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England: Bamburgh Castle - more than a perfect film set

Updated: Mar 20, 2023


Rob stands in a fighting pose next to the old throne and presents his sword. Grimly he looks into the distance over the endless dunes and the steep cliffs to the sea.

Perfect film set: Bamburgh Castle in England

Suddenly he turns to me almost apologetically: "Actually, I should wear a beard, but on Saturday I still have a tour as Ron Weasly, the red-haired friend of Harry Potter, so facial hair would probably be out of place."

Rob Lundgren Jones schlüpft für seine Führungen in alle möglichen Rollen und Verkleidungen

Northumbria is THE film location. Blockbusters like Transformers, Downton Abbey, The Last Kingdom, Game of Thrones and even Harry Potter were filmed here or inspired by the landscape.

Speaking of film work: 20 years ago we made a film about Vikings and were also advised by historians and archaeologists. "If you want to know what it was really like at that time and what it felt like to fight in a shield wall, read Bernard Cornwell" advised one of the archaeologists, whose name I have unfortunately forgotten. I remember his appearance well, though: his incisors were missing and his weather-beaten face was barely recognisable under his shaggy grey hair and long beard.

But DESTINY IS ALL - ever since I read "The Last Kingdom", the first of the 13 books of the Uthred saga, I have been "hooked".

Like the hero of the novel, I have been dreaming of seeing the "Bebbanburg" ever since.

Click on the first picture to start the photo gallery:

Fortunately, I don't have to start a battle, because Bamburgh Castle, as Bebbanburg is called today, is known to be impregnable. In fact, its silhouette can be recognised from afar - the defiant walls leave no doubt as to where the rulers of the time lived.

Bamburgh Castle could not be taken until the invention of cannons in the 16th century.

No wonder that Bernard Cornwell - author of the Uthred saga, which served as a model for the film version of "The Last Kingdom" - chose these walls as the home and place of longing of his hero.

History has been written here since the 4th century: Kings, Vikings and Normans - all have left their mark here.

If you think: "Dry history, boring - especially for children", you will soon be disabused of this notion in Northumbria.
I'm jumping for joy: Bamburgh Castle in the Northumberland Dunes

In Bamburgh Castle, for example, little would-be heroes are taught sword fighting by real Vikings.

Rob Lundgren Jones takes on all kinds of roles and disguises for his guided tours in order to bring his audience closer to fact and fiction in the most entertaining way possible. "The last two Lockdown years have actually been quite good for us," Rob tells us. "A lot of English people who would normally have gone abroad were only able to travel domestically and so they discovered Northumbria. A lot of them came here and said:

"Wow this is really nice here - we didn't know that."
Bebbanburg in "The Last Kingdom" aka Bamburgh Castle

Wide sandy beaches, palaces, castles, mysterious ruins, abandoned monasteries, fishing villages, cosy pubs, snug accommodation and dreamy coastal walks between roaring sea and endless dunes attract not only film crews but also more and more visitors. Where the Romans expanded their empire 2000 years ago, where Christianity spread to England from the island of Lindisfarne with Saint Aidan in the 6th century and where the Vikings raided a few centuries later, castles were built to weather any storm.


Bamburgh Castle is second to none, and not just in terms of location. In addition to a visit to the stately castle, you should also plan a long walk along the beach. If you want to be completely alone, you can sleep in the clock tower, for example.

On the website you will also find the times for the current guided tours and events:

A good overview of everything you can do in Northumbria (including accommodation, walks, restaurants and sights, unfortunately only in English) at:

Getting there:

If you travel with your own transport and don't want to drive all over England, you can also take the ferry directly from Amsterdam to Newcastle. A quicker route is via Dover.

There are direct flights from Frankfurt to either Newcastle or Edinburgh.

At you can compare prices for rental cars and also book them.


Stablewood Cottages has cosy, well-equipped self-catering cottages in various locations - either directly on the beach at Budle Bay, or in the small village of Lucker - both very close to Bamburgh Castle.

If you want, you can also sleep in lovingly converted shepherd's caravans, or in the B&B above the pub. A SPA with sauna, steam bath and swimming pool is perfect for warming up on rainy days.

Fish'n Chips at Apple Inn Lucker

If, like Uthred, you want to have Bamburgh Castle to yourself, you can also sleep directly in the castle in the "Clock Tower" or in the "Neville Tower".

Eating out:

The Apple Inn in Lucker is a cosy pub with award-winning food. If you want, you can also sleep in the pub or in converted - now stylish - shepherd's caravans.

Lobster, fish, but also lamb and vegetarian dishes are available at "The Potted Lobster" directly in Bamburgh.

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