8 spectacular hiking trails in the UK
Here's our guide to the best Travellers’ Choice award-winning hiking trails in Britain, suited for walkers of all levels of fitness and experience.
Searching for plans for the summer? The great outdoors is beckoning. Whether it’s a challenging day hike or an epic multi-day expedition, these hiking trails across England, Wales and Scotland are yours to conquer this summer.
Pack your bags, strap on your hiking boots and check out these 8 iconic hikes across the U.K.
1. Scafell Pike Walk
- Where: Lake District, England
- Distance: 2.6 - 10.5 miles
This summer, make your way up England’s highest mountain — the Scafell Pike. While there are several walking routes of varying difficulty ranging from three to six hours long, each trail up this Travellers’ Choice award-winning mountain is no less challenging than the first but promises to reward you with sweet views at the summit. Embark on a solo hike along popular and tried-and-tested routes like the Scafell Pike from Wasdale route, or build up your confidence to try one of the more demanding routes on this full-day guided mountain walk.
- Where: Snowdonia National Park, Wales
- Distance: 7 - 10 miles
If England’s highest peak doesn’t faze you, the mighty Snowdon, the highest mountain in Wales, might be just the challenge for you. Standing at over 1,000 metres high, its rugged peaks offer breathtaking views of Snowdonia National Park, Anglesey, Pembrokeshire and all the way across to Ireland. Choose from six different trails that take about six hours to the summit and back, each showing you a unique glimpse into Snowdon’s history, including remnants of its mining past. The road to the summit is a challenging one, so book a guided walk with MountainXperience to get you there safely.
3. Ben Nevis Mountain Track
- Where: Lochaber, Highland, Scotland
- Distance: 10.5 miles
The Ben. It’s the biggest and baddest mountain of them all. At 1,345 metres tall, Ben Nevis stands as the highest peak in the U.K. with formidable and exhilarating routes that challenge the best of walkers. The Ben Nevis Mountain Track — also known as the Tourist Track — is the easiest and most popular route to the summit. Follow this guided walk up the mountain path and be rewarded with panoramic views of the surrounding peaks, Northern Ireland and beyond.
4. The Yorkshire Three Peaks
- Where: Yorkshire Dales National Park, England
- Distance: 24 miles
Located within the Yorkshire Dales National Park are the iconic Three Peaks of Pen-y-ghent, Whernside and Ingleborough. Soak in the atmosphere and admire the beautiful scenery as you ascend The Yorkshire Three Peaks on a multi-day hike. Or up the ante and take part in the Yorkshire Three Peaks Challenge, which pushes you to conquer all three peaks — with a total ascent of 1,585 metres — within 12 hours.
5. Coast to Coast Walk
- Where: Cumbria to North Yorkshire, England
- Distance: 182 miles
Created by Alfred Wainwright, a decorated British fellwalker, the Coast to Coast Walk traverses some of what he described as the “grandest territory in the north of England”. Starting at St Bees in Cumbria, this gruelling multi-day hike will take you through three stunning national parks: Lake District National Park, the Yorkshire Dales National Park and the North York Moors National Park. Tackle this epic trail in parts or venture on the full 14-day expedition, made easier with an all-inclusive walking tour that will have your food and accommodation covered.
6. Hadrian’s Wall Path
- Where: Tyne and Wear to Cumbria, England
- Distance: 84 miles
Stretching across the north of England, the Hadrian’s Wall Path is a National Trail that follows the footsteps of the Romans along the historic Hadrian’s Wall, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Over seven days and 84 miles, you’ll venture through rolling hills and rugged moorland, past vibrant cities, ancient forts and fascinating museums that offer a glimpse into ancient Roman Britain. Take a shot at the full trail with the help of a local guide or go for a leisurely day walk along the shorter routes available.
7. South Downs Way National Trail
- Where: South Downs National Park, England
- Distance: 100 miles
The South Downs Way is a long distance trail that takes approximately nine days to complete in full. The trail will take you along the chalk ridges of the South Downs and through iconic natural landscapes like the Seven Sisters, Devil’s Dyke and Old Winchester Hill. Located entirely within the South Downs National Park, the trail offers great opportunities for you to spot rare wildlife like the greater mouse-eared bat, nightingales, otters and the silver-spotted skipper butterfly.
8. Pembrokeshire Coast Path
- Where: Pembrokeshire, Wales
- Distance: 186 miles
Cutting through the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park, the Pembrokeshire Coast Path takes you through some of the most breathtaking coastal landscapes in the U.K. The trail in its entirety will take you around 12 days to complete, bringing you across rugged cliffs, sandstone coves, secluded beaches and tranquil estuaries. The trail will also introduce you to the maritime history of the area, as you pass by historic sites like the Porthgain Brickworks and the Milford Haven Waterway.
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