Durham to Edinburgh, Northern England and Scotland
As the train pulls out of Durham you are treated to the first of many spectacular views: one of the most admired Norman cathedrals in the world, overlooking the city (see p14).
It’s but a short journey to Newcastle-upon-Tyne, where you’ll cross the river, enjoying a fantastic view of the city’s industrial glory. The urban cityscape is soon left behind, replaced by rolling unspoilt Northumbrian countryside. The track hugs the coast north of Newcastle, taking in majestic, unforgettable views.
The train passes close to Bamburgh Castle, one of the largest inhabited castles in Britain. With a history dating back 2,000 years, it sits dramatically on the shore. Passengers can later alight at Berwick and make the short journey back to the castle by car or bus to explore.
A highlight is surely passing the Holy Island of Lindisfarne, founded by St Aidan in 635 AD. Marooned in the North Sea, it is accessed at low tide by a causeway known as the Pilgrims’ Way.
Passing from England to Scotland through border country presents some of the wildest rural scenery you will find. Just before arriving at Berwick-upon-Tweed, the train crosses the Royal Border Bridge – a Grade I-listed railway viaduct opened by Queen Victoria in 1850. The 659m-long bridge doesn’t actually mark the border, though, as this is three miles further north.