• Explore Northumberland National Park

    Northumberland National Park Area Guide

Scenic Views and Stunning Wildlife

Northumberland National park is renowned for its scenic views and stunning wildlife. An untainted haven of natural beauty, it's the least populated park in the whole of England, so you can guarantee a peaceful retreat from the hustle and bustle of modern life in this remote paradise. Northumberland National Park boasts an unrivalled tranquillity that's hard to come by in this day and age, and as you roam through the pristine wilderness, you'll feel your worries melt away. Much like the Farne Islands, there’s certainly no shortage of things to do during your visit, and our guide details the many great attractions on offer for you to choose from.

Go On A Guided Walk

Northumberland National Park is famous for being an excellent walking destination, its location is a prime spot for various routes to enjoy. Although you can walk yourself with any one of the printable routes found on All Trails, Forestry England, and National Trails, we advise that you take a guided walk. After Storm Arwen in 2021, many paths have been affected, these include The Drake Stone and Harbottle, Copper Snout and Clennell Street, Elsdon into Harwood, Kidland Forest, Salter’s Road, and Otterburn Hall woods.

A guided walk with an experienced, knowledgeable ranger will introduce you to the best places in the park, and make sure you’re taking the safest route. A popular path suitable for all abilities is the Sycamore Gap and Crag Lough walk. The route can begin from either The Sill: National Landscape Discovery Centre or the Steel Rigg Car Park, and will take you along some of the most picturesque sections of Hadrian’s Wall. If you’re looking for something a bit more challenging, try the College Valley trail, a 4.8-mile moderate hike through Northumberland’s tranquil valley; the moorland hills are even the perfect place for Cheviot goat spotting.

Hareshaw Linn - Northumberland National Park

Horse Riding, Cycling, and Wild Swimming

The park is host to several exciting cycle paths, ideal for mountain bikers, cyclists, and even horse riders along the Elsdon trail too. For the keen cyclist, a particularly popular loop is the Curlew Cycle route. This North Tyne circular trail takes you through Bellingham, Birtley and Wark, and meanders along the existing National Cycle Network, including the Pennine Cycleway Route 68, and Reivers Route 10 to Greenhaugh. There are some lengthy hill climbs along this particular route, but the challenges are outweighed by the abundance of woodland wildlife, and scenic landscapes.

On a hot summer’s day, you can leave your bike at Bellingham and walk along the footpath to Hareshaw Linn for a waterfall dip, where you’ll find a refreshing oasis nestled amidst the ancient woodland. If you’re a fan of wild swimming, take another plunge at the Linhope Spout, an 18m spectacular geyser that’s great for a chilly dip, or to enjoy a family picnic.


For the avid bird enthusiast looking for a day of relaxation, you’ll be amazed at how many breeds you’ll see flying around the park. Keep an eye out for the rare black grouse, golden plover, and the curlew, the latter of which is Northumberland National Park’s official emblem!

Take a trip to Kielder Water and Forest Park to find more amazon species of birds, such as the rare goshawks and crossbills, you may even be lucky enough to spot an osprey! For families, it’s the perfect way to induce some group fun – make a tally of all the birds you’ve seen, and see who spotted the most at the end. For a bit of excitement, your little ones are bound to appreciate a trip to the Kielder Water Birds Of Prey Centre, where they can witness an osprey’s impressive wingspan up close!

archaeological landscapes in northumberland national park

Archaeological Landscapes

The park is a treasure trove of history just waiting to be explored! Breamish Valley’s stunning landscape has been home to people for thousands of years, and you can still see the traces of their lives etched into the earth. From the mysterious cairns and burial mounds of our prehistoric ancestors at Turf Knowe to Hadrian’s Wall, a 73-mile-long engineering marvel that snakes across the countryside.

You can also explore the Brocolitia Roman Temple of Mithras, a stunningly-preserved temple dedicated to the mystery deity “Mithras” worshipped by the Romans. The term “brocolitia” is said to translate to “badger holes”, and you can also find some remains of ancient wells nearby that was dedicated to the Celtic water goddess “Coventina”. Symbols of Roman power and the many archaeological remains you can visit across the park are testaments to the ingenuity of its ancient builders.


No trip to the Northumberland National Park is complete without stargazing. That’s right when the sun sets, the fun continues. As the sky turns black, you get presented with an incredible experience. Stargazing in the national park is one of the best things you’ll ever do. I challenge you to find a better stargazing spot in the country! You’ll find loads of great places within the park to stargaze from. There are even Dark Sky Discovery Sites in Cawfields and Walltown. These are probably the two best places to gaze from. On the right night, you’ll be able to see a whole galaxy of luminous stars.

Walltown Craggs at night - Northumberland National Park
Northumberland National Park is a phenomenal place to visit. It’s the perfect place to spend a long summer day and enjoy a peaceful, natural, environment.