Discover the environmentally friendly way to enjoy your great outdoors.
Save your pennies too. Bus routes provide a cheaper, greener way to access 600 square kilometres of forest and 27 miles of beautiful shoreline. Please note this is based on summer timetables.
Hexham to Bellingham and Kielder via Humshaugh
Mondays to Saturdays (times vary depending on the day - always check the timetable before you set off)
Hop onboard and get closer to the action.
Don’t forget you can bring your mountain bike on the bus! (Timings based on leisurely cycling at around six minute a mile).
Depart Hexham bus station on the 880 at 9:30am and after a scenic journey you will arrive at Kielder Castle Visitor Centre at 10:50am.
11am Begin your day by exploring the castle, the former hunting lodge of the Duke of Northumberland. It is now home to various exhibitions (including ospreys and red squirrels) and is also the hub for mountain biking. Enjoy the Minotaur Maze and children’s play area.
If you haven’t brought your own mountain bike there are two hire shops in Kielder with plenty of kit. 12pm collect your bikes and set off along the south shore of the Lakeside Way. You’ll cross the stunning and unique suspension bridge that spans the Lewisburn.
12:45pm arrive Leaplish Waterside Park - a great place to stop for lunch. Why not pop into the Kielder Water Birds of Prey Centre, play miniature golf, shop for souvenirs or try out the children’s play area. Visit the red squirrel hide and see if you can spot one of the native mammals.
2pm set off along the south shore further to Tower Knowe Visitor Centre. You’ll pass some more striking artworks along the way including Freya’s Cabin. At Tower Knowe you can visit the Explore Centre and learn about the history of the area.
3:30pm depart Tower Knowe and just less than a mile away is Kielder Dam where you can stop and enjoy the views across the whole of Kielder Water.
From Kielder Dam back to Kielder Castle, the north shore route is 11 miles long. Give yourself time to cycle back and extra to stop and enjoy artworks such at The Wave Chamber, 55/02, Belvedere, the Janus Chairs and Silvas Capitalis, the forest head.
Depart Kielder Castle at 5:26pm and you will arrive back at Hexham bus station by 6:53pm.
Approx 26.34 mile(s) between Hexham Tourist Information Centre and Kielder Castle Visitor Centre
Kielder Castle Visitor Centre is open all year round, 10am to 5pm (11am opening for exhibition Now to March) . Kielder Castle is the visitor centre for Kielder Forest. Features include information centre, tearoom and exhibitions about forestry and conservation. Bike hire available.
Approx 0.03 mile(s) between Kielder Castle Visitor Centre and Lakeside Way
Thanks to the Lakeside Way, a multi-user trail that follows the 27 mile Kielder Water shoreline, you can have a unique and beautiful walking experience.
Approx 3.9 mile(s) between Lakeside Way and Leaplish Waterside Park
With views of the reservoir Leaplish Waterside Park is the ideal base to recharge and refresh or take part in an action packed day of activities. The Boat Inn Restaurant and bar serves fresh new locally sourced menus throughout the day.
Approx 2.43 mile(s) between Leaplish Waterside Park and Tower Knowe Visitor Centre
Tower Knowe will be re-opening on the 29th March time 10 - 4pm. Tower Knowe, the gateway centre to Kielder Water & Forest Park, is an ideal location to orientate yourself and find out what you can do and where. Interactive exhibition, Cafe on the water, gift shop, ferry rides around the lake and fishing.
Approx 9.12 mile(s) between Tower Knowe Visitor Centre and Bellingham Tourist Information Centre