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Stroll On: UK’s Best Family Walks Near You

Dela Gonon

17 December 2020

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12 minutes

Fancy a good stroll through the park or a family woodland adventure? The UK has plenty of places worth exploring by foot and we’ll help you find the best walks near you that are also suitable for tiny feet.

From footpaths in ancient forests, to circular walks in historic castle grounds, to nice walks in stunning parks, there are plenty of great places to go for a walk near you that you may not even know exist. Check out our favourite kid-friendly walks for each region below!

Dad and son in the forest

Walks Near You in the West Midlands

Croft Castle Estate (Leominster, Herefordshire)

If you’re a Midlander and you love spending time in nature, Croft Castle and Parkland is definitely one of the best places for a walk near you. There are several easy to moderate walks you can explore but our favourite is the Ancient Tree Walk. The stunning views of Herefordshire make this an exceptionally beautiful walk and the 350-years-old Spanish Chestnut avenue is the perfect setting for a relaxing stroll, You can even bring your dog along.

The Ancient Tree Walk is only 1.5 miles (2.4 km) long, so it can be done in about 1 ½ hours. One of the main sights along the way is the 1,000 year old Quarry Oak, and if you’re lucky, you might spot deer and other local wildlife.

Sandwell Valley Country Park (West Bromwich, West Midlands)

Sandwell Valley Country Park is an award-winning Green Flag park which offers a number of good family walks near West Bromwich. With 660 acres to walk round and a network of surfaced pathways for easy access, you’ve got plenty of options but with a trail map to guide you, you’ll quickly find your way around.

Walks Near You in the North West

Dunham Massey Deer Park (Altrincham, Greater Manchester)

Dunham Massey is one of the most famous places to go for a walk near Manchester and for a good reason. Wildlife lovers of all ages will enjoy the organised daily walks around the park, which will introduce you to the history of the estate and the herd of 150 stunning fallow deer who live there.

Fancy exploring on your own? The Ancient Trees Trail is a great family walk featuring a fascinating collection of veteran trees. It’s 2.5 miles (4 km) long but the terrain is easy to cover, so your little ones shouldn’t find it too difficult. The path will take you by a 16th-century watermill and the deer sanctuary.

Rivington Pike (Bolton, Greater Manchester)

Fancy a family picnic to the backdrop of the most beautiful views in the North West? Then, you should put on your walking shoes and take on the heights of Rivington Pike in Bolton! Don’t let the steep ascent put you off this wonderful local walk - simply stop often to take in the views, you’ll barely notice when you’ve reached the top. You can see Winter Hill, Macron Stadium and Lever Park from the highest point.

There are different routes you could take but the walk from Rivington Hall Barn to the top of Rivington Pike is about 3 miles long. We’d recommend taking the scenic route through the Rivington Terraced Gardens - they’re definitely worth a visit.

Walks Near You in the North East

Kielder Water and Forest Park (Kielder, Northumberland)

Kielder Water and Forest Park is a great place to go for a walk with your family because no matter how old your kids are, you’ll find the right trail for your group. There are 5 beautiful marked walks for lovers of the great outdoors to explore. However, if you’re going with younger kids, your little ones will be more interested in the character trails - the Gruffalo Sculpture Trail and the Zog Activity Trail.

The best place to start your family walk is Kielder Castle Visitor Centre. Also, since you’re there already, in the grounds of Kielder Castle, there’s a lovely mini minotaur maze, which is always a big hit with the younger visitors.

Craster to Dunstanburgh Castle (Alnwick, Northumberland)

Speaking of stunning views, we’ve got just the right walk in mind! If you find yourself close to Craster fishing village, the best family walk near you is north from Craster to the historic Dunstanburgh Castle.
Along the 1.3 miles (2km) path you’ll come across farmlands rock pools which your little ones will love exploring, and of course you’ll be able to enjoy breath-taking coastal views.

The ruins of Dunstanburgh Castle are the perfect place for young knights and princesses to unleash their imaginations, run around and play. Once you get back to Craster, you will have probably worked up an appetite, so make sure you try the famous smoked kipper, it’s a local delicacy!

Large family on woodland walk

Walks Near You in the South West

Penzance to Marazion Seafront Walk (Penzance, Cornwall)

If you live in stunning Cornwall, then you’re blessed with having many of the UK’s best walks near you. The Penzance to Marazion Seafront Walk is one of our favourite coastal routes, due to the breath-taking views across Mounts Bay to St Michael’s Mount, the Lizard and Mousehole. The 2.7-mile (4.3km) seafront stretch is easily-accessible and pushchair-friendly, with plenty of dog-friendly pubs along the way.

Want a tip on keeping the kids entertained the whole time? Make sure you read up on the lore surrounding St Michaels Mount before you go. All those fascinating stories about giants, pilgrims and magical stones will give a whimsical twist to your day.

Studland Beach Sand Dunes Trail (Swanage, Dorset)

What coastal day out would that be if you didn’t get to play in the sand? Take the Studland Beach Sand Dunes Trail and it will lead you right through the golden Studland Beach. This beautiful beach-side walk is suitable even for the tiniest explorers in your group. Starting from Knoll beach, the trail is only 1 mile (1.6km) long, so it can be covered in just 30 minutes. You’ll see yellow stones along the way, just follow them and you’ll know where to go.

Oh, and make sure you tell your kids the legend of the Old Harry Rocks - the most famous landmark on the South Coast! Dating back to the Ice Age, they’re part of the Jurassic Coast World Heritage Site.

