Rural Britain includes some wonderful areas of landscape which are famous all over the world. These areas provide many fantastic walking opportunities for visitors and locals alike. If you want to see more of the finest walking areas in the United Kingdom, why don’t you check out some of the destinations in the list below?
The Yorkshire Dales National Park is the third largest national park in the country, and it is not hard to see why the area has been given national park status. The wonderful scenery offers a huge variety for visitors, including wild moorlands, beautiful valleys and rugged hillsides. The picturesque villages also hint at the amazing human history of the area. Whilst the area has a proud agricultural heritage, you can also see remnants of the industrial revolution that shaped Britain.
Consider tackling the Yorkshire Three Peaks: Ingleborough, Whernside and Pen-y-ghent. Walkers normally depart from the Pen-y-ghent Café at Horton-in-Ribblesdale where there is a clocking-out and clocking-in point. The owners of the Café ask walkers to post their name and details through the door or hand them to a member of staff, so that they will be aware if anyone has failed to arrive back in the expected time. Although the walk can be done on a casual basis, many walkers take on the “challenge” for charity, as they attempt to walk the route in under 12 hours.
The Cairngorm range is one of Britain’s wildest areas. The unique, rugged landscape means that it is home to some of the UK’s rarest plants, animals and bird species. It is largely made up of pine forest, heather moorland and some of the highest peaks in the country.
Within the boundaries of the Cairngorm National Park, there are 52 individual summits of over 900 metres, including Ben Macdui, which is the second highest mountain in the United Kingdom.
Interspersed between the mountains, walkers will be delighted by the beautiful lochs and glacial valleys which were carved out millions of years ago by the immense forces of nature. For those who do not fancy a difficult walk, there are also ski lift facilities and a mountain railway.
There are hundreds of different walking routes to choose from, but hardy walkers may wish to tackle the Cairn Gorm itself. Although the Cairn Gorm is not the highest mountain in the area, most walkers will be delighted by the thrills, challenges and rewards that are offered by this particular peak. The weather in the Cairngorms can be quite erratic, so it is important that walkers take all possible safety precautions when setting off, even if the weather forecast looks good. Inexperienced walkers should not set out in winter without a mountain guide.
Dartmoor is known for some of the wildest upland in the United Kingdom. The mysterious wilderness has helped to produce some fascinating works of fiction which are known all over the world.
The wild upland landscape is dotted with rocky outcrops and interesting archaeological sites. There is also evidence of the fascinating mining heritage of the area, but walkers must always take care whilst they are around old mine buildings, as some open shafts still exist. Visitors will also have the opportunity to see some of the famous Dartmoor ponies.
Most of Dartmoor is open access land, meaning that walkers have the right to roam across the area without being confined to footpaths. However, it is always important to take notice of signposts and never cross into fenced off areas unless travelled on a proper footpath. Part of Dartmoor is used as a military training area and live ammunition is used. These areas are always announced and clearly marked, so you must avoid these zones when they are in use.
Although the terrain is relatively low-lying compared to the other destinations on our list, those who are seeking higher ground should visit High Willhays and Yes Tor. Both of these peaks stand at over 2000ft, but can be easily combined thanks to the height of the rest of Dartmoor.
Snowdonia, which lies in the North of Wales, is the highest maintain area south of Scotland. The rugged terrain means that many of the walks in the area are challenging but full of character. With so many different ranges to choose from, most holidaymakers will choose one sub-region to explore; such as The Glyders, The Moelwyns or the Arenigs.
Although some of the peaks can get quite busy during the summer months, it is still possible to find areas which offer complete tranquillity. Because of the lack of lower level peaks, inexperienced walkers are advised not to visit Snowdonia if poor weather conditions are expected. Winter walking gear is required for the majority of walks which are undertaken during the winter walking season.