Coast to Coast Walk West
- Walk England’s Coast to Coast West from St Bees to Kirkby Stephen
- Journey among dramatic upland scenery of the Lake District
- Pass through some of England’s classic villages, such as Grasmere
- Enjoy wonderful camaraderie between fellow ‘coast to coasters’
- Observe some of Britain's rare wildlife, including red squirrels and otters
ItineraryDay 1 Starting Point: St Bees
The attractive village of St Bees is served by regular trains to Carlisle and Barrow-in-Furness, from where you can connect to all UK destinations. Journey time from London is between 4h30 and 5h30.
Stonehouse Farm is a friendly family run Georgian farmhouse in the centre of St Bees. It is only a 10-minute walk to the start of the Coast to Coast walk. The rooms are mostly en-suite, have tea & coffee making facilities and TVs.
This guest house offers a warm welcome and comfortable rooms all with a railway theme. They have three bedrooms available to let, which are Orient Express, Northern Bell & Flying Scotsman. There is a lounge and private dining room which is shared by the three rooms. In the morning, you can enjoy a lovely continental breakfast before setting off on your days walk.
The Manor is situated in the heart of the seaside village of St Bees. The location is ideal for walking the start of the Coast to Coast which leaves from the beach. Rooms have all the amenities you require along with flat-screen TV and tea and coffee making facilities and a private bathroom with either a bath or a shower and a selection of toiletries.
Kickstart your Coast to Coast adventure by leaving the shores of the Irish Sea behind, but not before a dramatic section along the cliffs of the St Bees Headland. The rest of the walk heads east towards the imposing peaks of the Western Lake District. There is a sharp ascent up Dent Hill, rewarded with great views, a taster of things to come!
Ascent: 675m (2215ft) / Descent: 580m (1905ft)
Due to availability, when you arrive at Ennerdale Bridge you may be transferred back to Cleator by taxi for your overnight stay. A return transfer will take you back to Ennerdale Bridge in the morning.
The Shepherds Arms Hotel is a comfortable and friendly inn in Ennerdale Bridge. They have 8 bedrooms which are all en-suite or with private bathrooms (bathrobes provided). All are equipped with TV, hot drinks, toiletries and hairdryer. There is free Wi-Fi throughout the hotel and they offer good food & ales in the company of locals in their restaurant.
The Fox & Hounds in Ennerdale Bridge offers three spacious en-suite rooms with all the amenities you require. All their food is homemade and cooked to order, they have a choice of 5 locally brewed ales and a selection of wines and spirits are available to compliment your meal.
Parkside Hotel is a friendly hotel offering high levels of service, and individually decorated ensuite rooms. Their restaurant serves delicious food freshly prepared for you. They have a wide choice of meals and a varied selection of drinks, including real ale for those who enjoy a good pint of local beer.
Walk along the southern side of Ennerdale Water, enjoying an easy lakeside stroll. Keep on the lower path as you head towards the picturesque Borrowdale. The route takes you along the low level path past the summits of Red Pike, High Stile and Hay Stacks. If you have nice weather and are feeling energetic it is also possible to take a high route from which the views are simply breathtaking. Borrowdale is your destination, made up of three different settlements, Longthwaite, Rosthwaite and Stonethwaite.
- High Route - Ascent: +1110m (3645ft) / Descent: -1125m (3690ft)
- Low Route - Ascent: +540m (1775ft) / Descent: -555m (1820ft)
Please note that if your stay in Rosthwaite falls on a weekend day you may be transferred to either Keswick or Grasmere for your accommodation due to limited availability of 1nt stays in Rosthwaite at the weekend. There will be a small supplement for the cost of the return taxi transfers.
The Royal Oak is a small family run hotel; the main house is a fine example of a Cumberland Longhouse and dates from around the year 1750. Formerly a farm and miner's tavern the dining room, lounges and bar retain and reflect this heritage. The hotel has a television lounge - with free wifi access and an efficient drying room.
