10 Fun Things to do in Wooler

Thanks to our writer Bethanie for their help in writing this article which was published in May 2023. Please always check with venues direct for the most up to date information.  

Despite only being up the road from where we live, it is very rare we seem to visit Wooler. However, we recently enjoyed an overnight stay in the area and spent some time exploring this small market town in the very north of Northumberland.

My family all agreed it was such a lovely location and couldn’t think why we didn’t visit more. 


In case you also have been wondering “what is there to do in Wooler?” I have put together this guide on how to spend either a day or a weekend break in Wooler. 

Wooler is known as being the “gateway to the Cheviots”, sitting at the base of the Cheviot hills, just before you reach the Scottish border. Berwick and Bamburgh are both a short drive away and you are also within easy reach of Alnwick and the Breamish Valley. All popular tourist locations, making Wooler an ideal base for exploring the north of Northumberland. 


The main high street of Wooler, is home to independent shops, cafes and pubs. There is also a co-op and garage, as well as a playpark and holiday park.

2023 has seen the opening of the hugely anticipated Ad Gefrin museum and whisky distillery, which I will talk about more further down the post. 


If you are searching for picturesque landscape, set to the dramatic backdrop of the Cheviots and plenty of ways to explore northern Northumberland, then Wooler is the perfect base for your adventures. 

Car Parks in Wooler The best place is Padgepool Place (NE71 6BL) which has 47 free spaces. See here for more options.

Wooler Public Transport Please check with Traveline / Operators for current timetables. Wooler is served by:

  • 267 and 464 (Border Buses)
  • 473 (Glen Valley Tours - Alnwick)
  • 710 (Glen Valley Tours - Kelso/Metrocentre/Newcastle)
  • 869 (Glen Valley Tours - Alnwick)

Wooler Public Toilets There are currently Public Toilets in Wooler Marketplace. These are being refurbished in Spring 2023 and due to reopen in June.

10 Fun Things to Do in Wooler

Enjoy a Walk on Wooler Common

We started our weekend in Wooler, by going for a walk at Wooler Common. This came after a recommendation from my dad, and I am so pleased he told us about this stunning area, with views across Glendale and beyond. 

Wooler Common and woodland park, are managed by Forestry England, who also look after nearby Thrunton Woods and Hepburn Wood. 

From the car park information point, there is access to Wooler Common's easy going trail, the St Cuthbert's Way and a network of public paths. It is great for bringing kids because you can choose whichever route you think they will be able to manage and there is plenty of space for running around and exploring. 

There is also a wheelchair easy access trail with handrail and tapping boards for the visually impaired, which also starts and finishes near the car park.

Along the walking route, there are many benches to sit and observe the wildlife. There is also a small remembrance garden which has been very thoughtfully put together. 

Use postcode: NE71 6RJ 

Parking is free. You must park in the designated parking areas. 

Visit Doddington Dairy Milk Bar

Doddington Milk Bar is definitely worth a visit.

They serve breakfast, light lunches and hot and cold drinks, as well as a choice of cakes, milkshakes and the award-winning Doddington ice creams. This would be a great stop off after your walk at Wooler Common. With both indoor and outdoor seating, this is a popular break stop for cyclists and walkers. 

Use postcode: NE71 6QE 

Step Back in Time at Ad Gefrin

Brand new for 2023, Ad Gefrin is more than just a whisky distillery. There is also a museum sharing the history of the area and its important role during the Anglo Saxon era. This part of Northumberland is steeped in history as many battles took place between the border countries of England and Scotland. 

At first, I didn’t think this would be suitable for families, but aside from the distillery tours, they are encouraging families to visit the museum. The building itself looks pretty impressive in its countryside setting. There is a bar and bistro inside, as well as the museum, the great hall and whisky distillery. 

You can buy a ticket to look round the museum and shop at a cost of £10 per adult, £5 for 8 - 17 year olds and under 8’s are free. 

If you wish to add a whisky distillery tour to your ticket, these are priced at £25 per adult and £12.50 for over 8’s. 

Visit Scotts Park Playground

Please note - this is an older photo as I haven't been able to find an up-to-date photo

Find Scots Park by the river on South Road (NE71 6AE). This enclosed playground includes a slide, swings, toddler swings, picnic table, climbing frame and zip wire. 

Adventure on Horseback at Kimmerston Riding Centre

Whether you are a keen horse rider or a complete novice, the Kimmerston Riding Centre is one of the top rated places to ride in the north east. You can book either an hour or a two hour ride with prices varying depending on the length and experience you have. 

I think this seems like a brilliant way to take in more of those wonderful countryside views, whilst riding across fields and along the edge of the woods. 

This would be a lovely family activity to do, if you have children who have always wanted to try their hand at horse riding but never done it before. There is the option to be led by the reins as well for extra peace of mind. 

