I’ve never owned a passport. I know, how have I managed without one?! I was required to go for an interview at Her Majesty’s Passport Office in Durham City, so I got in touch with my good friend Amy and decided we’d make a day of it!
We met up in Newcastle’s Central Station and got an Off Peak Day Return ticket to get us through and back. These tickets are less than £10 each and can be used on any train after 9am!! So you get the freedom of picking which train you get through to Durham and don’t have to rush around worrying about missing your train home – you get to pick when you leave!
Of course the first thing we did from getting off the train? Took in the skyline of the city. On a fresh clear day you can’t help but stop and look from the top of the hill.
We made our way to the banks of the river to find the Passport Office – although we were too early for me to go in so grabbed a quick drink at the local Wetherspoons – Bishop’s Mill. In my opinion this is the nicest Wetherspoons I’ve visited. Then after a half hour pit stop I made my way to the office for my interview. Afterwards, Amy and I decided it was time for a bite of lunch.
Now, Durham is definitely a city where you can’t turn a corner without finding somewhere to eat. Normally Amy and I take four days and long essential planning to decide where we’ll eat, but we’d been talking about going to Fat Buddha for so long we decided that was where we would go. She’d never been and knew she had to try it! You certainly can’t go wrong with their lunch deal of a main and side for £5.95! Amy getting the chicken teriyaki with egg fried rice, and myself the Pan-Pan chicken with diced potatoes. Delicious! Unfortunately we ate all the main courses before I could snap them. But I did catch my dessert! Amy had the sticky toffee pudding which she said was delicious and I had the white chocolate and strawberry cheesecake. I have never had a lighter and fluffier cheesecake!
We demolished our delicacies and made our way to walk around the shops. Durham has most of your typical high street stores and chains, but also has some wonderful hidden gems. The Georgian Window being one of my personal favourites; full of clothing, accessories, trinkets and goodies. The traditional Market Hall is definitely worth a look around for all those things you don’t realise you need until you see them. Supporting small local businesses like those in the market is a major plus to roaming around, whether it’s a tube of sweets or craft supplies.
If you are fortunate enough to go on a dry clear day a walk up to Durham Cathedral is certainly recommended – it is a stunning building and grounds. If you’re a Potterhead you will be walking around the set of both The Philospher’s Stone and The Chamber of Secrets as both exterior and interior parts of the building were used in the films. How exciting?!
Where do you like to visit if you go through to Durham?