Immerse yourself in the beauty of Somerset’s landscapes with a journey along The Coleridge Way.
This 51-mile walking route, which inspired a famous poet, Samuel Taylor Coleridge, winds through the stunning scenery of the Quantock Hills, Brendon Hills, and Exmoor. Over six days, you can explore quaint villages, enjoy cosy accommodations, and marvel at natural wonders. Along the way, you’ll find pubs for refreshment, tearooms for relaxation, and Hotels for restful nights.
With clear signage and detailed route guides, the trail is easy to navigate, making it an ideal choice for a memorable walking holiday.
Amenities and Comforts Along the Trail
The Coleridge Way is not just a journey through the picturesque landscapes of Somerset but also a delightful exploration of the region’s charming amenities. From cosy pubs to quaint tearooms and comfortable accommodations, the trail offers various comforts that enhance your journey’s overall experience.
Bars and Pubs
As you traverse the enchanting landscapes, you’ll come across various bars and pubs as perfect spots for rest and refreshment. These establishments offer a warm welcome, great food, and a chance to mingle with the locals.
Whether you’re looking for a hearty meal or a refreshing pint, these pubs will surely provide a memorable experience.
Quaint tearooms dot the route for those who prefer a quieter break, offering a perfect spot for a relaxing break. These tearooms serve a variety of teas, coffees, and light snacks, providing a tranquil setting to rest your feet and soak in the serene surroundings.
Bed and Breakfasts, Hotels and accommodations
After a day of exploring, there’s nothing more comforting than a cosy bed to rest for the night and wake up to a delicious-smelling breakfast in the morning. The Coleridge Way has such accommodations nearby, each offering a unique charm.
One such place is here at the Apple Tree Hotel; we are a family-owned and run country hotel at the foot of the Quantock Hills. We are known for giving a warm welcome, great food, and quality accommodation, making us a great choice if you want a quality stay in Somerset.
Luggage Transfer Services
Some of these accommodations offer luggage transfer services to make your journey convenient. This means you can walk the trail unburdened by heavy bags, with your luggage safely transported to your next stop. This service allows you to fully immerse yourself in the beauty of the trail without any worries.
Remember, the journey along the Coleridge Way is not just about the destination, but also the delightful experiences. So, take your time, enjoy the amenities, and let the trail’s charm seep into your soul.
Navigating the Coleridge Way
Embarking on the Coleridge Way is an adventure that promises a wealth of natural beauty and historical intrigue. However, to fully enjoy this journey, it’s crucial to understand how to navigate the trail effectively.
This section will provide essential information on waymarks, signs, and safety measures to ensure a smooth and enjoyable journey.
Waymarks and Signs
The Coleridge Way is well-marked, ensuring walkers can easily navigate the route. The trail is adorned with distinctive Quill signs, a nod to the literary heritage of Samuel Taylor Coleridge. These signs are strategically placed throughout the route, guiding walkers through the picturesque path.
Route Guides and Maps
In addition to the Quill signs, detailed route guides and maps are available to assist walkers. These guides are regularly updated to reflect any changes or improvements to the route. Check that you have the latest version before setting out. The route guides are written in both directions, allowing walkers to enjoy the trail from either end.
While the Coleridge Way offers an enchanting journey through Somerset’s landscapes, it’s essential to take certain safety measures to ensure a comfortable and safe walking experience.
Given the nature of the trail, wearing appropriate clothing and sturdy walking boots is recommended. The terrain can vary, and suitable footwear can significantly affect your comfort and safety.
Caution on Roads and Lanes
The Coleridge Way does intersect with main roads and country lanes at certain points. Walkers should exercise caution when crossing these roads and walking along the lanes. Being mindful of traffic and maintaining awareness of your surroundings is crucial for a safe journey.
Remember, the Coleridge Way is more than just a walking route; it’s a journey through history, literature, and some of Somerset’s most stunning landscapes. By following these navigation tips, and safety measures, you can fully immerse yourself in the experience, creating memories that will last a lifetime.
Extending Your Adventure
The Coleridge Way, while a fulfilling journey in itself, offers opportunities for further exploration. For those seeking to extend their adventure, the trail can be expanded to include additional points of interest, each adding a unique layer to your experience.
Extension to the Valley of Rocks
The Valley of Rocks, located near Lynton, is a natural wonder that can be incorporated into your journey. This extension is facilitated via the South West Coast Path, a well-trodden route offering scenic beauty.