Yew Craggs is a family run B&B in Rosthwaite, the heart of Borrowdale. Yew Craggs offers 3 quiet and comfortable en suite bedrooms and each is equipped with tea and coffee making facilities, WiFi and TV. The bathrooms come complete with soft towels, toiletries and hairdryer. The owners will also dry any wet items in their boiler room.
The Hotel is situated almost at the foot of Great Gable and the Scafell Massif, and is regarded as one of the Lake District’s renowned headquarters for climbers and hill walkers. The rooms are decorated in a warm and rich Country House style with a ‘Contemporary Twist’ perfect for a peaceful and relaxing overnight stay in the beautiful Borrowdale Valley. The Scafell Hotel offers an efficient and friendly service, with an elegant restaurant.
This stage is a Lakeland classic, taking you on a straightforward climb up past Lining Crag with fantastic views over towards Scafell Pike to Greenup Edge. Continue across the head of Wythburn Valley before you continue down the Easedale Valley. There is also the option to take the high route via Helm Crag. Grasmere is filled with bustling cafes, restaurants, and a classic pretty Lakes village.
- High Route - Ascent: +680m (2230ft) / Descent: -705m (2315ft)
- Low Route - Ascent: +660m (2165ft) / Descent: -675m (2215ft)
Please note that if your stay in Grasmere falls on a weekend day you may be transferred to Patterdale for your accommodation due to limited availability of 1nt stays in Grasmere at the weekend. There will be a small supplement for the cost of the return taxi transfers.
The 200 year old traditional Cumbrian property has been furnished using local craftsmen and local materials and offers some lovely accommodation in Cumbria. Each of their 6 fabulous ensuite rooms has its own uniqueness with high quality furnishings. Each room has a flat screen TV, internet connection, underfloor heating, duck-down duvets and pillows, Egyptian cotton sheets and wool carpets.
Glenthorne is a long-established guest house. They offer comfortable accommodation and delicious home-cooked meals in stunning surroundings. They are service orientated people who aim to make your stay as comfortable as they can. All rooms are individually decorated and have all the amenities you require for a lovely overnight stay.
A traditional Lakeland Stone House with magnificent views of the surrounding fells where Jacky and Keith have created an atmosphere of warmth and friendliness. They have five en-suite bedrooms are all tastefully decorated and furnished to a style, which complements the ambience of this traditional Lakeland house, they are stylishly appointed with fully co-ordinated soft furnishings and flat screen televisions complete with freeview.
Grasmere to Patterdale, one of the shortest sections on the walk, is a classic stage where walkers can enjoy some great views back to Grasmere before walking over Grisedale and on to Patterdale via beautiful valleys and the lake of Ullswater glistening in the distance. This quiet village offers a couple of pubs as well as being home to a population of red squirrels.
- High Route (via St Sunday Crag) - Ascent: +830m (2725ft) / Descent: -730m (2395ft)
- Low Route (via Grisedale Valley) - Ascent: +525m (1725ft) / Descent: -435m (1430ft)
Situated in the delightful village of Patterdale, and surrounded by some of Lakeland’s most magnificent scenery, The Old Water View has been welcoming visitors for over 100 years. All guest bedrooms are tastefully decorated and furnished to a high standard. They offer comfortable, central heated accommodation, with all modern conveniences, including TV, USB sockets, hair dryer, free Wi-Fi and tea/coffee making facilities.
Crookabeck Farm offers B&B accommodation in a stunning farm location in Patterdale. The B&B is in a converted old stone and slate farm building nestled under Place Fell. All bedrooms with en-suite shower room, with guest lounge and outside seating areas.
School House is a lovely B&B in the centre of Patterdale. Each room has tea and coffee-making facilities, complimentary toiletries, wifi and spectacular views from every window. They also have a drying room just in case you encounter a bit of rain on your walk.
