We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

Twelve days in England

Melbourne
Level Contributor
1,032 posts
Save Topic
Twelve days in England

I put the following question in the general UK forum yesterday, but it got buried so quickly no-one picked it up. Here goes again-

"I am making my fourth visit to England shortly as part of an around the world trip, arriving Manchester airport April the 16th and leaving from London LHR the 29th, so am spending 12 full days in the country between those dates. I am starting off with a short return visit with distant relatives near Skipton that have become good friends over the years, then the more-or-less settled plan is to take the train to Carlisle, a bus to Newcastle, stopping off on the way at various historic sites along Hadrian’s Wall. From Newcastle I think I will come down the eastern side calling in at Whitby (because of the James Cook – Australia connection), then perhaps Ely. I think to spend at least 3 full days in London before flying off to Dublin.

From my study it seems that because of the short individual journeys I am planning a Britrail Pass would not be the most economic.

I would welcome some input from UK residents or recent visitors about this plan, with perhaps some suggestions as to how best to go about it. This could include your ideas on places, clean but cheaper and convenient hotels or guest houses, best modes of travel between the various points of interest, and so on. I look forward to any responses and all ideas will be looked at."

Mentioned in this post
Manchester
Manchester
Greater Manchester, UK
Dublin
Dublin
County Dublin, Ireland
Yorkshire Dales...
Destination Expert
for North Yorkshire, Suffolk
Level Contributor
3,747 posts
86 reviews
Save Reply
1. Re: Twelve days in England

A few small points to kick off research (I am sure others will pitch in with more detailed comments).

1) You'd see far more, far easier (and far quicker) if you had a rental car rather than relying on public transport. 'Stopping off at various historic points along Hadrian's Wall' would be simple in a car - but have you considered the practicalities of doing this by bus? What will you do with your luggage? And you can't rely on good weather either in April - you might be lucky but equally it could be extremely wet, windy and cold.

2) The city of York (beautiful, very historic) seems an obvious omission unless you plan to visit whlst with your relatives in Skipton

3) Why Ely? The Cathedral is wonderful but to be honest there's not a lot else to detain you there, although Cambridge is close by of course

.

Mentioned in this post
Hadrian's Wall
Hadrian's Wall
474 Reviews
Carlisle, UK
York
York
North Yorkshire, UK
Durham, United...
Level Contributor
308 posts
100 reviews
Save Reply
2. Re: Twelve days in England

It should be feasible to see quite a lot in the week you'll have between leaving Skipton and arriving in London.

From Skipton you can get to Carlisle in 2 hours via the Settle to Carlisle railway which is one of the most scenic in the UK

http://www.settle-carlisle.co.uk/

The Roman gallery in Carlisle's Tullie House Museum gives a good introduction to the Roman history of the area http://www.tulliehouse.co.uk/

For information about Hadrian's Wall travel and accommodation see http://www.hadrians-wall.org/

The best place to stay to visit the Wall is the central part between Haltwhistle and Hexham. The AD122 bus is very useful. It goes between Carlisle and Newcastle and calls at all the main Roman sites along the way. It normally operates from about 9am to 6pm daily between April and October, but the timetable for 2012 doesn't seem to have been published yet. There's also a regular rail service between Carlisle and Newcastle.

To get to Whitby by public transport either go by train from Newcastle to York then get the Coastliner bus http://www.coastliner.co.uk/

or go all the way by train (except Sundays), changing at Darlington and Middlesbrough (there are also buses between Middlesbrough and Whitby). You should have no difficulty finding inexpensive accommodation in Whitby. The North York Moors Railway is a good day out http://www.nymr.co.uk/

Great Ayton is nearby and also has Capt Cook connections (he grew up there and there's a museum in the village and a monument nearby) http://www.captaincookschoolroommuseum.co.uk/

Trains from Newcastle or York to London are fast and frequent. For the cheapest fares it would be advisable to book asap - choose a specific date and train time and buy an advance ticket (they can be booked up to 12 weeks in advance) on http://www.eastcoast.co.uk/

To visit Ely you will need to go to Peterborough first and change trains there.

Hope this helps.

Enjoy your visit.

Mentioned in this post
Hadrian's Wall
Hadrian's Wall
474 Reviews
Carlisle, UK
York
York
North Yorkshire, UK
Melbourne
Level Contributor
1,032 posts
Save Reply
3. Re: Twelve days in England

Thanks very much for the information and I'm working through the suggestions so as to get the best out of my time in England. I'm now thinking perhaps booking a night somewhere near one of the historic sites along Hadrian's Wall might be the best way to absorb some of the history there. Would it be feasible to take the Skipton-Settle-Carlisle train, then hop on the bus to wherever I choose, rather than an overnight stay in Carlisle, or is that too much in one day?

On every visit I like to add an area of the country that I haven't visited before. I stayed in York on my first visit in 1980 and loved it. The Scottish National Ballet was performing Giselle there - beautiful. And I'll never forget laughing at the sign for Whip-ma-whop-ma Gate.