You will need to visit their website for full details and requirements before booking. They do not accept credit cards, so payments are made by cash, cheque or BACS. 

Use postcode: NE71 6JH

Book Dinner at Milan

Milan is a lovely family friendly Italian restaurant on Wooler High Street. It's popular and advance reservations are recommended. Expect delicious pizza & pasta as well as a children's menu and warm, friendly service. Check out their Facebook page here: Milan Restaurant Facebook Page

Spot the Hethpool Wild Goats

There are a number of different walking routes you can do up in this area and to make sure you are following the correct ones, I recommend you visit the Northumberland National Park website. 

From here you can download PDFs and maps of the different walking routes in the Cheviot Hills and surrounding valleys. 

It also shares the latest information on storm damage and which paths are going to be the most accessible. 

If you can, I think it is definitely worth visiting the College Valley estate. Often a little bit quieter, there are gorgeous areas along this route to take the bikes, walk and enjoy picnics. 

Please note: there is a free car park at Hethpool where you can leave your car and head off exploring from there. You can try the Hethpool Wild Goat Walk which is a moderate 2 mile circular route. If you wish to drive further into the valley, you will need a permit. Only a few permits are issued per day, which is fantastic for those walking or cycling, but just to make you aware before you travel. 

You can check permit availability here

Use postcode: NE71 6TW

Visit Wooler High Street

Wooler High Steet is filled with independent shops and a few pubs. It's a lovely place for a potter and to pick up some local treats. Don't miss the Chocolate Box Sweet Shop.

Paddle at Ingram Valley

Ingram Valley is a short drive out of Wooler and a perfect place to visit on a sunny day as you can easily access the water for a paddle (it goes without saying - make sure you supervise children). There is a cafe and nice walks to enjoy too. Read our guide to visiting: Ingram Valley Guide

Visit Linhope Spout Waterfall

Equally, Linhope Spout Waterfall is not too far from Wooler. It's a gorgeous 60ft waterfall which lands in a 16ft plunge pool. You can often spot Red Squirrels around this area too.

Enjoy Tapas at No1 Hotel Wooler

The No.1 Hotel in Wooler is located on the High Street and has a small, friendly restaurant attached. They run regular theme nights (see their FB page to see what's coming up) and I can highly recommend their Tapas nights. We visited a few years ago and thoroughly recommend. 

Where to Stay

Riverside Leisure Park Glamping, Touring & Lodges

Riverside Leisure Park is a lovely site with a clubhouse, playground and swimming pool in the heart of Wooler. They offer a selection of luxury lodges, holiday homes and glamping pods as well as hardstanding touring pitches for motorcomes / tourers (no tents). Read our review from a few years ago here.

Fenton Hill Farm Cottages

Bethanie recently enjoyed a very comfortable stay at Fenton Hill Farm cottages

These self catering cottages are located a ten minute drive from Wooler town centre. There are four cottages situated on this working farm, and we stayed in the largest which slept six. With a large double bedroom, a twin room and then bunk beds, it was great for a bigger family to have plenty of space. 

Other places to visit nearby: 

  • Just up the road from Wooler, you will find the Heatherslaw Railway which runs between Heatherslaw and Etal village. A return family ticket costs £25. It is a lot of  fun to ride on the little steam train - the kids and grown ups will love it. 

Once you arrive at Etal village, you can walk round the castle, visit the pub or tearoom in a relaxed environment before catching the train back. Visit the website for up to date train times, depending on the time of year of your visit.  Read our full guide to visiting Ford & Etal here: 15 Things to do at Ford & Etal

  • Holy Island: thirty minutes drive. 

I really hope this has inspired you to visit Wooler for the day or for a short break. I truly think you will be blown away by the stunning scenery and hopefully this post has given you plenty of things to do when visiting this gorgeous corner of Northumberland.

10 Things to do in Wooler 
  • Enjoy a walk on Wooler Common - there are accessible routes and tap boards for the visually impaired
  • Visit Doddington Dairy Milk Bar for Award-Winning Ice Creams 
  • Step back in time at the Ad Gefrin Anglo-Saxon Museum & Distillery 
  • Visit Scots Park Playground (it has a zip wire) 
  • Adventure on Horseback at Kimmerston Riding Centre 
  • Book an Italian Family Dinner at Milan Restaurant 
  • Spot the Wild Goats at Hethpool 
  • Shop Local on Wooler High Street (don't miss The Chocolate Box Sweet Shop)
  • Paddle at Ingram Valley & Visit Linhope Spout Waterfall and swim in the plunge pool (a short drive away)
  • Enjoy Tapas at No1 Hotel 
Where to park: Padgepool Place (NE71 6BL) which has 47 free spaces Public transport: Buses available (check with Traveline) Where to stay: Riverside Leisure Park (lodges, glamping and tourers) or Fenton Hill Farm Cottages


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