7 stunning North East waterfalls | North Photo

7 stunning North East waterfalls

7 Stunning North East Waterfalls

If you asked most people where the best waterfalls are in the UK, the North East probably wouldn’t be their first answer. Fair enough, as there are some fine examples in Wales, Scotland, the Lake District and Yorkshire Dales.

That said, there are some stunning waterfalls in and around Northumberland, County Durham and Teesdale. They may not be the tallest in the country (although High Force is close) but they certainly are pretty.

Here are my favourites…


Roughting Linn

Roughting Linn is probably my favourite spot of all in Northumberland. Tucked away in a little amphitheatre, the falls can be quite tricky to find unless you know where to look. It is probably one of the prettiest and most photogenic waterfalls up here – difficult to find much information on it as it’s just next door to some very impressive cup and ring marks which tend to take the limelight.


The bottom section of Roughting Linn

The lower section of Roughting Linn


To get to Roughting Linn park up at the crossroads on the first map below and take the track towards Roughting Linn Farm. Keep your eyes open for a narrow path to your left next to a very small stream – this track will take you downhill and loop back around to the waterfall. If you can hear the waterfall to your left you’ve gone too far (it’s almost impossible to climb down from here) so retrace your steps until you find the right track. I’ve marked the route on the second map below.


Roughting Linn Map

Where to park for Roughting Linn


Roughting Linn Route

The route to Roughting Linn


Davdison’s Linn

Davidson’s Linn takes a good hike to reach – it’s right in the heart of the Cheviots. Definitely worth the hike, Davidson’s Linn is particularly impressive after rainfall. Unseen in the photo below, there is a second element to the fall, just around the rock face to the left. This second part is pretty much non-existent if water levels are low, but either way it’s great fun scrambling up the sides.


Davidson's' Linn


There are a number of routes to Davidson’s Linn so an Ordnance Survey Map (OL16) is a must. It’s nestled in the triangle of Windy Gyle, Bloodybush Edge and Cairn Hill, the waterfall is on the Usway Burn. The three key routes into the area are from Cocklawfoot, Linhope or Barrowburn – my favourite route. The Barrowburn route takes you up and over Barrow Law then across to Uswayford before joining Salter’s Road from the East. One of the reasons it’s my preferred route is there are plenty of options to make it a circular walk, including via the amazing views from Windy Gyle.


Davidson's Linn Map

Davidson’s Linn, with potential starting points of the walk marked. Click for larger image.


Hindhope Linn

Hindhope Linn was an almost accidental discovery for me a few years ago – on the hunt for undiscovered (by me) waterfalls in the area I saw it marked on the Ordnance Survey Map near Forest Drive at Kielder Forest. Hadn’t heard of it before but I thought it would be worth dropping by on my way into Kielder one day – and I’m glad I did. A short walk up through the forest leads you up a a seemingly dead-end trail to the waterfall. The whole area is very pleasant and well worth exploring.


Hindhope Linn


To get to Hindhope Linn, take the turn for Forest Drive off the A68 between Byrness and Rochester. After you’ve turned onto the track, look out for a parking area on the left very early on. Park up here, take the track over the burn and past the farm, then turn left up the signposted path to Hindhope Linn. Follow the signs from here and you can’t really go wrong.


Hareshaw Linn

Hareshaw Linn, along with Linhope Spout, is probably the most visited and well known waterfall in Northumberland. But for a good reason – it’s a wonderful walk up the gorge, criss-crossing the river over half a dozen great little footbridges and along a well managed footpath. Look out for the penny stump on the way up and be sure to add a coin if you can. I’ve been up to Hareshaw Linn a number of times and each time it has looked different – it really is a great experience.


Hareshaw Linn

Hareshaw Linn in full flow, taken from just downstream


Getting to Hareshaw Linn is easy as it’s so well managed. Head to Bellingham and park up in the car park just to the east of the bridge over the Hareshaw Burn (opposite the Police Station). Head north up the trail and you’ll be led through magical glades, past the old dam and up through the impressive ravine. Full details of the walk can be found here.


Crammel Linn

Crammel Linn sits on the River Irthing, which acts as the border between Northumberland and Cumbria at this point. It’s one of the largest waterfalls in the North East, and quite probably the widest. When water levels are low to normal, the falls are vertically split in two; when the rain has been falling it can become one behemoth – a sight to behold.


Crammel Linn

The central sections of Crammel Linn up close


Head along the A69 towards Greenhead, then follow the turn off up through Gilsand and past Gilsland Spa. Park up at the point indicated on the map below and walk down the pretty straight path to the falls. If you’re feeling adventurous there is an abandoned fighter jet just to the north west of where you can park (marked on the map) which requires a bit of scrambling over ‘moon grass’ but is worth a look.


