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Step Up To Long Distance Trails | 5 Multi-day Hikes to Try This Year

Mollie Hughes is a Mountaineer, Adventurer and Motivational Speaker based in Edinburgh, Scotland.

Is 2019 the year to challenge yourself on one of the UK’s long distance hiking trails?

Over recent years there has been an emergence of long-distance walking trails across the country. In fact, there are now 700 such footpaths around the UK to enjoy as a walking holiday.

Some long-distance trails are well-waymarked, offer baggage transfer services and have ample accommodation options. However, other routes, in more remote parts of the country require confident navigation skills and plenty of hiking experience.

With so many trails on offer, it can be hard to choose the one for you! We are here to help. We have narrowed the list down to our top five multi-day hikes across the UK.

The South West Coast Path

Location // South West England

Distance // 630 Miles

The South West coast path is the longest national trail in the country.

Starting in Minehead, Somerset, this route spans around the north and south coast of Devon and Cornwall, the route then continues along the Dorset coastline to Poole Harbour.

Most people will complete this route within 30-50 days, however it is easily broken into short sections for tackling during weekends and holidays. Along the South West Coast path you will be exposed to some of the best scenery, wildlife, heritage and geology the country has to offer.

The West Highland Way

Location // Glasgow to Fort William

Distance // 96 Miles

Scotland’s first and most famous long distance hiking route.

This 96 mile trail runs from the outskirts of Glasgow to the town of Fort William in the highlands. The West Highland way is a well-waymarked route and avoids any high mountain tops.

The scenery is superb, passing through open-moorland, spectacular glens and along loch shores. Baggage transfers and walking holiday packages are widely available.

The West Island Way

Location // Isle of Bute

Distance // 27 Miles

The Isle of Bute is home to Scotland’s first official island long distance footpath, the West Island way.

Spanning 27 miles and the whole length of the Island, this varied waymarked route travels through forest, moorland and coast. This route can be split up into stages and completed over a few days or during separate visits to the Island.

The Isle of Bute offers quiet and accessible walking, beautiful scenery and cosy pubs to warm up in after a day’s hike.

The Cape Wrath Trail

Location // Fort William to Cape Wrath

Distance // 235 Miles

The Cape Wrath trail is often thought of as the UK’s toughest long distance walk.

Spanning 235 miles, this trail takes you from the highland town of Fort William to Britain’s most north-westerly point, Cape Wrath.

With no way-markers and no official line, this trail gives the most experienced hikers the freedom to experience the very best of Scotland’s wild, awe-inspiring beauty. Walkers will need an expert level of navigation skills and be comfortable being self-sufficient on the long stretches between civilisation.

The Coast to Coast

Location // Northern England

Distance // 192 Miles

The coast to coast is one of the UKs most famous hikes. Spanning from the west coast of northern England to the East coast.

This 192 mile, long-distance hiking trail starts at St Bees in the west and ends at Robin Hood’s bay in the east. The route passes through three national parks en route, the Lake District national park, the Yorkshire Dales national park and the North York moors national park.

This route was devised by writer Alfred Wainwright and the route first set out in his 1972 guidebook ‘A Coast to Coast Walk’.

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