Hadrian’s Wall and its Roman Forts Grade: Leisurely
Join us for this guided walking holiday which offers a leisurely itinerary, exploring the heartland of Hadrian’s Wall and the exhibitions and forts which bring the wall to life. The walks are a mix of linear and circular routes based around the Roman Forts which were the strongholds of Hadrian’s fortifications.
We will be based in Haltwhistle, staying at the very comfortable Centre of Britain Hotel, known for its friendly hospitality and amazing food. It is a truly wonderful place to return to each evening after our walk.
Itinerary (subject to change)
Day 1 Arrive at the hotel from 2pm and join your guide for an orientation briefing at 6.30pm followed by dinner. If you arrive by 5pm there will be the opportunity to take a short walk with your guide to explore Haltwhistle.
Day 2 Walltown to Birdoswald 4.5 miles
From Walltown, we head off on a linear walk taking in the evocative ruins of the 12th century Thirlwall Castle before heading into the village of Gilsland which straddles the Northumberland / Cumbria border. Formerly a spa resort on a par with Harrogate and Bath, it is thought to have the purest air in England. From here, we continue our journey to Birdoswald, Cumbria’s principal Roman Wall exhibition fort where you will gain a real insight into life on the Roman frontier.
Day 3 Vindolanda Circular 4.5 miles
From Vindolanda, we head gently uphill onto the impressive Barcombe Fell with its long ranging views across this most beautiful of landscapes. We will look across to the Great Whin Sill, a rollercoaster of rugged volcanic crags thrusting skywards. From here, we descend to the Roman fort of Vindolanda where we will have time to explore the many ancient ruins and find out the latest news from the archaeological digs.
Day 4 Housesteads to The Sill 4 miles
Today, we begin by visiting Housesteads, a hugely impressive fort with large sections very much still intact from the commanding officer’s house to the latrines (probably the best surviving example of its type in Britain). From Housesteads, we head west along the wall, taking in Sycamore Gap known prinipally as the stunning location of Robin Hood’s Tree. We continue along this popular stretch of the wall before reaching our final destination, The Sill, National Landscape Discovery Centre.
Day 5 Cawfield Quarry to Walltown 4 miles
Today there will be an optional walk ending at 1pm to give you plenty of time for your onward journey. We walk from Cawfield Quarry and head west following, in part, the Vallum, a ditch which followed alongside the wall. We will hope to get distant views of the Pennines and the Lakeland fells ahead.