From the beautiful valley of Patterdale follow the path in the direction of Shap, leaving the Lake District behind you. Tackle the steep ascent out of Patterdale to Kidsty Pike and once out of the Lake District the wayfinding becomes easier and the gradients become gentler as you wind your way towards Shap. Don't let this fool you though, as on today's walk it is the distance which will leave you tired.
Ascent: +1115m (3660ft) / Descent: -1015m (3330ft)
Brookfield House is a traditional B&B offering a warm welcome to walkers and wonderful uninterrupted views over the surrounding farmland. The accommodation is centrally heated throughout, and has ensuite rooms with flat screen TVs, digital radio alarms, hospitality trays, hairdryers, and free wifi. They also have a relaxing lounge and a well-stocked bar.
New Ing Lodge provides comfortable B&B accommodation; it used to be a working farm and has been a guest house since the 1820’s. They have a strong local/environmental policy, they know that buying local means fresh produce, and far better taste & superior quality. All the rooms are comfortably furnished and have all the amenities you require for a lovely overnight stay.
A lovely old former farmhouse dating back in some places to the 1500's. You will find warmth and comfort here as well as a friendly welcome and a wonderful breakfast. All bedrooms have the amenities you need for a relaxing overnight stay including TV and tea & coffee making facilities. There is also a large sitting room where you can relax in the evening.
Having left the lakes behind, enjoy a short walk to Orton with no notable ascents, making the first part of today a nice break from the challenges of the previous days. Stop in the pretty village of Orton for lunch before continuing via limestone crags, open pastures and several prehistoric sites characterise this section. Finish in the town of Kirkby Stephen, a very walker-friendly place with several great pubs enjoy a refreshing real ale in!
Ascent: +410m (1345ft) / Descent: -495m (1625ft)
A warm welcome awaits you in this Grade 2 Listed Georgian Townhouse. The house dates from 1750 and has retained much of its original charm and character with a relaxed and friendly atmosphere. The owners have decorated and furnished each of the four bedrooms in a style to complement the house without compromising on comfort to make you feel at home. All the rooms have a digital TV, tea, and coffee facilities, hairdryers and free WIFI. Each room also has a foot spa and complimentary toiletries from The Bath House, a local company from Sedbergh. Following a long day walking why not sooth those aching feet with a foot spa containing lemongrass bath salts.
Lockholme is a warm and welcoming B&B offering stunning views, delightful rooms and a very warm atmosphere. The owners aim to make your stay extra special, in a relaxing friendly atmosphere. Their rooms have shower en-suites, are beautifully decorated, reflecting the Victorian character and charm, and they are well equipped with a hairdryer, free WIFI throughout, tea and coffee making facilities and luxury complimentary toiletries from The Bath House, Sedburgh. Upon arrival you can look forward to delicious homemade cake with tea or coffee and relax either in your room, the Guest Breakfast Room, with a real coal fire and fabulous views of the fells and The Nine Standards Rigg, or the sunny private rear garden, knowing that any wet boots and clothes will be taken care of!
Built in 1833, Fletcher House is a double fronted Grade II listed building in the centre of Kirkby Stephen. To match the fine-looking exterior of the house, the interior has many original features. All rooms are en-suite with walk in shower, WC, and basin. There is also a hairdryer in each room. They also have an extra "Pamper Bathroom" which any guest may use with large roll top bath, WC and basin. There is a separate guest lounge with tv and book swap library to exchange books. Complementary drinks available from the dining room from the coffee machine or a selection of teas and decaf options.
Enjoy one last hearty Coast to Coast Breakfast before checking and making your way to the closest train station or airport for onward travel.
Other InformationIs it for me?
Designed for those who have limited time but want to experience the C2C. This itinerary is only the West section of the Coast to Coast from St Bees to Kirby Stephen. It takes you through the beautiful and mountainous Lake District National Park. The walking days are long and involve a significant amount of ascent and descent. It completes the full west half of the trail, giving you the freedom to choose to do the East section at another date.
