guarding the Stanegate, the Roman road from the River Tyne to the Solway Firth, Vindolanda was an important frontier fort and village long before the construction of Hadrian's Wall.
Lying just to the south of the Wall, near Bardon Mill, it was occupied for over 300 years, during which over nine forts came and went. Today it offers a fascinating insight into the lives of the soldiers, families and traders who lived there.
Home to Britain's “Top Treasure” the Vindolanda Tablets - the oldest surviving handwritten documents in Britain, which were discovered during excavations in 1973 - its museum also houses the largest collection of Roman leather goods to be found anywhere in the Empire, along with a host of other artefacts, from jewellery to weaponry.
Visitors can see replicas of a Roman temple and shop, a Romano-British house and replica sections of Hadrian's Wall in turf, timber and stone, and watch live archaeological excavations.
At the Roman Army Museum, next to Walltown Crags, visitors can learn about the highly skilled and organised fighting force that was the Roman Army and see in 3D detail what life was like on the Wall for soldiers in the award-winning “Edge of Empire” film.