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A weekend break in Northamptonshire: what to see

Posted by Toni Jenkins on September 24, 2017
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So, you’re on a weekend break in Northampton? Well Northampton may be a hub of business and innovation, but it’s also a town that’s full of culture, history, and excitement. The charming town of Northampton, and the other outlying areas in the county, really make this area of the country something special. With so much in the town and surrounding county, what can you get up to on a weekend stay here?

Historic Sites and Landmarks

For history buffs or lovers of architecture, Northampton is home to some incredible, historically important sites; take Althorp House for example. Just a short jaunt on the A428 just north of Northampton town, Althorp House – with 500 years of history and 19 generations of the Spencer family to discover – promises beautiful interiors, immaculate grounds and one of Europe’s finest private collections of furniture, pictures and ceramics.

If you prefer something closer to town, then the Northampton Guildhall is a great way to spend a few hours. Architecturally and historically significant, its Victorian Gothic style is instantly recognisable and it’s been heralded as an “unexpected gem” and “Northampton’s best kept secret” by weekend visitors and residents of Northampton alike. It’s Great Hall and fascinating interior are another must-see.


For sports enthusiasts, the Northampton County Cricket Ground is a must-see when spending a weekend in Northampton – a beautiful stadium home to the Northampton Steelbacks. Catch some great county cricket, or perhaps you’ll plan your stay around some of the events held at the grounds, like the upcoming Oktoberfest Beer Festival .

Other sporting grounds include Franklin’s Gardens, home to the Northampton Saints Rugby Club, and the Collingtree Park Golf Club, just south of the town, if you fancy a tee-off on some incredibly picturesque and challenging greens.

Suit up for Wet Pursuits

Whether you’re looking for adrenaline or just a little jolt of excitement, Northampton has enough to offer anyone to keep their weekend busy. Explore whitewater rafting (or tubing if you’re brave), kayaking, or canoe hire at Nene Whitewater Centre.

DIVE Northampton does what it says on the tin, offering Scuba and Diving equipment hire to use at their own state of the art Dive Centre. To spend your weekend doing something really extreme, the Willow Lake Hovercrafting School offers a one-seater hovercraft that you can take on a course over land and sea. Who knew the midlands could offer so much water-based activity?


If you’ve got time to stay in Northampton, you’ve got time to experience some exceptional shows from the Royal & Derngate Northampton: from theatrical shows including The Railway Children and Shirley Valentine, to contemporary performances from the Richard Alston Dance Company and Blodeu(w)edd Untold (several of these are award-winning “Made in Northampton” productions – shows created and premièred in Northampton before touring nationally), and new shows and tours from beloved comedians like John Bishop, Stewart Lee, Milton Jones, and  Andy Parsons. There is literally something for everyone here and a perfect end to a Saturday night after exploring what Northampton has to offer!

Need any other tips on a weekend in Northampton? Call the iStay team on 01604 945115 today who can help you to plan an unforgettable stay here.

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