Classic Routes | If you’re the active, outdoorsy type, who’s interested in taking on the great routes of the world or looking for a challenge, then our Classic Routes are for you. We’re talking the West Highland Way, Tour Du Mont Blanc and the Passau to Vienna Danube Cycle Path, to name but a few!
Inn to Inn Walking | Walk from place-to-place changing accommodations each night. Generally staying in B&B’s, inns, and guesthouses.
This holiday is graded moderate to strenuous and is most suitable for those walkers with previous long distance experience.
The route is a mixture of paths, tracks and minor roads. Some of the paths can become very muddy and boggy where progress can often be slow.
We specifically choose the hotels, inns, guesthouses and B&B’s to ensure that you enjoy every minute of your stay. They all offer a warm welcome to walkers, traditional hospitality and delicious local food. We always try and book your accommodation as close as possible to the trail.
We will always try and accommodate you at the locations detailed in the tour itinerary. Occasionally, because of limited availability we may have to accommodate you in alternative accommodations which are not listed in the description. If those listed are unavailable the alternative accommodation will be of the same or better standard than those described.
Single Rooms & Solo Walkers
If you require single rooms we would be happy to accommodate you although there is a single room supplement payable. We welcome solo walkers on the Coast to Coast, although you should of course take extra care in the outdoors when walking solo.
The route is waymarked sporadically on the Coast to Coast but navigation is straightforward using the Macs Adventure Smartphone App which has maps, GPS tracks and daily route information. Simply download the GPS tracks for offline use and follow the route on your phone with the assurance that navigation on this tour will be made simple and you cannot get lost.
You will find more information on downloading the app in your Macs Adventure Account.
- Hand picked B&B's, guesthouses and small hotel accommodation
- Door to door baggage transfer
- Access to maps, GPX tracks and daily route information with the Macs Adventure app
- All your trip documents provided digitally through your online Macs “My Account”
- 24/7 Emergency telephone support from our UK office
- Travel to the start or from the finish of the walk.
- Lunches, dinners, snacks and drinks.
- Travel Insurance.
- Personal Equipment.
- Extra nights
The Coast to Coast Walk West is available from March to September.
PLEASE NOTE: Around early June (3rd to the 9th June 2021) the Appleby Horse Fair takes place in Appleby and it is extremely difficult to book any accommodations Shap, Orton and Kirby Stephen during this period.
You can start your holiday on any date during the season. If your itinerary includes Grasmere, it may be easier to get availability if you do not start your walk on a Tuesday or Wednesday due to restrictions with weekend availability in Grasmere. Also, if Grasmere is on your itinerary it may be easier to confirm if you add in an extra night here (which we recommend anyway) due to restrictions with 1 night bookings in Grasmere.
No accommodation in Grasmere will allow one night stays on a Saturday night, we would therefore have to book you two nights in Patterdale.
Getting to St Bees
The closest airports to St Bees are Manchester and Newcastle. From both airports the travel time by train is approximately 4 hours . You can also fly into any of the London Airports and take a train north from London Euston (via a change in Carlisle). There are also alternative trains going via Lancaster and Barrow-in Furness.
If you are considering driving, please be aware that St Bees has minimal parking facilities. The only free public parking is available at the railway station (only 18 spaces) but is not intended for C2C walkers. Many B&B’s have parking available for a small fee per night. Our local supplier also runs a daily bus service that runs once a day back from Kirby Stephen back to St Bees (costs £40 per person) and departs at 08:00
Getting from Kirkby Stephen
The closest airports to Kirkby Stephen once again Manchester and Newcastle. From Kirkby Stephen you can take a train to Manchester via Carlisle. Getting to Newcastle from Kirkby Stephen is more complicated and time consuming as you have to go via bus and train with a few changes. However it can be done and you would need to check the Traveline website for schedules.
