I finally had the time (=gumption) to sit down and write this review of our visit to Holy Island last year, something I had wanted to do for a long time. It is now my favourite destination in the UK, a place that is so peaceful and special, I look forward to visiting it again.
Holy Island (known as the Holy Island of Lindisfarne) is halfway between Newcastle and Edinburgh, and is connected to the Northumberland mainland via a causeway that’s covered by the sea twice a day. You have to check “tide times on the Northumberland Council website”:https://holyislandcrossingtimes.northumberland.gov.uk/ before visiting, to make sure you “cross the causeway safely”:https://holy-island.uk/holy-island-causeway-tips-tides-safety/ – and that’s part of the charm of the place. When all the day-trippers have to leave because of the tide, the Island becomes serene and magical and you have it to yourself. The sunsets are spectacular.
We took the train up from London Kings Cross, and after 3 and a half hours we were at Berwick-upon-Tweed station. From there it was a 20 minutes taxi ride to the Island. Crossing the causeway at sunset was memorable. We saw seals swimming in the shimmering water beyond, and the stress of our city living existence evaporated at once.
We were celebrating an anniversary, so decided to book a luxury studio at “Belvue Guesthouse Holy Island”:https://holy-island.uk/ – and we can certainly recommend it. We prefer accommodation where the hosts leave you alone and there’s not a feeling that you are in someone else’s house, and Belvue is exactly that, with the standard that of a top quality hotel and spa-like facilities in the en suite. I might write a separate review about them, if I have the gumption.
For dinner, we went to “The Ship Inn pub”:https://www.theshipinn-holyisland.co.uk/ where the fish and chips was excellent. The Mrs had a lamb tagine and seemed pleased with it. We tried the local tipple, Lindisfarne Mead, which was a tad too sweet for us both, and the local Gin (Holy Island Gin), which we liked.
We visited Lindisfarne Castle (steep climb on ramp to the castle and then many steps, though we enjoyed the views from the battlements), but the highlight was the North Shore beaches, which were deserted and absolutely stunning.
Overall, I cannot recommend it enough. At the time of writing we are in lockdown because of Covid-19, but as soon as restrictions are eased, we’ll be on a train to Holy Island.