We’re extremely fortunate to have the stunning Yorkshire Dales right on our doorstep. Whatever the weather, we love to pack a flask full of soup, don our walking boots and get out in the countryside.
We’ve compiled a list of our favourite wintery walks around Yorkshire and found a few well-recommended walks from all round the country, so wherever you are you’ll find a fantastic trail to explore this winter.
Brontë Walk, Haworth
The Haworth Moors are where the famed Bronte sisters are from and it was this wild and atmospheric countryside that inspired much of their writing. Head out on this walk and you’ll be stopping by the Bronte Bridge and waterfall (where the sisters were said to take turns sitting and writing their first novels). You could even stop for a visit at the Parsonage Museum which really brings the Bronte sisters’ story to life.
Saying that though, you don’t have to be a Jane Eyre fanatic to enjoy this walk, aside from the literary connections, you will be able to enjoy long stretches of beautiful, rolling, Yorkshire moorland peppered with streams and plenty of local wildlife.
Fountains Abbey, Ripon
Fountains Abbey has everything you need for a crisp winter walk: the beautiful Fountains Hall, a well-kept historical site with the partially-standing 12 Century Abbey itself, wildlife in the form of a medieval deer park amongst plenty of scenery to take in.
With a well-marked path as well as open parkland you can choose to travel the road less travelled or the well-worn route.
Muker to Keld Circular, Upper Swaledale
This walk is, in our opinion, an absolute must for anyone in Yorkshire or visiting our fine county! Muker is a lovely Dales village with quaint stone cottages, an Elizabethan church and the rest. The walk includes amazing scenery more than a few waterfalls and striking views down Swaledale. This is just a fantastic walk!
Bolton Abbey, Wharfedale
(Photo credit: walkingenglishmen.com)
There are over 80 miles of breath-taking trails around the incredible Bolton Abbey Estate. One of our favourites is to walk from the Priory along the River Wharfe passing by the Strid, crossing Barden Bridge and looping back around. On this route you can take in stunning views along the river, wander through Strid Wood whilst passing a number of cafés to stop and refuel.
If you’re feeling energetic then a trip up to Simon’s Seat and the Valley of Desolation waterfall is a must.
Outside of Yorkshire
Hadrian’s Wall Loop, Housesteads & Vindolanda Forts, Northumberland
(Photo credit: hadrianswallcountry.co.uk)
There aren’t many walks you can do in the UK with more history than this one! Housesteads is the most well-preserved Roman fort in Britain as it the barracks, granary and hospital are still visible. Britain’s oldest surviving handwritten documents were also found at the nearby Vindolanda Fort. This landscape has remained relatively unchanged for around 2,000 years, so for anyone wanting to transport themselves into days gone by and learn a little about the history of the land, this one’s for you!
Coombe Hill & Chequers, Wendover, Chilterns, Bucks
(Photo credit: nationaltrust.co.uk)
It’s only 35 miles from central London but you’ll feel a world away from the city on this walk with its geographical and historical delights. The “Wow. What a view!” highlight is the Boer War Memorial at the top of Coombe Hill, from where you can see Aylesbury Vale, Ivinghoe Beacon and the Cotswolds to the west.
Perranuthnoe to Porthleven, Penzance, Cornwall
(Photo credit: Alamy)
This coastal walk is up there with the best in the UK.
The route starts out at St Michael’s Mount with an incredible panoramic view before continuing around Cudden Point to Prussia Cove. The brisk coastal winds will certainly make you feel more alive and coupled with scenery such as the tin mine above Rinsey Cove (pictured) this is certainly a walk to remember.
One thing to bear in mind is that this isn’t a circular route so you’ll need to plan to get a bus back to where you began.
Bishop’s Castle & Bury Ditches, Shropshire
(Photo credit: Alamy)
Not only is this walk in an official Area of Outstanding Beauty with stunning Shropshire scenery for miles around, the highlight of the walk is one of the most well-preserved Iron Age hill forts anywhere in the country (pictured). This site is shrouded in soul-enriching countryside with the walk taking you through woodland and over gorgeous rolling hillocks.
We hope that you’ve managed to take away at least one route from our list that you can get to this winter! If not you’ll have certainly added a few to your own walking wish list. Whichever walk you manage to get out and enjoy this winter, make sure you pack a flask of hearty, healthy soup. While stopping to enjoy the view of a valley or under cover of some wonderful woodland, it’s always made that much nicer with a sip of delicious soup – well it is for us, anyway!