Re the Cook connection, you may or may not know that Melbourne has a link - thatsmelbourne.com.au/PlacesToGo/CooksCottag… - click on Visitor Information for more detail. Cook's first sighting of the Australian continent was on the far east coastline of what became Victoria, at Point Hicks, though he didn't land there.

Mentioned in this post
Hadrian's Wall
Hadrian's Wall
474 Reviews
Carlisle, UK
York
York
North Yorkshire, UK
Melbourne
Melbourne
Victoria, Australia
Durham, United...
Level Contributor
308 posts
100 reviews
Save Reply
4. Re: Twelve days in England

Very interesting about Cooks' Cottage. I didn't know about that. It must have been quite an operation moving it to Melbourne brick by brick.

Changing at Carlisle and moving on to somewhere along Hadrian's Wall shouldn't be a problem. Assuming you don't want to leave Skipton on the early train at 6.15am it's going to be around midday by the time you could get to Carlisle. From there you've got a choice of bus or train to get to wherever you decide to stay. The bus leaves from outside the station but they only go from Carlisle about every 2 hours (it calls at sites along the way so it isn't very fast but you see some stretches of Wall along the way). The train leaves from the platform next to where the Settle train arrives and they are faster and more frequent (timetable on northernrail.org/pdfs/…4.pdf ) but the train doesn't go near to any Roman sites. If you don't have a car it would be easier to use one of the towns along the Tyne Valley as a base, in which case getting the train to, say, Haltwhistle would be a good idea. It's going to be well into the afternoon by the time you arrive and I assume you'll want to drop off luggage so it won't leave much time before the visitor attractions close at 5 or 6 o'clock. The buses run more often between Haltwhistle and Hexham as that's where the most interesting sites are, so it would be convenient to pick up the bus from there. The link to last year's timetable for the AD122 bus doesn't work but there's an old one for 2010 that gives you an idea of the sort of times they are likely to run at hadrians-wall.info/hadrianswall/ad122timetab…

The forts at Vindolanda http://www.vindolanda.com/ and Housesteads

english-heritage.org.uk/daysout/…

are worth visiting. The most spectacular section of wall is between Housesteads and Steel Rigg.

Mentioned in this post
Melbourne
Melbourne
Victoria, Australia
Hadrian's Wall
Hadrian's Wall
474 Reviews
Carlisle, UK
Tenterden, United...
Level Contributor
2,476 posts
12 reviews
Save Reply
5. Re: Twelve days in England

Also with a link to Captain Cook is Staithes. He went to live there at the age of 16 to work for a local merchant and it is here that he was said to have acquired his love of the sea. I do not think you are able to get there by bus so you would probably need a car.

www.captaincookatstaithes.co.uk

Durham, United...
Level Contributor
308 posts
100 reviews
Save Reply
6. Re: Twelve days in England

The 2012 timetable for the Hadrian's Wall bus is now on hadrians-wall.org/ResourceManager/Documents/…

Mentioned in this post
Hadrian's Wall
Hadrian's Wall
474 Reviews
Carlisle, UK
Melbourne
Level Contributor
1,032 posts
Save Reply
7. Re: Twelve days in England

I've just printed the Carlisle-Newcastle page of the time-table, thank you, Colin.

I've booked for my first night in England at the Mitre Hotel in Manchester as my arrival will be too late to tackle the onwards journey to Barnoldswick. I'm now thinking of two nights with my relatives in Barnoldswick, train to Carlisle and bus out to Haltwhistle or Hexham (depending on where I get accommodation, any suggestions?) for two nights, on to Newcastle-upon-Tyne for two nights, then Whitby (still to book) and on to London (booking made for last four nights). This plan, if I make it two nights in Whitby, or one night there and one night somewhere else), takes up the thirteen nights spent in England.

If I do book two nights in Haltwhistle, how feasible is it to get around to at least some of the Roman sites from there without a car? I see there is a day roamer ticket for the bus, but is that the only way? I do appreciate all the help given.

Mentioned in this post
Manchester
Manchester
Greater Manchester, UK
Newcastle upon Tyne
Newcastle upon Tyne
Tyne and Wear, UK
Durham, United...
Level Contributor
308 posts
100 reviews
Save Reply
8. Re: Twelve days in England

Sorry just seen your post. From Haltwhistle it's possible to walk to the Wall - about a mile along the Haltwhistle Burn. The best method of getting to the Roman sites is the AD122 bus. Housesteads is about half an hour away. I don't know of any other buses so other than that you would need a taxi.

9. Re: Twelve days in England

-:- Message from TripAdvisor staff -:-

This topic has been closed to new posts due to inactivity. We hope you'll join the conversation by posting to an open topic or starting a new one.

To review the TripAdvisor Forums Posting Guidelines, please follow this link: http://www.tripadvisor.com/pages/forums_posting_guidelines.html

We remove posts that do not follow our posting guidelines, and we reserve the right to remove any post for any reason.

Removed on: 26 May 2013, 10:28
Get answers to your questions about Carlisle