Throughout the countryside of the United Kingdom and Ireland, there are many beautiful landscapes to behold. While many may consider a rainy or drizzle-filled day a waste of a good time, those who love to see the countryside in its natural form will find a pleasant walk to be had no matter the weather. The following is a guide to the five best walks you can find throughout the British and Irish countrysides, which will help you determine where to hit the ground running (or walking).
Cornwall has great scenery and is an ideal place to start out for a walk in the British countryside. One of the best routes in the area is the sixteen-kilometer stretch between the villages of Looe and Polperro, which will take you by rolling hills, bright-green farmlands and craggy lakes that dot the coastal shore. While inland from the beach, the brisk winds will still be felt throughout the walk, so be sure to bring a jacket. All in all, this walk is a great, flat stretch that takes about four hours to complete and showcases the very best scenery in the southwestern peninsula of Britain.
Another great walk just a few kilometers away is the walk through Bodmin Moor. Legend has it that a monster lives here and it comes out to harass the local farmers’ livestock, although such a creature has never been positively identified. The gently rolling plains give way occasionally to steep, craggy cliffs that dive off into lakes and moors. Known more commonly in the area as the Hurlers Walking Route, you can see a variety of rock formations along this path with several monolithic-looking rock features as well.
Situated on the eastern outskirts of Manchester is Derbyshire and in this area, you will find the Peak District National Park. This area remains far more isolated than its nearby urban counterpart and as such, features some of the best rural walking paths in the area. “Walk 1706” as it is called will take you on a ten-kilometer journey through parts of the park and will give you a great overlook of the nearby town of Edale. At the end, you will be on top of Win Hill but the walk itself is a fairly easy one as it winds up the side of the hill.
We now head to the western shores of Ireland – Galway County to be precise – to explore yet another walking trail across the hilly landscape. Typically explored with a guide, these trials have been worn down and converted from hiking trails into walking trails. While most people will not have difficulty walking these paths, they are not on flat ground. As you cross through meadows, over loughs and explore the beauties of Connemara National Park, you will wonder why you did not come sooner.
Finally, we will end our excursion in southern Ireland with a walk at the Glengarriff Wood Looped Park. With a relatively short distance of eight kilometers, this track gives you the peaceful exclusion found in nature without getting too far (at all) off the beaten path. Stunning untouched countryside filled with trees, meadows and a thick canopy give you the feeling of being in a lost forest from times gone by.
Photo courtesy of James Jin
Whether you are planning on taking your walking holidays in Ireland or elsewhere in the UK you are guaranteed to have a great time. Why not stay in one of the Cornish cottages or traditional Irish guesthouses during your stay? With so many to choose from you’ll be spoilt for choice.