Alnwick Castle and Alnwick Garden, Alnwick, Northumberland

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Alnwick Garden is great to visit any time of the year and is a registered charity. It has specialised areas for activities and is one of the most frequently visited attractions in the North East. Alnwick Castle is full of medieval history and is still lived in by the Duke of Northumberland!

As we were away for a party at a relatives house we decided to revisit Alnwick Garden. We went last year and as the tickets last a year, we thought we shouldn't waste them.

Alnwick Garden is a great place to let kids run riot. There is a central water cascade, which every 30 minutes puts on an impressive fountain and water jet display. There is a section which has lots of mirrored water features, some to walk through. There are ride on diggers at the bottom of the cascade, which kids can drive on to scoop up water from the bottom of the fountain.

Other features include a tour around a poison garden, restaurant, gift shop and cafe. The best feature is a huge treehouse you can explore and has its own coffee shop and restaurant.

There is enough to keep you busy for half a day or even a whole day if the weather is good. If this isn't enough, there is Alnwick Castle to explore on the same site. You can buy joint tickets with the garden, and these also last a year.

Alnwick Castle is famous for being Hogwarts in the first two Harry Potter movies, mainly for Harry's first broomstick scene. In the holidays they have kids broomstick training. This was fully booked, but looked good fun. There are also Harry Potter tours throughout the day.

The castle rooms are like a National Trust property, so may be a bit dull for younger kids. There is a cellar experience, for older children and a dragon quest challenge, which my son enjoyed. Here, you fill out an activity sheet and there are interactive skeletons, monsters etc. There is also a knights quest for kids in a courtyard where you can dress up.

All in all a good day out with plenty to do.

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