If you’re looking for a dog friendly stay in Northumberland National Park then I really recommend the unique Brown Rigg Lodges and rooms.
When I first started looking for places to stay in Northumberland I was surprised at just how few options there were. With Northumberland National Park having a population of under 2000, it isn’t any surprise there aren’t many places to stay within the park’s boundaries.
Brown Rigg is not only within the National Park on the edge of Bellingham, but it is also in the International Dark Sky Park, meaning you are likely to get an incredible sky full of stars to enjoy in the evening too.
I was really excited when I found Brown Rigg, as not only was it perfectly located for my hike across the National Park, but it was also very dog friendly.
I was gifted a night at Brown Rigg in one of their Guest Rooms, but as always all opinions are honest and true.
A dog friendly stay in Northumberland National Park – Brown Rigg
Brown Rigg has a really interesting history, starting its life in 1938 as a school for the National Camps Corporation, bringing children into the national park for fresh air away from the polluted cities and towns. I loved this history of Brown Rigg, as it is a large part of what my fundraising hike was all about. Fundraising to find ways to make our parks more accessible and ensuring more people get to experience the benefits of being in our national parks.
The lodge has also been a horse riding school and a film set, until the Hunter Family bought Brown Rigg and turned it into the great venue it is today. I love that it is a family run venue. As soon as I arrived I was welcomed by Alastair who was clearing up for an event in their function hall and then Sue showed Cookie and I to our room.
The Rooms and Lodges at Brown Rigg
We stayed in one of six guest rooms they have on site. The rooms can be made up as twin or double rooms and have en suite bathrooms. There is also a fully accessible room too.
The room was perfectly clean, with plush pillows and big fluffy duvets. Each room also has a TV, wifi and tea and coffee making facilities. You also get the options of continental breakfast delivered to your room in the morning. This included a porridge pot, fruit, juice and pastries.
There is also a shared fully equipped kitchen available for all guests to use. I love that you can get the friendly hostel vibes and meet fellow guests, or enjoy your own space in your room. While I was there a couple were making use of the BBQ just outside our rooms.
They also have four lodges, each sleeping 6 people. The lodges have fully equipped kitchens, living spaces, three bedrooms and a bathroom. The Pennine Lodge has french doors leading out to a stargazing platform from the main bedroom too.
I think the prices are really reasonable too, with double rooms at around £60 a night and lodges that sleep three from £220 for two nights.
Facilities at Brown Rigg
Alongside the great rooms and lodges they have additional facilities too. The function room can be booked for events, meetings, dances or anything else you might need while there. They also have a games room that can be used by all guests. The games room includes a pool table, pingpong table, darts board, board games and toys.
There is also a boot room and laundry room on site you can use. Perfect for muddy hikers like Cookie and I.
Brown Rigg is set in 24 acres of land, there are fields for picnics or to enjoy the starry night sky, a basketball net and plenty of space for cycling or kids to play.
Set in the middle of Northumberland National Park it is the perfect place to base yourself for an adventurous hiking or cycling holiday in the park. The Pennine Way route goes straight past the entrance so it’s also a great point to enjoy a good night’s rest before you tackle the final few days of the route when heading north.
Things to do in Bellingham
Brown Rigg Lodges are a short walk from the village of Bellingham. Of all the places I walked through when hiking across Northumberland National Park, Bellingham seemed to have the most going on. Here are a few things to do in or near Bellingham in Northumberland.
- Walk the Pennine Way – The famous walking route goes right past the entrance to Brown Rigg. Whether you’re doing the full route and need a place to stay along the way or just fancy walking a short sections Brown Rigg is a great base for walking around the national park.
- Stargaze – Brown Rigg are Dark Sky Friendly with some of least polluted skies in the country. On a clear night you can enjoy thousands of stars, the milky way and even the Aurora Borealis.
- Go for a bike ride – with 350 miles of cycling paths across Northumberland National Park, there are no shortages of great places to cycle in the park. The new 120 mile Sandstone Way goes close by to Brown Rigg and is a great one to try.
- Enjoy BAAfest – nope it’s got nothing to do with sheep, the Bellingham All Acoustic Music Festival takes place in September and is a weekend full of music, food and fun.
- Visit Bellingham Heritage Centre – The Heritage Centre includes a cafe, shop and various exhibitions or events that are on throughout the year. Learn more about the area and history of this part of Northumberland.
I really enjoyed my stay at Brown Rigg and would definitely visit again when I return to Northumberland. Alastair and Sue were really welcoming and the cosy rooms were just what I needed after a long day of walking. If you’re looking for a dog friendly stay in Northumberland then I highly recommend Brown Rigg.