Walks Near You in the East

Ashdown Forest (Wych Cross, East Sussex)

If you’ve got book-loving kids in your house, Ashdown Forest should be on the top of your list of the best places to go for a walk. It’s the home of Winnie The Pooh!

As you walk amongst the trees, you can spot Owl's and Piglet's homes, and most importantly, you can go to Pooh Bridge and play Poohsticks. There are two designated family walks, starting from Gills Lap, which take you to locations from the book. There’s a shorter walk, suitable for younger kids, which takes you to The Enchanted Place and the Sandy Pit. If your little ones are happy to walk a bit further, there’s a longer walk, which goes down to the North Pole and Eeyore’s Sad and Gloomy Place.

Ashridge Estate (Berkhamsted, Hertfordshire)

Here comes another beautiful woodland walk we absolutely adore - Ashridge Ancient Trees Walk. Discover the routes people from Bridgewater used to travel in the past and see some of the oldest trees on the estate. You can also spot bats and other curious wildlife hiding in the deadwood.

Depending on how much walking you want to do, you can take an easy walk for 0.8 miles (1.2 km), or you can choose to continue on and add another 1.2 miles (1.9km) to your route. Whatever you decide, you will leave with fond memories of your family adventure at Ashridge Estate.

Walks Near You in Yorkshire

Anglers Country Park (Wakefield, West Yorkshire)

Anglers Country Park has been awarded Green Flag and it has some of the best family walks near you. The Room on the Broom Adventure Trail is perfect for younger kids. It’s a circular walk, featuring various activities including finding sculptures and looking for animal footprints. You can get an activity booklet from the Visitor Centre for £2.

If your kids are too old for fairytales, you can choose one of the other family-friendly trails in the park, including the Woodland walk for walkers and joggers and the 2-mile Lakeside Walk, which takes you by the area known as the “Pol”, which is home to lots of local birds.

Worsbrough Mill Museum and Country Park (Barnsley, South Yorkshire)

As a beautiful large 240-acre nature reserve, Worsbrough Mill Museum and Country Park naturally has some good walks for you to enjoy. You can pick up a leaflet about the walks for free from the Mill shop and Millers Tea Room and choose your favorite. Try The Owl Walk (5km) in dry weather and The Badger Walk (3.5km) or The Fox Walk (2km) if you’re looking for an easily accessible route.

If you’ve got a whole day on your hands, you can combine your family walk with another activity. Worsbrough Mill Museum and Country Park is a popular place for bird watching and fishing. Lots of wild flowers grow in the meadows around the reservoir, which makes this an interesting place for photography enthusiasts as well.

Family with lots of girls on a walk

Walks Near You in Scotland

Loch Lomond Faerie Trail (Luss, Glasgow and Strathclyde)

How many walks near you guarantee you see fairies along the way? Yep, that’s right, fairies! Loch Lomond Faerie Trail is a wonderfully whimsical walk for families with younger kids. You’ll have to collect clues and solve a mystery all while, discovering hidden faery and troll houses and villages.

This is a rather short walk - just 1 mile long, so even the tiniest members of the family can do it without getting too tired. It’s not every day that your kids get to pose with magical fairy houses, so make sure you bring your camera. If you really want to get into the spirit of things, you’re welcome to come in a fairy costume. Oh, and don’t forget your wellies, the trail can get quite muddy if it rains!

Brodie Castle (Forres, Moray)

The charming Brodie Castle, historically owned by the Brodie Clan, is a very interesting attraction to visit and the parkland surrounding the estate offers lots of nice walks for kids of all ages. We think your little explorers will enjoy the Pond Walk the most. It’s fairly short - 1¼ miles (2.1km), and it takes less than an hour to do. You’ll have the chance to spot buzzards, herons and kingfishers by the pond, so get ready for some bird watching!

If you opt in to take the Green Walk, you’ll find yourself walking in the footsteps of the local villagers, who used it in the 50s as a scenic shortcut to Brodie village and station. The trail is ½ mile (0.8km) long but you can extend it by returning via the exit driveway or by following the public road to the pond.

Walks Near You in Wales

Stackpole Estate (Pembroke, Pembrokeshire)

Featuring beautiful walking trails and family-friendly beaches Stackpole Estate is a wonderful place to go for a walk on your next day out. There’s a 7.4-mile (12km) walk, starting from Stackpole Estate, which boasts breath-taking views of limestones and crystal clear blue waters. If you’re up for a proper hike and you’re a sucker for a stunning seaside landscape, you’ve got to give this coastal walk a go!

Love animals? If your kids are budding wildlife explorers, tell them to stay on the lookout for choughs and Welsh mountain ponies. Spot some and you’ll have some adorable photo opportunities!

Worm’s Head at Rhossili Beach (Swansea, Glamorgan and Cardiff)

Rhossili Beach is consistently ranked amongst the most beautiful beaches in Wales, which on its own is reason enough to go and explore. Also, kids just love the walk to Worm’s Head. And it’s not just because of the catchy name! There’s a genuine old shipwreck on the beach, so with a little bit of imagination, you’ll feel like a fearless pirate crew on a mystery adventure.

Plus, you can bring a sense of excitement to your walk when you tell the kids that the area is only available at precise times either side of low tide. It takes about 2 hours to walk the full distance (3 miles/4.8km), so you’ll have to plan your pirate quest carefully.

 Family on a walk looking back

That’s the end of our list of the best places to walk in the UK. We hope you’ve discovered some new and exciting walks near you! If you’re looking for more inspiration, check out these ideas on our blog:

Best Castles in England | Best Castles in Scotland | Best Theme Parks in the UK | Bluebell Walks in the UK | Outdoor Lockdown Activities