The Northumberland Coast Path starts in the pretty village of Cresswell at the southern end of Druridge Bay it then hugs the Northumberland Coast taking in the fishing town of Amble and the villages of Warkworth, Alnmouth, Craster, Seahouses before reaching Bamburgh, a village dominated by the mighty Bamburgh Castle.
Beyond Bamburgh the path heads inland a bit, to the coaching village of Belford before picking up height, onto the sandstone ridge with fine views of the coast and the Cheviot Hills.
The path then decends back to the coast and the wide open sand and mud flats of the Lindisfarne National Nature Reserve before striking north, along sandy beaches and cliff-top paths to the River Tweed and the border town of Berwick-upon-Tweed.
What is the path like?
The route mostly follows the coast on good, flat paths and bridleways but in some places beaches, minor roads, tracks, and permissive paths are used. The route is generally level with very few steep climbs. Most stiles along the route have been replaced with gates and the walking surfaces are generally good, although some sections of the path can become muddy in winter or after heavy rain.
If you enjoy walking on the beach, we have shown in the guide book where a beach-alternative to the path is possible. North of Alnmouth (Foxton Hall) golf course, the public right of way is on the beach. Check the tide times before you set off as the path will be inaccessible at the top of the highest tides.
North of the causeway at Holy Island, the path skirts the mudflats and again, at the top of the highest tides, the path may be underwater.
How long will it take?
The route is 100km or 62 miles. Some walkers will be able to complete the route in three days or even less whilst some will take seven or more days, depending on their pace and whether they stop to visit attractions along the way.
The Official Guidebook breaks the route into six stages of between 7 and 13 miles, with the end of each stage being somewhere you can find accommodation.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes. We recommend walking North because you won't be looking into the sun and the wind will be on your back but the route is waymarked and signed in both directions.
You can't cycle along the Northumberland Coast Path because much of it is on public footpaths where there is no right of way for cyclists. The Coast and Castles Cycle Route follows the Northumberland coast and runs parallel to the Coast Path for much of the way.
We recommend that you stay in Alnwick or if you want to be by the sea, in Alnmouth. These places have the best bus links to starting points both North and South.
Our Communications and Funding Officer, Catherine Gray, ran the virtual Great North Run along a stretch of the Northumberland Coast AONB, taking in parts of the Northumberland Coast Path....
We're hosting six guided walks over the summer, each in the company of the path's originator, Iain Robson. We've been writing a diary of the walks, which are being published in the Northumberland Gazette. This is the sixth and final entry: Fenwick to Berwick upon Tweed...