The UK is covered with hundreds of delightful canals with canalside towpaths for walkers to use. Below are a selection of popular walks which include canalside walking for all or part of the route.
Please use the links below to view full route information including descriptions, elevation profiles, interactive maps and GPS downloads.
You can also view an overview map of all the routes in the using the Canal Walk Map
|Aire Valley Towpath||16 miles (26 km)||Follow the Leeds & Liverpool Canal and the River Aire from Leeds to Bingley on this waterside cycle or walk. The route follows National Cycle route 66 and passes Kirkstall Abbey, Bramley Fall, Rodley, Calverley Woods, Apperley Bridge, Thackley, Shipley, Hirst Wood and Dowley Gap with both countryside and urban sections to enjoy.|
Highlights on the route include the fascinating Saltaire. Here you will find the grade II listed Victoria Hall and Salt's Mill with its shops, cafes and galleries. The site is adjacent to the delightful Shipley Glen which is well worth a small deviation from the path at Saltaire.
Also of interest is Kirkstall Abbey. This medieval Cistercian abbey is set in beatutiful parkland and is well worth a visit if you have time. View Full Details>>
|Ashby Canal||22 miles (35 km)||Follow the Ashby-de-la-Zouch Canal from Bedworth in Warwickshire, to the little village of Snareston in Leicestershire. The towpath runs for just over 20 miles with pretty hedgerows, reeds, countryside views and lots of wildlife to look out for on the way.|
The route starts just to the north east of Bedworth town centre at Marston Junction. If you are coming from the town centre or train station just follow the Coventry Canal north and then head east at Marston Junction. The canal is located very close to Nuneaton as well. You could follow the Centenary Way from the southern edge of the town to the start of the route.
The towpath first heads east towards Burton Hastings before skirting the western edge of the market town of Hinckley. You continue north towards Stoke Golding and Ambion Hill. The hill was long considered to be the site of the Battle of Bosworth Field and is where the Bosworth Battlefield Heritage Centre is situated. It is now accepted that the core of the battlefield lies either side of Fenn Lanes, about two miles south-west of the visitor centre and that Ambion Hill was Richard III's camp on the night before the battle.
You continue north past Shenton, the terminus of the Battlefield Line Heritage Railway which runs steam and diesel-hauled trains every weekend and Bank Holiday from March to December. The canal then skirts the western edge of Market Bosworth, passing Bosworth Water Park before coming to Shackerstone at the other end of the Battlefield Line Railway.
The final section runs north west from Shakerstone to Snarestone, passing some attractive woodland on the way.
Around Market Bosworth you can pick up the Ivanhoe Way and Leicestershire Round long distance trails in order to further explore the area. You can pick up the Ivanhoe Way at Snarestone and follow it north to Measham where the Ashby Woulds Heritage Trail starts.
You could also take a small detour at Market Bosworth and visit the splendid Bosworth Battlefield Country Park. Here you can visit the Bosworth Battlefield Heritage Centre which tells the dramatic story of the Battle of Bosworth of 1485. View Full Details>>
|Ashby Woulds Heritage Trail||4 miles (6 km)||This lovely short cycle and walking trail runs from Measham near Ashby-de-la-Zouch to Moira along a disused railway path. The path passes old Donisthorpe Colliery site, which is now a Woodland Park and Conkers - a forest-based attraction with a number of activities to enjoy. There is also a pleasant waterside section along the Ashby Canal.|
Please click here for more information View Full Details>>
|Ashton Canal||6 miles (9.5 km)||Enjoy a waterside walk or cycle along this 6 mile long canal in Manchester. The canal runs from central Manchester to Ancoats, Bradford-with-Beswick, Clayton, Openshaw, Droylsden, Fairfield and Audenshaw before finishing at Ashton-under-Lyne where it meets the Huddersfield Narrow Canal. Walkers and cyclists can enjoy the whole route along the towpath. National Cycle Network Route 60 runs along the first section of the canal and a local cycle route takes you the rest of the way. Along the way you'll pass 18 locks, Manchester City Football Stadium, Manchester Velodrome and Philips Park. You can take short detours from the canal to visit some nearby attractions too. For example at Audenshaw you could head just south of the canal and visit Debdale Park and enjoy a walk around Gorton Reservoir. At the velodrome you can take a short trip north of the canal and visit Clayton Vale where there is a nature reserve with miles of walking trails and some great mountain bike trails.|
To extend your walk you can continue along the Huddersfield Narrow Canal in Ashton-under-Lyne. The canal leaves Manchester and heads into the lovely countryside of the Peak District and Pennine Hills before finishing at Huddersfield. View Full Details>>
|Aylesbury Canal||6 miles (10 km)||This waterside walk takes you along the Aylesbury Arm of the Grand Union Canal. The arm runs for about 6 miles from Aylesbury to Marsworth. You can start off from the centre of town near the train station or there is a parking area on the outskirts next to the canal. You then head east along the towpath to the village of Marsworth. Along the way there are pretty locks, stone bridges over the water and some nice views of the surrounding Bucks countryside to enjoy. Near the end of the walk you'll pass the lovely Tring Reservoirs. If you have time it is well worth following the footpaths around the four reservoirs which include Startops End, Marsworth, Tringford and Wilstone reservoir. Look out for birds such as grebes and bitterns on the water.|
Just before Wilstone you will pass the Aylesbury Ring long distance footpath which crosses the canal. You can pick this up to explore the Buckinghamshire countryside around Long Marston and Buckland.
At Marsworth you have the option of continuing along the Grand Union Canal. Heading north will take you towards Cheddington, while heading south east will take you past Tring towards Berkhamsted. View Full Details>>
|Aylesbury Ring||31 miles (50 km)||This circular walk takes you on a tour of the Aylesbury Vale. The path starts and ends in Wendover first heading towards Great Kimble and then onto Dinton where you will find the impressive Dinton Hall. The route continues to Eythrope, crossing the River Thame and passing Eythrope Park and Eythrope Manor House. You continue through the countryside past Waddesdon, Hardwick, Long Marston and the Aylesbury Canal before joining the Wendover Canal Arm near Aston Clinton for the final waterside stretch back to Wendover. View Full Details>>|
|Baker Way||11 miles (18 km)||Take a stroll along the Baker Way from Chester to Delamere Forest on this pleasant, varied walk.|
The walk starts at Chester railway station and heads east along the Shropshire Union Canal to Rowton. You then leave the canal and head through the countryside to Tarvin which is an excellent place to stop for a pub lunch. The final section of the walk takes you from Tarvin to the lovely Delamere Forest Park where the route finishes at Delamere Station.
This is a pleasant and fairly easy walk with waterside, countryside and woodland sections to enjoy. View Full Details>>
|Barnsley Canal||5 miles (8.5 km)||Enjoy a waterside walk or cycle along the Barnsley Canal on this easy route near Royston. This section of the canal follows National Cycle Network Route 67 from Shaw Bridge, near Royston, to Walton. The route runs for just over 5 miles passing Rabbit Ings Country Park, Wintersett Reservoir and the woodland of Haw Park. It's a peaceful area with a nice surfaced path ideal for a safe cycle or easy walk. |
Rabbit Ings is located next to the canal at Royston and consists of 160 acres of wetland, woodland, grassland and ponds. It also has a mountain bike trail. You can also take a detour near Walton and visit Anglers Country Park. A cycle route runs around Cold Hiendley Reservoir and Wintersett Reservoir to the park.
