National Trails and Walking Holidays in England

When we think of the best places to visit in Britain, many of us will think of the big cities such as London or Edinburgh with their wealth of sights, shops, restaurants and nightlife or perhaps the beaches in Newquay or Norfolk but some of Britain‘s best holiday destinations lie within its glorious countryside. There is a mass amount of beautiful countryside all over Britain and there are a wide range of walking holidays that are available.

Walking Holidays in England have always been popular and became increasingly popular in the early decades of the Twentieth Century. Walking in England has always been part of our heritage, whether going to that old public house in Minehead, going for a walk was something that would typically have been done as a family after a meal. After the Second World War, there was a growing desire amongst the public to keep certain areas of Britain preserved and this led to The Establishment of National Parks, Areas of Outstanding National Beauty and Long Distance Routes which today are known as the National Trails.

National trails can be described as long distance footpaths and bridleways in England and Wales. There are 15 of them and they are administered by Natural England and the Countryside Council for Wales, statutory agencies of the UK Government. The first route was established in 1965, named ‘The Pennine Way’ and this was in the Peak district in Derbyshire. You can tell when you are walking along a national trail as there will be an acorn symbol along the route.

One of the most popular walking holidays in England is The Cotswold Way. The Cotswold Way has existed for over 30 years as a promoted walk although it was only formally made a National Trail in May 2007 and is a long distance walking trail that runs between the small market town of Chipping Campden and Bath. The Cotswold Way is 102 miles long and passes through many different beautiful and picturesque villages and also runs close to many different historic sites such as the Roman heritage in Bath and Sudeley Castle near Winchcombe amongst others.

Another popular trail is the South Downs Way which follows the old routes and droveways along the chalk escarpment and ridges of the South Downs in Sussex. The trail is 160 kilometres long and is shared amongst cyclists, horseriders and walkers. What makes the South Downs Way trail special is the fact that you can see the earliest signs of occupation along the way. About 6000 years ago settled farming became the main source of food, replacing hunting and gathering as the main source of food . The dips left by old flint mines can be seen at several places along the trail.

As well as the trails there are a whole load of other walks and public pathways for you to explore. Walking Holidays are a great way to get out and explore the wonders of the British Countryside, so why don’t you put on your walking boots and get out there