And if so, is it reasonable to do it as a daytrip by rail from York or do we need to overnight in Newcastle?
Can't speak toAlnwick Castle as I've never been there.
Not a Potter fan BUT as you are, I recommend seeing Durham Cathderal. It was home to Hogwarts.
I'd also spend the night in Durham which is a lovely town. 45 minute train ride from York.
If you're going just for HP reasons then I second the above comment about going to Durham Cathedral instead, which is the site of Hogwarts corridors and McGonogall's classroom. Alnwick Castle is nice but not much of an HP destination in my view.
Thanks so much for the advice. I'd rather see Durham Cathedral anyway-just need an HP connection to interest my daughter!
In that case, you can tell her the cloisters of Durham Cathedral (the courtyard bit) was used as Hogwarts corridors and also where Ron accidentally made himself eat slugs, while the Chapter House was used as McGonagall's classroom. Hopefully that will keep her interested.
RE getting there: yes, it's perfectly easy to do it as a daytrip from York. You can just buy tickets on the day if you want as it's a short journey so the prices don't fluctuate, though feel free to book in advance if you want to guarantee a seat.
Returning to the question of Alnwick Castle, I think it would be a pretty long and taxing day trip from York. From Durham, a bit more manageable.
Downton Abbey fans will be keen to see Alnwick as it's the "real" Brancaster Castle, estate where Lady Edith met Bertie Pelham (just as Inveraray Castle in Scotland is the "real" Duneagle Castle, estate of the Marquess of Flintshire).
Personally I think Alnwick is well worth a visit! It's not only very recognizable from the HP series but the family still lives there and it's a great example of a traditional castle home. Pretty far from York...about a 2 hour train ride. Early start though and it is totally doable!
Went to Alnwick and loved it, but I like castles. Didn't even know it was of HP fame until we arrived and many guests were dressed up. Walked across the quiddich field as well as took the tour. It's a nice castle by itself even if it hadn't been in HP films.
Have been to Alnwich Castle twice on school trips with middle-schoolers...it's worth a visit if you are in the area. See all comments above. Harry Potter and Downton fans will enjoy it, and it's in a beautiful part of England. Plus, it's fascinating to realize that Alnwich is a real, living, thriving, private residence that is open for tourists certain times of year. Fun stuff for kids, also gorgeous gardens and insightful tour of the castle available. Lots going on at any given time. Their website should have all current events posted.
Thanks for all the help. Husband and daughter definitely want to go to Alnwick-is this the best plan leaving from Edinburgh?
Train to Newcastle, bus to Alnwick, website says there is a luggage storage at the Castle, then train to Durham to spend night?
take the train from Edinburgh to Alnmouth
Thanks ramblin' on.
I visited both Alnwick Castle and Durham cathedral last month and both are quite recognizable from the HP movies. Alnwick is a superb Castle, though i actually thought it was a bit of an amusement park, with broom flying lessons and guides in costumes. Probably great for kids, but I would have prefered a crusty old historian as a guide instead of a teenager with a broom stick.
Thanks Morten. Of course, amusement parks are quite popular!