We arrived on foot to Housesteads as part of a 10 mile walk also taking in Vindolanda and a five mile length of the Hadrian's Wall. As National Trust members we did not have to pay but I may have been disappointed if we had. The exhibition is interesting and well presented but rather small. I can only assume there is a policy in EH to push membership as the hard sell we received was very off-putting. If that is the welcome we can expect in EH places from now on, I will think twice about visiting.
The remains of the fort are interesting but if you can only visit one in the area, make it Vindolanda.
Most importantly, walk a section of the wall (even a little bit) and get a feel for the enormity of the construction task and the beauty of this dramatic landscape.
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