To continue your canal-side exercise head north and you can pick up the Wakefield Canal to Castelford. View Full Details>>
|Basingstoke Canal Walk||33 miles (53 km)||Follow the Basingstoke canal from Up Nately to Woodham, on this delightful waterside walk. The walk passes Fleet and Woking and includes regular views of the lovely Hampshire and Surrey countryside. View Full Details>>|
|Bath Canal Walk||5 miles (8 km)||This is a popular walk along the Kennet and Avon Canal from Bath to Bradford on Avon. It's about a 10 mile walk along the towpath taking you from Somerset into Wiltshire on the southern fringes of the Cotswolds AONB. On the way you'll pass pretty locks, lots of barges, delightful little cottages, interesting villages, and attractive parks and gardens.|
The walk starts at Bath locks situated at the start of the Kennet and Avon Canal. You then head north towards Bathwick passing through tunnels as you go. At Bathwick you pass the lovely Sydney Gardens which are worth a slight deviation from the canal to explore. The gardens are the only remaining eighteenth-century pleasure gardens in England.
The path continues to the village of Bathampton where you can take a small detour to visit the Toll Bridge over the River Avon. The bridge and toll house are both Grade II listed. There's splendid views from the bridge down to the beautiful weir below.
At Bathampton you turn south to Claverton. The little village has a Grade II listed pumping house and a church which dates from the 13th century.
You continue south towards Monkton Combe, passing the Dundas Aqueduct which carries the Kennet and Avon Canal over the River Avon on the Somerset Wiltshire border. It's a real highlight of the walk with great views over the river and the surrounding countryside from the elevated position of the aqueduct. You can virtually explore this section of the canal using the google street view link below.
The route then heads to Limpley Stoke and Freshford, passing Conkwell Wood on the way. The final section takes you into Wiltshire where you will pass the impressive Avoncliff Viaduct and Barton Farm Country Park before finishing in Bradford Upon Avon. Barton Farm is worth exploring if you have time. It includes historic buildings, craft shops and tea rooms while the farmhouse, granary and tithe barn of the original Barton Farm date back to the 14th century.
There's lots of good options for extending your walking around the canal. At Bathampton you can pick up the tremendous Bath Skyline Walk where you can enjoy fabulous views over the city. View Full Details>>
|Battlefields Trail||20 miles (32 km)||This interesting walking trail links three of England's most significant Battlefields:|
Edgcote (1469) in Northamptonshire
Cropredy Bridge (1644) in Oxfordshire
Edgehill (1642) in Warwickshire
It runs from Chipping Warden, Northamptonshire and ends in Kineton, Warwickshire, passing through some beautiful countryside along the way.
The first section of the walk takes you from Chipping Warden to Upper Wardington. On the way you will pass the site of the Battle of Edgecote Moor which was fought during the Wars of the Roses in July 1469. The battle pitted the forces of Richard Neville, 16th Earl of Warwick, against those of King Edward IV.
From Upper Wardington you continue west to Warmington, passing Cropedy where the Battle of Cropredy Bridge was fought on 29th June 1644 between a Parliamentarian army under Sir William Waller and the Royalist army of King Charles. This section also includes views of the Oxford Canal Walk and the River Cherwell.
The final section then runs from Warmington to Kineton, passing through the beautiful Edghill Country Park. The park is set in the Cotswolds Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and includes sixteen acres of mixed grass and primary Bluebell woodland. After passing through Ratley you soon come to the site of Battle of Edgehill. The battle was fought on Sunday, 23rd October 1642 and was the first pitched battle of the First English Civil War. Shortly after the walk then comes to at an end at the village of Kineton in Warwickshire.
The Battlefields Trust Website has a wealth of information on this route and the history of the Battlefields of Britain. View Full Details>>
|Beeches Way||16 miles (25 km)||Follow the Beeches Way through the Chilterns AONB from the River Thames at Cookham to the Grand Union Canal at West Drayton.|
You start off at Cookham and head east to the wooded Burnham Beeches Nature Reserve. The reserve covers over 500 acres with a network of great woodland trails. There's also ponds, grassland, heathland with wildlife which includes Exmoor Ponies. The walk then passes through Fulmer before a lovely stretch through Black Park Country Park and Langley Park Country Park. The final stretch takes you around the lakes in Colne Valley Regional Park before finishing on the Grand Union Canal at West Drayton. View Full Details>>
|Berkhamsted Canal Walk||6 miles (10 km)||This walk takes you along the Grand Union Canal from Berkhamsted to Tring and then on to Mawsworth. It's a very pretty section of the canal with a series of locks and nice views over the Hertfordshire and Buckinghamshire countryside. |
The walk starts in the town centre near the train station and the pretty Canal Fields park. You can then follow the towpath north west past Northchurch Common on the Ashridge Estate. The common has some nice woodland walking trails and feeds into the pretty Berkhamsted Common. You continue towards Tring where you will pass the lovely Tring Reservoirs. The reservoirs are a great place to extend your walk with a series of waterside footpaths and lots of birdlife to look out for on the water. After passing round Marsworth Reservoir the walk finishes in the village of Marsworth. Here the canal splits of in two directions. If you head west you can follow the Aylesbury Canal to Aylesbury. Continuing north would take you into Leighton Buzzard. View Full Details>>
|Birmingham and Fazeley Canal||15 miles (24 km)||Enjoy a walk or cycle along the Birmingham and Fazeley Canal from the city centre of Birmingham to the town of Fazeley in Staffordshire. Along the way there's lots of pretty locks, old bridges, nature reserves and wildlife to look out for.|
You start off at Old Turn Junction near the National Indoor Arena in Birmingham and head through Aston and Tyburn where you pass close to Pype Hayes Park. The large park has 100 acres to explore with a lake, ornamental gardens and woodland. It's just north of the canal at Tyburn and worth a short detour. Just next to the park there is the pretty Plantsbrook Nature Reserve which consists of open water, wetland, woodland and meadow.
You leave the city and head through Minworth and Cudworth before coming to the splendid Kingsbury Water Park. The 600 acre country park is a major highlight on the route. It consists of 15 lakes with miles of good cycling and walking trails to try.
The final section takes you from Kingsbury Water Park to the town of Fazeley near Tamworth. On the way you'll pass Middleton Lakes RSPB reserve with 400 acres to explore. It's a great place for wildlife watching with common pochard, tufted duck and smew to look out for.
At Fazeley you have the option of continuing along the canal towards Whittington and Lichfield. This section passes Hopwas Woods which is good for mountain biking.
National Cycle Network route 535 runs through Aston so this is the best section for those on a bike. View Full Details>>
|Bishop's Stortford Canal and River Walk||14 miles (22 km)||Follow the River Stort Navigation canal from Bishop's Stortford to Hoddesdon, on this delightful waterside walk through Hertfordshire. The walk follows the flat towpath through Sawbridgeworth and Harlow with lots of barges, weirs and pretty locks to look out for on the way.|
Starting in the town centre follow the Hertfordshire Way east and then south to the river. You then head south to Sawbridgeworth, passing the Thorley Wash nature reserve on the way. In summer you'll see lots of attractive wildflowers and plants including early marsh orchid. There's also a number of wooden sculptures and a variety of wildlife to see in this area.
The route continues towards Harlow, passing Beckingham Palace, the former country house of footballer David Beckham. The river also passes close to Harlow Town Park which is worth a small detour. The 164 acre park includes nice footpaths, Water Gardens and woodland.
The final section takes you past Roydon and into the splendid Lee Valley Regional Park. Here the Stort Navigation meets with the River Lee Navigation just after Lower Lock. The park is Greater London's largest park and includes country parks, nature reserves, lakes and riverside trails.
