The 5 best walking trails in the UK
As well as the obvious health benefits of walking in the fresh air, the idea of exploring the great outdoors appeals to most people. After what seemed like an endless winter, spring has sprung and it’s the perfect time to dig out the walking boots, or even buy some new ones, and go in search of bluebells and birdsong in our green and pleasant land.
The UK has all sorts of terrain to suit all sorts of walkers, with views from on high, coastal paths and forest trails, such is the diversity of the UK. From the flat openness of Suffolk and Norfolk to the peaks and caves of the Lake District, the pull of the great outdoors on a sunny spring day can fill even the most reluctant hiker with optimism.
Whether you’re treading a familiar path close to home or setting off to discover the unfamiliar on the other side of the country, here are five of the best walks the UK has to offer.
1. Blickling Estate, Norfolk - Distance 4 miles
Now under the stewardship of the National Trust, the area is largely unchanged from the 18th Century and walkers will enjoy carets of bluebells amid oak, beech and sweet chestnuts trees.
2. Cleeve Hill, Costwolds - Distance 6 miles
Cleeve Hill, at 1083 ft is the highest point in the Costwolds affording those who reach the top stunning views across to the Malvern Hills. A site of Special Scientific Interest, it is known for its wildlflowers and birds such as skylarks and willow warblers. Expect chalkhill blue and dingly skipper butterflies to flutter by too.
3. Tramway Trail, Cornwall - Distance 11 miles
This route from Portreath to Devoran follows the historic line of two 19th Century horse drawn tramways used for moving locally mined copper and tin. Woodland and grassy glades await.
4. Seven Sisters, East Sussex - Distance 13.8 miles
This coastal path is a section of the South Downs Way along chalk cliffs with dips down to the shoreline. The Seven Sisters are the undulation hilltops between Birling Gap and Cuckmere Haven.
5. Leeds and Liverpool Canal, Yorkshire - Distance 16.5 miles
This walk along the banks of northern England’s largest watercourse of its kind runs from Skipton to Saltaire through some of the heartland of the Industrial Revolution. Saltaire was built by Victorian textile mill owner and philanthropist, Titus Salt as a village where his workers could live. It is now a UNESCO World Heritage site.
Click on these links to plan your walks and trails. They feature our chosen walks plus lots more of varying distances and terrain.