Things to do

Gibshiel offers a springboard to Northumberland’s many attractions, sights and life

Gibshiel is located within the Tarset Parish in the Upper North Tyne and is in The Border Reiver Country.  From the 14th Century to 17th Century criminal families nicknamed ‘Reivers’ (robbers) dominated the Borders.  From Norman times, Tynedale was a ‘Liberty’ – an area of land so remote (not much has changed!!!) from the centre of power, it was allowed a degree of independence.  The Border families or clans became a law unto themselves and according to records the Tynedale and Redesdale folk were most feared!!

Walking / Leisure

The world famous Pennine Way actually crosses the farm and the Tarset Bastle Trail starts in nearby Greenhaugh. Gibshiel is ideally situated approximately half way between Bellingham and Byrness which makes us a convenient stopover for those walkers (or cyclists) who want a pit stop. The views from the top of the farm are unrivalled stretching to Cumbria in the south, the Cheviots to the north and eastwards towards the Coquet valley and Simonside.

Northumberland National Park

Gibshiel is located within this 400 square mile National Park.  It comprises miles of beautiful landscapes and scenery.  There is so much to explore here.  Places to visit (amongst many) are The Sill, Harshaw Linn, Hadrian’s Wall, Kielder, the Cheviots, Coquetdale, Simonside.  Followers of the TV drama ‘Vera’ will love to follow in her footsteps – indeed a recent episode was filmed down the road at Highgreen Manor – our nearest neighbour.


Kielder Forest

Within the National Park lies the world famous Kielder Forest. Gibshiel is situated on the eastern flank of the forest and may be accessed on foot or by bicycle from the farm. It comprises some 250 square miles of forests, lakes, walks, cycle routes and water sports clubs.

Kielder holds annual events such as the Kielder Marathon, Dark Skies Run, a 24 hour mountain bike race and some extremely challenging car rallies.  Deadwater Fell red mountain bike trail is the highest bike trail in England at 1900 ft – the view is wonderful. There’s a Winter Wonderland around Christmas time too.

Kielder Observatory and Stargazing

Covering an area of 1500 square miles, the Northumberland International Dark Sky Park, is Europe’s largest Dark Sky Park.  The Kielder Forest Observatory is the best place to view the bright star constellations, however, here at Gibshiel they shine bright too.   Stuart and Alex have been granted planning consent and approval from the National Park to build their own observatory as the light here is free from any light pollution too – it’s amazing.

Kielder Waterside

There is plenty to do at Kielder Waterside too. There’s a Birds of Prey Centre and a Petting Zoo also bicycle hire (electric and non) to explore the lakeside tracks and trails.

There is a cosy and welcoming restaurant, café, spa and indoor swimming pool at the Waterside – perfect for inclement weather. It also shows all the Newcastle United games! 


Other unmissable nearby attractions include:

  • Hadrian’s Wall
  • The Sill
  • Sycamore Gap
  • Go Ape – at Matfen 

The Coast

Gibshiel lies only 1 hour and 20 minutes from the beautiful Northumberland Coast which is blessed with never ending, sandy and unpopulated beaches.   The coastal walks are stunning and there are so many restaurants, tea shops etc in which to indulge excellent wine, beer and cuisine.  From Berwick in the North to Tynemouth in south and more, there are a plethora of places to visit.  Take in Alnwick, Bamburgh, Alnmouth, Amble, Warkworth, Cresswell, Beadnell Bay.


If it’s history you are after then take a trip to Alnwick Castle, Bamburgh, Holy Island and Lindisfarne.

Locally, visit Bellingham (and the Bellingham Heritage Centre), Black Middens Bastle, Falstone, Hexham, Carter Bar (the English/Scottish Border crossing).  

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