In the park you can extend your walk by picking up the Lea Valley Walk. This will take along the river all the way to the Thames at Limehouse Basin. View Full Details>>
|Bishop Bennet Way||32 miles (52 km)||The Bishop Bennet Way is a shared walking and cycling path running from Beeston in Cheshire to Wirswall on the Shropshire borders.
The route starts at the 13th century Beeston Castle and proceeds through Milton Green, Churton and Shocklach where you will pass the Grade I listed Norman church. You continue to Grindley Brook where you cross the Shropshire Union Canal shortly before finishing at Wirswall near Whitchurch.
For cyclists please note that a mountain bike is required for this route as there are some fairly rugged off road sections. View Full Details>>
|Bollin Valley Way||25 miles (40 km)||Follow the River Bollin from Macclesfield to Partington on this delightful waterside walk through Greater Manchester and Cheshire.|
The walk starts at the Macclesfield Riverside Park and follows the river through Prestbury, Wilmslow, Hale and Bowdon to Partington on the Manchester Ship Canal.
On the route you will pass the 18th century Grade II listed Mottram Hall and National Trust owned Dunham Massey Hall. This Georgian House is set in a magnificent 121-hectare (300-acre) deer park and boasts Britain's largest winter garden.
As well as the River Bollin there are also views of the Bridgwater Canal and a short final section along the Manchester Ship Canal into Partington. View Full Details>>
|Bolton Rotary Way Footpath||50 miles (80 km)||Enjoy industrial heritage, reservoirs, historic estates, memorials and country parks on this circular walk around Bolton. The walk visits Adlington, West Houghton, Blackrod and Farnworth. Walk highlights include Jumbles and Rivington Reservoirs, Blackleath Country Park and a waterside stretch along the Leeds & Liverpool canal. View Full Details>>|
|Brentford Canal Walk||7 miles (11 km)||A walk along the Grand Union Canal from Brentford to Minet Country Park and Lake Farm Country Park in Hillingdon.|
Start the walk from Brentford Dock and the marina in Brentford. It's located just to the south of the train station and on the opposite side of the Thames from Kew Gardens.
From the marina you head west towards Syon Park where there's 200-acres of parkland and gardens to explore.
The canal then bends round to the north west towards Hanwell and Norwood Green. You'll pass close to Osterley Park where there's some lovely parkland and gardens to explore.
From Norwood Green the walk heads west through North Hyde to Hillingdon where you will pass Minet Country Park. The park includes ponds, grassland and a variety of wild plants and flowers. You can also pick up the long distance Hillingdon Trail here and follow it towards the pretty Yeadling Brook.
This route continues west to Hayes where it finishes at Lake Farm Country Park. Here you can enjoy meadows, open grassland and a trim trail. View Full Details>>
|Bridgewater Way||38 miles (61 km)||A walk along the Bridgewater canal, through Cheshire, Greater Manchester and on into Lancashire. The route passes Salford, Trafford, Manchester, Warrington and Halton.|
Along the way you'll pass a series of nice parks including Dunham Massey, Worsley Woods and Sale Water Park. View Full Details>>
|Bridgwater and Taunton Canal||14 miles (22.5 km)||Follow the towpath of the Bridgwater and Taunton Canal on this easy walk or cycle in Somerset. The multi user path runs for about 14 miles from the Bridgwater Marina to Firepool Lock next to the River Tone in Taunton. It's a great way to see the lovely countryside and pretty villages of lowland Somerset. The route follows National Cycle Route 3 making it a great option for families looking for a safe cycle ride or walkers looking for an easy stroll. Along the way there's lots of interesting lock structures and old bridges to look out for. At Mansel lock you will find a fascinating scale model of the sun with planets set along the towpath for six miles in both directions, demonstrating the scale of the solar system. There's also a series of nice pubs and cafes where you can enjoy refreshments.|
The canal is great for wildlife with heron, moorhen, coot and a variety of dragonflies to look out for on the way. There's also lots of interesting plants and wildflowers in the summer months.
The route starts at the pretty marina in Bridgwater and follows the canal south through the town and out into the countryside. You then pass the villages of North Newton, Creech St Michael and Bathpool, before entering Taunton.
At Bridgwater you can pick up the long distance River Parret Trail to extend your walk. You can follow it north along the river to the beautiful Bridgwater Bay National Nature Reserve.
In Taunton you can pick up the West Deane Way and head west along the River Tone towards Norton Fitzwarren. View Full Details>>
|Bronte Way||44 miles (71 km)||Follow the Bronte Way through Lancashire and Yorkshire and visit many of the places associated with writings and lives of the Bronte Sisters.|
Highlights on the walk include:
Gawthorpe Hall - visited by Charlotte Bronte on several occasions, Gawthorpe Hall is the start point of the walk
Wycoller Country Park - Wycoller Hall is believed to have inspired Ferndean Manor in Charlotte Bronte's "Jane Eyre".
Top Withens - the inspiration for the location of Wuthering Heights
Ponden Hall - situated near the village of Stanbury it inspired Thrushcross grange in Wuthering Heights. It sits next to the pretty Ponden Reservoir.
Haworth - this Yorkshire village is where the Bronte sisters wrote many of their works and includes the Haworth Parsonage Museum
Thronton - birthplace of the Brontes
Oakwell Hall - inspiration for 'Fieldhead' in Charlotte Bronte's novel Shirley and also the end point of the route
Bronte Waterfall - this beautiful waterfall is located in Bronte Country near Haworth. It was a popular spot for the Bronte sisters who loved visiting the waterfall. There is a pretty little bridge called Bronte Bridge next to the falls.
As well as the interesting places above the walk also passes some beautiful scenery including Ponden and Leeming Reservoirs, the Leeds and Liverpool Canal and Penistone country park. View Full Details>>
|Bude Marshes||3 miles (5 km)||This delightful local nature reserve in Bude is a great escape from the busy seaside town centre. You can enjoy a stroll along the Bude canal tow path with views of the River Neet. An off road National Cycle Network route runs along the opposite side.|
Habitats in the reserve include reed bed, wet grassland, woodland and willow carr. You can look out for a variety of birds from the bird hide, while otters can also been seen around the canal and river. View Full Details>>
|Calder and Hebble Navigation Canal||6 miles (9 km)||This section of the Calder and Hebble Navigation Canal runs along National Cycle Network route 66 from Sowerby Bridge to Brighouse. It's a nice easy, traffic free ride along the towpath with some lovely views of the Calder Valley countryside and the River Calder. Walkers can also enjoy this section of the canal.|
The route starts in Sowerby Bridge and heads to Copley. Just after Copley you have the option of heading north along the Halifax arm into Halifax. This route continues to Elland, where you'll pass Elland Park Wood where there are some nice woodland trails. The final section takes you into Brighouse passing Brookfoot Ski Lake on the way.
The Rochdale Canal also passes through Sowerby Bridge so you can pick this up to continue your exercise. It heads to Hebden Bridge through Mytholmroyd with some cycling sections along National Cycle Route 66. View Full Details>>
|Caldon Canal||6 miles (10 km)||Follow the Caldon Canal through the beautiful River Churnet Valley on this easy walk in Staffordshire.|
The walk starts at the lovely Froghall Wharf where you will find a good sized car park. You then pick up the canal towpath and head to Cheddleton before finishing at Deep Hayes Country Park. Along the way you will pass some attractive woodland which is worth exploring with a small detour. For example the Consall Nature Park is located just to the west of the canal near Consall Forge. It has miles of nice walking trails and is easy to access from the route.
