As the nights draw in, our hiking habits will have to adapt around weather conditions and daylight. Our community have drawn together a list of the Best Winter Walks in the UK and have taken into account the safest options when snowfall and extreme weather comes into play.
Want to read more out the best hikes in the UK?
1. The Thames Path, Marlow to Taplow
A great place to start for your walks outside of London is The Thames Path between Marlow and Taplow. If you join the Thames Path at Marlow Bridge you can then follow the river downstream, passing through Temple Marina, Cookham Dean Chalk Pit and riverside paths.
During the three-hour hike, you could stop for a wander around Cliveden House, one of the UK’s most iconic historic houses, before heading onwards towards Cliveden Woods, and heading down the Thames again towards Taplow. The walk takes around three hours and is 10 miles long. One of the best hiking near London.
2. Fife Coastal Path, Fife
Around 30 minutes from Edinburgh, the Fife Coastal Path is around 115 miles in length along the beautiful coastline of Scotland. The coastal walk goes from Kincardine Bridge to Newburgh and the Tay Bridge, and along the route, you pass through some of Scotland’s most beautiful towns, as well as the world-famous golfing capital St Andrews. It’s one of the best Scotland hiking trails.
3. Kinder Scout Peak District Circular
Kinder Scout and Edale Walk is an 8-mile loop trail located near Castleton, Derbyshire, England that features a waterfall and is rated as moderate. This is one of the most popular Peak District circular walks, starting from Edale, via Jacob’s Ladder, following some of the Pennine Way, up to Kinder Scout and across the Woolpacks! As the highest point in the Peak District, Kinder Scout is one of the most challenging places to walks in the Peak District but offers those that take on the challenge some of the most unforgettable views.
READ MORE: Walks from Edale / Kinder Scout
4. South Downs Way
The South Downs Way is one of 15 National Trails in England and Wales and was the first bridleway National Trail in England. The South Downs Way National Trail stretches for 100 miles from Eastbourne to Winchester and is an impressive hike to undertake if you love hiking near London. If you plan to hike the entire trail, you will need to find accommodation on route, or bring a tent, as the whole hike can take 8-9 days in total.
5. Scafell Pike
Standing at an impressive elevation of 978 metres above sea level, Scafell Pike is situated in the stunning surroundings of the Southern Fells in the Lake District National Park, climbing it is a rite of passage for anyone who loves walking. There are three routes up Scafell Pike – the Hollowstones route, Mickledore and the Corridor route. The routes aren’t waymarked or signposted and so you will need a map or a route planning app with you at all times.
It’s also a very popular route for participants in the Three Peaks Challenge where you climb the highest peaks in England, Scotland and Wales (Scafell Pike, Ben Nevis and Snowdon) in just 24 hours.
6. Mam Tor via the Great Ridge
There are many hiking routes which take in Mam Tor, one of the most well-known hills in the Peak District, but the Great Ridge walk is our favourite thanks to the stunning scenery of the ridge. Standing at 517m (1,696 ft), Mam Tor isn’t quite high enough to be counted as a mountain but it does have a very windy summit like the best of them! This six and a half-mile walk starts and finishes in the village of Castleton, another picturesque village which is known for its caverns which lie 450m below the hills. One of the best hikes in the Peak District.
7. Ben Lomond, Highlands
One of the most iconic mountain in Scotland, after Ben Nevis, is Ben Lomond, another incredible mountain range. Standing at 974 metres, Ben Lomond is a mountain in the Scottish Highlands on the eastern shore of Loch Lomond. It lies within the Ben Lomond National Memorial Park, the Loch Lomond region and The Trossachs National Park. There are two main paths up Ben Lomond, to the craggy summit: the Sròn Aonaich ridge to the east and the Ptarmigan Ridge to the west.
READ MORE: Hiking in Scotland
8. The Yorkshire Three Peaks
Another iconic long-distance England hike is The Yorkshire Three Peaks challenge. The challenge is to climb the main 3 peaks in Yorkshire (Pen-y-Ghent, Whernside and Ingleborough), and complete all three hikes within 12 hours. Pen-y-Ghent is 694 metres high, Whernside is 736 metres high and Ingleborough is 723 metres high.
9. The Jurassic Coast
Another one of the best hikes in England is World Heritage Site, The Jurassic Coast, on the south coast of England, stretching from Orcombe Point near Exmouth in East Devon to Old Harry Rocks near Swanage in East Dorset. The coast is approximately 96 miles in length and passes through some of England’s most beautiful towns and village.
10. Pembrokeshire Coast Path, Wales
The best long-distance hike in Wales has to be The Pembrokeshire Coast Path, also often called the Pembrokeshire Coastal Path. It is a designated National Trail in Pembrokeshire, established in 1970 and is 186 miles long. The path mostly at cliff-top level, and twists and turns is way down the coast of Wales, offering hikers the most incredible views. You can expect to see stunning coastal villages, caves, rivers and even wildlife.