Wind on your face, fresh air in your lungs, and the crunch of the crisp ground below your feet: there is nothing quite as exhilarating or refreshing than a good old hike up one of Britain’s many green hills and mountains.
Whether you are new to the game or a seasoned expert, there are a plethora of legendary hiking spots just waiting for you to explore. Indeed, there are so many that a bit of help can go a long way in choosing the best trail for you, dependent on both your experience and time available.
It’s tough to narrow down the very best hiking locations from the UK. But because of this, we have chosen our top 5 that can be done in a day.
First up is the stunning Glencoe, which is the most well-known glen in Scotland for its unmatched beauty, with a bonus that The Three Sisters can be seen at the highest peak.
Whether you’re in the mood for a brisk walk or you’re a keen hiker, there are many different paths available to explore Glencoe partially or in its entirety. There are a handful of routes with a distance up to 3km that take less than 2 hours to walk, or if you are up for the challenge of covering all grounds then you can take the 21km route from Ballachulish to Fraochaidh in just 8 hours.
Exploring this beauty sounds better than a 9-5 shift to us, what about you?
Lake District Hiking
For those living in or visiting the North West of England, the Lake District is the starting location of one of the best routes to do the grand Helvellyn hike. At 950m above sea level, there are a few ways to climb of Helvellyn but the route via Striding Edge is one of the most notable.
An ascent via Striding Edge is often considered to be the best, with the most exquisite views of all. Although it’s characterised by many narrow walkways with valleys falling away on either side, it is certainly worth the climb up as you will be greeted with a breathtaking 360° view across the Lake District National Park.
The walk is 6.5km so make sure you’ve got a nice brunch or lunch packed, plenty of water and maybe a flask or two of tea or coffee to keep you warm on the 3-hour hike.
The highest peak in Wales, Snowdon, provides an excellent hike for thousands every year. The most beaten track is arguably the Pyg track, which is a Trespass favourite for its relative ease in comparison to the other options and the absolutely gorgeous views of Snowdon’s northern face along the way.
Covering 11km, Snowdon via Pyg will take roughly 6 hours to ascend and descend, although on a dry – and especially sunny – day, we definitely recommend stopping for a picnic.
When it comes to the Scottish Highlands, Fort William is one of the best places to go. Situated on the Western coastline, this beautiful town has become somewhat of an ‘Outdoor Capital’ for being at the base of the legendary Ben Nevis and, also, the gateway town to Glen Nevis.
Before taking on the Ben, you might want to start with Glen. Glen Nevis is one of the most jaw-dropping glens in Scotland and leads along the foot of the Ben itself.
For a shorter hike that is manageable in one day, there are many different routes you can take to explore Glen Nevis that range from 1 hour to 12 hours in total length. This, of course, is due to the different distances that can be covered; the longest route, Ben Nevis by the Carn Mor Dearg Arete, is 17.5km but only takes about 11 hours. Not as bad as you might think!
You can also visit Steall Falls on this hike, which is one of the three highest waterfalls in Scotland. Why not tick two landmarks off your bucket list at once, eh?
South England Hiking
The South West Coast Path is Britain’s longest national trail at a staggering 630 miles, although it can be taken in parts that don’t require [insert horrendous number here] of days.
Going from West Lulworth to Weymouth will introduce you to some of the UK’s most beautiful, natural landmarks, and allow you to go for a swim if you so fancy. Clocking in at 21km, the stunning trail can be done in a day, although there are many possible adventures that present themselves along the way that you could take advantage of by setting up camp.
It goes without saying that going along the coast makes for some cracking photos and views that you simply will never forget.