GPS Cycle and Walking Routes

Tyne and Wear Walks

This north east county has some fine riverside walking along the Tyne and Derwent Rivers. There's also several country parks and woodland areas ideal for walking.

Use the filter to show walks of a certain type such as woods, reservoirs, hills, long distance, country parks, canals and rivers.
In the spring walkers flock to the beautiful bluebell woods in Tyne and Wear. Click the 'Woodland' button below to see these.

Use the links to view full route information including elevation profiles, interactive maps and GPS downloads.
You can also view an overview map of all the routes in the using the Tyne and Wear Walk Map>>

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Route NameDistanceDescription
Bede's Way12 miles (19 km)Follow in the footsteps of seventh century pilgrims on this interesting walk or cycle through Tyne and Wear. The trail links the twin Anglo-Saxon monastery of St Peter’s in Wearmouth and St Paul’s in Jarrow. The route passes through the beautiful landscape of the Great North Forest which includes twelve miles of rolling hills and meandering streams. Trail highlights includes a waterside stretch along the River Don and the final coastal stretch along Whitburn Sands and through to the finish point near Sunderland Harbour.
There is also the Bede's Cycleway which follows a very similar route to the walk - please click here for more information. View Full Details>>
Chopwell Wood3 miles (5 km)Enjoy miles of cycling and walking trails in this large forest near Gateshead. There's 360-hectares of mixed woodland to explore on a variety of waymarked paths. Walkers can try four trails of varying lengths and difficulty. These include an easy walk along the Old Railway Footpath which takes you through the heart of the forest on a well surfaced path. There are also longer, more challenging trails around the boundary of the forest and a riverside walk along the River Derwent. Look out for a number of woodland sculptures including the popular Chopwell 'hands'.
It's great for mountain biking too with a number of blue graded trails and one fast technical red grade trail. View Full Details>>
Consett and Sunderland Railway Path28 miles (45 km)A walk along a disused railway path from Consett to Sunderland. The path starts at Consett and heads east towards the coast passing Stanley and Chester-le-Street before joining the River Wear and following it to Sunderland harbour. You'll also pass Beamish Woods where there's some nice woodland trails and the views of the River Team. View Full Details>>
Derwent Valley Walk11 miles (18 km)This lovely railway path runs from Swalwell, near Gateshead, to Consett alongside the River Derwent and is suitable for walkers and cyclists.
You will pass the villages of Rowlands Gill, Hamsterley and Ebchester on the way. The path also takes you through Derwent Walk Country Park and there is a woodland section at Byerside Wood. At the park you could cross to the to the western side of the river and visit Thornley Woods where there's a sculpture trail and a visitor centre with lots of information about the area. Also of interest is the National Trust owned Gibside near Rowlands Gill. This is well worth a visit with its 18th-century landscape park and nature reserve. View Full Details>>
Derwent Walk Country Park2 miles (4 km)The Derwent Walk is a former railway path running from Swalwell, near Gateshead, to Consett alongside the River Derwent and is suitable for walkers and cyclists. The Derwent Walk Country Park is situated on the path and contains a mixture of woodland, meadows and wetlands. There is also the pretty Clockburn Lake located in Derwenthaugh Park. There are a number of excellent waymarked trails, taking you along the river and through Thornley Wood. You can get further information from the Thornley Wood Visitor Centre located at Thornley Lane, Rowlands Gill NE39 1AU.
A wide variety of wildlife visits the park such as great spotted woodpecker, nuthatch, sparrowhawk, fox, badger and roe deer. Also look out for kingfisher, dipper and otter around the river.
The park is located a few miles west of Gateshead, near Blaydon. View Full Details>>
Gateshead12 miles (20 km)This major north east town has a number of good options for walkers with two significant waymarked trails running through the area. There's also several nearby woods, country parks and riverside trails along the Derwent and Tyne Rivers.
This walk takes you along the Tyne before visiting Watergate Forest Park and Derwent Walk Country Park. It uses two of the waymarked trails which run through the town in the shape of the Tyne and Wear Trail and the Derwent Valley Walk. View Full Details>>
Gibside Rowlands Gill4 miles (6.6 km)This splendid 18th century landscaped park has over 15 miles of footpaths taking you through gardens, meadows, fields and woodland. You can also enjoy a waterside stroll along the River Derwent and visit the orangery, stables, lily pond, walled garden, the magnificent Palladian chapel and the ruins of Gibside Hall - the former home of the Bowes-Lyon family. View Full Details>>
Great North Forest Heritage Trail65 miles (105 km)This circular cycle and walking route takes you through the countryside of this former mining area in Tyne and Wear. The trail passes Pelton, Bournmoor, Hetton-le-Hole, the Penshaw Monument and Witherwack. The route includes a section along the River Wear in Sunderland and a delightful coastal section visiting Whitburn, Marsden Bay, the splendid magnesian limestone cliffs at the Leas in South Shields and Souter Lighthouse. You will also visit Lumley Castle - a 14th century quadrangular castle at Chester-le-Street with lovely gardens. Also of interest is the Penshaw Monument - a folly situated on on Penshaw Hill dedicated to John George Lambton, first Earl of Durham. The video below shows the splendid views from this most beloved landmark which appears on the badge of Sunderland Football Club.
Near Stanley the route visits the oldest single-arch railway bridge in the world at Causey Arch. The site includes a lovely woodland gorge, interesting geology and views of the Tanfield Heritage Railway which runs through the area. The route is waymarked with a yellow and green disc. View Full Details>>
