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Northumberland is packed with characterful coastal villages - and if you’re venturing to the ever-popular Seahouses, a trip to the National Trust’s Farne Islands should be at the top of your itinerary. Loved by locals and tourists alike, this cluster of small islands just off the Northumberland Coast offers the ideal day out for those looking to explore.
Set against a breath-taking backdrop, the blackened rocks of the Farne Islands are visible from several areas throughout the region and can only be reached by water. You can board a boat from Seahouses harbour and wash up on the shore where there is an abundance of things to see and do - and the local wildlife is always happy to entertain.
Walk on the wild side
Offering a safe haven high above the formidable tide, there are an estimated 150,000 seabirds that call the imposing rock faces of the Farne Islands home. From the instantly recognisable Cormorant, to nesting birds like Guillemots and Razorbills, this is the ultimate way for bird watchers to get up close with some new feathered friends. Particularly famous for Puffins, these beautiful birds can be seen travelling between the islands during nesting season, resting wherever there’s suitable shelter.
A colony of grey seals also make regular appearances and can be seen bobbing around the coast, playfully peeking out of the water and putting on a performance for their audience. With so many stunning sights, remember to pack your camera before you board the boat to make sure you never miss a shot.
A port in a storm
If you’re a history buff infatuated with yesteryear, a trip to the Farne Islands is a must. Visitors can journey back in time with a visit to the Chapel of St Cuthbert, where incredible stained-glass windows are all part of the appeal. Steeped in Christian history, the islands attract visitors from all around the country - setting the scene for some truly remarkable stories.
Over the years, the islands have been home to a number of lighthouses, including the Longstone Lighthouse - famously associated with heroine Grace Darling. Built in 1825, the lighthouse was in use until 1990 and is now open to the public, giving visitors a chance to explore the spot from which Grace first saw stranded sailors in trouble.
While various groups of people have lived on the islands over the years, there’s currently no fixed population. National Trust rangers reside on the inner island for part of the year, living in basic accommodation to take care of the local wildlife. As an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, whether you’re an inquisitive local or an adventurous tourist, a journey to the Farne Islands won’t disappoint.
Boats, birds and cosy beds
If you enjoy spending time by the coast, boat trips to the Farne Islands make for the perfect day out - and the village of Seahouses boasts a brilliant range of delicious dining options for you to indulge in after a day spent out at sea. Warm up in The Olde Ship Inn, where the whole family can sample some traditional British pub food or head over to The Links Restaurant, where you can investigate its extensive menu and enjoy a sizzling steak.
As darkness descends over Northumberland, you can leave the outdoors behind and head inside for some much-needed rest, relaxation and refuelling! Thanks to our wonderful collection of Seahouses cottages, finding self-catering holiday accommodation to suit you is easy.