With scoresof woodlands, lakes, and pathways, Northumberland is one of the best walking locations in the UK.

Wherever you are in the county, it’s likely that you’re not far from a jaw-dropping view or a natural wonder that can be reached on foot.

With that in mind, here are five of the best walking locations in Northumberland which are loved by locals and tourists alike.

Kielder Water

Visitors to Kielder are spoiled for choice when it comes to walks. Spot artwork along the reservoir's North Shore, hike up to the Elk Kirk viewpoint and survey the enormity of your surroundigns, or navigate your way around the Bull Crag Peninsula, keeping eyes peeled for water voles, red squirrels and birds.

Adventurous hikers can do a complete loop around Northern Europe’s largest artificial lake on the 27-mile path in 8 -10 hours. The path is also accessible to bikes and taking to two wheels means you can get around in a more manageable 3 – 4 hours.  

Vindolanda and Sycamore Gap

Hadrian’s Wall is another of the most popular walking destinations in Northumberland. A circular route starting at the Sill will take in some of the most breath-taking sections of the wall – including Sycamore Gap next to Crag Lough. One of the most photographed trees in the country, the sycamore that stands here featured in Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves. After walking along the wall, follow signs to Housesteads, and later Vindolanda, and visit the Roman Fort if you have time.

Hareshaw Linn

Start in the village of Bellingham to see a natural wonder that once attracted scores of Victorian tourists. From the car park in the village, follow the path that hugs Hareshaw Burn. The walk is relatively easy, but there are some steep steps and uneven gravelly ground along the way. Continue through ancient woodland until you reach the end of the track – the magnificent Hareshaw Linn waterfall. To get back to Bellingham, it’s the same route and there is a picnic area where you can stop either before or after visiting the waterfall itself.

The Meeting of the Waters

Finding a nice walk in Northumberland doesn’t always have to include getting out into the car. Head down to Hexham’s Tyne Green Country Park, a short stroll from the train station or town centre and follow the river west for about a mile. Close to Warden Bridge, you’ll come to ‘the Meeting of the Waters.’  This spot is where the North and South Tyne tributaries meet – and it’s an easy and flat walk from Hexham.

Bolam Lake

Close to Belsay, Bolam Lake is another easy walk – great if you’re looking for a family day out. The approximately mile-long path around the lake is accessible to wheelchairs and pushchairs and can be done in under half an hour. There are several stops around the lake with benches, piers, and a birdwatching hide, from which you can spot swans and other birdlife. For those looking for a more strenuous walk, Shaftoe Crags can be incorporated into the walk, taking your trek above 3 hours.