Expedition Overview

Expedition Overview

  • Set out on one of the ten best long-distance hikes in the world, trekking through three national parks: Lake District, Yorkshire Dales, and North York Moors.
  • Step back into England’s fascinating history as we explore sites from prehistory to the Roman era to the Tudors and beyond.
  • Visit the home of poet William Wordsworth in the enchanting Lakeland village of Grasmere.
  • Stay in comfortable hotels and simple, family-run inns offering true English hospitality.

Itinerary

Itinerary

Cross England on foot, trekking from the Irish Sea to the North Sea through three incredible national parks. Immerse yourself in the mystical landscapes of the Lake District, where gemlike lakes reflect England’s highest mountains and poets like William Wordsworth and Samuel Coleridge drew their inspiration. In the Yorkshire Dales—James Herriot country—hike to storybook villages filled with half-timbered cottages and warmly lit pubs. Then climb into the wild, heather-covered highlands of the North York Moors. Along the way, discover ancient stone circles, medieval castles and monasteries, and the legendary charm of northern England. This is a moderate to strenuous 133-mile hike designed to take in the most beautiful and historic sections of Alfred Wainwright’s famous 190-mile Coast-to-Coast walk.

Day 1: Penrith, England/Ennerdale

Travel on your own to the Penrith train station in Northwest England. Your guide will meet you at the station for the transfer to our charming hotel in Cleator. After a trip briefing, gather for our welcome dinner.

Meals Included:Dinner
Accommodations:Ennerdale Country House Hotel
Day 2: St. Bees to Ennerdale Bridge

Our journey kicks off early this morning with a Coast to Coast tradition, dipping a toe in the Irish Sea. Then set off along the sandstone cliffs of St. Bees Head. Turning inland, we’ll pause for a typical pub lunch on our way to Ennerdale Bridge, nestled at the foot of the Lake District mountains. (15 miles hiking, 8 hours)

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodations:Ennerdale Country House Hotel
Day 3: Ennerdale Bridge to Honister

Today we’ll walk into spectacular Lake District National Park, where glass-like lakes reflect mountains that rise abruptly from their shores. Our splendid ramble traces the southern edge of Ennerdale Water, the park’s most westerly lake—and one of its most remote. After lunch near the Black Sail Hut, climb a 2,000-foot pass and take in the vista of peaks, lakes, and sheep-speckled pastures. We finish in Borrowdale, a short transfer from our hotel. (11 miles hiking, 7-8 hours)

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodations:Inn on the Lake
Day 4: Grasmere to Glenridding

Take a short drive to Grasmere, where the great poet William Wordsworth wrote some of his most renowned works. Visit the poet’s home, and stroll through the village where he found inspiration. Then climb over Grisedale Hause (1,936') enjoying views of Helvellyn, England’s third-highest peak. Hike down the valley toward Lake Ullswater and spend the night in Glenridding. (9 miles hiking, 5 hours)

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodations:Inn on the Lake
Day 5: Lake Ullswater to Shap

The day begins with a scenic cruise on Lake Ullswater to Howtown. From here, we cross a historic Roman road on our way to Bampton. Hike to the 12th-century Shap Abbey. A short transfer takes us to our hotel in the quintessential English village of Ravenstonedale. (12 miles hiking, 6-7 hours)

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodations:The Black Swan
Day 6: Shap to Orton and Ravenstonedale

Today we trek across a limestone plateau as we enter Yorkshire Dales National Park. In the charming village of Orton, we’ll stop for lunch and visit the chocolate shop and factory. Continue the hike or transfer back to Ravenstonedale for a wander along the riverside or to try a pint of local ale. (6 or 15 miles hiking, 4-9 hours)

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodations:The Black Swan
Day 7: Ravenstonedale to Muker

Follow a lovely trail across rolling hills to the market town of Kirkby Stephen. After lunch, drive to the hamlet of Keld in the heart of Yorkshire Dales National Park. Hike along the River Swale, discovering waterfalls and enchanting hamlets tucked in among the dales. End with an afternoon cream tea in Muker before heading back to the hotel. (9 miles hiking, 5-6 hours)

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodations:The Black Swan
Day 8: Reeth to Richmond

A short transfer brings us to the village of Reeth. From here, continue through the Yorkshire Dales, hiking along fascinating stretches of limestone on the way to historic Richmond. Here, we’ll explore an 11th-century Norman castle. (10 miles hiking, 5–6 hours)

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodations:The Kings Head Hotel
Day 9: Richmond to Lord Stones

Our path takes us along the River Swale past the remains of Easby Abbey, founded in 1152. In Catterick Bridge, we’ll hop on our bus and transfer to Mount Grace Priory. Venture into the ruins of this important 14th-century Carthusian priory located at the edge of North York Moors National Park. After lunch, we’ll hike toward the Cleveland Hills in the heart of the moorland. Return to Richmond for free time to explore. (5 or 13 miles hiking, 2–7 hours)

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch
Accommodations:The Kings Head Hotel
Day 10: Clay Bank Top to Blakey Ridge

A short transfer takes us into North York Moors National Park, where we begin hiking across the dramatic landscape of the Moors. Our high level route allows us to enjoy far-ranging vistas as we hike through the heather this region is known for-lush and green in early summer, deepening to purple in August. (9–13 miles hiking, 5–7 hours)

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodations:Mallyan Spout Hotel
Day 11: Blakey Ridge to Grosmont

This morning our hike begins with a descent to Great Fryup Head, an important region during the 19th-century iron ore boom. Continue to Glaisdale where we’ll see Beggars Bridge. Then hike along an old trade route to Grosmont. Today, guests who would like to take a day off from hiking can choose to ride the bus. (9 or 14 miles hiking, 5-8 hours)

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodations:Mallyan Spout Hotel
Day 12: Littlebeck to Robin Hood’s Bay

Starting out at the hamlet of Littlebeck, our walk takes us back into the Scarry Wood, past a legendary cave, and up to the gorgeous waterfall of Falling Foss. Walk along the cliff-top to the picturesque fishing village of Robin Hood’s Bay, and bathe your feet in the North Sea. (12 miles hiking, 7 hours)

Meals Included:Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner
Accommodations:Victoria Hotel
Day 13: York

After breakfast, depart from York for your return flight home.

Meals Included:Breakfast