Also of interest is the Churnet Valley Steam Railway which runs alongside the canal. One option would be to catch the train back from Cheddleton to Kingsley & Froghall Station.
The canal runs along some of the prettiest countryside in Staffordshire with views of the River Churnet, pretty locks and arched stone bridges to enjoy. You'll also pass villages and hamlets such as the delightful Consall Forge where you can stop for refreshments at the canalside Black Lion Inn. There's great outdoor seating with views of the canal and the passing steam trains.
The route follows the Staffordshire Way long distance trail so there is scope for continuing your walk towards Leek and Ladderedge Country Park. Deep Hayes Country Park at the end of the walk is also well worth exploring. View Full Details>>
|Caledonian Canal||6 miles (9 km)||Follow the Caledonian Canal from Inverness to Loch Dochfour on this waterside walk or cycle in the Scottish Highlands. The flat towpath is ideal for an easy cycle or walk in beautiful surroundings.|
The route starts at the Muirtown Basin in Clachnaharry on the Beauly Firth. You then head south through Inverness passing the Ship Space interactive maritime museum and Whin Park where you can board the Ness Islands Miniature Railway. The canal then leaves the city and heads through some beautiful countryside to Loch Dochfour which feeds Loch Ness.
You can continue your walking in the area by picking up the Great Glen Way. The long distance trail also starts in Inverness, running parallel to the canal. It will take you to Fort William via Loch Ness and Loch Lochy. The canal also runs alongside the River Ness so you could try the waterside trail to Whin Park, through the city.
You can virtually follow the first section of the canal from Inverness using the google street view link below! View Full Details>>
|Capital Ring||78 miles (126 km)||This 78 mile circular walk takes you on a tour through London passing many of its most famous landmarks and through some of its most attractive parks and green areas.|
The route officially starts at Woolwich foot tunnel by the Thames Barrier and first heads south passing through Eltham, Beckenham and Tooting Bec Common before reaching Wimbledon with its famous common and windmill. You continue through Richmond deer park to Richmond where a pleasant stretch along the Thames takes you past the popular gardens at Kew. Soon after you join the Grand Union Canal for more pleasant waterside walking, passing Brentford and Hanwell on your way to Harrow. The route then turns east passing Brent Reservoir, Wembley Stadium, Hampstead and Finsbury Park. The final section takes you through the delightful Lee Valley Park, past Stratford and the Olympic Park before returning to the Woolwich foot tunnel. View Full Details>>
|Celandine Route||12 miles (19 km)||Follow the River Pinn from Pinner to Cowley on this nice easy waterside walk through west London. The walk starts at Pinner tube station and follows the river through Ruislip and Hillingdon before finishing on the Grand Union Canal at Cowley.|
Look out for flora and fauna on the walk including Kingfishers and Treecreepers and the Lesser Celandine flowers after which the walk is named. View Full Details>>
|Chelmer and Blackwater Navigation||16 miles (26 km)||Follow the Chelmer and Blackwater Navigation Canal from Chelmsford to Maldon on this easy, waterside walk in Essex. The canal takes you through some lovely Essex countryside, passing a series of pretty locks, a number of reservoirs and the villages of Little Baddow and Ulting. At Little Baddow you can find a number of nice woodland trails in Blake's Wood, Lingwood Common and Danbury Common. The village and commons are located just to the south of the canal and contain 214 acres of heath, gorse and coppice. The final section of the canal takes you along the Heybridge Basin in Maldon, with views of the National Trust owned Northey Island. There are great views over the estuary of the River Blackwater to the nature reserve. View Full Details>>|
|Cheshire Ring Canal Walk||98 miles (158 km)||This nice easy walk follows six historic canals through Cheshire, Greater Manchester and Staffordshire. |
The canal towpaths you will follow include:
The videos below show the sections along the Rochdale Canal in Manchester and along the Peak Forest Canal at Marple. View Full Details>>
|Chester Canal Walk||20 miles (32 km)||Follow the route of the old Chester Canal on this waterside walk in Cheshire. The canal route runs for about 20 miles from Chester to Nantwich, passing Waverton, Beeston Castle, Tiverton and Barbridge. Along the way there are lots of pretty locks, nice villages, historic old mills and great views of the countryside of the Cheshire Plain.|
The walk starts at the Chester Canal basin, on the Wirral Line of the Ellesmere Canal, at Raymond Street, near the junction with the River Dee. The basin is located just to the north west of the city centre. You follow the canal east along the city walls, passing the Grade I listed Northgate and Phoenix Tower before coming to Great Boughton.
The next stage takes you through Christleton, where there is a large grade II listed mill building, which was once steam powered and includes bays in the right gable from which boats were loaded.
The canal then meanders through the villages of Waverton and Tiverton. Just before you arrive at Tiverton there's the option of taking a short detour south along the Sandstone Trail to Beeston Castle. You can climb up to the ruins of the 13th century castle and enjoy wonderful views over the Cheshire Plain.
You continue to the Bunbury Staircase Locks, Calveley and Barbridge where you pass Hurleston Reservoir before arriving at Hurleston Junction where the Llangollen Canal terminates and meets the Shropshire Union Canal main line.
The final section runs from Barbridge to the market town of Nantwich where you will pass the Nantwich Aqueduct. At the Nantwich basin there is a pretty marina and Dorfold Hall, a grade I listed mansion, built in 1616 for Ralph Wilbraham.
To extend the walk you can continue south along the Shropshire Union Canal to Audlem. There's also the option of picking up the Crewe and Nantwich Circular Walk. The waymarked long distance trail explores the countryside and villages surrounding the two towns. View Full Details>>
|Chichester Canal||7 miles (12 km)||Enjoy a lovely waterside stroll along the Chichester Canal on this easy walk in Sussex. The walk begins in the centre of Chichester (near the train station and cathedral) following the canal towpath to Birdham Pool with its pretty boating marina.|
Although this is categorised as a walking route, cyclists can also enjoy the first section of the towpath from Chichester to Hunston.
To extend your walking in the area you could head south and enjoy a lovely coastal walk at the RSPB Pagham Harbour reserve. You could also enjoy a walk around the nearby Chidham Peninsula anf enjoy great views of Chichester Harbour. View Full Details>>
|Claude Duval Bridleroute||63 miles (102 km)||This shared walking and cycle path runs from Quainton, near Aylesbury in Oxfordshire to Great Barrington in the Cotswolds.|
This route is named after the well-known local highwayman, Claude Duval. It starts at Quainton and passes Stratton Audley, Bicester and Bucknell before crossing the Oxford Canal near Woodstock. The route then heads towards Chipping Norton and then Spelsbury where you join the River Evenlode for a short waterside stretch to Ascott d'Oyley. You then head onto Great Barrington via Fifield.
