The best UK walks
Embrace the great outdoors and discover the UK's most beautiful landscapes on these scenic walking routes.
Hadrian's Wall | Wallsend to Bowness-on-Solway
If you were dreaming up the perfect walking route, Hadrian's Wall Path in northern England is probably what you'd come up with. Stunning natural beauty, rich history and lovely towns and villages to recharge in along the way? It's got the lot.
Roman Emperor Hadrian's namesake wall was built around 1,900 years ago to keep out invaders north of the border in what's now Scotland. Back in the day it was one of the most heavily fortified borders in the ancient world, with soldiers garrisoned in large forts, smaller milecastles and turrets.
Nowadays, the only rabbles you'll find are excitable walking groups taking on the scenic 73-mile hike along the wall. Top sights include Housesteads, the country's best preserved Roman fort, Millennium Bridge connecting Cumbria and Northumberland and Vindolanda – an active archaeological site that offers fascinating insights into Roman life.
If you plan on walking the whole length of the wall, it'll take around 5 to 7 days.
Causeway Coast Way | Portstewart to Ballycastle
A coastal walk more your thing? You should head to Northern Ireland's Causeway Coast, an Area of Outstanding Beauty which promises sandy beaches, dramatic rocky cliffs and views across the Atlantic Ocean.
Between Portstewart and Ballycastle you'll discover iconic landmarks like the Giant's Causeway, Northern Ireland's only natural World Heritage Site, and the medieval ruins of Dunluce Castle.
You can complete this 31.5-mile walk in two days, but we'd recommend taking an extra day to truly admire the sights and scenery en route.
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Yr Wyddfa (Snowdon) | Eryri National Park
Up for a challenge? Climbing the highest peak in Wales should do the trick.
It'll take some preparation. There's 3,560 feet of mountain to conquer, and Yr Wyddfa offers little protection from the elements, so keep a beady eye on the weather forecast and pack your best pair of walking boots.
But there's plenty to reward the brave hikers who take on this famous Welsh summit. The higher you climb, the more picture-perfect the deep green valleys and shimmering blue lakes become. And the feeling of making it to the top is worth every upward step.
There are plenty of routes to the top – the popular Llanberis Path is recommended for beginners and takes around 7 hours to complete depending on fitness. It gets very busy in the summer and on weekends, so consider heading to Yr Wyddfa another time to avoid the crowds.
West Highland Way | Milngavie to Fort William
Scotland's first official long-distance route is also its most popular. The 96-mile West Highland Way will take you all the way from the edge of Glasgow to the foot of Ben Nevis.
And the Scottish Highlands have no shortage of spectacular natural landscapes to delight you in between. Loch Lomond comes to mind – the unspoilt views of the lake from the 'bonnie banks' are a sight to behold. And then there's Glen Coe, formed from the remains of an ancient supervolcano and featuring dramatic hills and straths. It's considered the home of Scottish mountaineering, so you know it will be a route to remember.
It'll take 6 to 8 days to complete this walk, or slightly longer if you have one too many drams in Glengoyne Distillery.
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South West Coast Path | Minehead to Poole Harbour
Stretching 630 miles along the entire coastline of Cornwall, Devon, Dorset and Somerset, it would take up to 8 weeks to walk the entire South West Coast Path. And given you'd have to scale Mount Everest four times to match the trek's 115,000 feet of ascent and descent, don't feel like you have to tackle this all at once.
The journey offers rugged cliffs, sandy beaches and lots of quaint fishing villages to explore. You could head to Land's End, mainland England's westernmost point, the artsy seaside town St Ives for its galleries and beaches, Exmoor National Park and its heather-covered moors, the unique rock formations along the Jurassic Coast – the list goes on.Top