Paths, parks and countryside areas

South Downs

  • Distance or area: 1624 sq km
  • Type: National Park
  • Location: South East England

In 2011, the most populated corner of Britain finally got the recreational refuge it was desperate for. The South Downs is the most visited of all the national parks, with 39 million visitors per year. Walkers are well served by the 100-mile South Downs Way, woodlands, countryside, coast and an impressive 3,000 kilometres of rights of way.

More information:www.southdowns.gov.uk

The Cairngorms

  • Distance or area: 4528 sq km
  • Type: National Park
  • Location: Northern Scotland

Few National Parks are as epic as the Cairngorms. Not only is it the largest of the National Parks family, it’s also one of the wildest landscapes in Britain. Where else can boast Britain’s highest and largest mountain range, five of the UK’s six highest mountains, 43 Munros and even three ski centres?

More information:cairngorms.co.uk

Yorkshire Dales

  • Distance or area: 1769 sq km
  • Type: National Park
  • Location: Yorkshire and Humber

Expansive, tranquil and often remote these limestone uplands with their distinctive crags and pavements straddle the Pennines in striking fashion. Situated in North Yorkshire and Cumbria in Northern England, the park protects some 1,769 square kilometres of some of the most beautiful terrain in the country.

More information:www.yorkshiredales.org.uk

Cleveland Way

  • Start point: The cross in Market Square at Helmsley
  • End point: Filey Brigg, on the coast, 7 miles (11km) south of Scarborough
  • Distance or area: 110 miles (177km)
  • Type: National Trail
  • Location: Yorkshire and Humber

Those of us who like variety on a walk are well served by the ever changing landscape of the Cleveland Way.
It is often described as two walks in one. The first half showcases the North York Moors and the second half brings walkers along a spectacular coastal route.

More information:www.nationaltrail.co.uk/clevelandway

Cotswold Way

  • Start point: Bath Abbey, Bath
  • End point: Market Hall, Chipping Campden
  • Distance or area: 102 miles (163km)
  • Type: National Trail
  • Location: South West England

This hugely popular trail offers beautiful rural surroundings with the convenience of facilities and services which are never far away. It runs between the town of Chipping Campden in the north and the city of Bath in the south.

More information:www.nationaltrail.co.uk/cotswold