For cyclists a hybrid or mountain bike is required for this route. This is a fairly challenging route but with some fabulous Cotswolds scenery to enjoy. View Full Details>>
|Colne Valley Circular Walk||13 miles (21 km)||Take in the stunning scenery of the Colne Valley on this circular footpath through Kirklees in Yorkshire.|
The walk begins and ends at Golcar, passing Linthwaite,Slaithwaite and Marsden on the way. The path includes a waterside stroll along the Huddersfield Narrow Canal at the start, a stretch through Slaithwaite Moor and views of the picturesque Butterley Reservoir near Netherley. There are some challenging climbs on this walk but you are rewarded with fabulous views of the Colne Valley. View Full Details>>
|Colne Valley Trail||7 miles (11 km)||Follow the Colne Valley Trail from Uxbridge to Rickmansworth and enjoy riverside and canalside walking or cycling.|
The trails follows the Grand Union Canal and the River Colne while also passing a series of pretty Lakes including Lynsters, Stocker's and Batchworth Lake. The trail finishes at Batchworth Lake by the car park in Rickmansworth. View Full Details>>
|Cotswold Canals||41 miles (66 km)||Follow a series of delightful waterways from Framilode to Lechlade on this waterside walk through Gloucestershire.|
The walk starts at Framilode, next to the River Severn and follows the Stroudwater Canal and the River Frome to the market town of Stroud. You continue to Sapperton, following the River Frome and the Thames and Severn Canal. A wooded section through Hayley Wood follows before coming to Kemble where you will pass the source of the River Thames.
From Kemble you head to the village of Siddington and then on to South Cerney where you will pass the fabulous Cotswold Water Park which boasts 150 lakes, Nature Reserves and plenty of options for refreshment.
The final section takes you through the countryside towards Kempsford, passing the River Colne and the Fairford/Lechlade section of the Cotswold Water Park before arriving at the finish point at Lechlade.
There's much to enjoy on this walk with several waterside sections along various canals, rivers and lakes. There are also a series of quaint Cotswold villages with ancient churches, historic watermills and pretty waterside pubs for refreshment. View Full Details>>
|Coventry Canal||38 miles (61 km)||Enjoy waterside cycling and walking along the 38 mile long Coventry Canal towpath. Walkers can follow the whole of the route while cyclists can enjoy lovely sections through Coventry and from Marston Junction to Nuneaton.|
The canal runs from the centre of Coventry to Fradley Juction, passing through Bedworth, Nuneaton, Atherstone, Polesworth and Tamworth.
Highlights along the canal include the vibrant Coventry Canal Basin with its shops, businesses and art gallery. You'll also pass the splendid Hartshill Country Park which has miles of footpaths and wonderful views over the Anker Valley. There's also some wonderful countryside to enjoy and a series of artworks by local artists on the Arts Trail from the Basin to Hawkesbury Junction. At the end of the route at Fradley Junction there is a nature reserve with excellent bird watching opportunities.
The canal links with the Ashby Canal just north of Bedworth and with the Trent and Mersyet Canal at the end of the route at Fradley Juction near Lichfield. Around here you can also pick up the Lichfield Canal through the city. View Full Details>>
|Coventry Way||40 miles (64 km)||This walk circles the countryside around Coventry taking you through some fine Warwickshire countryside and a series of interesting villages.|
The walk starts at Meriden and heads towards Kenilworth with its impressive castle - described by architectural historian Anthony Emery as the 'finest surviving example of a semi-royal palace of the later middle ages, significant for its scale, form and quality of workmanship'. You then head towards Stoneleigh and the fascinating Grade I listed Stoneleigh Abbey. With 690 acres of parkland and overlooking the River Avon the abbey is well worth a visit.
From Stoneleigh you continue to Wolston where you follow the River Avon to Bretford and then onto Brinklow. Here you join the Oxford Canal towards Bedworth. The final section leads back to Meriden passing Birchley Hays wood and Corley Moor on the way. View Full Details>>
|Cown Edge Way||17 miles (28 km)||Visit the striking Cown Edge rocks on this walk through Greater Manchester and Derbyshire.|
The path starts at Hazel Grove and heads east towards Marple where you can enjoy waterside stretches along the Macclesfield Canal and the Peak Forest Canal with views of the River Goyt. You then begin the ascent to Cown Edge, passing Hollywood End on the way. The path then takes you along Cown Edge Rocks and Coombe Edge Rocks where there are splendid views of the Peak District.
At Coombe Edge the route turns west towards Charlesworth before taking you over the River Etherow to Werneth Low and then onto the finish point at Gee Cross. View Full Details>>
|Crewe and Nantwich Circular Walk||28 miles (45 km)||This circular walk takes you through the countryside and villages surrounding Crewe and Nantwich.|
You start off at Coppenshall just north of Crewe and first head to Weston. This section takes you past Sandbach Flashes wetlands (good for bird watching) and also the tudor house at Haslington.
From Weston you head towards Acton passing Hough Common, Wybunbury and Austerson. Highlights on this section include Shrewbridge Lake and Dorfold Hall Jacobean mansion. You will also cross the River Weaver and the Shropshire Union Canal.
The final section takes you back to Coppenshall from Acton, passing Henhull and Church Minsall on the way. This section also includes a pleasant section along the towpath of the Shropshire Union Canal. View Full Details>>
|Crinan Canal||8 miles (12.5 km)||Enjoy a waterside walk or cycle along the Crinan Canal in Argyll and Bute. It's a stunningly beautiful area with the canal running between Loch Crinan and Ardrishaig on Loch Fyne. Along the way there are a number of pretty locks and bridges with fabulous views of the surrounding Scottish hills and countryside. The flat towpath makes for a nice easy stroll or cycle ride.|
The route starts at the Crinan Basin with its pretty boats and views over Loch Crinan to Duntrune Castle. You then head in a south easterly direction towards Bellanoch with views of the River Add and Loch A' Bharain.
The route continues past the village of Cairnbaan to Lochgilphead. The town sits at the head of Loch Gilp and is the administrative centre of Argyll and Bute.
The final section takes you from Lochgilphead to the Ardrishaig canal basin. The pretty village contains a pier, a lighthouse and pubs where you can enjoy refreshments at the end of your exercise.
To extend your cycling in the area you could try the Crinan to Taynuilt and Tarbert to Crinan cycle routes. There's also miles of cycling and walking trails in the adjacent Knapdale Forest. It's a splendid place with several lochs and lots of wildlife to look out for. View Full Details>>
|Cromford Canal||5 miles (8 km)||Enjoy a waterside stroll along the Cromford Canal on this easy walk in Derbyshire. This section of the canal runs from Cromford to Ambergate and is designated as a Biological Site of Special Scientific Interest and a Local Nature Reserve. The walk passes the Leawood Pump House by the aqueduct over the River Derwent and a series of pretty bridges. You'll also pass Shining Cliff Woods and enjoy lovely views of the Derwent Valley. The walk makes use of the Derwent Valley Heritage Way so you could continue along this long distance walking route to extend your walk. |
The canal is located just a few miles south of Matlock. View Full Details>>
|Cross Bucks Way||24 miles (38 km)||Travel from Stratton Audley in Buckinghamshire to Linslade, near Leighton Buzzard along the Cross Bucks Way. The route meanders through the Buckinghamshire countryside passing Hillesden, Winslow and Hollingdon before a pleasant waterside stretch along the Grand Union Canal takes you to Linslade. View Full Details>>|
|Cuckoo Way||46 miles (74 km)||This walk follows the Chesterfield Canal through Nottinghamshire, South Yorkshire and Derbyshire from Chesterfield to West Stockwith. You will pass 36 locks and 11 bridges as you walk along one of England's most beautiful waterways.|
The walk passes Stavely, Retford and Worksop while there is also a pleasant section around the lovely Rother Valley Country Park at Killamarsh. Here you will find 5 lakes and a nature reserve which boasts the recording of over 260 different varieties of birds over the past two decades. Just south of Rother Valley Country Park you will pass the splendid Renishaw Hall. Here you will find a large country house surrounded by beautiful gardens, parkland, woodland and lakes.
