Posts Tagged With: durham
We decided to visit Durham Castle on Saturday afternoon, and rocked up about 2pm to wander around. Although it turns out you can’t do that. You can only look around on a guided tour so we walked around the corner to the visitor information centre to buy our tickets (£5 each) only to be told that the 2:15pm tour was fully booked but there were two places left on the 4:15pm. So we had a couple of hours to wander around Durham before returning for our tour.
Our tour was done by a very confident Durham University maths student, who did a good job of taking us around a few key rooms. The Castle is in use as student accommodation so there are plenty of areas we couldn’t look around as they were student bedrooms. We also weren’t allowed to take photographs inside for the same reason. It was a little strange being shown the great hall and it’s portraits of University patrons while some poor students were trying to do their revision.
The Castle dates from C11th, construction start in 1072 under the orders of William the Conquerer. Modifications and alterations were added throughout the Middle Ages and beyond. We saw a little chapel with carvings that indication to illiterate worshipers where to stand. That room has incredible thick walls to protect against assault on the Castle. We also saw the Black Stairs which were added in 1660 by Biship Cosin who was the last Bishop to make major changes to the Castle before the University took over.
We spent the Spring Bank Holiday in Durham which has some lovely old buildings combined with Greggs and Pound Shops. It is also over run with obnoxious students. But anyway, we only really had one day in Durham and spent the morning in the Cathedral. This is an impressive building from the 11 century and home to shrine of St Cuthbert. It has been expanded several times over the last few centuries and boyfriend was concerned that they’d never be able to fill it for the services. Still there were quite a few tourists like us wandering around.
You aren’t allowed to take photographs inside but you can get a glimps of the interior via this nice Lego reproduction on display in the gift shop. Yes there is a gift shop, and cafe, and toilets all of which are pointed out to you several times while you’re there. We also paid £7.50 each to look around the ‘Open Treasure’ exhibition. This houses various artifacts from the cathedrals history, as well as allowing you to see the old Monks dormitory and kitchen spaces. We spent a good few hours there before heading off for some lunch.
Another mini-break, this time to Durham and Beamish! I’ve never been to Durham, it’s not huge but it has a Cathedral and Castle. We’re only going for two nights so I don’t need loads of clothes, and I’m clearly over packing! The weather has been HOT but has cooled a little leaving me in a quandry as to what to take. So I’m taking jeans, shorts, and a dress. Also a long sleeve top, two t-shirts, a cardigan, and a hoody. And then underwear, PJs, shoes, a day bag, toiletries, camera, and a book.
This includes what I’ll wear to work on Friday and then wear to travel to Durham, so it’s three days worth of clothes. So it’s not quite as crazy as it seems. Below is my travel outfit and the Blacks City 30 bag I use for these little trips.