walkhighlands

Scotland's Great Trails

St Cuthbert's Way

St Cuthbert's Way runs from Melrose Abbey in the Scottish Borders to the Holy Island of Lindisfarne off the coast of Northumberland in England. The route climbs over the fringes of the Eildon Hills before following stretches of the mighty River Tweed and the Roman Dere Street. It then passes Cessford Castle before a fine hill ridge is traversed en route to the attractive village of Kirk Yetholm. The route then skirts the northern edges of the Cheviot Hills to cross the border and descent to the fine old market town of Wooler. The final stretch crosses the Northumberland countryside for the dramatic finale across the causeway to Holy Island and its dramatic castle and ruined abbey.

Stage descriptions Length Time Done
Melrose to Harestanes 23.75km 6 - 7 hours
Harestanes to Kirk Yetholm 28km 6 - 8 hours
Kirk Yetholm to Wooler 20.75km 6 - 7 hours
Wooler to Lindisfarne 28.75km 7 - 8.5 hours

The route links several sites associated with St Cuthbert. He began his monastic career at Melrose Abbey from 650AD, and eventually became the Abbot at Lindisfarne. Following his death and beatification, in 875AD Lindisfarne was abandoned due to Viking Raids and St Cuthbert's relics were rested at a cave whilst en route to safety - the cave is also visited along the route. The walk passes through attractive and varied countryside throughout its length; it can be done in four days or taken at a more leisurely pace by building in additional stopovers, or taking a stage at a time.

THE CHALLENGE

The route is well waymarked throughout. The walking itself is very varied, with some easy riverside and farmland stretches as well as some rougher going on modest hills.

ROUTE PHOTO GALLERY

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BAGGAGE TRANSFERS AND WALKING PACKAGES

Click to find organised St Cuthbert's Way walking holiday packages and baggage transfer providers.

ACCOMMODATION AND SERVICES ALONG THE WAY

Melrose is a small and picturesque town with a choice of hotels, bed and breakfast and a campsite. The first section could be split by an overnight stay in the village of St Boswells.

Harestanes is a visitor centre with a seasonal cafe but no accommodation. Bed and breakfast is available in Ancrum which is a short distance off route and also has a pub serving meals. The next stage could be split by an overnight stay at Morebattle.

Kirk Yetholm (and adjacent Town Yetholm) offers bed and breakfast, hotel and a youth hostel; Town Yetholm has a shop.

Wooler is an attractive market town with a good range of accommodation, again including a youth hostel. Finally, Holy Island at the end of the route has a choice of guest houses.

BOOKS AND MAPS

PUBLIC TRANSPORT

All the stage start and finish points are accessible by public transport, though timetables for Holy Island and for Kirk Yetholm are quite limited.

The nearest bus to Harestanes is where the B6400 meets the A68, or in Ancrum nearby.

Timetables for all the routes can be found on Traveline Scotland.

Users' walk reports for St Cuthbert's Way

There are 171 Walkhighlanders who have completed the St Cuthbert's Way. To record if you have completed the route, you must register and be logged in. Our users have contributed one public walk report for the route.

Title AuthorDate walked Likes
  01/07/2013  17

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Walking can be dangerous and is done entirely at your own risk. Information is provided free of charge; it is each walker's responsibility to check it and navigate using a map and compass.