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Kielder Water and Forest Park

From a gentle stroll to take in the scenery to a brisk heart-pumping hike around the 26-mile circumference of the dam, Kielder has something for everyone. Kielder Reservoir is the largest man-made capacity of water in the UK and holds an impressive 200 billion litres of water. Commissioned in 1974 and completed by 1981, HRH Queen Elizabeth officially opened the dam in 1982 and it took a further two years to fill it up! 

 

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Kielder Observatory

As the third largest Dark Sky reserve in the world, stargazing is a big part of the area. Kielder Observatory runs events most nights during the summer especially - but booking in advance is a must if you want the opportunity to really admire our beautiful skies!

 

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Kielder Bird of Prey Centre

The Bird of Prey centre in Kielder is a brilliant place to really get up close to some of our most beautiful and rare birds of prey. The centre runs daily demonstrations and even bird handling sessions, showcasing one of the largest collections of birds in the North. The centre's Captive Breeding program is also doing vital conservation work to help protect and revitalise our precious BOP population.

 

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Hexham

The historic market town of Hexham is just 45 minutes or 25 miles away from the Blackcock. With a market every Tuesday and Saturday, and a big range of shops open everyday, Hexham is well worth a visit. If shopping isn't your scene, the majestic Hexham Abbey may be your cup of tea, or a gentle stroll around the park. Hexham Abbey also houses an Anglo-Saxon crypt, and many other historic treasures for the history buffs amongst us.

 

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Hadrian's Wall

For almost three centuries, Hadrian’s Wall was a bustling, multi-cultured frontier sprawling almost 80 miles coast-to-coast. Built by an army of 15,000 men in under six years, it’s as astounding today for its sheer size and vision as it is for its engineering. Milecastles, barracks, ramparts, bastles  and forts punctuate a diverse landscape that provides a dramatic backdrop.

Explore bath houses, turrets and shrines, visit galleries and museums, walk in the footsteps of history... However you discover it, Hadrian’s Wall is a unique, must-see UNESCO World Heritage Sight and piece of history - a remarkable place to experience. For a list of key places to visit or explore, visit the 'Visit Hadrian's Wall website' below. The wall is also a lovely place to walk along to see some of the best sights in the county, whether you want a good solid hike or just a short wander before lunch.

 

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Cycling and Mountain Biking

Kielder is renowned for its large range of cycle tracks to suit any and all abilities.

The Lakeside Way is the most popular route which runs the full 27 mile length of the dam and is suitable for leisure cyclists, hardcore cyclists, walkers, horse riders and wheelchair users alike, with many outdoor public pieces of art dotted around the trail to explore.

A favourite long distance trail that takes cyclists through Kielder is the 'Cross Border Route', which takes you into Scotland following the historical 'Drovers Route' - a trail using The Lakeside Way, Forest Roads and Open Moorland.

Kielder Cycle Centre is a cycle hire/repair, bike and accessory sale centre located opposite Kielder Castle in the village of Kielder (visit their website for more info!) They stock electric bikes among many others which are very popular.

 

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Fishing

Kielder Water has 2000 acres of water to explore, and offers both bank fishing and boat fishing. There are 15 motor boats available to hire (visit the link below for more information/locations/prices). Fishing permits are available to purchase from Tower Knowe or Kielder Waterside visitor centres from 06:00. For weekly fishing reports and even videos of fish releases, visit http://www.nwwatersideparks.com/.  

Two of the hireable boats are wheelchair-accessible and there are also purpose-built accessible fishing platforms around the dam.

The dam is stocked weekly with rainbows, blues and browns who apparently all stick pretty close to the shore!

 

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Artwork around Kielder

 

Kielder Water's shoreline is home to many pieces of artwork inspired by the local area's unique environment and history. From the ever-popular 'Silvas Capitalis' (also known as the Forest Head) to the Wave Chamber near Hawkhope Car Park, there is something for everyone to explore. A copy of the Kielder Trails Guide is available from either Tower Knowe Visitor Centre or Kielder Waterside park - for a downloadable copy click here. 

For information on any upcoming events in the area, head over to our Facebook page!

 

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