3-Night Northumberland Gentle Tread Lightly Guided Walking

Alnmouth beach in spring
Duration: 3 nights
Type: Tread Lightly
Walking Grade: 1 & 2
from £359pp £324pp

We are all well-versed in ‘leaving no trace’ but now we invite you to join us in taking it to the next level with our new Gentle Tread Lightly walks. We have pulled together a series of spectacular walks which do not use transport, reducing our carbon footprint while still exploring the best landscapes that Northumberland have to offer. You will still enjoy the choice of three top-quality walks of different grades as well as the warm welcome of a HF country house, all with the added peace of mind that you are doing your part in protecting our incredible British countryside.

Holiday Highlights

  • Enjoy breathtaking walks from the doors of our country house
  • Admire sweeping seascapes from the coast of this stunning area of outstanding natural beauty
  • Experience the stunning Northumberland coastline with your experienced HF Walk Leader
  • Look out for wildlife, find secret corners and learn about this stretch of the North East coast's rich history
  • Evenings in our country house where you share a drink and re-live the day’s adventures

What’s included

  • High quality en-suite accommodation at our country house
  • Full board from dinner upon arrival to breakfast on departure day
  • 2 full days of guided walking with choice of easier, medium and harder grades
  • Use of our comprehensive Discovery Point
  • The services of HF Holidays Walking Leaders

Trip Notes

Trip notes are detailed, downloadable PDFs for each holiday.

Download Trip Notes

On our Guided Walking holidays, we believe that choice is key. Our walks descriptions will help you choose according to your interests and fitness. The walks are grouped together with care by local experts to give the best experience. While every effort will be made to adhere to the described itinerary, we may occasionally vary the sequence shown here or substitute an alternative route to suit local conditions or for other operational reasons, potentially at short notice.

You're welcome to check in from 4pm onwards.

Enjoy a complimentary Afternoon Tea on arrival.

Option 1 - St Oswalds Way and Wooden Farm

Distance: 4 miles (7km)

Ascent: 300 feet (80m)

In Summary: Our walk today takes us through Alnmouth town to Hipsburn. We then turn South and follow quiet paths with views towards the sea and return via a different route to Nether Grange.

Highlight: Views of the Northumberland Coast.

Option 2 - Buston Links and St Oswald's Way

Distance: 7 miles (11km)

Ascent: 420 feet (120m)

In summary: We begin following Lovers Walk out of Alnmouth. We walk through Buston Links. This grassland is carefully managed by the National Trust you will see blooming wild flowers. Beyond the dunes, lies the southern section of Alnmouth Bay and the sound of the waves crashing on the shore accompanies you as you walk along this near deserted section of the Northumberland Coast.

Highlight: The estuary is renowned as a nature reserve and particularly for migrating waders and wildfowl that gather as autumn approaches. 

Option 3 - In the Footsteps of St Oswald, a Northumbrian King

Distance: 9 miles (15km)

Ascent: 500 feet (160m)

In summary: We follow Lovers Walk out of Alnmouth village to the estuary and renowned nature reserve. There are some fantastic views from the higher path down across the Aln Estuary and the colourful houses of Alnmouth as we make our way towards Warkworth. Look out for fossilised tree stumps on the beach after we turn for Alnmouth.

Highlight: Buston Links is a haven for birds and wildflowers, the latter more so in spring and summer, the former can turn up surprises any time of the year.

Option 1 - Alnmouth Oxbow

Distance: 3 miles (5km)

Ascent: 300 feet (80m)

In Summary: A circular walk today takes us out of Alnmouth with a circular walk round the river Aln below Lesbury.  

Highlight: Views of the Northumberland Coast.

Option 2 - The Lesbury Estate

Distance: 8 miles (12.5km)

Ascent: 600 feet (180m)

In summary: A repeat from earlier in the week for 7 night guests. The Lesbury Estate, which is part of the Northumberland Estate, stretches from Lesbury to the eastern edge of Alnwick. The route enters the estate at the hamlet of Bilton and we ascend gently to reach the Aln Valley railway route which once connected Alnwick with the London Edinburgh main line railway at Alnmouth. The railway route takes the walkers past the railway depot before returning along River Aln.

Highlight: An appreciation of the Northumberland Estate and the tranquil riverside path.

Option 3 - Exploring the Northumberland Estate

Distance: 10.5 miles (16.5km)

Ascent: 880 feet (280m)

In summary: This walk is a repeat from earlier in the week for 7 night guests. Hugh Percy the 1st Duke of Northumberland wanted to be able to see all his considerable lands easily so he built two follies to give panoramic views of his estate. This route passes along the north bank of the Aln and then ascends towards the first and less well known of his follies built in the late 17th century. Pastureland walking then leads to the eastern end of the Waterside Estate before returning along the tranquil south bank of the Aln and the hamlet of Bilton.

Highlight: The Ratcheugh Observatory creation of the 1st Duke of Northumberland.

Enjoy a leisurely breakfast before making your way home.

Nether Grange

Sitting pretty in the centre of the quiet harbour village of Alnmouth, Nether Grange stands in an area rich in natural beauty and historic gravitas. There are moving views of the dramatic North Sea coastline from the house too. This one-time 18th century granary was first converted into a large family home for the High Sheriff of Northumberland in the 19th century and then reimagined as a characterful hikers’ hotel. Many of the 36 bedrooms look out across the sea, while a large lounge, conservatory and adjoining bar are there to entertain you. Easily accessible from the house are the coast path while inland lies the Northumberland National Park. North are the Farne Islands and their spectacular seabird colonies and close by is Lindisfarne and its romantic castle accessible at low-tide via an ancient pilgrim’s path. Nearby too is the medieval market town of Alnwick and its eponymous castle, as well as the atmospheric ruins of Dunstanburgh Castle, perched on a grassy peninsula to the south of Embbelton Bay. Best of all though is Bamburgh Castle, built to resemble a magnificent medieval fortress but actually an impressive Victorian folly.