Crammel Linn Map

Crammel Linn, with parking and fighter jet highlighted



Ashgill Force

Ashgill Force is in the eastern reaches of Cumbria, but is close enough to the North East for me to include it in here. And it’s such a great place it would be criminal to ignore it… The waterfall drops an impressive 55 feet almost directly under the arched road bridge above. This place can be quite a popular spot with climbers so it’s probably best planning a visit mid-week when it’ll be quieter.


Ashgill Force

Ashgill Force in full flow


To get to Ashgill Force head to Garrigill near Alston. Look out for the curve over a small bridge next to a farm a little south of Garrigill (on the B6277). Park up nearby, then the easiest route down is to take the path downstream between the bridge and farm, and follow it down to the river then back upstream to the waterfall.



Linhope Spout

Like Hareshaw Linn, Linhope Spout is very well know in the area. Sitting up ion the Cheviots, it’s fairly easy to get to and has a great flat grassy area near the falls that’s perfect for a family picnic or spot of sunbathing. Very much a ‘spout’, the waterfall more pours down the rock face than falls. Still an impressive sight though, and due to the nature of the surrounding rocks it’s great for climbing and scrambling right next to the waterfall.


Linhope Spout

Linhope Spout, taken from a little further downstream


Head along the A697 and turn off at the road for Ingram and Linhope, just north of Powburn. Keep going along this road as far as you can – you’ll get to a point where there is a sign stating you can go no further just before Hartside Farm – and park up on the verge. You then need to walk the rest of the road into Linhope and follow the signs for Linhope Spout from there. I’d recommend using an Ordnance Survey Map (OL16), particularly if it’s your first visit.



Bonus content…

Some honourable mentions should certainly include High Force, Low Force and Hethpool Linn – all fabulous waterfalls and definitely worth a visit.

Another waterfall, which so many people miss, is Harthope Linn up in Harthope Valley. The reason many people miss this is that there is a smaller, and arguably prettier waterfall a little further upstream from Harthope Linn. To find the ‘real’ Harthope Linn, take a left at the sheepfold (check out the OS map to see what I mean) and work your way through the undergrowth (careful of the drop). If you can see it easily from the path you’re at the wrong one…


Harthope Linn

The real Harthope Linn


Not Harthope Linn

The waterfall often mistaken for Harthope Linn


Harthope Linn Map

Both waterfalls on the OS Map (click to view larger)




So there you have it – my top seven waterfalls in the North East of England.  Anything I’ve missed? Let me know in the comments…


Thanks for reading and have a look at my galleries and other blog posts.

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Comments (13)

  1. Fara
    February 07, 2019

    I must thank you for this information, very useful and on my list of places to visit. you have a fantastic gallery. All the Best.

    • Stuart Lonsdale
      February 11, 2019

      Thank you Fara – just had a look through your website and you have some beautiful photographs! Some real inspiration for me in there too.

  2. kevan hubbard
    December 14, 2018

    Good pictures!I disagree that you most people wouldn’t think of the north east and waterfalls after all Englands biggest,high Force,is here!the Tees has 4 cauldron spout,high Force,low force and there’s a little one in between the two forces.

    • Stuart Lonsdale
      February 11, 2019

      Thanks Kevin – great point about the falls on the Tees (I guess I was thinking more about the Northumberland end of the North East). Summerhill Force is nearby too, isn’t it?

  3. Michael Hinchcliffe
    November 17, 2016

    My compliments on some exquisite photography . Came across your website whilst looking up more info on Hindhope Linn which we visited earlier in the year , but wasn’t in full flow. Your image is quite stunning .

    And thank you so much for posting this resource for waterfalls in Northumberland , some of which I’ve never heard of . Now on the to do list.

  4. Joe Caffery
    October 22, 2016

    Hi Stuart, great article on these wonderful features. Hope to be in the NE next year for photography and this has just altered my plans! Out of interest, where is the first waterfall at the start of your article? Great image by the way.

    • Stuart Lonsdale
      October 22, 2016

      Hi Joe, thank you for your kind comment. The waterfall at the very top is another angle of the bottom of Roughting Linn (sometimes known as Roughtin Linn or Roughtin Lynn). Hope you enjoy your visit, if you’d like any advice on other locations feel free to give me a shout here or on stuart@northphoto.co.uk

  5. Keith Hedley
    October 14, 2016

    Thanks for taking the time and effort to create your website, I visited Roughting Linn for the first time after driving very close to it due to my job for many years yet not knowing it was there, I shall be returning when I have a bit more time as for a small place I think there are many photos to be made!

    • Stuart Lonsdale
      October 17, 2016

      Glad this has been of help for you Keith, Roughting Linn is a hidden gem and it’s surprising how many people don’t know it’s there. Enjoy your return visits and hope you get some great photos!


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