Hiking is a great form of exercise and has many benefits. It offers a good cardio workout, especially if you’re walking uphill, burns calories and releases endorphins. Being outdoors helps the body get its vitamin D and walking amongst nature gives you the opportunity to practice mindfulness.
Getting out in the fresh air provides clarity, helping to clear the mind focus on what you might want to achieve. Removing yourself from the stresses of daily life by taking a hike in the countryside can allow you space to think about future goals whether this is a dream career, setting financial goals and budgets, traveling to a distant country or having a fulfilled family life.
Here in the UK, we’re lucky to have such beautiful scenery and hikes on our doorstep. We’ll explore some of the country’s best hikes, as suggested by timeout.com, and awaken your desire to discover what our small island has to offer.
South West Coast Path
A 630-mile trail, this route starts in Minehead, Somerset and ends in Poole in Dorset. Covering the coastlines of Devon and Cornwall, this National Trail features some stunning views, dramatic cliffs and golden sandy beaches.
Completing the whole hike takes approximately seven weeks but there are plenty of options to do one section at a time, with accommodation along the way.
Wales Coast Path
This continuous path stretches across the whole of the Welsh coastline. 870 miles long, the route begins in Chester and runs all the way to Chepstow. With an array of sights to see along the way and activities for all the family, it’s a perfect way to immerse yourself in the Welsh culture and discover some historic landmarks.
A 102-mile walk, taking in pretty villages and rolling hills, this route is easy to follow and will take you from Chipping Campden to Bath. Filled with history, you won’t be stuck for things to see or do along this path.
Coast to Coast Walk
Starting at St Bees in Cumbria and crossing the country to Robin Hood’s Bay in North Yorkshire, this popular 190-mile route is a network of paths. With lakes, hills, mountains and coastlines, this walk covers three national parks. There are plenty of places to stay along the way with numerous B & Bs, pubs and guest houses.
West Highland Way
This is a fairly challenging route, with elevations and steep mountains, in the Scottish Highlands. 96 miles long, the walk can easily be split into sections. Starting at Milngavie and finishing at Fort William, the West Highland Way is a beautiful and dramatic walk, taking in some of Scotland’s most scenic lochs and countryside.