The Allure of the Valley
The Valley of Rocks is renowned for its dramatic landscape, towering rock formations and rugged coastline. The valley is home to a herd of wild goats, adding a touch of wildlife to your adventure. This extension enhances the scenic beauty of your journey and introduces you to unique geological formations that are a testament to the area’s rich natural history.
Visit the Poet’s Shelter
An extended route would be incomplete without a visit to the Poet’s Shelter. This historical point of interest, located near Lynton, adds a cultural dimension to your journey.
A Glimpse into the Past
The Poet’s Shelter, also known as the “Rhenish Tower”, is a distinctive landmark on the Lynton skyline. Built-in the 19th century, the tower offers panoramic views of the surrounding landscape. It’s easy to imagine how this vista inspired poets and writers of the past, adding a touch of literary history to your journey.
By extending your route to include the Valley of Rocks and the Poet’s Shelter, you can enrich your experience on the Coleridge Way. These additions offer a blend of natural beauty, wildlife, and historical intrigue, ensuring that your journey is as diverse as it is memorable.
Westward Route from Nether Stowey to Lynmouth
The westward route from Nether Stowey to Lynmouth offers a unique landscape perspective. As you embark on this journey, you’ll find yourself transitioning from bustling coastal areas to serene hinterland, a shift in atmosphere that is truly mesmerising. This route, part of The Coleridge Way, allows you to walk in the footsteps of the famous poet Samuel Taylor Coleridge, immersing yourself in the same stunning landscapes that inspired his works.
The Journey Begins
Your journey begins in the charming village of Nether Stowey, nestled at the foot of the Quantock Hills. From here, you head west towards Holford, passing the Iron Age fort of Dowsborough along the way. The path then takes you through a wooded section at Alfroxton Woods and onto Stowborrow Hill, where you might glimpse the resident deer.
The Heart of the Route
As you continue your journey, you’ll pass through the villages of Bicknoller and Monksilver before entering Combe Sydenham Country Park. Here, a 15th-century stately home is set within a 500-acre estate with a Deer Park and various walking trails. The route then takes you through the Brendon Hills, climbing to the high point of Lype Hill (1,388 ft) with breathtaking views over the Exmoor National Park.
The Final Stretch
The final stretch of the route takes you past Culbone Wood, Leeford, and Alderford before arriving at Watersmeet. You’ll find a beautiful house, woodland trails, and waterfalls along the East Lyn River. The journey concludes in the picturesque coastal settlements of Lynton and Lynmouth.
Several useful resources are available for download to ensure a smooth and enjoyable journey. These resources include detailed guides and maps that provide comprehensive information about the route.
Detailed guides offer valuable insights into the route, including the best paths to take, landmarks to look out for, and potential challenges. These guides are designed to enhance your experience, ensuring you don’t miss any of the route’s highlights.
A good map is an adventurer’s best friend. Downloadable maps of the route provide a clear visual guide to your journey, helping you easily navigate the landscape. Whether planning your next stop or looking for a scenic detour, a map can be invaluable.
The westward route from Nether Stowey to Lynmouth on The Coleridge Way offers a unique and immersive experience. With the right planning and resources, you can embark on a memorable journey through some of Somerset’s most picturesque landscapes.
Connecting Walks to Explore
South West Coast Path
The South West Coast Path is a remarkable trail that intersects with The Coleridge Way, providing an additional opportunity for exploration. This trail is the UK’s ultimate challenge for the long-distance hiker, stretching over 630 miles around the coastline of England’s southwest peninsula.
Starting at Minehead in Somerset, the path runs along the coastline of Exmoor, continuing through North Devon and into Cornwall. It follows the entire coastline of Cornwall, crosses the mouth of the River Tamar, and continues into Devon. After running along the south coast of Devon, it concludes at Poole Harbour.
Trail Marking and Sections
The South West Coast Path is well-marked with the symbol of an acorn, a standard for National Trails. It is divided into seven sections of varying lengths, categorised geographically. These sections include Somerset and Exmoor, North Devon, North Cornwall, West Cornwall, South Cornwall, South Devon, and the Jurassic Coast.
Difficulty and Accessibility
The South West Coast Path is a challenging route with over 115,000 feet (35,000 metres) of ascent and descent. However, it is also accessible to those with limited mobility, with flatter and wider paths available. This makes it a versatile trail that caters to various fitness levels and abilities.
