Cross 3 National Parks – The Lake District, Yorkshire Dales and North York Moors.
Varied hiking, with a memorable mix of valleys, plains, mountains, dales and moors.
Enjoy breath-taking views over the lakes from the peaks of the Lake District.
Discover many charming villages and cosy pubs along the way.
Experience the feeling of achievement and exhilaration as you reach Robin Hood’s Bay.
Coast to Coast: A 300 km walk across England from St. Bees to Robin Hood’s Bay.
The Coast to Coast Walk is by far the most popular long-distance trail in Britain, and one of the world’s great walks. The route was created in 1972 by the devoted walker Alfred Wainwright. Crossing England from west to east, the Coast to Coast path winds its way through over 300 km of Northern England’s finest scenery. As well as taking in two coastlines, the route passes through three National Parks: The Lake District, Yorkshire Dales and North York Moors – offering a stunning variety of terrain and scenery.
Starting in the coastal town of St. Bees on the Irish Sea, you first head northwards along the cliffs before turning inland towards the impressive peaks of the Lake District. Here, you walk through the beautiful valleys of Borrowdale, Grasmere and Patterdale, with occasional ascents to the peaks offering magnificent views over the glistening lakes below.
The Lake District is followed by the gentler landscape of the Yorkshire Dales, with its idyllic river valleys, farmlands, dry stone walls and traditional villages. You then climb again onto the North York Moors, before finally reaching the rugged North Sea coast. Turning south along the cliffs, your final destination soon comes into view. The former smugglers’ town of Robin Hood’s Bay is now a lively fishing village and a real gem on the Yorkshire Coastline.
On your Coast to Coast Walk, you will pass through numerous charming villages with inviting pubs, staying in cosy B&B’s or inns along the way. You will discover numerous heritage sites including St. Bees Lighthouse, Honister Slate Mine, Dove Cottage (Grasmere), the Ullswater Steam Ferry, Shap Abbey, Nine Standards Rigg, Swaledale Mines, and Richmond Castle.
The Coast to Coast Walk is a truly exhilarating adventure, and once completed is an achievement that will remain fondly in the memory for the rest of your life.
|16 DAYS / 15 NIGHTS
|From €1,799 per person sharing*
*A single supplement charge will apply for solo walkers.
|We use a variety of accommodation along the route ranging from bed and breakfasts to lodges, pubs and small hotels. They are run by walker friendly hosts offering en-suite or private facility rooms with a tasty breakfast to get you ready for the walk ahead. Further facilities such as washing and drying facilities, packed lunches and packed lunches are available in some accommodations.
|The overnight accommodations are on a bed & breakfast basis. You will have a selection of cold and hot options to choose from each morning.
Packed lunches can be booked and paid for on arrival at your accommodation. They offer a good selection of sandwiches, snacks and drinks for you to take with you for that day’s walk. On a few sections you will also pass a café and/or shop but on many days you will not pass anything between the start and finish.
For evening meals you will have a variety of pubs and restaurants to choose from, or your accommodation will provide a tasty meal.
|You can start any day, subject to availability, between late March and mid-October.
We recommend that you start your walk between Saturday and Tuesday as many of the Lake District accommodations stipulate a minimum 2 night stay at the weekend.
|DIFFICULTY / TERRAIN
|The difficulty level of this tour is rated as moderate to challenging overall. It is not technically demanding, but a good level of fitness is required. The sections through the Lake District include some steep ascents and descents. Other sections are relatively easy, but there are some long walking days, with distances of up to 33 km.
The walks are mostly unsurfaced tracks, riverside paths, mountain trails and some short stretches on tarmac roads. Some sections may be muddy or boggy, which can make progress slow.
Day 1: Arrival in St.Bees, Cumbria
Arrival in St. Bees via train – routes available from all major airports. Most customers travel to Manchester airport then take the train to St.Bees by changing at South Lakes or Carlisle.
St Bees Head is the most westerly point of Cumbria, on the coastal strip between the Lakeland fells and the Irish Sea. It has a history going back over 1,000 years and has been a popular holiday destination for over 150 years.
Overnight: St. Bees
Day 2: St.Bees to Ennerdale Bridge
Distance: 23 km | Ascent: 645 m | Descent: 547 m | 6 hrs approx.
