Hadrian's Wall is Europe’s largest surviving Roman monument. It was the brainchild of Emperor Hadrian, who ordered its construction in AD122 to hold back the advancing Barbarians in northern England. As much of the wall still exists, and it traverses some of Britain's most ruggedly beautiful landscape, this is a remarkable and dramatic walk through history. As you follow Hadrian's footsteps from coast to coast, from Bowness on Solway, past Carlisle to Newcastle, you encounter a string of milecastles and forts, jaw-dropping vistas and details of life from two thousand years ago.
To this World Heritage walk we have added wonderful stays in boutique hotels, full of elegant charm, and private transfers to these and key related Roman sites.
from £2,490 per person
Based on two people sharing a room
Transfers at the beginning and end of each day to and from your hotel. See what’s included as standard
Start & Finish
Starts daily from Carlisle and finishes Newcastle
3 and 4* charming country house hotels and one very special restored castle
This tour is priced without a guide and you are free to explore on your own. If you would like a guide for part or all of your trip, we are happy to provide a knowledgeable, local guide
Not so gentle walking. More info...
7 days of walking 8 -15 miles (13 - 24 km) per day
Hilly with flat days either end
1. Day one
Arrive at your hotel, Warwick Hall, on the outskirts of Carlisle at your leisure. Your host will meet you and run through your itinerary, answering any questions you may have. Enjoy the scenery at this fine country house hotel and spend the evening as you wish.
2. Day two
Bowness on Solway to Carlisle
We will transfer you to Bowness on Solway after breakfast for the start of your walk. Here on the west coast estuary of the Solway Firth, your adventure begins where Hadrians Wall rises from the sea as the most northerly frontier of the Roman Empire. This is an area of outstanding natural beauty where the birdlife is prolific and more of a feature than the Roman remains. Occasionally the walk can be interferred by very high tides in the Solway Firth. Follow quiet tracks with salt marshes and distant Scottish hills in view through Port Carlisle and Burgh by Sands. Pastures and wooded banks lead on to the River Eden as you enter the heart of Carlisle with its imposing castle. We meet you there for a transfer to Warwick Hall for a second night.
14 miles (22 km)
3. Day three
Carlisle to Walton
We return you to Carlisle to enjoy a relaxed section of the walk today through lovely rural countryside and hamlets with a fine inn for a hearty lunch. As the wall here was predominantly dirt and turf there is not much evidence of it remaining as you follow the banks of the River Eden out of Carlisle. Imagine the huge fort here which housed the largest body of cavalry anywhere in the empire. At the end of the day we will transfer you to Farlam Hall, your hotel for the next two nights.
11 miles (18 km)
4. Day four
Walton to Gilsland
After a short transfer you begin your walk from Walton. Your path travels through farmland to Haytongate, where there is an option to take a detour to visit the romantic Lanercost Priory ruin and the adjacent vicarge's Edward Tower, where Edward I once convalesced. then turns downhill from Banks. This is a very pleasant section of walking before the rigours of the next few sections. The turf wall gives way to consolidated stone now, and there are some great views from some of the turrets of the stunning countryside all around. The Roman gem of the Birdoswald estate on Banna fort is yours to explore too - this is a magical place coupled with informative exhibits. At the end of the walk in Gilsland you will be met by your driver and transferred back to Farlam Hall.
8 miles (13 km)
5. Day five
Gilsland to Once Brewed
Transfer to Gilsland to pick up the trail. Today is one of the most demanding sections, but when you reach the highest point of the trail at Winshields Crags, you will be rewarded by stunning views in every direction. The quality of the wall is also excellent along this section. Upon reaching Once Brewed, we will transfer you to Vindolanda if time permits, en route to Langley Castle - your base for the next two nights. Vindolanda was a Roman auxiliary fort which guarded the Stanegate Roman road. It is noted for the Vindolanda tablets, considered to be among the most important finds of military and private correspondence found anywhere in the Roman Empire and the oldest surviving handwritten documents in Britain. They are also probably the best source of information about life on Hadrian's Wall, so a visit here is highly recommended!
8 miles (13 km)
6. Day six
Once Brewed to Chollerford
Pick up your packed lunch from the hotel before hopping into your car back to Once Brewed for the start of the trail, or to Vindolanda if you missed it yesterday. Once en route, you will experience some of the most spectacular sections of the wall, through rugged countryside and a host of roman ruins and forts. Housesteads Fort has an interesting museum and a tea shop. At Shield on the wall you rejoin the wall and follow the Roman road past Tower Tye and on to Chesters Museum, which marks a key site on the wall. At the end of the walk we meet you at Chesters Museum for a transfer back to Langley Castle.
12 miles (19 km)
7. Day seven
Chollerford to Heddon on the Wall
Today we transfer you to Chollerford to pick up the trail where you left it. Follow the old military road for much of the day, passing through the beautiful rolling countryside of Northumberland. Walk to Brunton and then reach the highpoint of Whittington Fell, at 268m. Beyond lies East Wallhouses and the lovely old Robin Hood’s Inn, Vindovala fort and Heddon on the Wall. At the end of the walk you will be transferred to Matfen Hall hotel for the evening.
15 miles (24 km)
8. Day eight
Heddon to Wallsend
Setting off from Heddon again after a quick transfer from your hotel, signs of the wall become less frequent as you leave the countryside behind and head towards Newcastle, which you approach by the River Tyne. The route leads though the heart of this vibrant city and invites you to discover the industrial history of Newcastle. The official end of the walk is the Segendunum Roman Fort and museum. You will be met here and transferred to Jesmond Dene House by your driver for this final evening of the tour.
15 miles (24 km)
9. Day nine
Depart at leisure today from Newcastle which has a mainline railway station and airport.