Hiking in United Kingdom

Hikes in United Kingdom

Country in Europe

The United Kingdom has long been regarded as one of Europe’s most popular tourist destinations, offering historic cities, beautiful castles, quaint villages, and some really spectacular natural attractions. This beautiful country also has a lot to offer in terms of adventure travel, with more and more people coming to the UK each year to experience its magnificent mountains, valleys, and coastline.

The United Kingdom may be a small country, but it certainly packs a punch when it comes to outdoor activities! This small collection of islands offers a whole host of amazing things to do, from hiking and backpacking to climbing, scrambling, and cycling.

The UK is made up of four nations, England, Wales, Scotland, and Northern Ireland, each with its own particular charm. Rugged Scotland has much to offer hikers and backpackers, with some of the highest mountains in the UK, and many multi-day backpacking treks, while England is a hub for cycling and road biking, in addition to boasting some fascinating city walks. Climbers flock to Wales and Northern Ireland every year to take advantage of the beautiful mountains and coastal cliffs.

To help you plan your next adventure holiday to the United Kingdom, we’ve put together all the information you’ll need. You’ll find helpful tips, recommendations for places to stay and visit, and our guide to all the best walks and adventure activities in the UK.

15 Greatest Hikes in the United Kingdom

The United Kingdom is perhaps one of the most idyllic settings for a walk, with rolling green hills, picturesque ponds and charming, quiet villages. Whether you’re looking for something short and sweet, or long and challenging, we’ve got you covered on your next adventure through the U.K. countryside.

  • Ravenscar and Robin Hood’s Bay: This incredible hike takes you from the tip of the Ravenscar cliffs to the charming town of Robin Hood’s Bay. With incredible views from start to end, follow the loop back to discover the historic old Scarborough-Whitby railway.
  • Scafell Pike: Walk along the road less travelled to explore the highest peak in England--Scafell Pike. This trail is decidedly more pretty than the popular Wasdale Head hike and far less crowded.
  • The Great Ridge and Win Hill: Considered the most walked ridge line in England, this hike makes all the bucket lists for a reason. It connects some of the most famed summits in the region, Lose Hill (476 m) and Mam Tor (517 m), while also conquering Win Hill.
  • Hole of Horcum: Featuring the already impressive Hole of Horcum, this walk is extra special as you hike through the magical moorlands and pass through the charming town of Levisham.
  • Mam Tor: This easy, circular route is perfect for families with young children and offers easy access to the Peak District’s most iconic view. At the top of the ascent, lookout over Vale of Edale, Peveril Castle and the Hope Valley for stunning landscapes.
  • Helvellyn Walk: This walk remains a classic and for good reason. This challenging trail takes in some of the most beautiful sections of England’s Lake District and the scenic town of Glenridding—which looks straight out of a postcard.
  • Kinder Scout: Prepare for an epic adventure on this hike conquering the most difficult terrain of the Dark Peak with peaty trails, craggy peaks and deep cloughs.
  • Ben Venue Walk from Loch Achray: The Ben Venue Walk tops our list as one of the best hikes out there! With exceptional stunning views across Scotland’s Loch Katrine, Ben Lomond and beyond, this hike should go to the top of your bucket list.
  • The Great Trossachs Path 1: This section of the famed Great Trossachs Path covers exceptional viewpoints over Loch Lomond to Trossachs Pier at the head of Loch Katrine. Pop into the local tea shop or unwind at the rustic Stronachlachar Lodge at the mid-way point in your two-day journey.
  • Ben Lomond: While an extremely popular mountain, we recommend taking the less popular route for the descent, which makes for an interesting return from the summit and a much quieter hike.
  • Loch Venachar Walk: Head out on this long, but relatively flat trail to take in the perimeter of Loch Venachar. Enjoy beautiful views of the waterfront and surrounding mountains as you walk through the countryside.
  • Dovedale: Enjoy a variety of quirky oddities on this Dovedale hike, as you wander past unique limestone features, like Lover's Leap, Tissington Spires and Dove Holes. Then, summit Bailey Hill for impressive views.
  • Snowdon Horseshoe: Be forewarned, this hike is best left to experienced hikers. Take in the incredible views of Crib Goch ridge—considered one of the best in Whales—for a memorable hike. Come prepared for crazy winds and snowy conditions at times.
  • CWM Idwal Walk: This short, but steep hike tempts with the promise of a stunning lake and multiple waterfalls just beyond the peak. Plus, there is a shop for a sweet treat to enjoy at the end of the trail.
  • Barmouth Panorama Hike: Be dazzled by panoramic views from the tip top of Barmouth on this spectacular hike. Lookout over the Afon Mawddach estuary, up and down the Welsh coast, and out to Cardigan Bay from the top of the ridge.