Before setting off this morning, follow the tradition of all Coast to Coast walkers, and collect a stone from the beach in St. Bees, which you will carry to Robin Hood’s Bay on the North Sea.
You first head north along the dramatic coastal path, before turning inland towards the village of Sandwith. You pass through the sleepy villages of Moor Row and Cleator, before the first climb of the trip at Dent Fell. Finally, you arrive in the small village of Ennerdale Bridge.
Overnight: Ennerdale Bridge
Day 3: Ennerdale Bridge to Rosthwaite
Distance: 24 km | Ascent: 1028 m | Descent: 1044 m | 8 hrs approx.
You are now in the Lake District National Park and the day starts with a walk along the southern shore of Ennerdale Water, with superb views of the approaching fells. From here, you have a choice: either go high up to Red Pike and over High Stile onto the iconic Haystacks and past Inominate Tarn (where Wainwright’s ashes were scattered) or follow a gentler route up to Black Sail Youth Hostel and then up Loft Beck. Both routes take you to Honister Slate Mine (the last working slate mine in England) before a descent into the village of Rosthwaite, followed by Stonethwaite (both located in the Borrowdale Valley).
Overnight: in the area of Borrowdale between Rosthwaite and Stonethwaite.
Day 4: Rosthwaite to Grasmere
Distance: 15 km | Ascent: 547 m | Descent: 563 m | 5½ hrs approx.
A shorter stage today, but the ascent to the day’s only peak – Greenup Edge – is steep and demanding. From here, you will enjoy another iconic view of the unique and beautiful landscape of the Lake District.
You will spend the night in pretty Grasmere. There is lots to explore, including the Wordsworth Museum and the poet’s former residence, Dove Cottage.
Day 5: Grasmere to Patterdale
Distance: 14 – 17 km | Ascent: 541 m | Descent: 458 m | 6 – 8 hrs approx.
All walkers climb up to Grisedale Hause, with stunning views back towards Grasmere. From here, you have the option to go even higher and up the famous Helvellyn peak or St Sunday Crag – with far reaching views as far as Ullswater – before coming down Grisedale into Patterdale. Alternatively, you can take the direct route down through Grisedale to the village.
Overnight: in Patterdale or nearby Glenridding
Day 6: Patterdale to Shap
Distance: 27 km | Ascent: 900 m | Descent: 798 m | 7½ hrs approx.
The day starts with another climb and impressive panoramic views across to Fairfield, Helvellyn, Hartsop and Kirkstone Pass. You continue beside the beautiful mountain lake Angle Tarn, then across the old Roman path of High St and onto Kidsty Pike – at 780m, the highest point on the Coast to Coast Walk. From here there are amazing views down to Haweswater and Riggindale. Descend to Haweswater Reservoir – built in the 1930’s to provide water to the cities of the Northwest – for an undulating onward walk through the charming village of Bampton. You continue past the ruins of the 13th Century Shap Abbey. The monks abandoned it to Henry V111 in 1540 and since then it has served as a memory of a bygone era. It is then just a short distance to the village of Shap.
Overnight: in Shap village
Day 7: Shap to Kirkby Stephen
Distance: 33 km | Ascent: 452 m | Descent: 532 m | 8 hrs approx.
The route from Shap crosses into the Westmorland Fells, within the Yorkshire Dales National Park. From here, the vistas change from dramatic granite rocks to an open limestone landscape as you continue past the tiny village of Orton. Continue through open countryside with occasional villages, remote houses and secluded farms. You will enjoy a wide panorama towards the distinctive Howgills and the distant Pennines (tomorrow’s challenge!). Pass Smardale Bridge, a stunning piece of Victorian architecture from a long-gone railway. Then it’s on into the small yet lively town of Kirkby Stephen, with its welcoming pubs, cafes and restaurants, in the heart of the lovely Eden Valley.
Overnight: Kirkby Stephen
Day 8: Kirkby Stephen to Keld
Distance: 19 km | Ascent: 534 m | Descent: 385 m | 5½ hrs approx.
You leave Kirkby Stephen via the picture postcard village of Hartley. The route then gets hillier once again as you climb up into the Pennines and over the Nine Standards – a very distinctive feature on the fell, marking the border between Cumbria and Yorkshire. This point also marks England’s watershed between the Irish Sea and the North Sea.
