Iconic Challenges


Some trails are immensely pretty. Others are remote, wild or all of these things rolled into one. Some trails are easy and some are reserved for the seasoned walker, but there are a select few long distance walking trails whose reputations have somehow risen above the rest. They are revered with a sense of awe - the sort of trails that people aspire to add to their walking repertoire. It is probably impossible to identify exactly why these trails are so renowned, so pull on your boots and try one of them yourself!

South West Coast Path

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For many long distance walkers, completing the South West Coast Path is the ultimate test of stamina and determination. At 630 miles (1,008km) long, it is the UK's longest National Trail, but with over 115,000ft (35,000m) of tough ups and downs, it is not just the length of the trail that makes it so challenging. In fact, it is thought that walking the entire trail is the equivalent of climbing Mount Everest four times!

Completing the South West Coast Path is not only an incredible achievement, but it offers an insight into a unique part of our heritage as it encounters world heritage sites, sites of special scientific interest, numerous areas of outstanding natural beauty and protected biosphere reserves. For this reason, the walk is regarded as world class and frequently finds its way onto lists of the top hiking trails in the world.

Completing the South West Coast Path can take anywhere from 30 days to 8 weeks, but don't worry, most people complete it in shorter sections, returning year upon year until they reach the finish.


Coast to Coast Walk


If ever there was a character more renowned in the walking world than Alfred Wainwright, we are yet to hear about them. Wainwright's pictorial guides are famed for reflecting his love of the Lake District and in 1973, he devised a route that epitomises everything that is wonderful about walking - it is known very simply as the 'Coast to Coast.'

190 miles (304km) of mountains, moorland, pretty villages and camaraderie across three national parks, is what has led to the Coast to Coast Walk becoming one of the world's best-loved walks. Yet, despite its popularity, the trail remains unofficial and does not have National Trail status. While the route uses public footpaths, old packhorse trails and passes, the route is largely un-signposted, so it is necessary to be able to navigate confidently. For this reason, there is a real sense of adventure about the route and when you dip your feet in the Irish Sea at St Bees or pick up at a stone and carry it to the end of the trail at Robin Hood's Bay, it will be with a real sense of satisfaction that you finish this iconic walk.


Bob Graham Round


The Bob Graham Round takes its name from an adventurous Keswick guest-house owner who, in 1932, decided to visit a peak for every year of his life. At 41 years old, the idea was already no mean feat, but to satisfy his burning ambition for a record breaking challenge, Bob Graham vowed to complete all 41 peaks in the space of 24 hours. His first attempt in 1931 failed due to poor weather, but the following year, with another peak added for a new year of his life, Bob Graham completed his round - a total of 42 peaks, 66 miles and 27,000ft of ascent.

Our version of the Bob Graham Round tackles the route at a somewhat slower pace, but the magnitude of the challenge should not be underestimated. With the route extended slightly so that each day ends in a village with a comfy bed for the night, the trail takes in 74 miles of mountainous terrain and 29,100ft of ascent - that's like climbing Everest from sea level or Ben Nevis almost 7 times!


Pennine way


Back in 1932, a mass trespass on Kinder Scout by hundreds of ramblers paved the way for the creation of National Parks and by 1965, the first National Trail in the UK had been created - The Pennine Way.

When you start the Pennine Way, with the slopes of Kinder Scout looming over the trail, it is hard to ignore the turbulent history that has made the trail possible. Today, it is seen by many as the epitome of freedom in the countryside, passing along the backbone of England and taking in mile up mile of glorious countryside from the Peak District, the Yorkshire Dales, over Hadrian's Wall and to the borders of Scotland. It is one of the longest, best-known and most challenging national trails and for this reason, it is also one of the best loved.

With a variety of itineraries and shorter sections available, our self-guided walking holidays along the Pennine Way give you the chance to feel the sense of achievement at tackling one of the most demanding long distance trails in Britain.


Yorkshire Three Peaks


Forget Snowdon, Ben Nevis and Scafell Pike, the Yorkshire Three Peaks is the original tri-peak challenge. The circuit was first completed by two Giggleswick schoolmasters in 1887. It took Canon J.R. Wynne-Edwards and D.R. Smith just 10 hours to take in Pen-y-Ghent, Whernside and Ingleborough, walking 24 miles with 5249ft of ascent.

Today, thousands of walkers attempt to complete the Yorkshire Three Peaks in under 12 hours, but we think that the route deserves to be savoured. We have extended the route and turned it into a fantastic three-day short break, giving you the chance to climb Ingleborough, Pen-y-ghent and Whernside at your own pace, allowing you to savour the Yorkshire hospitality and classic Dales scenery.