When is the Best Time to Hike in the United Kingdom

The summer is a particularly fantastic time to hike in the United Kingdom, with the most amount of days promising sunshine and warmth. As a bonus, it never gets overly hot in the U.K. throughout the summer, so you don’t have to worry about heat exhaustion or planning the timing of your hike just right. The spring also offers pleasant weather, but be prepared with an umbrella and wellies in the case it rains (which it often does!).

Best Regions to Hike in the United Kingdom

There is no shortage of breathtaking spots to hike across the United Kingdom. With multiple countries under one umbrella, you’re sure to be delighted with the options for an adventurous hiking holiday. In England, discover the natural beauty of Chiltern Hills, the famed pools of the Lake District, the stunning, rugged landscape of the North York Moors, the rolling, unexpected hills of South Downs, or the oldest national park in the U.K.--the Peak District. In Scotland, the gorgeous Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park awaits exploration. And in Wales, the magic of hiking in Snowdonia continues to delight hikers each year.

Other Activities in the United Kingdom

While most don’t first and foremost think of the United Kingdom as an outdoor adventure paradise, let us assure you, they’re wrong. The U.K. offers a fantastic vacation to those seeking epic hiking adventures, as well as fascinating and historic city walks. It’s also revered by cyclists to be one of the best and most beautiful destinations for a cycling holiday, where you’ll work up a sweat peddling from pub to pub. For more remote adventures, there are plenty of options for mountain biking, trekking and climbing--regardless of skill level.

United Kingdom's Adventure Tours

If you’d rather skip the headache of planning your own trip, why not let 10Adventures help? With our wide-range of tours in the United Kingdom, check out England or Scotland for fantastic options. All you have to do is pack your bag—the rest is taken care of! From walking the Cotswold Way in its entirety to cycling the Scottish Isles of Arran, Islay, and Jura, our 10Adventure tour options are guaranteed to be epic and worry-free.

How to Plan a Trip to the United Kingdom

Ready to pack your bags and hit the trails across the United Kingdom? We’ve got you covered with our complete, local guides! From the Chiltern Hills, to the Lake District, to North York Moors National Park, to South Downs National Park, to the Peak District, to Loch Lomond & the Trossachs National Park, to Snowdonia—we took out all the guesswork, leaving more time for hitting the trails.

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Hiking regions in United Kingdom

    Best Hikes in United Kingdom

    Open details for Snowdon Horseshoe

    Snowdon Horseshoe

    Hard
    12.2 km
    1,072 m
    5-7h

    This ridge hike is not for inexperienced hill walkers or those afraid of heights. Crib Goch is a phenomenal ridgeline - one of the best in Wales - but, it should not be underestimated. Be prepared, and avoid it in high winds and wintery conditions unless well equipped. Having said that, it is exceptional!

    User Ratings
    Overall Rating
    10.0
    Technical Difficulty
    Easy (Circle)
    Suitable for beginners, families, young children, and those looking for a casual adventure.
    Physical Difficulty
    Advanced (Diamond)
    Suitable for advanced experience level looking for a solid adventure.
    Open details for The Great Trossachs Path 1

    The Great Trossachs Path 1

    Very Hard
    28.5 km
    693 m
    7-10h

    The Great Trossachs Path is a fantastic walk that we have split up into two long days. This first section can be done as one long day or broken into two shorter days. The TGTP provides instant access to the wonderful wilds of Scotland. From the bonny banks of Loch Lomond to Trossachs Pier at the head of Loch Katrine this is the first section of the Great Trossachs Path, the whole of which can be walked comfortably in two days.

    User Ratings
    Overall Rating
    9.9
    Technical Difficulty
    Intermediate (Square)
    Suitable for intermediates who are ready for a little bit more adventure.
    Physical Difficulty
    Intermediate (Square)
    Suitable for intermediates who are ready for a little bit more adventure.
    Open details for Helvellyn Walk

    Helvellyn Walk

    Hard
    13.6 km
    842 m
    4.5-6.5h

    The Helvellyn walk is one of the classics in the beautiful Lake District. To complete this challenging walk, you will have to use your hands and to be comfortable with heights, but this route offers some of the best rewards in the Lakes. The ascent to Helvellyn will take you scrambling up the Striding Edge and to go down, you will descend the Swirral Edge. Helvellyn was named Britain's best walk in 2018!

    User Ratings
    Overall Rating
    9.9
    Technical Difficulty
    Intermediate (Square)
    Suitable for intermediates who are ready for a little bit more adventure.
    Physical Difficulty
    Advanced (Diamond)
    Suitable for advanced experience level looking for a solid adventure.
    Open details for Roseberry Topping Walk via Captain Cook’s Monument

    Roseberry Topping Walk via Captain Cook’s Monument

    Easy
    8.3 km
    324 m
    2.5-3.5h

    Though short in distance, the Roseberry Topping Walk is a bit of a challenge with a sharp incline for most of the ascent up Cleveland’s most photographed hill. With a unique, half-cone shape, this hill is perhaps the most notable in the area, offering rewarding views over all of the Cleveland plains on a sunny day. Continue onto Captain Cook’s Monument, which stands proudly in the land the famous explorer once grew up.

