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Hiking Hadrian's Wall - Your Path To Adventure

Updated on September 15, 2014
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Jeff Johnston is a medieval reenactor and avid history fan. He is also the publisher at Living History Publications.

Rights for image granted under the terms provided by the artist in Wikicommons rights.
Rights for image granted under the terms provided by the artist in Wikicommons rights.

A Dream Vacation - A Hike Through History

If you've read any of my other articles you probably realize that I am a bit of a history buff, it is with that in mind that I thought I'd introduce you to my dream vacation a hike along Hadrian's Wall. This is not a vacation for the feint of heart, it is a long arduous trek though the North England country side, but I believe it would be a trek well worth the effort, both for the historical significance of this magnificent showpiece of Roman engineering ability, but also for the joy of a camping adventure unlike no other.

Ever since I first heard of the wall I wanted to see the ruins, to stand where the Roman Legions stood at the edge of the Roman Empire during the time of Emperor Hadrian. This was the edge of the world to the Romans, the furthest they pushed, the wall stood as tribute to the size and magnificence of the Roman Empire. While little remains of the original wall and fortification, it is still a formidable sight by all accounts.

What is Hadrian's Wall? - The History of The Wall

If you are reading this wondering what is Hadrian's Wall, then perhaps I should enlighten you.

The wall was constructed by the engineering corps of the Roman Army during the reign of Hadrian (or at least started during his reign) the production of the wall began around 120AD although the precise reason for the building of the wall has never been fully understood by historians. The official reasoning of keeping the rebellious forces of Northern Britannia out of Roman territory is a tad confusing. While these "northern barbarians" did put up quite a fight, conquering it wouldn't have been a huge feat for even relatively small Roman armies garrisoned in Britain at the time, and much of the area walled off would have been tough for the rebels to cross even without the wall.

In all likely-hood the wall was more of a make-work project designed to employ the British-Romans and keep the military busy. The Wall was built to hold some 9,000 Roman troops and attracted, as the movement of troops often do, a whole host of others to set up camps and towns all along the wall.

Hadrian's Wall Map
Hadrian's Wall Map

The Wall Trail

The Hadrian's Wall Trail is an unbroken hiking trail 135 km long following the winding path of the wall. It is suggested to hike the trail breaking it down into more managable hikes of 19-25km sections. The map shown shows some of the area that the path travels.

Image use with permission from Natrual England

Read More About the Man Who Had the Wall Built

© 2012 Jeff Johnston

What is your Dream Vacation?

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    • RawBill1 profile image

      Bill 5 years ago from Gold Coast, Australia

      It is hard to pinpoint my dream vacation as in some ways I have already done it when I spent four months working in an American ski resort, then travelled another month across the USA and a few weeks in the UK and then China. A six month round the world trip! I visited Hadrian's wall on that trip and loved the area. In fact I loved the history of all of the UK as I am a bit of a history buff as well and the UK is bursting at the seams with historical sites!

    • flycatcherrr profile image

      flycatcherrr 5 years ago

      One of my favourite places in the world. You can still feel the Roman ghosts lingering on the more isolated bits of the Wall; especially under a dark sky, when the wind blows.

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      entertainmentev 5 years ago

      I love learning about new places around the world. Thanks for sharing :)