End the day in peaceful Keld, a former lead-mining village.
Day 9: Keld to Reeth
Distance: 19 km | Ascent: 459 m | Descent: 573 m | 5½ hrs approx.
Today you have the choice between a route over the mountain or the lower route along the valley.
The high route crosses a remote landscape of grouse moors, dotted with ruins from the lead-mining era, with wonderful views along the way.
The low route takes you via the heather clad valley of Swaledale, with its traditional stone barns and drystone walls.
Whatever you choose, you arrive in Reeth, another quintessential Dales village with cosy pubs.
Day 10: Reeth to Richmond
Distance: 19 km | Ascent: 290 m | Descent: 344 m | 5 hrs approx.
Today’s more leisurely stage takes you across verdant meadows and through pretty villages. Take some time to explore Marrick Priory, a 12th century Benedictine monastery which was abandoned during the 16th century religious wars.
You will spend the night in the pretty market town of Richmond, with its quaint cobbled streets and imposing Norman Castle.
Day 11: Richmond to Danby Wiske
Distance: 22 km | Ascent: 77 m | Descent: 172 m | 6 hrs approx.
An easier and flatter walk again today, taking you across the Vale of Mowbray. You will walk through fertile farmland and along quiet country lanes, via Bolton-on-Swale and its 14th century St. Mary’s Church. Your destination is Danby Wiske, a cluster of pretty houses huddled around the village green.
Overnight: Danby Wiske
Day 12: Danby Wiske to Ingleby Cross/Osmotherley
Distance: 18 km | Ascent: 232 m | Descent: 102 m | 5 hrs approx.
Today you continue your approach towards the North York Moors National Park – and its hills! You will walk along flat footpaths and farm tracks, passing brightly coloured rapeseed fields and sleepy livestock.
Overnight: Depending on accommodation availability, you will stay in either Ingleby Cross or Osmotherley.
Day 13: Ingleby Cross/Osmotherley to Blakey
Distance: 33 km | Ascent: 907 m | Descent: 682 m | 8 hrs approx.
A long but very rewarding day today.
You walk first through woodland, then head uphill for superb views back to Richmond and ahead towards the North Sea. You are finally in the North York Moors National Park, with its wide expanses of heather-covered moorland contrasting with the distinctive rocky crags of the Wain Stones. It feels like you are on a high mountain, but the North York Moors is only 4-500 m above sea level.
Today’s stretch brings you across the plateau, following the route of an abandoned mine railway to The Lion Inn pub. Originally a 16th century hunting lodge, it’s the third highest pub in England and the only building for miles around.
Overnight: at The Lion Inn or a short transfer to others in the surrounding area.
Day 14: Blakey to Grosmont
Distance: 22 km | Ascent: 127 m | Descent: 488 m | 6 hrs approx.
Today’s route is mainly flat and downhill beside Great Fryup Dale and into Glaisdale. There’s one sting in the tail to get up and down into the pretty village of Egton Bridge, before you end the day in peaceful Grosmont (pronounced ‘Growmont’), one of the stops on the famous North York Moors steam railway.
Day 15: Grosmont to Robin Hood’s Bay
Distance: 25 km | Ascent: 521 m | Descent: 548 m | 7 hrs approx.
Your final walking day begins with a steep road climb up onto the moor. You then descend into beautiful Littlebeck – but not before catching a glimpse of the sea and the breathtaking Whitby Abbey!
You cross the last section of moors via Falling Foss woods, with its hidden follies. The final stretch of the Coast to Coast Path takes you from High Hawsker along the top of the Jurassic cliffs – with stunning coastal scenery and perhaps some dolphin sightings if you’re lucky. There are gorgeous vistas of Robin Hood’s Bay as you descend to this beautiful old fishing village. Once a smugglers’ haunt, this is a timeless place with a maze of cobbled streets and alleyways, surrounded by steep cliffs.
On arrival, don’t forget to throw your St Bees’ stone into the North Sea. Congratulations – You’ve crossed England!
Overnight: Robin Hood’s Bay
Day 16: Departure from Robin Hood’s Bay
Your arrangement comes to an end after breakfast this morning.