Stunning Summer Hikes to Enjoy This Season in the UK

Stunning Summer Hikes to Enjoy This Season in the UK

Summer in the UK is a time of vibrant landscapes, warm weather, and long days – the perfect combination for outdoor adventures. With its diverse scenery, ranging from rugged coastlines to tranquil forests, the UK offers some of the best hiking experiences. Whether you're a seasoned hiker or a casual walker, there’s a trail waiting for you.

Here, we explore some of the most stunning summer hikes across the UK, providing detailed insights into what makes each one unique and worth exploring.

1. South West Coast Path, Cornwall

The South West Coast Path is the longest National Trail in the UK, stretching 630 miles from Minehead in Somerset to Poole Harbour in Dorset. For this guide, we focus on the Cornish section, renowned for its dramatic cliffs, sandy beaches, and picturesque fishing villages.

  • Land’s End to St Ives: This 28-mile stretch offers spectacular coastal views, including the iconic Minack Theatre and the secluded Porthcurno Beach.
  • Lizard Peninsula: The southernmost point of mainland Britain, the Lizard Peninsula boasts unique flora and fauna, along with stunning coves like Kynance Cove.
  • Tintagel to Bude: Rich in Arthurian legend, this rugged section features the ruins of Tintagel Castle and the beautiful Bude beaches.


  • Be prepared for varying weather conditions and rugged terrain.
  • Make sure to stay hydrated and take plenty of breaks to enjoy the scenery.
  • Local accommodation ranges from cosy B&Bs to luxurious coastal hotels.

2. Snowdonia National Park, Wales

Snowdonia National Park in North Wales is home to some of the most breathtaking landscapes in the UK. Dominated by the highest mountain in Wales, Mount Snowdon, this park offers hikes that cater to all levels of experience.

  • Snowdon Summit via the Llanberis Path: The most popular route to the summit, it’s a manageable hike with rewarding panoramic views at the top.
  • Cader Idris: A challenging hike that takes you to the summit of Cader Idris, offering views of the surrounding mountains and lakes.
  • Glyderau Range: This hike includes the famous Tryfan peak and offers rugged terrain and dramatic landscapes.


  • Start early to avoid crowds, especially on popular routes like the Llanberis Path.
  • Check weather conditions before setting out, as they can change rapidly.
  • Consider using a local guide for the more challenging hikes.

3. The Lake District, Cumbria

The Lake District is synonymous with stunning lakes, rolling hills, and charming villages. It’s a UNESCO World Heritage site and a haven for hikers looking to explore its scenic beauty.

  • Helvellyn: One of the most popular hikes, with routes like Striding Edge offering a thrilling ridge walk.
  • Scafell Pike: The highest peak in England, with routes suitable for both beginners and experienced hikers.
  • Catbells: A shorter, family-friendly hike that provides stunning views over Derwentwater.


  • The weather can be unpredictable, so pack layers and waterproofs.
  • Many trails can be busy in summer, so consider less well-known routes for a quieter experience.
  • Enjoy the local hospitality in villages like Keswick and Ambleside.

4. Cotswold Way, Gloucestershire

The Cotswold Way is a 102-mile long-distance trail that runs from Chipping Campden to Bath. Known for its picturesque villages and rolling countryside, it’s an ideal choice for those seeking a more leisurely hike.

  • Broadway Tower: This iconic landmark offers stunning views of the surrounding countryside.
  • Sudeley Castle: A historic castle with beautiful gardens and a rich history.
  • Bath: The trail ends in the historic city of Bath, known for its Roman Baths and Georgian architecture.


  • The trail is well-marked, making it suitable for novice hikers.
  • Accommodation along the route ranges from quaint B&Bs to luxury hotels.
  • Take your time to explore the charming Cotswold villages along the way.

5. West Highland Way, Scotland

The West Highland Way is Scotland’s most famous long-distance trail, stretching 96 miles from Milngavie to Fort William. It offers a diverse range of landscapes, from Loch Lomond’s shores to the rugged highlands.

  • Loch Lomond: The trail follows the eastern shores of this iconic loch, providing stunning waterside views.
  • Rannoch Moor: A vast, remote wilderness that offers a unique hiking experience.
  • Ben Nevis: The trail ends near the base of the UK’s highest mountain, offering the opportunity for an epic summit hike.


