15 AM

We meet outside Deacon’s House Cafe, 304 Lawnmarket, Edinburgh EH1 2PS

Please note that if your tour departs between the 15th of July and 30th of September 2024, departure will be from outside Heritage of Scotland, 459-461 Lawnmarket, Edinburgh EH1 2NT. This is opposite the road from our original departure point.

Seats are unreserved so we recommend you arrive early if you have a preference of where you would like to sit.

The tour will leave at 8:15am prompt. We are unable to wait for guests who are late and no refunds will be issued in this instance.

DURATION

Tour concludes outside Deacon’s House Cafe, 304 Lawnmarket, Edinburgh EH1 2PS at approximately 6:30 PM.

Please note that between the 31st of July and the 24th of August 2024, our 1-day tours will finish on Princes Street.

ABOUT YOUR ALNWICK CASTLE & SCOTTISH BORDERS TOUR

Departing Edinburgh’s historic Old Town, we travel south through  the rolling, beautiful hills of the Scottish Borders. Hear tales from your Guide about the infamous Border Reivers, who raided villages and settlements in this part of the country for centuries – friends to neither the Scots nor the English!

You’ll see for yourself why Sir Walter Scott, one of Scotland’s greatest cultural figures, loved this landscape and you will learn why it became his home.

Across the English border, in the heart of the Northumberland coast lies a sanctuary steeped in history and mystique: Holy Island. Nestled amidst windswept landscapes and surrounded by the ebb and flow of the North Sea, this tiny isle is a treasure trove of ancient wonders and spiritual significance.

Step onto its shores and be transported through time, where the ruins of Lindisfarne Priory stand as silent sentinels to centuries of faith and resilience. Wander through the narrow streets of the village, where time seems to have slowed to a tranquil pace, and immerse yourself in the warmth of its community.

It’s then on to the magical Alnwick Castle. A dream come true for Harry Potter fanatics from around the world, you will have plenty of time to explore the corridors, great halls and courtyards of the real school of witchcraft and wizardry, Hogwarts! See where Harry learned to fly and to play Quidditch in the Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone. You might even wish to take part in their famous Broomstick Training sessions with the resident Wizarding Professor!

Whilst we can’t promise that you will become a bonafide wizard on this tour, we can promise the next best thing. Used as a filming location for Hogwarts, Alnwick Castle has both a medieval and magical charm about it. The castle dates from the 11th century and is a ‘Grade 1’ listed building. It possesses a rich and interesting history, a few Hollywood secrets and it’s very own Duke and Duchess who continue to reside there today.

Some guests may prefer to explore breathtaking Alnwick Gardens, originally developed by the Duke of Northumberland in the 18th Century and redeveloped by a charitable trust over the past 20 years. Or indeed, the charming village of Alnwick itself which is home to the largest second hand book store in the UK.

Late afternoon, we depart Alnwick and travel North along the rugged ‘Viking Coast’ towards the Scottish border. We’ll stop in the picturesque village of Bamburgh and enjoy spectacular views of the imposing Castle overlooking the bay. Take yourself back in time and imagine Viking longships attacking this strategic stronghold in the 10th Century! Or, enjoy local ice-cream in the sun as you stroll along the beautiful beach. From here it is back to Edinburgh for approximately 6:30pm.

Please note: If you join us between the 25th of October and late April 2025 (specific dates to be confirmed) Alnwick Castle will be closed, and the tour will visit Bamburgh Castle instead of Alnwick Castle. Here you can explore over 3000 years of incredible history while enjoying fantastic views and sea air. From the 9th of October to the 5th of January, Bamburgh Castle puts on it’s annual Christmas Installation which is sure to be bursting with enchantment and joy with something to delight everyone!

WHAT IS INCLUDED IN THE PRICE?

  • Experienced ‘Hairy Coo’ Driver Guide providing live commentary and storytelling throughout.
  • Travel on one of our luxury, modern, air-conditioned coaches.

WHAT IS NOT INCLUDED?

  • Food & drink.
  • Gratuities for your Driver Guide.
  • Optional Extras are purchasable on the day with cash only.
    • Alnwick Castle and Gardens – Adults £30.00, Children £9.50
      Please note that Alnwick Castle will not be open between the 25th of October and late April 2025, the tour will stop at Bamburgh Castle instead. 
    • Bamburgh Castle (October 25th to late April 2025)
      (25/10/2024 – 3/11/2024) – Adults £17.00, Children £8.50
      (9/11/2024 – April 2025) Adults £18.75, Children £9.40

(Price subject to change)

 

ALNWICK CASTLE TOUR ITINERARY

8:15am

Depart Edinburgh

♦ St Abbs

♦ Holy Island

♦ Alnwick Castle and Gardens (seasonal: late Apr – late Oct)

♦ Bamburgh Castle (seasonal late Oct – late Apr)

Arrive Back in Edinburgh

6:30pm

 

♦ Stop

BEFORE YOUR TOUR

  • We recommend you bring warm and/or waterproof clothing, no matter what the forecast appears to be…Scotland’s weather is very unpredictable!
  • Don’t forget your camera to capture all the lovely scenery and wildlife you’ll encounter on your tour, which you can later share with us online
  • We must remind you that while picturesque and quaint, many of the suppliers in smaller towns do still prefer cash payments
  • You are more than welcome to bring along a carry-on bag on the tour which can be packed with essentials for the day, but we would advise keeping this bag as light and small as possible to maximise your comfort on board
  • Food is readily available at the majority of stops on tour, but you are absolutely more than welcome to bring snacks and a cold packed lunch on board. Hot drinks and soups are permitted but only if they have a secure lid.