Although not strictly on the C2C route Alston is just a short detour and well worth a visit. Nestled high up in the North Pennines, Alston claims to be the highest elevation market town in England, being about 1000 feet above sea level.
Set on the upper reaches of the River South Tyne, Alston lies within the Eden district of Cumbria. Alston is remote and almost 20 miles from the nearest town but this fact seems to add to its rugged beauty.
It is also noted for its cobbled streets, 17th century stone buildings, and market cross. It featured in a recent ITV adaptation of Oliver Twist and has also been used as locations on several other TV shoots.
Owing its past glories to mining the town had numerous working mines producing lead, silver, zinc and coal as recently as the 1950s. It now relies upon agriculture and tourism as its mainstay. A good range of pubs, hotels, B&Bs and campsites are available in and around the town.