Four Historic Drives to Inspire You Today
The UK has some of the most dramatic coastline in the world. See it from the comfort of the driver’s seat with our guide to the best sea-side routes. From the Scottish Highlands to the Northern Irish coast, here are our four favourites.
FOUR HISTORIC DRIVES TO INSPIRE YOU TODAY
Alnmouth to Bamburgh Castle, Northumberland
Bamburgh Castle sits grand and imperious on the high basalt cliffs of the Northumberland coast. The Norman castle was once the centre of government in the county and is one of the most interesting sights along the route. Start at Alnmouth and head north on the B1340 and you’ll pass Dunstanburgh Castle to the east and hear the North Sea roaring up the white sand beaches. It’s a rugged wind-swept coast that is filled with history and not a little romance and we can’t get enough of it.
Hunstanton to Cromer, Norfolk
It is 217 years since Admiral Lord Nelson gave the French a licking at Trafalgar. But his legend still looms large, no more so than in his native Norfolk. Set off from Hunstanton along the A149 and head towards Nelson’s birthplace, the small village of Burnham Thorpe. Here you’ll find the parsonage in which Nelson was born, Brancaster Beach is next, and is the place Nelson learnt to sail. The drive ends at the beautiful Cromer Hall, one of the great jewels of the area.
Marlborough to Chippenham, Wiltshire
This route was initially created so the wealthy in London could travel to Bath to take the waters in the days of the regency. The finest stretch of it is the 19-mile section between Marlborough and Chippenham. You’ll pass the Waggon & Horses Inn, featured by Charles Dickens in The Pickwick Papers, and then, in Avebury, you can see the stone circles and a series of other Neolithic monuments which are most definitely worth a detour. A little later you can see that most extraordinary of creations: the Cherhill White Horse. A route fit for a king – or a prince regent, at the very least.
Edinburgh to Darlington, Scotland and England
After the Romans took Britain in 43 AD, they thoughtfully created a road linking Edinburgh and York. Today, the A68 follows that same route. So do as the Romans did and start in the Scottish capital and head for Darlington. Along the way you’ll pass through the Cheviot Hills in the Scottish Borders, Hadrian’s Wall and the Northumberland National Park. Roma Invicta!
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