From the West Highland Way to the Pembrokeshire Coast Path, there are plenty of stunning walking routes in the UK.
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In case you didn’t know, May is National Walking Month.
Organized by the Living Streets charity, National Walking Month aims to encourage people to walk for at least 20 minutes each day this month.
With temperatures showing signs of perking up and days getting longer, now seems like a good time to start some serious hiking if you haven’t already. The potential health benefits of regular walking, both physical and mental, are numerous.
Better yet, we in the UK are very fortunate to have some truly exceptional walking trails on our doorstep, with some spectacular scenery to enjoy.
So if you fancy a walk in the countryside, here are some of the UK’s highest rated walking trails according to Tripadvisor users.
cornwall coastal path
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Cornwall is home to a 300-mile section of the South West Coast Path, which is considered to be one of the most impressive walking routes in the world. Rated 4.5/5 by Tripadvisor users, the Cornish Coastal Path is perfect for getting up close and personal with the rugged beauty of Cornwall.
The South West Coast Path section offers something for the whole family, with varied terrain and stunning natural beauty everywhere you look.
It also has a peculiar history: many years ago, when Cornwall was known for its piracy and smuggling, the Inland Revenue needed walking paths that would allow its agents easy access to ports and key vantage points.
Pembrokeshire Coast Path
The Pembrokeshire Coast Path is a national walking trail that stretches for about 186 miles. From St Dogmaels in the north to Amroth in the south, the path is perfect for enjoying some genuinely beautiful and varied coastal scenery.
A feast for both the spirit and the eyes, the Pembrokeshire Coast Path takes you past stunning cliffs, unspoiled beaches and mysterious coves. Its unspoiled setting makes it a firm favorite with walkers and nature lovers.
West Highland Road
Running 154 miles from Milngavie, in the northern suburbs of Glasgow, to Fort William in the Scottish Highlands, the West Highland Way is a popular long-distance walking route. Around 35,000 people travel the route each year.
The West Highland Way is noted for the variety of landscapes it offers, including rugged mountains, picturesque lake shores and rolling moors. Most people tackle the route from south to north, with the northern stages considered more demanding than the southern ones.
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The 8.5-mile Monsal Trail is a popular walking, cycling and horse riding trail in Derbyshire’s Peak District. Follow part of the route of an old railway, passing over old railway viaducts and tunnels for a distinctive walking experience.
Running between the Topley Pike junction on Wye Dale and Bakewell, Monsal Trail is a smooth route perfect for the less experienced walker just starting out. Four rail tunnels along the route opened to trail users in 2011.
Birks of Aberfeldy
Rated 5/5 by Tripadvisor users, Birks of Aberfeldy is a short loop trail, just 1.5 miles, outside of Aberfeldy on the River Tay. The trail runs through mixed forests and offers stunning views of deep chasms and waterfalls.
The area takes its name from a poem written by Robbie Burns, Scotland’s national poet, in 1787. Much of it has been designated a Site of Special Scientific Interest due to its botanical features.
The 17.3-mile Camel Trail in Cornwall is very popular with walkers, joggers, horse riders and cyclists. It runs between Padstow and Wenford Bridge, passing through Wadebridge and Bodmin on the way.
Following the paths of two old railway lines, the Camel Trail, rated 4.5/5 on Tripadvisor, runs through beautiful villages and stunning forests. Railways were designed to avoid sharp turns and steep inclines, making the modern trail a smooth route for walkers.
Wainwright Coast to Coast Walk
The Coast to Coast Walk, originally devised by writer and walker Alfred Wainwright, is a 190-mile route through the north of England. It comprises three national parks: the Lake District, the Yorkshire Dales and the North York Moors.
While the Wainwright Coast-to-Coast Walk is not a National Trail, it is very popular with walkers exploring the natural beauty of the North. However, the route, which is unofficial, is not fully signposted, so be sure to research where you’ll be going beforehand.