  • The trail is well-serviced with accommodation, from campsites to hotels.
  • Be prepared for midges in the summer; bring repellent.
  • The weather can be unpredictable, so pack accordingly.

6. Hadrian’s Wall Path, Northern England

Hadrian’s Wall Path is an 84-mile National Trail that follows the line of the Roman wall from Wallsend to Bowness-on-Solway. It’s a walk through history, with stunning landscapes along the way.

  • Housesteads Roman Fort: One of the best-preserved forts along the wall.
  • Sycamore Gap: The iconic tree featured in the film “Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves.”
  • Carlisle: A historic city with a castle and cathedral worth exploring.


  • The path is well-marked and relatively easy to follow.
  • There are plenty of places to stay along the route, from campsites to guesthouses.
  • Take time to explore the historical sites along the way.

7. Pembrokeshire Coast Path, Wales

The Pembrokeshire Coast Path runs for 186 miles along the rugged Welsh coastline, from St Dogmaels to Amroth. It’s known for its stunning coastal views, wildlife, and charming seaside towns.

  • St David’s Head: Offers dramatic coastal scenery and ancient monuments.
  • Tenby: A picturesque seaside town with colourful houses and beautiful beaches.
  • Stack Rocks: Famous for its impressive sea stacks and nesting seabirds.


  • The path is well-signposted and suitable for walkers of all abilities.
  • Summer is a great time to spot wildlife, including seals and seabirds.
  • Accommodation ranges from campsites to coastal inns and hotels.

8. Yorkshire Dales, North Yorkshire

The Yorkshire Dales National Park is a haven for hikers, with its rolling hills, limestone cliffs, and picturesque valleys. It’s an area rich in natural beauty and offers a variety of trails.

  • Malham Cove: A natural limestone formation with stunning views from the top.
  • Ingleborough: One of the Yorkshire Three Peaks, offering a challenging hike with rewarding views.
  • Aysgarth Falls: A series of beautiful waterfalls in Wensleydale.


  • The weather can be changeable, so pack accordingly.
  • Many of the trails can be muddy, so good hiking boots are essential.
  • Take time to explore the charming villages and local pubs.

9. New Forest National Park, Hampshire

The New Forest National Park is known for its ancient woodlands, open heathlands, and diverse wildlife. It’s a great destination for leisurely hikes and family-friendly walks.

  • Bolderwood Deer Sanctuary: Offers the chance to see deer in their natural habitat.
  • Lyndhurst: The ‘capital’ of the New Forest, with its charming shops and cafes.
  • Beaulieu: A picturesque village with the historic Beaulieu Abbey and Palace House.


  • The New Forest is relatively flat, making it suitable for all fitness levels.
  • There are plenty of picnic spots, so pack a lunch and enjoy the scenery.
  • Be mindful of the New Forest ponies and other wildlife.

10. The Peak District, Derbyshire

The Peak District was the first National Park in the UK and remains one of the most popular hiking destinations. It offers a variety of landscapes, from rugged peaks to gentle dales.

  • Mam Tor: Known as the ‘Shivering Mountain,’ it offers stunning views of the surrounding area.
  • Dovedale: Famous for its limestone ravines and stepping stones across the River Dove.
  • Stanage Edge: A gritstone escarpment popular with climbers and walkers alike.


  • The terrain can be challenging, so wear sturdy hiking boots.
  • There are plenty of places to stay, from campsites to cosy inns.
  • Consider exploring some of the less well-known trails to avoid crowds.


The UK offers an incredible array of hiking opportunities, each with its own unique charm and challenges. From the rugged coasts of Cornwall to the serene woodlands of the New Forest, there’s a trail for everyone. This summer, take the time to explore these stunning hikes and experience the natural beauty and rich history that the UK has to offer.

Whether you’re looking for a challenging mountain trek or a leisurely coastal walk, these trails provide the perfect opportunity to reconnect with nature and enjoy the great outdoors. So, lace up your hiking boots, pack your essentials, and set out on an adventure that will create lasting memories.

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