Everything You Need to Know About Visiting Hexham
From its majestic Abbey to nearby Hadrian's Wall, this charming market town is full of history
The Heart of Northumberland is a Grade II-listed pub with an emphasis on locally-sourced produce. For more international eats, Hexham has some great places to try, including Vercelli, an Italian restaurant and cocktail bar; Zyka, serving great Indian cuisine in stylish surroundings; long-standing favourite family-run Danielle’s Bistro, where you can choose from a selection of Mediterranean dishes; and Cilantro, an unusual Indo-Latino tapas bar. Hexham is also home to the hugely popular Bouchon Bistrot, with fantastic French-style food and an impressive selection of wines.
In Hexham’s centre is The Beaumont, a Victorian hotel with stunning views of Hexham Abbey, and a popular bar and restaurant too. The County is a gem of a pub with seven ensuite rooms, while in the nearby hamlet of Warden, The Boatside Inn is a welcoming guesthouse offering both B&B accommodation and self-catering holiday cottages. Heading a little north, in Gunnerton you’ll find fabulous self-catering accommodation at Southlands Farm, which includes a lovingly-restored showman’s wagon, a unique retreat for couples and families.
Hexham has an abundance of independent shops to choose from, including the new Pure Plants for unusual and sustainable houseplants, a great lingerie and swimwear shop in Petals, and eco-friendly homeware and gifts at Matthias Winter. Head to Cogito Books to browse the bookshelves, while Mr Wolf is every child’s dream toyshop. For gorgeous gifts, fashion and home accessories, Sorella and Ralph and Mimi are both worth a visit. Hats & Gladrags is for special occasion wear, and Sarah Hickey for beautiful bespoke jewellery. Stock up your pantry with pies and terrines from Hadrian’s Game Larder, and The Grateful Bread is a small family-run artisan bakery specialising in organic sourdough.
The iconic Hadrian’s Wall stretches 73 miles from coast to coast, and the famous forts of Housesteads, Vindolanda and Chesters are within easy reach – there are plenty of stretches of wall to walk along. Be sure to visit Cawfield Crags and Quarry. If Roman history doesn’t cut it, head to the Saxon Crypt at Hexham Abbey. If art is more your thing, facing the abbey is the Queen’s Hall Arts Centre with a 350-seat theatre, 50-seat studio and two galleries to explore.
Around the corner...
Head to The Sill at Once Brewed, the UK’s National Landscape Discovery Centre, to learn about the region’s history and connect with nature, or to Hexham Racecourse, Britain’s most scenic racecourse, for the next evening meeting. The beer garden at Twice Brewed Inn near Bardon Mill has just been ranked among the best in England, so why not enjoy a pint here, or stay over for stargazing and supper, enjoying the starry dark skies with their expert team of astronomers.