A pleasant stroll alongside the River Coquet and into Rothbury village. Suitable for a variety of users. Due to width/surface restrictions on some parts, the route is not suitable for pushchairs/wheelchairs, although the riverside can be accessed by these users from the village centre. Be aware: parts of the route may flood when the river level is high.
Calculated time is computed with the distance, the height difference, and an average speed of 2.2 mph. For an intermediate walker, this time includes small breaks.
(D/A) From the car park, descend to the riverside path, either by the sets of steps or by the ramp and shallow steps. Turn left and follow the path alongside the River Coquet. This path is a public bridleway so be prepared to meet others, including bicycles and horses. Be aware: the path is quite narrow in places, so pass other users with care. The first part of the path is aggregate, which then gives way to a sandy surface and then the path meets grass.
(1) If you would rather avoid climbing steps, follow the sign for the town centre, taking the access road alongside the toilet block into the village of Rothbury. Alternatively, walk across the grass, passing the children’s’ play area to your left and continue along the path to the road bridge.
At the bridge, turn left and walk up the tarmac path onto Haw Hill. Cross the road and climb the steps to take the path through the churchyard. Turn right and begin to explore the village of Rothbury. The National Park Information Centre is on the right, next to the All Saints Parish Hall if you would like further assistance.
(2) When you are ready to return to the riverside path, take the narrow road between the Rothbury United Reform Church and Town and Country insurance consultants. Follow this past the Model Buildings on your left and continue on the tarmac path back down to the River Coquet. Turn right and follow the path back upstream to the car park. (D/A)
D/A : mi 0 - alt. 289ft - Car park
1 : mi 0.36 - alt. 256ft
2 : mi 0.9 - alt. 279ft - Narrow road
D/A : mi 1.38 - alt. 292ft - Car park
Getting there: Follow the B6341 west out of Rothbury. Just after passing the national speed limit sign, turn left to park in Beggar’s Rigg car park and picnic site.
Car Parking: Beggars Rigg car park
Toilets: Rothbury (Bridge Street)
Local Services: Rothbury
Nearest National Park Centre: The Coquetdale Centre, Rothbury
Terrain: Aggregate and sandy paths, grass, tarmac
Visorando and this author cannot be held responsible in the case of accidents or problems occuring on this walk.
Local facilities: Shops and services are available in Rothbury, including pubs & cafes, tourist information and accommodation. The National Park’s award-winning visitor Centre and Tourist Information Centre is located on the village green in Rothbury and houses a fascinating interactive display about the wildlife, history and culture of this landscape. Our information officers have a wealth of knowledge about the area, services available and events, and can also help to book accommodation.
Points of Interest
River Coquet: The River Coquet is an exceptionally clean river, typical of the watercourses throughout the Cheviot Hills. Stretches of the river are designated as Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) due to the quality of the river, the habitats and species.The River Coquet is about 40 miles in length (64km), from its source in the hills to its mouth into the North Sea at Amble. The earliest reference to the Coquet is from the 7th Century when it was known as Coccoveda, which translates to ‘Red River’ referring to the red stones that litter its bed.
The land on the other side of the river (now a golf course) was a steeplechase course for over two hundred years. The land alongside a river is known as the ‘haugh’ (from the old English ‘halh’) which means riverside meadow or flat area.
Rothbury: Rothbury has always been the ‘capital’ of Coquetdale. An important settlement throughout its history, situated at a fording point of the River Coquet, with turnpike roads to Newcastle, Hexham, Morpeth and Alnwick. ‘Rothbury’ derives from Anglo Saxon times, (‘Routhebiria’ meaning Routha’s Town) mentioned as being around 1100AD. It is a bustling market town, popular with visitors throughout the year, but is particularly busy during the summer.
Wildlife: The riverside is home to a variety of animals, birds and plant life. On your walk, you may see rabbits, otters, chaffinches, blue tits and water-loving birds such as gulls, ducks, herons, dippers, swans, kingfishers.
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Enjoy a circular walk up to the summit of Simonside, involving some short, steep gradients. A walk along the Simonside Hills must not be missed. From the top, you have a wonderful 360-degree view encompassing the Cheviot Hills and the North Sea coastline. The area teems with wildlife such as the curlew, red grouse, wild goats, and even red squirrels in the forest below.
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Enjoy a circular walk suitable for most abilities, with fantastic views over Elsdon on the return leg. Enjoy a cuppa or a pint after building up a thirst and seeing the sights of this scenic Northumberland village. For the adventurous amongst you, why not pair this walk with our Elsdon Burn Walk.
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Take an invigorating walk to Cochrane Pike to see some spectacular views. This walk takes you through moorland sheep country surrounded by the sounds of the curlew, oyster catcher, skylark and meadow pipit. You may see buzzard or kestrel, or the recently-arrived red kite in the skies, and the heron in the river valley.
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