Walk of the week: River Tweed, Coldstream

The River Tweed is a world-renowned course of water. The salmon which are found in its pools are among the most sought after, anywhere.

River Tweed, Coldstream. Picture: Nick Drainey
River Tweed, Coldstream. Picture: Nick Drainey

However, on a sunny day at this time of the year thoughts of being next to a global attraction are probably going to be far from the mind.

Across the water is England, and despite the Border also attracting attention across the world ahead of this year’s independence referendum, thoughts are still likely to turn towards the tranquillity and beauty of this countryside.

Amid the swish of lines being cast, the only other sounds are likely to be a woodpecker or the quack of ducks.

Therefore, it makes for a great place for a walk. Starting in a country estate, you soon leave grounds behind and gaze over the water, towards the Cheviots – some may think it unexpected, but the hills are seen in England from this point whereas Scotland lies at a much lower level.

Coldstream is really well served by waymarked paths, and this walk makes use of two routes to give a lovely circuit, which some might say is world class.

DISTANCE 3 miles.


TIME 1 to 2 hours.

MAP OS Landranger 74.

PARK The best place is in a car park next to The Castle Hotel – on the left as you drive in to Coldstream from the north on the A698.

IN SUMMARY Go back to the main street and turn right to cross a bridge over the Tweed’s tributary, Leet Water. Continue by the road, past Lees Farm, and look for a pair of stone gate posts on the other side – opposite the entrance to a golf club. Go through the gate posts and follow a drive for about 150 yards, where you go right at a signpost, indicating the “Riverside Walk”.

A path leads through trees and over a dyke – go straight ahead here to cross a ditch which gives a good view down to the Tweed. A path then bends left to follow the bank of the river, downstream. Then, bear left just before an 18th century stone temple to reach a track, where you go right to continue downstream. After passing a fishing bothy, ignore a sign on the left, pointing back to Coldstream, and continue on a grass track by the river. The grass track, which runs along the top of a dyke, forks a few hundred yards after passing a weir. Go right here to continue closer to the river as it makes a wide loop. Go right again at another junction off tracks/dykes to continue following the course of the river.

The track bears left before the Leet Water and continues in a straight line to reach a kissing gate.

Go through this and follow a track, uphill, on the other side. The track leads to a road where you go left to walk the short distance back to the main road into Coldstream. Go right here to return to the start.

REFRESH The Castle Hotel is the obvious place although there are other eateries in the town.

WHILE YOU ARE IN THE AREA The Hirsel Estate, passed on the way into Coldstream, also has a nice café and is a good place for a stroll through parkland. Look out too for craft shops near the car park. n

Twitter: @ScotlandWalk