It is also possible to travel by train to London via Carlisle, or via Leeds.
Parking in Kirkby Stephen is limited. There are some spaces in the Pennine View Campsite, the campsite is secure and you can leave it there for the duration of your walk.
If you do decide to park your car in Kirkby Stephen then we can arrange for your first night’s accommodation to be in Kirkby Stephen instead of St Bees and you can then catch the Sherpa Bus to St Bees the following day to being the walk. Please contact your Destination & Adventure Specialist for further details.
You can read more detailed information on travelling to and from the Coast to Coast walk on our blog here.
Your bags will be transferred from your accommodation as per your itinerary and moved onto your next overnight accommodation.
At Macs Adventure, we work in partnership with many luggage transfer providers who set a limit on how many bags/suitcases they will transfer per person, and also the weight of the bag/suitcase. Your booking includes transfer of 1 bag per person. It is very important that you read the luggage information specific to your tour before departure. If you do not adhere to these limits, there is a great possibility that you will be charged locally both for extra bags or if they are too heavy. This limitation can be a challenge, especially as airlines generally have limits that are higher. However, our luggage providers have reasons for these limits (usually due to the Health and Safety of their employees), which we must respect.
The Coast to Coast is England's most popular national trail and booking accommodations along the way can be tricky all year round during the walking season (April to October). This means that in some cases you may have to get return transfers to neighbouring towns and villages in order to make the trip work. To avoid transfers we recommend booking well in advance of your proposed start date.
Your information pack has a detailed equipment list which includes standard walking gear such as good walking boots or shoes, warm and waterproof clothes and a day pack.
Please be prepared by packing all necessary items, for example, proper rain gear (jacket and pants), sun hat, sunscreen. Your information pack has a detailed equipment list which includes standard walking gear such as good walking boots or shoes, warm and waterproof clothes for the cooler months and lightweight clothing for summer, and a daypack.
It is a requirement of booking this tour with Macs Adventure that you have suitable travel insurance which covers you for the activity and emergency evacuation and hospital care.
Coast to Coast
Alfred Wainwright's Coast to Coast walk is one of the greatest walking routes in England. This video takes you through the technicalities and shows you the reasons why you should get on your boots and take to this trail. With stunning scenery, charming villages and a wonderful sense of achievement at the end, the Coast to Coast is waiting for you.
Tips & AdviceEating and Drinking on the Coast to Coast4 Min Read02 March 2018
Walking10 most Frequently Asked Questions about Wainwright's Coast to Coast Walk2 Min Read22 February 2018
WalkingHow fit should I be for walking the Coast to Coast?4 Min Read22 February 2018
WalkingHow Many Days to Walk the Coast to Coast?2 Min Read16 January 2018
WalkingAdventure of the Week: England&'s Coast to Coast2 Min Read20 December 2017
WalkingThe Coast to Coast Walk - East Vs West Sections2 Min Read25 November 2011
WalkingWhat to Pack for the Coast to Coast Walk2 Min Read22 October 2011
WalkingTop Tips on Travelling to the Coast to Coast Walk4 Min Read13 October 2011
Tips & AdviceCoast to Coast West: A Culinary Trip through the Lake District2 Min Read07 August 2022
WalkingRiding Solo on the Coast to Coast West2 Min Read08 August 2022
Meeting the people behind the scenery - Minna & Classic Routes2 Min Read01 February 2023
9 Days 8 NightsWalk the east section of the Coast to Coast through the Yorkshire Dales and North York Moors.Highlights
- Walk from Kirkby Stephen to Robin Hood's Bay
- Stay in the pretty Yorkshire Dale villages
- Experience the wild and rugged North York Moors
7 Days 6 NightsWalk the north section of the Cotswold Way, starting in Chipping Campden and finishing in Painswick.Highlights
- Experience the endearing Cotswold villages
- Sip a pint in the warm and cosy Cotswolds pubs
- Roam through the pretty English countryside