Coast to Coast Walks

 

Picking up a pebble at the start of a trail and dropping it at the end is a ritual that is undertaken by many coast to coast walkers. The act of carrying the pebble across the land from one coast to another symbolises the tremendous journey and the even bigger sense of achievement upon reaching the end.

The following holidays cross the UK from one coast to another. Some involve great distances or challenging terrain, some tread in the footsteps of our ancestors and some are so well renowned that people are drawn from across the world to experience their delights. Whatever you look for in a walking holiday, there is a coast to coast walk to suit you.

The Coast to Coast Walk


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Devised by Alfred Wainwright and described in his illustrated guidebook in 1973, the Coast to Coast Walk is, for many, the pinnacle of long distance walking. The trail has repeatedly found itself listed amongst the top ten walks in the world and encounters some of the most beautiful scenery in the country. From the rugged mountains and glistening lakes of the Lake District, across the tranquil valleys of the Yorkshire Dales and through the heather covered hills of the North York Moors, the best way to understand the appeal of the Coast to Coast Walk is to pull on your boots and walk it.

 

Alternative Coast to Coast Walk


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If climbing the dramatic peaks of Wainwright's classic route is a daunting prospect, the Alternative Coast to Coast Walk is an excellent way to experience the pleasure of crossing from the Irish Sea to the North Sea, without tackling the challenging terrain of the Lake District. While the route is a gentler alternative, the scenery is no less impressive, starting from within the Arnside and Silverdale Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and visiting a string of picturesque villages in the Yorkshire Dales, as well as impressive locations such as Ribblehead's 24-arched viaduct, the fortress of Bolton Castle, the waterfalls of Wensleydale and the lush heather of the North York Moors.

 

Great Glen Way


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The Highlands of Scotland are home to heather-clad hills, famous lochs, magical forests, majestic mountains and the sites of ancient battlefields. Crossing through all of this is the Great Glen Way, a trail that follows the route of the Caledonian Canal, visiting picturesque castles and the stunning lochs of Loch Lochy, Loch Oich and Loch Ness as it makes its way from the main centres of Fort William on the west coast to Inverness on the east coast. The Great Glen Way is a wonderful introduction to the highlands of Scotland and combines straightforward walking with a sense of the remote in this stunning part of Scotland.

 

Hadrian's Wall Path


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Walking from the banks of the River Tyne on the east coast to the shores of the Solway Firth on the west coast is not a simple jaunt across the north of England - it is an exhilarating journey over two thousand years of history. The trail encounters ancient burial cairns, medieval castles and of course, the Roman mile castles, forts, bathhouses and temples that adorn the remarkable remains of Hadrian's Wall. As well as passing through bustling cities, the Hadrian's Wall Path also visits sleepy hamlets and crosses isolated hillsides and peaceful farmland, offering a wonderful contrast between the new and the ancient as it moves into ever more blissful surroundings.

 

Saints' Way


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The popularity of coast to coast routes has soared in recent years, but people have been walking the Saints' Way since the Dark Ages. Tracing the route of ancient drovers, traders, missionaries and pilgrims, the Saints' Way crosses the heart of Cornwall from the charming harbour of Padstow to the wonderfully picturesque harbour at Fowey. Along the way, there are countless examples of the area's rich history, from the Celtic crosses that guide the way to charming granite clapper bridges, medieval churches and striking ancient monuments.

 

Two Moors Way/Devon Coast to Coast


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It is with a strange sense of longing and regret that the Devon Coast to Coast leaves the dramatic cliffs and enchanting rock pools of Wembury on the English Channel. Yet, as soon as you turn inland and begin to stride along a landscape littered with prehistoric settlements, ancient crosses and cairns, you will become captivated by the National Parks of Exmoor and Dartmoor. Beautiful villages and wild, open moorland soon give way to the dramatic 'hogs back cliffs' of North Devon and the Bristol Channel, with views of a stunning coastline disturbed only by grazing wild ponies. The Devon Coast to Coast is a thrilling example of a coast to coast route that crosses some of the wildest, most captivating and most popular of landscapes in the south of England.

 

Offa's Dyke Path


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Dividing the countries of England and Wales is a bank of earth that has formed a boundary line since the 8th century. Today, you can wind your way between the two countries, following the line of the dyke as it visits ancient strongholds, pretty border villages and superb countryside. In places, the dyke still reaches 25 feet high, with deep ditches along its side. It is a wonderful example of Wales' turbulent history; of magnificent archaeology and a showcase of glorious border scenery.