After two days in Edinburgh, we picked up a rental car and headed for the East Coast of Scotland and England—destination Lindisfarne. Lindesfarne is a tidal island off the north-east coast of England also known as Holy Island, and I wanted to see the upside-down boats used as storage sheds, as well as the Lindisfarne Castle. The village is known not only for the Lindisfarne Gospels, but for being the first site of a Viking raid in England in 793 A.D..
You have to drive across a narrow paved road through tidelands, only during low tide. Many a tourist who has ignored the tides has ended up with a car buried halfway in saltwater, and some have been rescued by helicopters. Lindisfarne is now a village of about 200 people, and we wandered around early in the morning in a light drizzle.
Even with all the tourists and tourist-trappings, there’s a magical feel to the place. The castle, long ago abandoned as a strategic military outpost, was purchased in the early 1900s by Sir Edward Hudson, the owner of Country Life magazine. Hudson’s buddy, noted Arts and Crafts designer Edwin Lutyens, did the interiors and designed the furniture. It’s been lovingly restored, and the rooms feel cozy and quite unlike dank, cold castles. I could curl up for a nap here on a rainy, cold day!
The remains of the priory, much of it in red stone quarried 10 miles away, are magnificent.
To tell you the truth, I’m having a bit of a hard time blogging on this trip, because we’re seeing so much, learning so much, and I’m shooting so many blasted pictures (over 1000 so far). I’ll keep trying to post, when time allows, not necessarily in chronological order.