(Best viewed large)
The third day's walking, from Belford to Seahouses, was, I think, my favourite. It took us through the Nature Reserve at Budle Bay, and then on to Bamburgh, a small village with a magnificent castle. (You could spend a week simply visiting all the amazing castles in Northumberland - Lindisfarne, Bamburgh, Alnwick, Dunstanburgh, Warkworth.) Bamburgh was once the capital of the ancient kingdom of Northumbria. There has been a castle here since 547, initially a wooden one, and the present structure incorporates a Norman keep dating from 1164. Some of the castle is still inhabited (it has belonged to the Armstrong family since 1894) as well as being a major tourist attraction and wedding venue.
The village itself is attractive (one of its coffee shops provided a welcome stop for us!). St Aidan's Church has a memorial to Grace Darling, daughter of the Longstone lighthouse keeper on the Farne Islands, who, in 1838, helped rescue nine people from the wreck of the SS Forfarshire in a terrible storm, using only a coble (a large rowing boat). It's an interesting story and she became a celebrated Victorian heroine, much sentimentalised.