Around Retford the splendid Idle Valley Nature Reserve is well worth a small detour. The huge site has miles of walking trails with several lakes and hundreds of species of wetland bird to look out for. View Full Details>>
|Delamere Way||21 miles (34 km)||Take a walk along the Delamere Way and visit Delamere Forest Park and the Trent & Mersey Canal.|
The path starts in Frodsham and heads south to Delamere Forest with its 2,400 acres of mixed deciduous and evergreen woodland and Blakemere Moss - a lake around 1 km in length.
You then turn north towards Acton Bridge before crossing the River Weaver at Dutton Lock and then the Trent & Mersey Canal shorty after. The final section takes you through Hatton and past Appleton Reservoir before finishing at Stockton Heath in Warrington. View Full Details>>
|Devizes and Caen Hill Locks||2 miles (3 km)||This circular walk visits this wonderful feat of engineering on the Kennet and Avon Canal in Devizes, Wiltshire. The 29 continuos locks have a rise of 237 feet in 2 miles (72 m in 3.2 km). It's a stunning sight with the bonus of some lovely woodland and countryside to see in the area surrounding the locks. There's also lots of wildlife to look out for with Kingishers, Moorhens, Ducks and Swans to see on the water.|
You can start the walk from the Caen Hill Locks car park. Then follow the footpaths along the locks before crossing to the other side of the canal and picking up the towpath. You can continue east along the canal into Devizes and visit the Canal centre. The town is also well worth exploring with fine Elizabethan timber-framed houses in St John's Alley, two Norman Churches, the 16th-century Bear Hotel and the attractive market place among the highlights. After your walk you can enjoy refreshments at the Caen Hill canalside cafe. There's also a small canal museum where you can learn all about the history of the canal locks.
In the town you can pick up the long distance Wessex Ridgeway and follow it north to Roundway Hill. The hill is the site of a famous Civil War battle where a Royalist cavalry force under Lord Wilmot won a crushing victory over the Parliamentarians in 1643. It's a great place to extend your walk and enjoy lovely views over the surrounding countryside.
Other walks around Devizes include the White Horse Trail and the Mid-Wilts Way which both run through the town. The White Horse Trail visits several of Wiltshire's well known hill figures with some lovely countryside to enjoy on the way.
You can virtually explore the locks by clicking on the google street view link below! View Full Details>>
|Downs Link||36 miles (58 km)||This is a terrific walking or cycling path running from St Martha's Hill to Shoreham-by-Sea and linking the North and South Downs National Trails.|
View Full Details>>
|Droitwich Canal||7 miles (11.2 km)||Enjoy an easy stroll along the Droitwich Barge Canal and the Droitwich Junction Canal, on this waterside walk in Worcestershire. There's much to enjoy with views of the River Salwarpe, pretty villages and the attractive countryside of the Wychavon district of Worcestershire. |
The walk starts where the canal meets the Worcester and Birmingham Canal just to the east of Droitwich (you could also start in Droitwich, if you prefer and miss out the first mile). The canal then heads west passing Hanbury Wharf and heading through the town. Just to the south there's the option of taking a small detour and visiting the Droitwich Spa Lido Park, one of the few remaining inland, open-air salt-water swimming pools in the UK.
At Westacre the canal turns south west, heading to the village of Salwarpe by the river of the same name. The final section runs to Hawford where the canal joins with the River Severn. Here you have the option of extending your walk by picking up the Severn Way and following it south into Worcester.
The canal also links with the Wychavon Way long distance trail. This is another great way of exploring the area on foot. View Full Details>>
|Dudley Canal||4 miles (6 km)||Follow the Dudley Canal from Warren's Hill Park to Leasowes Park on this waterside walk through Blackheath and Halesowen in Birmingham. The route makes use of the Monarch's Way long distance footpath to link these two lovely open spaces.|
The walk starts at the car park at Warren's Hall Country Park in Sandwell. You then head through the park with it's ponds, canals, grassland and small wooded areas. It's a lovely start to the walk with the park's footpaths leading to the canal. On the way you'll pass Cobb's Engine House. The eye catching building is a scheduled ancient monument and a Grade II listed building built around 1831. It housed a stationary steam pump used to pump water from Windmill End Colliery and other mines in the area.
After passing through the park you pick up the canal path and head south through Old Hill and Coombeswood to Halesowen. Here the route finishes at the splendid Leasowes Park. The historically significant park consists of 141 acres of woodland, grassland, streams, waterfalls and large ponds. If you keep following the Monarch's Way south past the park you'll soon come to the atmospheric remains of Halesowen Abbey. The abbey is owned by English Heritage and was originally founded in 1215 under a grant from King John of England. View Full Details>>
|Ebury Way||3 miles (5 km)||This is an easy short cycle and walking route ideal for families. It runs along National Cycle route 61 and a dismantled railway line from Ricksmanworth to Watford and passes through a variety of habitats, including open moor, woodland, and wetlands. The trail crosses a number of waterways including the rivers Colne, Chess and Gade and the Grand Union Canal.
Please click here for a pdf guide from watford council View Full Details>>
|Eddisbury Way||17 miles (27 km)||Follow the Eddisbury way from Frodsham to Burwardsley on this walk through Cheshire.|
You start by the River Weaver at Frodsham and head south to Kelshall, passing through Manley Common and skirting the edge of Delamere Forest. You then head to Duddon before crossing the Shropshire Union Canal and finishing at Burwardsley next to the Peckforton Hills. View Full Details>>
|Erewash Canal||12 miles (19 km)||Follow the Erewash canal through south Derbyshire on this waterside cycling and walking route. The canal runs from Trent Lock near Long Eaton to the Langley Mill (Great Northern) basin. You can follow the towpath all the way on your bike or on foot. It's a nice easy route that runs for about 12 miles so it's a good family cycle ride or long walk. On the way you'll pass old mills, pretty locks and a number of stone bridges. The areas around Nutbrook Junction and Trowell Marsh are nature reserves where you can look out for a wide variety of wildlife. There's also nice views of the River Erewash and the surrounding countryside. The canal forms part of the larger Erewash Valley Trail so it's easy to extend your exercise on this circular route. |
You start off at Trent Lock on the border of Derbyshire, Leicestershire and Nottinghamshire. It's a major canal junction where several significant waterways meet including the River Soar, the Trent and Mersey Canal, the River Trent and the Erewash Canal. The canal then weaves its way through the town of Long Eaton to Sandiacre. You continue north to Ilkeston, passing Gallows Inn, before finishing at Langley Mill at the basin of the Erewash Canal.
You can virtually follow part of the route along the canal from Trent Lock by clicking on the google street view link below.
To continue your walking in the area you can visit the lovely Attenborough Nature Reserve which is located near the start of the canal at Long Eaton. You can follow the Trent Valley Way along the River Trent to reach the reserve.
The canal also forms part of the Nutbrook Trail Cycle Route which runs up to Shipley Country Park on a dismantled railway line. View Full Details>>
|Exe Valley Ride||7 miles (11 km)||This lovely easy ride or walk follows the River Exe, the Exeter Canal and National Cycle route 2 from Exeter to Exminster.|
Highlights include Exeter's attractive quay, views of the Exe esutaury and the Riverside Valley Park.
Please click here for more information on this route. View Full Details>>
|Exe Valley Way||52 miles (84 km)||The walk starts in Starcross on the banks of the River Exe Estuary and heads through Powderham Deer Park and then along the Exeter Canal to Exeter. |
The next section continues along the River Exe to Tiverton via Thorverton and Bickleigh.
