With the World Heritage Sites, Hadrian's Wall and the Lake District, and Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty close by,  and a wealth of other great places to visit and experience, there are so many reasons to Explore the North sustainably by train. 

We have asked some of our volunteers to give us ideas for you to explore and enjoy the area.

Allan is our volunteer Infrastructure Director, who has an enthusiastic artist always looking for something new to sketch.  Here are two of his ideas for exploring the area:

Peter, our Finance Director, has a couple of suggestions for you to experience, both involving a coffee and a delicious cake:

  • Take the train to Riding Mill.  As the name suggests the Station Coffee House is just a few steps away.  It has a lovely, relaxed atmosphere as one reviewer on Tripadvisor reported. He likes the outside cabins where you will enjoy coffee and delicious scones. 
  • Or if you fancy a walk before your coffee, take the train to Wylam and then walk to Hedley’s Riverside Coffee Shop in the Tyne Riverside Country Park (near Newburn). Another gem in Peter's opinion.
  • A choice of walks - you can walk east to Newburn Bridge via the White House or you can go north towards the Wylam end of the  Tyne Riverside Country Park you then have a choice of going east to Newburn approx 3 miles passing George Stephenson birthplace or going West to Prudhoe walking over the Iron Bridge.  My preference would be to go east and stop off at the Hedley's.

Colin, one of the Director's who lives locally, suggests you travel by rail to Bardon Mill as it is a good place to start a walk in Hadrian's Wall Country.

Hadrian's Wall is 2.5 miles away through outstanding terrain. You can call at the internationally renowned Vindolanda Roman site on your way to the Wall.  Our leaflet showing details of the walk can be found here.

The Bowes Hotel

Housteads Roman fort is nearby as is the National Trust's Allen Banks site.

The Village Coffee Shop and Bowes Hotel are worthy of  a visit either as you start your walk or on your return, both being close to the railway station.


With vibrant, yet contrasting cities at each end of the Tyne Valley Railway, there are lots of opportunities to experience city-life and its culture as well as the rural delights of England's most northerly counties, Cumbria and Northumberland.



City Centre

One of the smaller cities in the country, Carlisle offers lots to do and see within easy walking distance of the railway station.

Markets and events are held in the pedestrianised city centre and within a short walk you can visit :

the Cathedral,

Tullie House Museum,

Carlisle Castle and the

Museum of Military Life.  

There are some lovely parks and open spaces to keep the children amused or for a stroll by the River Eden and horse racing at Carlisle Racecourse. Recently promoted Carlisle United's ground is within ealking distance of the railway station too.

Find out more about what Carlisle has to offer here


Hadrian's Wall

Housesteads With so many interesting sites and attractions along the length of the Wall, check out the Hadrian's Wall County website.




Newcastle and Gateshead

Grey stDo you know that research undertaken by one of the train companies identified that one of the main reasons to visit Newcastle was to experience the food and drink?  But there is so much more to do,shopping, sporting and music events, museums, great parks, cultural events and more.

We suggest that you take a look at the Newcastle Gateshead Initiative New Adventures website to learn about some of the places to visit, tours, attractions and places to eat and drink in Newcastle, Gateshead and Northumberland.  This award winning website will provide you with lots of ideas and current offers.