Need to know

Important Covid-19 steps we have taken for guest safety: Please Read

We are continuing to take extra steps to keep our guests leaders, and staff safe in our HF country houses. We ask all our guests to respect the measures put in place.

The English, Scottish and Welsh governments are not in sync, so measures in our country houses will vary between the nations. With the relaxation of social distancing in England, from 19 July we will be allowing larger groups to dine and relax in the bar together. However, we will still give guests space e.g. we will seat 6 people at a table where pre-pandemic we may have seated 8. We will ensure our public rooms are well ventilated by opening doors and windows wherever possible. If you have any concerns about distancing, please speak to the House Manager. The government recommendation for England is to wear face coverings in crowded areas. You must wear a face covering by law in public areas in hotels in Scotland. This is mandatory in public spaces; however, face coverings will not be required whilst eating and drinking in the restaurant and bar areas or whilst you are outside our houses. In Wales face coverings will remain a legal requirement indoors, with the exception of hospitality premises.

As a temporary measure, we will not be servicing rooms during a stay. Extra tea, coffee, milk, and toiletries will be made available on request for all guests. It is recommended that guests bring their own toiletries for the duration of their stay. We will though be increasing the frequency of cleaning in our public areas providing particular attention to frequently touched items including door handles and handrails.

Menus for the week will be available in your room on arrival. A self-service breakfast will be served from 7.45am – 9am. Picnic lunches will now be pre-ordered the night before from an order form in the room. Evening meals will be table service. A dinner order form will be available in each room for completion. Dinner is served at either 7.15pm or 7.30pm. Please check at the house for details. The bar will be open. We will be offering a table service but guests can also come to the bar to order (depending on local restrictions).

Join our team after dinner on Wednesday evenings for the HF Big Pub Quiz. There will be one other evening of entertainment at the start of the week, which will vary depending on the country house that you are staying at. Our Walk Leaders will also be on hand in the bar or lounge for individual or small group walks talks briefings, which allow guests to talk through the following day’s walk options and ask any questions. Swimming pools will be operated in line with maximum capacities.

For more information and to see all the steps taken, visit our page on how house stays will be adapted.


Tea & coffee-making facilities, TV, Hairdryer, Toiletries, Wi-Fi

Stay in one of the house’s smartly presented rooms up an impressive sweeping staircase. Full of warm tones or coastal colours and comfy touches they’re a great base for exploring the area. With 36 bedrooms, Nether Grange has plenty of space and there’s a range of Classic and Premium Rooms to choose from.

All ‘Classic’ rooms are ensuite and furnished to a high standard. There are also several ‘Premium’ Rooms that are either larger or have a desirable view, a more luxurious mattress and larger television – upgrade your stay for just an extra £15-25 per person per night. You can choose a specific room for an extra £30 per room, subject to availability. Upgrade supplements still apply.


Free Wi-Fi, boot room and drying room, extensive garden, multi-purpose activity room, lounges, library and board games to borrow

After a day walking on the coast, come back to the house and its specially tailored walkers’ facilities. Relax by sitting in the elevated terrace gardens with a cooling drink and a cracking sea view or challenge a fellow guest to a game of croquet or giant chess, backed by views of the beach and sea beyond. The spick and span sky-blue painted bar with its mismatched blue and stripy seats boasts all the requisite cosiness and British bonhomie, plus a selection of local beers and your favourite tipple. Settle in.

Food & Drink

As at all our country houses, holidays are full board, from afternoon tea served as a welcome treat through that evening’s meal to a hearty breakfast on the day of departure. Food at Nether Grange is varied with a strong emphasis on the use of seasonal British produce. Our experienced chefs create each dish using only the freshest ingredients and, when in season, use home grown herbs and vegetables taken from our own gardens to give a true taste of the local area.


For accessibility and assistance information, please contact our expert team on 020 3974 8865 or view the accessibility information online for Nether Grange

10673_0024 - Nether Grange - Chess

Getting to Nether Grange

Find out more about this location including travel details and room types.

More Information

Essential Information

Essential Equipment

  • Rucksack with a waterproof liner
  • Thermos flask for hot drink
  • Water bottle (at least 1 litre)
  • Spare high-energy food such as a chocolate bar
  • Small torch
  • First aid kit – your leader’s first aid kit doesn’t contain any medication or blister kits (such as Compeed)

Optional Equipment

  • Walking poles are useful, particularly for descents
  • Insect repellent
  • Sun hat
  • Sunglasses
  • Sun cream
  • Camera

Guest Reviews

All holidays are subject to availability. Prices are subject to change.
Prices based on two people sharing. Supplements may apply.
Non-member fee: £30 per person.

For 2022 departures, please note we are in the process of integrating a new booking system and you may notice some unusual pricing information displayed for a short while as we complete the work. Your patience is appreciated.

Holiday Prices

Date (Start - End) Nights Itinerary Price Status Trip Notes Book
11 Mar - 14 Mar 2022
3 Version 1 £359 £324 Save £35 Per Person Trip Notes Book Now
3 nights
Tread Lightly
Walking Grade:

3 nights from £359pp £324pp

...or call 020 3974 8865

For group bookings of 10+ people click here

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