Taking a weekend ramble is one of the joys of spring and summer, and there’s no better way to do it than by taking part in a walking festival.
So-called walking festivals or walking weekends are an excellent way to explore new territory without any of the hassle of navigating the area; guided walks and expeditions allow you to enjoy the scenery, meet like-minded people and learn more about the area.
Most festivals have walks for all ages and abilities – you can take part in a simple, short walk or participate in a more intensive trek.
Ready to dust off your old hiking boots? Here’s some of the best walking festivals taking place in the coming months.
North York Moors WalkFest – 28 May 2016
If you need something to do for the spring Bank Holiday, look no further. This weekend walking festival has a number of guided and themed walks to choose from where you can learn about everything from archaeology to wildlife and conservation on the Moors. There’s other activities too; catch a steam train, have afternoon tea or bring the grandchildren for a kids’ treasure hunt.
Hawick Walking Weekend – 28 May 2016
See the beauty of the Scottish Borders and enjoy a selection of walks over the spring Bank Holiday weekend. Walks will be focused on exploring the history and folklore of the area.
Malvern Walking Festival – 28 May – 5 June 2016
See the best of Elgar Country during the 9-day Malvern Walking Festival. There are dozens of short and long walks to choose from; you can join themed history walks or simply take a ramble through some of the most beautiful landscapes in the region.
South Downs Way Annual Walk – 10 – 18 June 2016
The South Downs Way Annual Walk is one of the oldest walking festivals in the country, spanning an incredible 100 miles along the South Downs Way National Trail. It’s a supported rather than guided walk, so everyone is free to go at their own pace. Don’t worry though if you don’t want to do the entire trail; walkers are welcome to come along and do a single section on a day trek instead.
Herefordshire Walking Festival – 18 – 26 June 2016
This nine day walking festival is the perfect way to explore the stunning landscapes in Herefordshire and the programme boasts a huge range of hikes, from easy guided walks that move at a gentle pace to challenging guided walks where your fitness will be tested.
Will you go out hiking this summer? Let us know your favourite trails in the comments below!