Coast to Coast – Classic Walks Itinerary

Coast to Coast Itinerary:

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Noran Bank Farm near Patterdale

England’s classic Coast to Coast walk is a 307 km route that takes walkers across farmlands, through the idyllic, yet challenging Lake District, the famous Yorkshire Dales, and the wild North York Moors.  A wonderful walking holiday

The walk can be done in as little as 12 days, but for a more pleasurable walking experience 17 days is recommended.  In planning an itinerary, some of the considerations in determining the distance for each day should include the type of terrain, the accommodation, weather, time of year and how fit one is.

The following is an outline of the 17-day walk itinerary that we chose.  We decided on this itinerary because of the reasonable distances and the available accommodation.

Begin at: St Bee’s, Cumbria.
How to get there: Take a train from London’s Euston station to Carlisle, then change trains for St. Bees (5 ½ hours).

Walking itinerary:

Day 1.  St Bees – Cleator (14.5km)
– A pleasant seaside start to the walk. Remember to dip your boot toe in the Irish Sea to officially start your walk.

Day 2.  Ennerdale Bridge (8km)
– From Cleator you gradually approach Lakeland, the province of poets and walkers. Ennerdale Bridge is the first of the Lake District villages we stay in.

Day 3.  Stonethwaite (22.5km)
– Some good ascents today. Up near ‘Haystacks’, Wainwright’s beloved peaks, over to Seatoller and down to the picturebook village of Stonethwaite.

Day 4.  Grasmere (14.5km)
– More valleys and hills to ascend, but with great views. Down to Grasmere and a visit to Dove Cottage, one of William Wordsworth’s homes.

Day 5.  Patterdale (13km)
– The aspiring walker can choose to walk along the ridge of Helvellyn or along the valley to reach the picturesque village of Patterdale.

Day 6.  Bampton Grange (20km)
– Kidsty Pike, the highest point for Coast to Coast walkers is encountered today, along with the old Roman road called High Street.

Day 7.  Orton (19.5km)
– We leave the Lake District behind and make our way over the rolling plains to arrive at the quiet village of Orton.

Day 8.  Kirkby Stephen (21km)
– Lush, green countryside. Sunbiggin Tarn with its waterfowl, and then to Kirkby Stephen. Visit St. Stephen’s church with its famous Loki Stone. We suggest an extra day at Kirkby Stephen, if you need a rest.

Day 9.  Keld (19km)
– We now enter the Yorkshire Dales and a steady climb up to the Nine Standards, a group of stone cairns. Then down to the village of Keld, our half way point.

Day 10. Reeth (17.5km)
– Along the Swale Valley, passing old Viking settlements such as Gunnerside and arrive at the solid village of Reeth.

Day 11. Richmond (17.5km)
– Walking along Applegarth Scar and Whitcliffe Woods we arrive at one of William the Conqueror’s towns – Richmond. We suggest an extra day here, to explore Richmond Castle, the narrow medieval lanes and the restaurants.

Day 12. Danby Wiske (22.5km)
– From Richmond it is a long and flat walk to Danby Wiske, situated at the lowest point on the walk.

Day 13. Osmotherly (16km)
– A fairly level walk. Visit the churchyard at Bolton-on-Swale to view the memorial to 169 year old Henry Jenkins.

Day 14. Urra (19.5km)
– The beginning of the North York Moors and the interesting, yet demanding valleys of the area.

Day 15. Blakey (14.5km)
– From Urra we proceed through the open moors to the wonderful Lion Inn dating from around 1553.

Day 16. Egton Bridge (14.5km)
– From Blakey, there are more moors to cross, so make sure you have a map and compass, in case of heavy fogs. Egton Bridge is a pleasant village to arrive in after the moors.

Day 17. Little Beck (10km)
– Take the opportunity to travel on the North Yorkshire Moors Railway to Goathland where you can visit the TV village of Aidensfield (from the Heartbeat series).

Day 18. Robin Hood’s Bay (22.5km) – your destination!
– Nearly there. More moor walking and then a three mile walk on the cliffs above the North Sea, before arriving at your destination and a welcome drink at the Bay Hotel.

How to get back from Robin Hood’s Bay: Taxi to Whitby and trains to London via Middlesborough. Another option is: Bus or taxi to Scarborough railway station. Train to York, then change trains for London King’s Cross (3½ hours).

Our Take: Walking west to east is the recommended way as you have the prevailing winds behind you. Robin Hood’s Bay is a beautiful village with good facilities and staying there for an extra couple of days at the end of the walk is an option.

See the Coast to Coast information for walkers here

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