    The Roseberry Topping Walk via Captain Cook’s Monument is a superb hike – taking you to two distinct peaks of the North York Moors. Though likely to be busy, especially on a summer day, it’s definitely worth the climb!

    User Ratings
    Overall Rating
    9.7
    Technical Difficulty
    Easy (Circle)
    Suitable for beginners, families, young children, and those looking for a casual adventure.
    Physical Difficulty
    Easy (Circle)
    Suitable for beginners, families, young children, and those looking for a casual adventure.
    Open details for Padley Gorge

    Padley Gorge

    Easy
    6.0 km
    196 m
    1.5-2h

    A fantastic hike starting from the beautiful Longshaw estate, following a bustling brook through the Burbage Valley to the village of Grindleford, and finally walking you back through the Yarncliffe Wood. Family friendly.

    User Ratings
    Overall Rating
    9.7
    Technical Difficulty
    Easy (Circle)
    Suitable for beginners, families, young children, and those looking for a casual adventure.
    Physical Difficulty
    Easy (Circle)
    Suitable for beginners, families, young children, and those looking for a casual adventure.
    Open details for Temple of the Winds

    Temple of the Winds

    Very Easy
    3.2 km
    21 m
    0.5-1h

    The Temple of the Winds walk is a short, relatively flat walk in the South Downs. This hike is an absolute must do for all walkers in the Sussex area, regardless of ability. From the stone bench seat halfway through the walk, you’re rewarded with some of the best views the South Downs have to offer. Lord Tennyson himself was said to have spent hours in this spot composing his poems, and once you reach the bench you’ll want to stay too.

    User Ratings
    Overall Rating
    9.6
    Technical Difficulty
    Easy (Circle)
    Suitable for beginners, families, young children, and those looking for a casual adventure.
    Physical Difficulty
    Easy (Circle)
    Suitable for beginners, families, young children, and those looking for a casual adventure.
    Open details for Pegsdon and Deacon Hill

    Pegsdon and Deacon Hill

    Easy
    7.9 km
    127 m
    1.5-2.5h

    This wonderful walk in the Chilterns follows an undulating path through rolling fields until you reach the stunning views at the peak at Deacon Hill.  Be sure to bring your camera!

    User Ratings
    Overall Rating
    9.2
    Technical Difficulty
    Easy (Circle)
    Suitable for beginners, families, young children, and those looking for a casual adventure.
    Physical Difficulty
    Easy (Circle)
    Suitable for beginners, families, young children, and those looking for a casual adventure.
    Open details for Rollright Stones Circular Walk

    Rollright Stones Circular Walk

    Easy
    8.5 km
    268 m
    2-3h

    The Rollright Stones Circular Walk is a great outdoor activity in the northeastern part of The Cotswolds AONB that will lead you through a lovely stretch of English countryside to visit an interesting historical site. The trail sets out from the charming village of Salford and traverses the open farmland and rolling hills to the northeast before arriving at the Rollright Stones, a series of Neolithic and Bronze Age limestone monuments. This is a fantastic day-walk for anyone that is interested in local history.

    User Ratings
    Overall Rating
    8.0
    Open details for Calshot Beach Walk

    Calshot Beach Walk

    Very Easy
    9.0 km
    56 m
    2-2.5h

    When you want a change from the woods of New Forest, head down to Calshot Beach for a lovely coastal walk. Head east along the beach, and explore the fascinating history of the Calshot Castle, which guards the entrance to Southampton. Walk north among the rich marshes home to plenty of wildlife, then return along the coast. Don’t be afraid to stop for a swim if the weather is pleasant! There’s plenty of opportunities to customize your day on Calshot Beach and enjoy some time by the sea.

    User Ratings
    No Reviews
    Open details for Ben Macdui and Cairngorm Walk

    Ben Macdui and Cairngorm Walk

    Very Hard
    17.5 km
    932 m
    5.5-8h

    Strive to reach the summit (932 m) of Scotland’s second-highest mountain on the gripping Ben Macdui and Cairngorm Walk in Aviemore, Scotland. The 17.5 km hillwalk is certainly not your average walk in the park, but for those seeking to conquer one of the more challenging hillwalks in Cairngorm National Park, this walk is for you! Featuring incredible views from the Cairngorm Plateau, wild river crossings and a triumphant final ascent across Ben Macdui’s northern flanks to reach the summit, this was packs a punch and if up for the challenge, you won’t want to miss it.

    User Ratings
    No Reviews

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