Four of UK’s best scenic walking routes.
image: CC0 Public Domain
This is the perfect time of year to get out of doors and enjoy the spectacular countryside that is within close reach of most of us.
In the British Isles, we have an abundance of spectacular coastline, rugged mountain ranges and green rolling open countryside dotted with pretty towns, historic sites and places of interest.
Walking is the UK’s favourite pastime and on foot is the best way to experience this landscape and to whet your appetite we have suggested four of UK’s best scenic walking routes:
1 Hadrian’s Wall (84 miles/135 km long) Hadrian’s Wall Path gently weaves across Northern England’s border country from Bowness, on the Solway Firth in west Cumbria, to Wallsend at the mouth of the river Tyne in the east.
A UNESCO World Heritage Site dating from the second century AD, if you walk part, or all, of this amazing route, you will be immersed in beautiful unspoiled landscape that is steeped in History. Take in the visitor centre Segedunum at Wallsend and marvel at the Roman Fort remains at Milecastle.
2 Cotswolds Way (102 miles/164 km long) running from Bath to Chipping Campden, the route passes famous ancient sites, monuments and picturesque villages with spectacular views from the Cotswold escarpment.
Places of interest it passes including the Battle of Lansdowne site, the Somerset Monument, the Tyndale Monument, Cleeve Hill, Sudeley Castle, Hailes Abbey, and the Broadway Tower.
3 The Thames Path (184 miles/296 km) From the source of the Thames, near Kemble in Gloucestershire, to the Thames Barrier at Charlton, this path follows the entire length of the river and in the main uses the original towpath. It can also be cycled.
- Thames Head to Oxford – mainly rural area until Lechlade
- Oxford to Henley-on-Thames – the path goes through Abingdon, Dorchester, Wallingford, Streatley and Reading, leaving the river bank to take in the towns.
- Henley to Windsor – through Marlow and Maidenhead.
- Windsor to Richmond – touches the edge of Windsor Great Park, passes Runnymede, then goes through Hampton Court Park.
- Richmond to Thames Barrier – Passes Kew Gardens, the Wetlands Centre at Barnes, then through London’s parkland like Battersea Park, it continues on either side of the river.
- 4 Southern Upland Way (212mile/341 km) A coast-to-coast walk in southern Scotland, the footpath runs through some of Scotland’s most dramatic, unspoilt scenery between Portpatrick in the west and Cockburnspath in the east.
The path visits Castle Kennedy, New Luce, Bargrennan, Dalry, Sanquhar, Wanlockhead, Beattock, St Mary’s Loch, Traquair, Galashiels, Lauder and Longformacusen
If any of these (or the hundreds of other) walking paths take your fancy, remember to plan your route in advance and stock up on practical clothing that is suitable for outdoor wear.
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