The final section takes you from Tiverton into the Exmoor National Park where you will pass through Dulverton and Hawkridge before the finish at Exford in Somerset. This section passes close to the old clapper bridge at Tarr Steps near Dulverton and Withypool. It's well worth a short detour if you have time. Around here you'll also cross the picturesque five arched Landacre Bridge over the River Barle.
For an excellent guide to this walk please click here.
The route finishes near Dawlish Warren where there is a lovely nature reserve with lots of waders to look out for. You can also pick up the Dawlish Sea Wall and enjoy a stroll along the train line, beach and red sandstone cliffs to nearby Dawlish. View Full Details>>
|Exeter Canal||5 miles (8 km)||Follow the Exter Ship Canal from the centre of Exeter to the River Exe Estuary. It's a nice easy cycle or walk following the canal towpath for about 5 miles. |
The route starts near the cathedral in the city centre and heads south towards Topsham, passing River Exe Country Park and the Exe Reedbeds nature reserve. There's nice views of the River Exe and lots of water loving wildlife to look out for. View Full Details>>
|Five Churches Walk||10 miles (16 km)||Visit five historic churches on this circular walk in South Rotherham. Much of the walk follows ancient footpaths and bridleways, visiting the picturesque villages of Wales, Harthill, Thorpe Salvin, South Anston and Todwick where you can see some of Rotherham’s finest church architecture. There also views of the Chesterfield canal and the ruins of Thorpe Hall to enjoy on this interesting walk. View Full Details>>|
|Forth and Clyde Canal||35 miles (56 km)||Follow the towpath of the Forth and Clyde Canal from Bowling to Falkirk on this super cycling and walking route. The route follows National Cycle Network Routes 7 and 754 so is well signed throughout. At Falkirk you can link up with the Union Canal which will take you into Edinburgh. As such you can cross central Scotland from Glasgow to Edinburgh on traffic free canalside paths.|
You start off at the Bowling Basin near to Bowling train station on the Glasgow suburban line. The path then heads through Clydebank and the outskirts of Glasgow, crossing the four-arched 120 metre long Kelvin Aqueduct and the Kelvin Walkway as you go. From the Aqueduct you continue to the town of Kirkintilloch passing Cadder, Bishopbriggs, a Roman Fort and the pretty Possil Loch on the way.
From Kirkintilloch you continue to the nearby town of Kilsyth, passing along the River Kelvin and Dumbreck Nature Reserve.
The final leg runs from Kilsyth to Falkirk, passing Bonnybridge and the Antonine Wall - a Roman turf and stone fortification bisecting Scotland. On the outskirts of Falkirk you'll come to the Falkirk Wheel - this rotating boat lift connects the Forth and Clyde Canal with the Union Canal lifting boats from the basin to the aqueduct 24 metres above. See the video below for a full description of this fascinating tourist attraction.
After the Falkirk Wheel you complete the trip by passing along the canal into Falkirk and finishing at Falkirk train station. View Full Details>>
|Glastonbury Canal||5 miles (8 km)||Follow the Glastonbury Canal through the Somerset Levels on this waterside walk through the Avalon Marshes. You'll pass through a series of lovely nature reserves with lots of wildlife and beautiful scenery to look out for.|
The walk starts at the Canal wharf in Glastonbury and heads west towards Glastonbury Heath and the Ham Wall Nature Reserve. The reserve has lovely waterside paths and wildlife such as otters, dragonflies, butterflies, marsh harriers, water voles, bitterns and roe deer.
The canal continues through Shapwick Heath Nature Reserve with its reedbeds, wildflower meadows, fens and woods to explore. View Full Details>>
|Glazebrook Trail||10 miles (16 km)||This easy trail follows Glaze Brook from Pennington to Cadishead.|
The trail starts in the lovely Pennington Flash Country Park in Leigh. This nature reserve has a 173 acre lake and is home to a variety of birdlife. You then follow Glaze Brook and Pennington Brook south to Glazebury and then onto Cadishead on the Manchester Ship Canal. View Full Details>>
|Glevum Way||24 miles (39 km)||This circular walk takes you through the suburbs, countryside and villages around the city of Gloucester.|
The walk starts at Gloucester's Victorian docks next to the Gloucester Waterways Museum which tells the story of England's canals and rivers. The walk then includes two consecutive waterside sections along the River Severn and the Gloucester and Sharpness canal, taking you to the village of Hardwicke. From Hardwicke the path takes you through some delightful Gloucestershire countryside and the villages of Upton St Leonards, Hucclecote and Churchdown. The walk finishes by passing Gloucestershire Airport and the village of Walham, before returning to the Gloucestershire docks. View Full Details>>
|Gloucester and Sharpness Canal||16 miles (26 km)||Enjoy cycling and walking along the towpath of this lovely canal in Gloucestershire. The whole of the route is suitable for walkers while cyclists can enjoy several sections as well. National Route 41 of the National Cycle Network runs along the canal from Gloucester Docks to the outskirts of the city. There's also another section from Frampton Upon Severn to Shepherd's Patch. |
The canal runs from Gloucester Docks to Sharpness with wonderful views of the Severn Estuary, the Forest of Dean and the Cotswolds. Route highlights include Gloucester Docks with its variety of shops, leisure facilities, marina and fascinating Gloucester Waterways Museum. You will also pass the wonderful Slimbridge Wetland Centre where you can see thousands of migrant birds. The route finishes at the dock of Sharpness Port which was opened in 1874.
The canal links nicely with the River Severn in several places so you have the option of picking up the Severn Way and continuing your walk. View Full Details>>
|Goyt Way||10 miles (16 km)||Follow the Goyt Way along the Peak Forest Canal and the River Goyt on this lovely waterside walk through Greater Manchester and Derbyshire.|
The walk starts by Etherow Country Park Lake in Compstall and heads south through Marple and New Mills to Whaley Bridge. The first section through Marple follows the towpath of the Peak Forest Canal, passing pretty locks on the way. You then join the River Goyt to New Mills before picking up the Canal again near Whaley Bridge where the route finishes. The final section through New Mills passes the wonderful Torrs Riverside Park and Millennium Way, a beautiful river gorge with a fabulous 160 metre long walkway elevated over the water. View Full Details>>
|Grafton Way||13 miles (21 km)||Follow the Grafton Way from Wolverton, Milton Keynes to Greens Norton in Northamptonshire. The walk starts following the Grand Union Canal to Cosgrove before heading into the countryside and passing the villages of Yardley Gobion, Paulerspury and Towcester. View Full Details>>|
|Grand Union Canal Walk||145 miles (234 km)||Follow the towpath of Britain's longest canal from London to Birmingham on this fabulous waterside walk. You start in West London in a lively and attractive area with canalside bars and restaurants, before heading towards the Chiltern Hills, on through rural Northamptonshire and Warwickshire and into the Birmingham suburbs. Highlights include
|Grand Western Canal||24 miles (38 km)||This splendid waterside walk takes you from Tiverton in Devon to Taunton in Somerset.|
The first section of the walk takes you from Tiverton to Greenham along the towpath of the Grand Western Canal. At Greenham you join the West Deane Way and the walk changes as you start following the dry bed of the canal. However, the waterside aspect continues as you also join the River Tone which takes you through Bradford on Tone and then onto the finish point in Taunton. View Full Details>>
|Grantham Canal||32 miles (52 km)||A lovely peaceful walk alongside the Grantham Canal from Grantham to Nottingham.|
The walk takes you through through the glorious Vale of Belvoir and passes Woolsthorpe, Redmile, Harby, Hickling and the delightful Cotgrave Country Park. View Full Details>>
|Great Glen Way||73 miles (117 km)||Follow the Great Glen, running from Fort William in the west to Inverness in the east. The route is suitable for walkers and cyclists with a mountain bike or robust hybrid.|
The stunning trail follows the Caledonian Canal and the shores of Loch Lochy, Loch Oich and Loch Ness with the mountains of the Ben Nevis range making a splendid backdrop. The route also passes Fort Augustus and includes several woodland sections, most notably through Creag nan Eun Forest. The final section along the River Ness to the finish point at Inverness Castle is also noteworthy.
