The Best UK National Walking Trails

Hadrians Wall over the hillsides | John Millen
Hadrians Wall over the hillsides | John Millen

Scattered around England and Wales, you may have come across a so-called UK National Trail. Marked by the iconic acorn symbol, these are walking (and sometimes cycling) routes designated by the British Government. The conditions along the trail are looked after by a dedicated officer and are kept maintained to a standard that truly sets them apart. 

They are a fantastic option to discover some of the best that the UK has to offer to outdoor enthusiasts as they wind their way through Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) and National Parks. All being long-distance walks, allow yourself a week or two to step into the outdoors and soak up the British countryside.

With nine out of the 15 trails to choose from, let Walkers Britain be your guide when completing a UK National Trail.

Cleveland Way

The 110 mile Cleveland Way follows a walking route from Helmsley to Filey. What stands out is the experience of half a walk over hill and scarp edges and half along the hilly coastline of the Yorkshire seaside.

> Walk this UK National Trail

 

Cotswold Way

The Cotswolds is the epitome of the English countryside. It is no wonder that this is an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty as rolling hills meet with quaint villages that are all preserved in a glorious state.  

> Walk the Cotswold Way National Trail

 

Hadrian’s Wall Path

Hadrian’s Wall stretches from the aptly named Wallsend in Newcastle Upon Tyne to the quaint village of Bowness-on-Solway in the west. The 84 mile (135km) Hadrian’s Wall Path takes hikers across the rugged countryside of Northern England, following the world’s largest Roman artefact.

> Choose your active holiday

 

Offa’s Dyke Path

Crossing the border between England and Wales more than 10 times, the Offa’s Dyke National Trail path follows some of the finest scenery in both countries for 177 miles (285 km).

> Walk this National Trail in Wales

 

Pennine Way

The Pennine Way, a mountain journey across the backbone of England, became the very first UK National Trail on April 24th 1965. It is a long, 268 mile (429 km) hike from Edale in Derbyshire to Kirk Yetholm in the Scottish Borders. It crosses some of the finest upland landscapes in England and down into Scotland.

> Choose your active holiday

 

South Downs Way

Exactly 100 miles of chalk downland walking separates the Victorian seaside town of Eastbourne and the ancient Saxon Capital of Wessex and England – Winchester, forming the South Downs Way. Stretching over a rare large Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty in Southern Britain, the walk generally follows the chalk (soft limestone) ridge just to the north of the popular seaside towns on the Sussex and Hampshire coast.

> Walk the South Downs Way National Trail

 

South West Coast Path

England’s longest and, many would say, the finest trail is the 630 miles long South West Peninsula Coastal Path from Poole to Minehead, of which almost half is in Cornwall.

> Choose your active holiday in Cornwall

 

Thames Path

Following the Thames Path will help you to understand not only the Thames but also why it is the key to the history of London. There is a lot to see: the palaces such as Hampton Court and Syon Park; castles such as Windsor and the Tower of London; multiple bridges each with their own history; and wildlife reserves.  And always as the backdrop to it all is the life on the river. 

> Walk the Thames Path



Contact our team to organise your UK National Trail walking holiday. 

Walking, United Kingdom

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