England Coast Path and Two Moors Way
Other intersecting trails include the England Coast Path and the Two Moors Way. These connecting walks offer more areas to explore, each with its unique charm and natural beauty.
Overnight Stops and Accommodations
The Coleridge Way is not just a journey through the picturesque landscapes of Somerset, but also a journey through the welcoming villages that dot the route. Each village offers a unique charm and character, making every stop a new experience.
Nether Stowey, the starting point of The Coleridge Way, is a village steeped in history. It’s where Samuel Taylor Coleridge penned some of his most famous works. The village welcomes walkers warmly with traditional pubs, local shops, and historical sites.
Porlock is another village along the route between Exmoor and the Somerset coastline. Its quaint charm and its array of local shops, pubs, and cafés make it an ideal stopover.
Luggage Transfer Services
Walking The Coleridge Way is made even more enjoyable by the availability of luggage transfer services.
Established in 2009, Luggage Transfers Ltd covers the full Coleridge Way route, moving over 36,000 bags annually for visitors walking and cycling throughout the South West. This service is available from 1st March to 31st October, allowing you to walk without carrying all your gear, making your journey more enjoyable and less strenuous.
The Convenience of Luggage Transfers
The convenience of having your luggage transferred from one accommodation to the next cannot be overstated. It allows you to focus on the beauty of the landscapes, the charm of the villages, and the joy of the journey, without the physical strain of carrying a heavy pack.
Enhancing Your Walking Experience
The luggage transfer service enhances your walking experience by making it more comfortable and enjoyable. You can walk at your own pace, take in the sights, and immerse yourself in the experience without worrying about your luggage.
This service, combined with the warm hospitality of the villages and the stunning landscapes of The Coleridge Way, makes for a truly memorable walking holiday.
Exploring Historic Villages and Natural Wonders
The Coleridge Way is not just a walking route; it’s a journey through time and nature. As you traverse this scenic trail, you’ll encounter a series of historic villages and natural wonders that add depth and richness to your experience.
Chapel Allerton, Somerset
One of the charming villages you’ll pass through is Chapel Allerton, a small parish in Somerset. This village is steeped in history, with its roots dating back to the Roman era.
As you stroll through its quaint streets, you’ll be captivated by the traditional stone cottages and the 15th-century Church of All Saints, a Grade II listed building. The village’s rich history and serene atmosphere make it a delightful stop along The Coleridge Way.
Another village that adds to the charm of The Coleridge Way is Skilgate. Nestled in the Brendon Hills, this village is a haven of tranquillity.
Skilgate is home to St. John the Baptist Church, a beautiful structure dating back to the 14th century. The village’s serene environment and historical significance make it a must-visit location on your journey.
Colne Point Nature Reserve
The Coleridge Way also takes you through some of Somerset’s most breathtaking natural landscapes.
One such place is the Colne Point Nature Reserve. This coastal reserve is a paradise for nature lovers, boasting diverse wildlife and plant species. The reserve’s unique coastal habitat and stunning sea views make it a memorable part of the route.
Devils Bridge Falls
Another natural spectacle along The Coleridge Way is the Devil’s Bridge Falls. This waterfall is a sight to behold, with its cascading waters creating a mesmerising spectacle.
The surrounding woodland offers a tranquil setting for walkers to relax and soak in the beauty of nature. The falls are a testament to Somerset’s natural beauty, making them a journey highlight. The Coleridge Way uniquely blends historical charm and natural beauty. The historic villages and natural wonders along the route provide a rich tapestry of experiences that make the journey unforgettable.
Whether you’re a history buff, a nature lover, or simply looking for a peaceful escape, The Coleridge Way has something for everyone.
The Coleridge Way isn’t just a walking route but a journey into England’s heart. As you traverse through landscapes that inspired Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s finest works, you’ll embrace an adventure filled with history, culture, and natural beauty. This 51-mile trail offers more than just breathtaking views; it allows one to explore historic villages, marvel at natural wonders, and experience the hospitality of traditional inns and charming bed and breakfasts.
Whether you’re a seasoned walker or a casual explorer, the Coleridge Way promises an unforgettable experience. So lace up your boots, pack your bag, and embark on this memorable journey through Somerset’s enchanting countryside.