Coast to Coast

The route which crosses the north of England from Coast to Coast was made famous by the late Alfred Wainwright whose guidebooks have introduced so many to the joys of walking in this area. On its course from St Bees on England's Irish Sea coast to Robin Hood's Bay on the North Sea coast it takes in the stunning scenery of three National Parks; the Lake District, the Yorkshire Dales and the North Yorkshire Moors and Coast.

  Wooden finger post pointing the route of the Coast to Coast over a stone stile


Footpath Holidays offers the Coast to Coast as two separate holidays, each of which offer fine walking in its own right, and when strung together enable our guests to tackle a challenging 190 mile (306km) route in its entirety.

The itineraries detailed below keep all the stages to 15 miles or below. If you would like to walk fewer, longer stages we will be happy to tailor the itinerary to suit your requirements, so far as the distribution of accommodation allows. 


Coast to Coast, West  (CCWSGP)

St Bee’s to Reeth
10 nights; 9 days walking

The cliffs of St Bees Head provide the start point for this western section of the walk and the mountains and meres of lakeland, followed by the rolling pastures of the Yorkshire Dales, are the objectives. Ennerdale Water, Honister Pass, Borrowdale, Grasmere, Patterdale, Ennerdale, the Lune Valley and Swaledale - famous names abound. The route traverses the region, sometimes through valleys, sometimes over the high tops, and sometimes offering a choice of high level and low level routes. 

 High ridge in the Lake District, with far reaching views beyond


On the final day from Keld the route crosses the River Swale and almost immediately a hard choice has to be made - to follow Wainwright's route over Melbeck Moor and through a stark but hauntingly beautiful landscape of abandoned leadmines with views down into Swaledale, or to follow the river past waterfalls, through attractive villages and across sheep pasture criss-crossed by a tracery of stone walls. Both routes lead to the village of Reeth and the end of a great nine days walk.


View from beside a tarn on the summit of Haystacks, looking out across the surrounding mountains

The variety of scenery along the route makes this a fascinating holiday. Highlights include the red sandstone cliffs of St Bees Head; the craggy shores of Ennerdale Water; the views into Borrowdale from Honister Pass; the crossings at Greenup Edge and Grisedale Hause; the high point of Kidsty Pike and the descent to Haweswater; the limestone scenery in Ravenstonedale and around lonely Sunbiggin Tarn; the climb over Nine Standards Rigg and descent to the isolated farm and tearoom at Ravenseat; and the iconic landscape of Swaledale, which is equally beautiful whether seen from the high lavel route over Melbeck Moor or the riverside route.

Approximate daily distances:
  • St Bees to Ennerdale Bridge - 14 miles (23 kms) 
  • Ennerdale Bridge to Rosthwaite - 15 miles (24 kms) 
  • Rosthwaite to Grasmere - 9 miles (15 kms) 
  • Grasmere to Patterdale - 9 miles (15 kms) 
  • Patterdale to Naddle Bridge - 14 miles (23 kms) 
  • Naddle Bridge to Orton - 13 miles (21 kms) 
  • Orton to Kirkby Stephen - 13 miles (21 kms) 
  • Kirkby Stephen to Keld - 12 miles (19 kms) 
  • Keld to Reeth - 11 miles (18 kms) 


Coast to Coast, East  (CCESGP)

Reeth to Robin's Hood Bay
9 nights; 8 days walking

From Reeth the route continues along the River Swale and through the beautiful woodland around Marrick Priory to reach the market town of Richmond and the pastoral Vale of Mowbray and North Yorkshire Moors beyond. 

History abounds on the North Yorkshire Moors and they have a mystical quality. The paths we follow are ancient trade and corpse routes and stone crosses mark the way. The views from the high ground are extensive. On the final day of the walk we reach the sea and follow the clifftop path southwards to Robin Hood’s Bay where the narrow streets plunge toward the harbour and the tiny red roofed cottages huddle for safety from the North Sea.

   Waterfront at Robin Hood's Bay, with fishermans' cottages lining the steep cobbled street


Highlights of the holiday include the iconic landscape of Swaledale with its stone walls, barns, villages and 'squeeze' stiles; the ruins of Marrick Priory and the ancient Nuns' Causeway (stone steps) which climb through beautiful deciduous woodland; the handsome Georgian architecture and imposing castle in Richmond; Mount Grace Woods and Mount Grace Priory; the undulating walk along the Cleveland escarpment and the views down into the valley; the Wainstones, the sight of the Lion Inn standing in splendid isolation on Blakey Moor; 'Young Ralph' Cross, 'Old Ralph' Cross and 'Fat Betty'; Beggar's Bridge and the villages along the River Esk; the magical beauty of Falling Foss; the first sight of the North Sea, and then the red roofs of Robin Hood's Bay; and the moment that you dip your boots into the sea at the end of your journey!

  • Reeth to Richmond - 11 miles (18 kms) 
  • Richmond to Danby Wiske - 15 miles (24 kms) 
  • Danby Wiske to Osmotherley (Mount Grace Wood) - 12 miles (19 kms) 
  • Osmotherley to Clay Bank Top - 14 miles (23 kms) 
  • Clay Bank Top to Blakey Ridge - 9 miles (15 kms) 
  • Blakey Ridge to Egton Bridge - 12 miles (19 kms) 
  • Egton Bridge to High Hawsker - 12 miles (19 kms) 
  • High Hawsker to Robin Hood's Bay - 5 miles (8 kms) 



What's included in the price of this holiday?

Coast to Coast map

Holiday Options

3 3
Grade:3 - 4
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Travel information - start

Rail: St Bees
Onward travel: On foot

Travel information - finish
Rail: Darlington
Onward travel: Public bus (via Richmond)

More travel information


Holiday Options

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Travel information - start

Rail: Darlington
Onward travel: Public bus (via Richmond)

Travel information - finish
Rail: Scarborough
Onward travel: Public bus or taxi

More travel information


Currency Converter: All of our prices are in British pounds. To estimate the cost in another currency use the currency converter here.

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