Although I’ve made it to the UK quite a few times in the past three years, this was the first time I had ventured up to northern England. From the coastal town of Brighton, to the posh university city of Oxford, to the quaint town of Sunderland, the dramatic changes that frequent such a tiny country during the drive were impressive. In Sunderland, the accents are next to impossible to understand, but the people are overwhelmingly friendly. And, as opposed to overcrowded London, the north of England is full of green hills and open countryside.
The most authentic of English Breakfasts
After a solid night’s sleep we enjoyed a fantastic English breakfast at a local establishment overlooking the sea, followed by a picturesque but windy walk.
Afterwards, we headed even further north to Durham, home to one of England’s most prestigious universities (and perhaps more importantly, home to one of the famous cathedrals where Harry Potter was filmed!)
Harry Potter Corridors at Durham Cathedral
Harry Potter Courtyard at Durham Cathedral
We topped off the night with a heart English pie at the oldest pub in New Castle.
The following morning, we headed even further north, to the towns of Alnwick and Bamburgh. Alnwick is home to the second largest inhabited castle in the UK– and coincidently where many more Harry Potter Quidditch scenes were shot (unfortunately the castle was closed to viewing due to it being inhabited at the time!) Bamburgh is also home to a lovely castle, right along the seaside!
In Alnwick, we stopped in the most charming of bookshops…
Our road trip finished in Edinburgh, capital of Scotland. Funnily enough, this was my first trip to Scotland and I was thrilled to be there! We stayed in an awesome Airbnb, enjoyed scrumptious Nepalese food, and indulged in a few too many whiskies at a local whisky pub (no regrets!)
Of course, no trip to Edinburgh is complete without seeing my roommate Laura, who had recently moved back home after spending stints in Rotterdam and northern France. Together we enjoyed a walking tour of the city, and a tour of the famous Edinburgh castle (a must-see despite the expensive entry fee!)
Finally, we bought haggis– a Scottish staple, which we prepared and ate on our last night in the UK.
Gorgeous view from the Castle
Greyfriars Kirkyard- Tom Riddle’s Grave, aka JK Rowling’s Inspiration!
The Elephant House- JK Rowling’s Inspiration
Beautiful Friends- Tom, Kate, François, Laura
Although freezing, Scotland and Northern England were so wonderful! I definitely need to get back eventually explore more. There is just so much to see! However, the best part of being a lectrice is having so many friends to visit all over. It’s made all of those goodbyes just a tad bit easier.