Herrington Country Park2 miles (4 km)This super, large park in Sunderland has a number of cycling and walking trails and interesting environmental sculptures. There is also a boating lake, a nature pond and a sculpture trail. The park is ideal for an easy family cycle ride.
The Great North Forest Heritage Trail runs through the park so you could continue your cycle/walk along this route. Also of interest is the Penshaw Monument just to the north of the park. This folly is situated on Penshaw Hill and dedicated to John George Lambton, first Earl of Durham. The video below shows the splendid views from this iconic landmark which appears on the badge of Sunderland Football Club. View Full Details>>
Hetton Lyons Country Park1 miles (2 km)Enjoy a walk or cycle around this country park in Hetton-Le-Hole. The park was developed on a former colliery site and contains a large lake.
The Great North Forest Heritage Trail runs through the park so you could continue your cycle/walk along this route. View Full Details>>
James Steel Park2 miles (4 km)Enjoy riverside walking and cycling in this country park situated on the River Wear in Sunderland. The park includes a fishing lake and cycling and walking trails. It is located less than a mile north of the Penshaw Monument on the Weardale Way and Great North Forest Heritage Trail walking routes. View Full Details>>
Newcastle15 miles (24.5 km)Newcastle upon Tyne is the most populous city in the North East of England. There's lots of good options for walkers with riverside walks along the Tyne and Derwent Rivers plus a number of country parks and woodland areas to explore.
This walk from the city centre takes you along the epic Hadrian's Wall Path to a historic Roman Fort on the wall. On the way there's riverside paths along the River Tyne and a visit to the Tyne Riverside Country Park. View Full Details>>
Penshaw Monument1 miles (1.5 km)Climb Penshaw Hill and visit this iconic Sunderland landmark on this short walk. It's a popular spot with the impressive monument sitting in an elevated position with wonderful views over the surrounding countryside. You can park at the foot of the monument and follow the footpath up the hill to the high point. After taking in the views you can then explore the woodland trails in Penshaw wood where there are pretty bluebells,white ramsons and wood anemones in the spring.
The 70 foot high monument was built in 1846 and commemorates the 1st Earl of Durham. It appears on the badge of Sunderland Football Club and can be see for miles around. View Full Details>>
Rising Sun Country Park3 miles (5.5 km)Explore 400 acres of parkland on this lovely cycle or walk in Newcastle. There is an extensive network of footpaths and bridleways suitable for walkers and cyclists. The park is made up of various habitats including grassland, woodland, ponds, wetlands and a lake designated as a Local Nature Reserve. There is also a bird hide overlooking the Swallow Pond and an excellent Visitors' Centre with a Restaurant and Exhibition Room. View Full Details>>
Saltwell Park2 miles (3 km)This beautiful park in Gateshead was voted Britain's Best Park in 2005. Highlights in the park include ornamental and woodland gardens, a boating lake, bowling greens, play areas, and a maze. There is also the splendid Saltwell Towers - an eyecatching Gothic Mansion which now serves as the Saltwell Park Visitors Centre. Also look out for the Dene - a delightful woodland valley with a stream, pools, cascades and a lily pond. There are 55 acres to explore making Saltwell an ideal place for a short walk in beautiful surroundings. View Full Details>>
Souter Lighthouse and Whitburn Coastal Park5 miles (8.5 km)Enjoy a coastal walk around the Souter Lighthouse, Whitburn Coastal Park and Lizard Point on the South Shields coast. The park and lighthouse are located just to the south of South Shields at the village of Marsden. You can park at the Souter Lighthouse car park off the A183 at Marsden Quarry to start your walk. Alternatively follow the traffic free cycle and walking path along National Cycle Route 1 from South Shields to the site. It's a nice trail passingFrenchman's Bay, Marsden Bay and the Leas. The park is also just a few miles north of Sunderland and can be reached by walking or cycling along the same National route.
This route starts at the lighthouse car park and heads to the coastal viewpoint at Lizard Point.You then head west along the coast to Marsden Cliff and the Leas. Here you will find two and a half miles of magnesian limestone cliffs, wave-cut foreshore and coastal grassland. It's a fine cliff top walk with great views along the coast.
After exploring the Leas the route turns round and returns to Whitburn Coastal Park. The park is a nature reserve with trees, a bird observatory, viewing screens and wetland habitats. There's also a new National Trust wildlife garden with ponds, wildflowers, trees, berry bearing shrubs, a bog garden and hibernation areas.
The reserve is great for wildlife watching with cormorants, shags, kittiwakes, fulmar and herring gulls.
At the end of your walk you can enjoy refreshments at the National Trust cafe.
The long distance Great North Forest Heritage Trail runs through Marsden so you can pick this up to extend your walk. It will take you inland towards Cleadon Park and Boldon.
You could also head south along the traffic free cycle path to Whitburn Bay and Sunderland. View Full Details>>
Thornley Woods2 miles (2.5 km)This walk takes you around Thornley Woods in Rowlands Gill near Gateshead. View Full Details>>
Tyne Riverside Country Park2 miles (3 km)This park follows the River Tyne for four miles through 200 acres of meadows, chalk grassland, woodland and river bank. The park is great for both walkers and cyclists with the Hadrian's cycleway running along the riverside. Hadrian's Wall Path also runs through the park so there is scope for continuing your walk along this path.
The park is a short walk from Wylam and Prudhoe train stations and Tyne Valley bus routes. It is about 6 miles west of the centre of Newcastle Upon Tyne and Gateshead. View Full Details>>
Watergate Forest Park2 miles (2.8 km)The popular park is located on the site of the former Watergate colliery in Gateshead. It includes woodland trails, a pretty lake and wildflower meadows. View Full Details>>
Weardale Way77 miles (124 km)Follow the River Wear from the coast at Sunderland to Killhope Lead Mining Museum in the Pennines.
The walk can be split into the following stages:

Sunderland to Durham - Starting on the coast at Roker, follow the river past the Sunderland docks and through the city. You'll pass the Wearmouth Bridge, the Stadium of Light, the Penshaw Monument and Chester-le-Street before heading into the countryside around Great Lumley and arriving at Durham soon after.

Durham to Bishop Auckland - After passing the magnificent Durham cathedral you continue along the river to Willington and then onto Bishop Auckland.

Bishop Auckland to Stanhope - A lovely section passing Marston Lake, Witton-le-Wear and Wolsingham

Stanhope to Killhope Lead Mining Museum - The final section throuh Rookhope and Weardale. This section takes you through the North Pennines Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty in Weardale with some truly stunning scenery and more riverside walking.

The walk is waymarked with a green and yellow disc. View Full Details>>
Weetslade Country Park4 miles (6 km)This former colliery site has been converted into a beautiful country park and a haven for wildlife. Weetslade hill rises to a height of 95m giving fabulous views of the surroundiing countryside, the North Sea, the Cheviots and Newcastle Upon Tyne city. You can cycle or walk along the tracks in the park towards the nearby Big Waters Nature Reserve where you can see a wide variety of birdlife. The park also contains three developing reed beds, which are now home to many common damselflies and dragonflies.
Weetslade is located just a few miles north of Newcastle City centre near Gosforth Park. View Full Details>>
Whitley Bay to Tynemouth3 miles (5 km)Enjoy a coastal walk along the North East coast from Whitley Bay to Tynemouth. It's about a three mile walk with nice beaches, bays and cliffs to admire.
The walk starts from Whitley Sands and heads south to Cullercoats Bay and the beach at Long Sands. You then pass Sharpness Point before arriving ay Tynemouth Castle. The fascinating castle includes moated castle-towers,a gatehouse, a keepand the ruins of a Benedictinepriory. It dates from the 13–14th century and is situated on a dramatic headland overlooking Tynemouth Pier. You can explore the grounds for a fee payed to English Heritage.
After leaving the castle you continue past Tynemouth Pier which is a nice place for an afternoon stroll. It stretches out to sea for about 900 yards (810 metres). There's an impressive lighthouse at the end of the pier and nice views back up to the castle and the mouth of the River Tyne.
To extend your walk catch the ferry over to the South Shields and continue up the coast to Souter Lighthouse and Whitburn Coastal Park. Here you can also visit the Leas with its two and a half miles of magnesian limestone cliffs, wave-cut foreshore and coastal grassland. View Full Details>>