Ring Chesters Round

Uncover the natural splendour of Northumberland as you embark on the Ring Chesters Round Walk. Meander through landscapes teeming with wildlife and immerse yourself in the region’s natural beauty, ready to uncover the delights that lay ahead.

This circular trail offers an ideal blend of challenge and enjoyment, catering to a diverse group of outdoor enthusiasts, whether you’re an avid birdwatcher, a hiker, or a runner.

One of the most remarkable features of this route is the several hillforts that can be found along the way, including East Laddies Knowe which offers a glimpse into the area’s past, as well as a great vantage point from which to soak in the views and snap a photograph to cherish for years to come.

Discover Northumberland’s highlights by setting out on the Ring Chesters Round Walk…

The Ring Chesters Round Walk, a captivating adventure in the heart of Northumberland’s unspoiled landscapes, allows visitors to explore ancient hillforts and immerse themselves in the rich history of the College Valley.

The route winds through breath-taking countryside, offering panoramic views, tranquil meadows, and the ever-changing beauty of the seasons. Whether you’re a nature enthusiast, a history buff, or simply seeking a peaceful pastime, this walk promises an unforgettable experience.

Experience the defining characteristics that make this walk so special:

  1. Ancient Hillfort Exploration: Journey to the historic Ring Chesters hillfort, steeped in ancient heritage, and explore its captivating remains.
  2. Spectacular Landscapes: Revel in the breathtaking beauty of Northumberland as you meander through rolling hills, lush meadows, and the pristine College Valley.
  3. Wildlife Encounters: Keep a lookout for diverse wildlife, making it a paradise for birdwatchers and nature enthusiasts. You may spot various bird species and native animals, making this walk a captivating experience all year round.
  4. Year-Round Allure: Experience the trail’s ever-changing charm, making it an attractive destination regardless of the season. From the vibrant colours of autumn leaves to the serene snowy winter landscapes and the vibrant rebirth of spring, this walk guarantees a captivating experience year-round.
  5. Historical Significance: The concentration of hillforts in the College Valley is remarkable, offering you a unique opportunity to explore and appreciate their cultural and historical importance.
  6. Natural Beauty: Immerse yourself in the untouched natural beauty of Northumberland, where every step brings you closer to serenity and a profound connection with the great outdoors.
  7. Contemplative Return: Enjoy a peaceful and reflective walk back to your starting point, relishing the memories and the beauty of the region.

Sykes Cottages has made every attempt to ensure the accuracy and reliability of the information provided on this website. However, the information is provided “as is” without warranty of any kind. Sykes Cottages does not accept any responsibility or liability for the accuracy, content, completeness, legality, or reliability of the information contained on this website.


  1. Starting Point: Begin your journey from the car park and turn right, following the road as it winds through the charming hamlet of Hethpool.
  2. Continuing Along the Road: Stay on the road as it takes a left turn, passing the private drive to Hethpool House on your right. Keep on this road, crossing the Elsdon Burn as you go.
  3. Sheep Pens: At the sheep pens, where the main valley road veers to the right, opt for the road to the left. After a short distance, leave the road and follow the path uphill, marked with the sign ‘Ring Chesters’. Keep going until you reach the corner of the plantation. Cross the fence using the stile and bear to the right. After a short distance, join the wide grassy track and continue your uphill ascent.
  4. East Laddies Knowe: As the path begins to head downhill, make a left turn and climb uphill towards East Laddies Knowe, the first of the hillforts on your journey. Continue along the path.
  5. Navigating the Landscape: Just before reaching the top of the hill, turn right off the main track and follow the path through the bracken to the fence ahead. Cross the stile at Black Bog, and after a short climb, make a left turn, heading toward the corner of the wall. Keep the wall on your left as you continue to follow it to the next corner.
  6. Gate in the Corner of the Wall: Go through the gate in the corner of the wall. After a short distance, turn right and follow the path through the plantation.
  7. Emerging from the Trees: When you emerge from the trees, cross the stile and climb to the top of the hill in front of you. Explore the hillfort before continuing along the ridge.
  8. Heading to Elsdonburn Farm: On joining the grassy track, make a left turn and continue downhill to Elsdonburn Farm. Pass through the gate and follow the tarmac road.
  9. Leaving the Road: Shortly after the junction, leave the road and turn right, following the sign for ‘Great Hetha.’ Cross the stile and the burn, keeping the fence on your right as you ascend. For an easier return route, continue along the road until you reach College Valley Road. Turn right and make your way back through Hethpool to the car park.
  10. Stile in the Wall: At the top of the hill, cross the stile in the wall slightly to the right and continue straight ahead along the track. Before crossing the stile, you could also consider taking a short detour to visit Little Hetha Hillfort to your left, keeping the plantation on your left. Then, continue downhill.
  11. Return to the Car Park: On joining the valley road, turn left and follow the road back to the car park, completing your Ring Chesters Round Walk adventure.
activityarrow_downarrow_leftsmall-rightarrow-top-rightbikeguidescamerachild-friendlycircularclockCottagecrossdangerdestinationpindownloaddropdown-arrowemailFamilyfinish-flagflagfloraflowergroupHeartinfo-altdidyouknowInspirationlinearlocationmap-pinmapparkingpawphonerulersearchshare Facebook Google Plus Instagram LinkedIn Pinterest Twitter YouTube ui-24px-glyph-2_grid-45popularsun-cloudtexturef-check-glyph-16toggleVideoWalkingwheelchair