We arrived in Bellingham (pronounced Belling jum) at about 7.00 pm. We were delayed again, this time for delays around Doncaster. The campsite is a Caravan and Camping site and is very pleasant. It’s probably the largest site we have stayed on so far so we had some feelings of trepidation. We ‘hooked up’ and then set off to the pub in nearby Bellingham.
The pub was great, The Cheviot Hotel. The local ale was lovely, but remember, beer is served cold in the North-East. I had pie and Richard had fish and chips, or rather, whale and chips. It was lovely. We walked back to the campsite, it was quite dark but there was a footpath all the way.
We retired to bed, our first experience of sleeping ‘up the top’.
Next morning arrived and I was relieved not to have fallen through the roof in the night. Richard said that I had remained remarkably still! Breakfast consisted of Richard’s now traditional ‘Breakfast Burritos’. The weather forecast wasn’t promising so we decided to spend the day exploring Hadrian’s Wall. The first stop was Chesters, an example of a Roman bathhouse within a fort. We looked at the Museum and the fort and then had a cup of tea and a slice of cake in the cafe. We also joined English Heritage and our new mission is to make sure we get our money’s worth!
Next stop was Housesteads, the Fort here is at the top of a hill and you have the opportunity to walk along the wall. Lunch was a picnic in the van.
Final stop of the day was Corbridge, a lovely market town where we stocked up with provisions and then made our way back to Bellingham.
That night we cooked in the van using a Simply Cook pack, Thai Red Curry. It was delicious and washed down with a very nice bottle of red wine.
The next day saw us head off to Kielder Water for a bike ride, this first this year!! We started off slow and managed to maintain that pace throughout! The views from alongside the reservoir were fantastic and well worth the effort to get there. Only one mishap along the way when I managed to knock Mr M off his bike – fortunately he landed on the rucksack, so the only damage was to our lunch, a little compressed. When we’d completed the whole trip around the reservoir we had a cup of tea in the cafe at Tower Knowe, again a great view over the water.
When we got back to the campsite it was time for the first BBQ of the year and the first one on our new portable BBQ. Nothing flash, just some corn on the cob, local sausages and supermarket burgers, but somehow it just tastes great when you’re outdoors. And of course it had to be washed down with some red wine.
Our usual modus operandi when on a touring trip is to get up and get gone. Time for a change. When we first arrived the wardens had suggested that we take a trip up to Hareshaw Linn, so after packing up the van (doesn’t take very long) we set off into the village to find the car park at the start of the walk.
It was a lovely dry and sunny day for this time of year and a nice stroll up to the Linn itself. Along the way there are various items of interest to look at as well as a number of bridges to cross over the stream. When you get to the Linn itself it’s well worth the effort to walk up there. Nice and peaceful. We had to take a selfie at this point just to wind up our daughter!
Back down from the Linn, into the van and off towardsRobin Hoods Bay.
Hooks House Farm, Robin Hoods Bay
Wow what view! We were escorted to ur pitch, all levelling blocks provided and soon had the kettle on for a brew. We didn’t do too much as we had agreed to meet some friends at the Magpie Cafe in Whitby.
Next morning we got up and decided that we would head off into Whitby to have a look around. When we got there we had a wander round, and coffee at Sherlock’s which we found completely by accident. After a couple of hours we decided to head off onto the the local moors, via Sleights. Lunch duly bought we wended our way down various lanes until we found a relaxing place to stop and eat our recently purchased lunch. After lunch we headed back to the campsite so that we could park up the van and then head down to the village.
Robin Hoods Bay is a great little village, lots of little streets and alleyways, and some interesting shops. We eventually found our way to the beach and sat and people watched for an hour. It was great to see families playing together, no mobile devices in sight! Time now to walk back up the hill, there is a penalty to pay for parking the van in such a great spot! Richard soon had the BBQ out again, although it was somewhat colder then a few days previous.
The trip home on the last day was fortunately uneventful compensating for the trip up. We drove through some great countryside down through Pickering to Malton and then picked up the dual carriageways all the way home.
This was our longest trip in the van to date and we enjoyed every moment of it.