The Hadrian’s Wall National Trail runs from Wallsend to Bowness-on-Solway in Cumbria. Wallsend, unsurprisingly, gets its name because that’s where Hadrian’s Wall ended all those years ago.
As part of my exploration of my new city, I decided to walk the first five miles of the route, which took me into the centre of Newcastle. For anyone that might live nearby, or fancies a new running route, I think I’ve found the perfect spot. I’m doing the Great North Run (half marathon) in September and I will definitely be using this trail to help me train.
How difficult is the Hadrian’s Wall trail?
For a five-mile walk, the trail is relatively easy. There are a few hills, but for someone who is severely asthmatic I never had any issues. The walk is clearly signposted and at times you have to go off the trail to cross busy roads, but that isn’t too much of an issue.
The trail from Wallsend to Newcastle upon Tyne follows the river round and you have an option to divert round to Quayside for a more picturesque ending to the walk – something I decided to do.
All-in-all, the walk only took me just over an hour, although I am rather a brisk walker. That did include a few stops to take the pictures that are in this post (the things I do for blogging).
Can I cycle the trail?
Yes, the route is actually a cycling route, but you can walk, cycle or run it. On my hike I bumped into people doing all of these things, including some dog walkers.
Is it worth doing the reverse way around?
Maybe you’re visiting Newcastle for a weekend and you want to know what else is around? The walk to Wallsend is very simple and takes you right up to the Segedunum Fort, which holds a lot of Roman history. Wallsend is also famous for its shipbuilding. If you’re into history then the walk is definitely worth it.
Where are the best places to take photos?
If you have a look through my blog post you can definitely see where the most picturesque places are on the walk. There are many places for you to stop and take photos of the river.
The best place to take photos though, is right at the end when you’re heading into Quayside. There’s a marina that you can walk down to, or take pictures from the trail. It’s a beautiful view and on the right day can create the perfect photo.
Another great place for a photo is by Gateshead Millennium Bridge, where you’re able to get a shot of the whole city if you’re lucky.
Is there much to see on the trail?
Most of the trail is surrounded by nature and is a very tranquil walk. Along the way there are signposts telling you where you are and how far away you are from different areas of Newcastle.
It means that if you want to visit anywhere on the route it’s very easy to drop in and out of the trail to take a look and there different districts. I didn’t do that this time around, but maybe that’s something for the future.
Can you go further than the five miles to Newcastle?
Yes, the route can take you all the way to Cumbria if you stay on it long enough. If you want to go beyond Newcastle, that is definitely a possibility.