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We all know the saying ‘the best things in life are free’ and that is certainly true of the Yorkshire countryside. It costs absolutely nothing to enjoy a good walk and with benefits to both the body and soul it can be a great activity to enjoy with family, friends or even on your own (if you fancy a bit of peace and quiet).
There really is no better way to see the best of Yorkshire as you can venture off the beaten track, stay flexible and take as much time as you like to discover hidden treasures. Yorkshire really does have everything you could want from the great outdoors with Moors, Dales, Peaks and coast to explore. Discover seven of the best Yorkshire walks below…
1. Coast to coast
If you are up for a challenge this year you could try the much travelled Coast to Coast walk which passes through the Lake District, the Yorkshire Dales and the North Yorkshire Moors, ending up at the pretty coastal town of Robin Hood’s Bay (where it is recommended you dip your feet at the end of the journey). The route however is a whopping 192 miles and typically takes about 2 weeks to complete so it may be more practical to tackle some smaller walks spread out over several weekends throughout the year.
2. Yorkshire Three Peaks
Pen y Ghent seen from Lower Winskill
If you like climbing, you could try and tackle the famous Yorkshire Three Peaks which comprises of the Pen-y-Ghent, Whernside and Ingleborough hills, all completed within one circular route. This challenge isn’t for the faint-hearted though as all three peaks are around 700 metres high so good physical fitness is required!
3. Roseberry Topping
Image courtesy of Joe Cornish
For a less challenging ascent, you could try Roseberry Topping at around 300 metres. The walk to the top is about 2 miles and you’ll get some great views of the area. Alternatively Urra Moor is the highest peak of the Moors at 450 metres and is famous for its pre-historic remains and carved rocks.
4. Aysgarth Falls
For an altogether more tranquil day out, you could try Aysgarth Falls which is one of the prettiest waterfalls around - the upper fall was even featured in Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves. With woodland paths and great views to Castle Bolton, it is a great spot for a scenic walk. A circular route which takes in the three separate falls as well as Castle Bolton itself will take you about 2½ hours.
5. The Nidderdale Way
The Nidderdale Way is around 50 miles long, is located in the Nidderdale Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and provides a fabulous unspoilt landscape for walkers. It crosses through the upper, middle and lower valleys of the River Nidd and attractions on the route include Brimham Rocks and Ripley Castle.
6. The Herriot Way
Also approximately 50 miles, the Herriot Way (named after James Herriot) runs through Wensleydale and Swaledale and takes in the valleys, fells and heather-topped moorland of the area. It is designed around 3 villages: Aysgarth (which is closs to the Falls), Grinton and Keld, as well as the popular market town of Hawes (home to Wensleydale Cheese). The walk is typically broken into 4 different days to match the 4 locations so that you have plenty of time to explore.
7. The Cleveland Way
If you fancy some refreshing sea air, Yorkshire is famous for its dramatic coast line with beaches, cliffs and coves. Making up part of the famous Cleveland Way walking trail, the 53-mile long cliff path going all the way from Saltburn to Filey gives you the opportunity to call in at lots of pretty villages along the way such as Staithes, Runswick Bay, Robins Hoods Bay and Ravenscar.
Of course this is just a small selection of some of the walks to try but there are lots more options open to you with acres of Moors and Dales available to everyone (not to mention pretty villages, heritage sites, rustic pubs and market towns). So what are you waiting for, why not venture into the great outdoors this weekend and discover Yorkshire by foot?
You can discover lots more walking routes on the Yorkshire Walks website. For accommodation during your walking holiday take a look at our collection of beautiful Yorkshire Holiday Cottages, most of which have stunning walks right from the doorstep!