The route is waymarked with a black hexagon thistle. View Full Details>>
|Greenwich to Cheshunt||21 miles (34 km)||Follow National Cycle route 1 on this pleasant ride or walk through north London into Hertfordshire. You start by the Thames at the Cutty Sark in Greenwich and crosses to the Isle of Dogs via the Greenwich tunnel. This section gives splendid views of the River Thames and Canary Wharf. |
Shortly after leaving the Thames behind you will come onto the Lee Valley path which will take you along the Regent's canal and through Tower Hamlets and Victoria Park. You then join the River Lee near Lea Bridge for some more waterside riding. The off road path then takes you past various Reservoirs until you reach the lovely Lee Valley Park - London's largest open space. After going through the park you will soon pass close to Waltham Abbey before you arrive at the finish point at Cheshunt station next to Cheshunt lake. View Full Details>>
|Gritstone Trail||35 miles (56 km)||This beautiful, challenging walk runs through the Peak District from Disley to Kidsgrove.|
The walk begins at the train station at Disley and soon comes to the wonderful Lyme Park (video below) with its mansion house and Medieval deer park. You continue south passing the town of Bollington before climbing to the unusual structure of White Nancy and crossing the Saddle of Kerridge. From the elevated position above Bollington you can enjoy splendid views across the Cheshire Plain, the mountains of North Wales to the west, the hills of Shropshire to the south and the Pennines to the north and east. The route continues to the lovely Tegg's Nose Country Park via Tower Hill. The views are truly dramatic from this former quarry site.
The next section takes you on towards Rushton Bank before climbing the Bosley Cloud - at 1,125 ft it's a challenging section but the views of Congleton, Macclesfield and Greater Manchester are magnificent.
The path continues to Mow Cop with its ruined castle, before you join the Macclesfield Canal and then the Trent and Mersey Canal taking you to Kidsgrove. View Full Details>>
|Hertford Union Canal||1 miles (1.7 km)||Enjoy an easy, waterside walk or cycle along this canal in Tower Hamlets. It runs for about a mile, linking the Regent's Canal and the Lea Valley Walk. You'll pass a series of locks and bridges along the way. It runs alongside Victoria Park so there is scope for continuing your walk through the park or along the Regent's Canal.|
The canal also visits the ,Olympic Park where you can pick up the Lea Navigation and the Limehouse Cut Canal. View Full Details>>
|Hillingdon Trail||19 miles (30 km)||Travel through North London along the Hillingdon trail and enjoy parkland, countryside and waterside walking along the Grand Union Canal.|
The walk starts in Cranford Park and heads through the borough of Hillingdon passing West Ruislip and Harefield before finishing at Springwell Lock on the Grand Union Canal. There's much to enjoy on this walk including sections along the Grand Union Canal, the Yeading Brook and the delightful Ruislip Lido. Here you will find a reservoir with boating and sailing and the Ruislip Lido Railway which runs about one third of the distance around the reservoir.
Please click here for more information about this walk. View Full Details>>
|Huddersfield Broad Canal||4 miles (6 km)||Enjoy an easy stroll along the towpath of the Huddersfield Broad Canal on this walk in Huddersfield. The canal runs from the town centre of Huddersfield and heads north to Bradley, passing a series of locks and old mill buildings on the way. You start off at Aspley Basin and head past Turnbridge Lift Bridge and Deighton before finishing at Bradley near Brighouse. Near the end of the route you'll pass the historic 18th-century Colne Bridge. The Grade II listed stone-built arch bridge spans the River Colne between Bradley and Kirkheaton. |
At Bradley you can pick up the Kirklees Way long distance footpath to extend your walk. You could head north to Hartshead or east towards Fixby along the path. The canal links also with the Calder and Hebble Navigation Canal at Bradley.
In Huddersfield you can also pick up the Huddersfield Narrow Canal. It heads across the Pennines and the Peak District into Greater Manchester.
For cyclists National Route 69 runs parallel to the canal. View Full Details>>
|Huddersfield Narrow Canal||21 miles (33 km)||Follow the Huddersfield Narrow Canal from Greater Manchester into the Peak District on this easy waterside walk. The canal runs from Ashton-under-Lyne in Manchester to Huddersfield, passing lots of interesting towns and villages with some beautiful scenery to enjoy along the way. There's also historic mills, views of the Pennines and interesting museums to see. |
You start off in Ashton-Under-Lyne and head east along the towpath to Stalybridge. The canal continues to Mossley where you have the option of taking a short detour to visit Hartside Pike. You can climb to the 19th century Hartshead Pike Tower for fabulous views over the Pennines.
The route continues north to Uppermill and Diggle before coming to the Standedge Tunnels. The canal tunnel was opened in 1811 and is the longest and highest canal tunnel in the United Kingdom. Here the route leaves the canal and picks up the Standedge Trail to take you across Marsden Moor in the Pennines. The estate is owned by the National Trust and consists of some lovely moorland scenery with valleys, peaks and crags. Look out for wildlife including golden plover, curlew, grouse and twite as you make your way over the hills.
The route rejoins the canal at the village of Marsden. It's a good place to stop for a rest with the Standedge Tunnel & Visitor Centre to explore. The centre has a good cafe, lots of information about the tunnels and organises underground boat trips. At Marsden there is also the option of taking a detour to visit Butterley Reservoir. This route continues along the canal to Slaithwaite and Linthwaite before finishing in Huddersfield. The canal then links with the Huddersfield Broad Canal which you can follow to Bradley. In Ashton-under-Lyne it links with the Ashton Canal which you can follow in central Manchester. It passes Manchester City Football Stadium and Manchester Velodrome before finishing at Manchester Piccadilly. View Full Details>>
|Hyndburn Clog||31 miles (50 km)||A circular walk around Blackburn and Accrington in Lancashire, visiting a series of reservoirs and the Leeds and Liverpool Canal. View Full Details>>|
|Irwell Sculpture Trail||30 miles (48 km)||Follow the River Irwell on this splendid waterside walk through Greater Manchester and enjoy over 70 artworks by renowned artists. |
The walk starts at Salford Quays and follows the trail north through Bury and Ramsbottom towards Bacup. View Full Details>>
|Ivanhoe Way||35 miles (56 km)||Travel through the setting of Sir Walter Scott's 19th century novel on this circular walk around Ashby-de-la-Zouch in Leicestershire.|
The path starts Ashby-de-la-Zouch and first heads to Moira where you will follow the Ashby Canal for a short stretch. The route continues passing Shackerstone, Coalville and Staunton Harold. Highlights on the path include the Ashby Canal, Cliff Hill Quarry and Staunton Harold Reservoir. Also look out for the National Trust owned Calke Abbey Park near the Staunton Harold Reservoir. This Grade I listed country house is slightly off the route but well worth a visit. View Full Details>>
|Jurassic Way||88 miles (141 km)||This walk follows the Jurassic limestone ridge from Banbury to Stamford passing through Northamptonshire, Oxfordshire and Lincolnshire.|
The walk includes a stretch along the Oxford Canal from Banbury and another waterside stretch along the Grand Union Canal near Braunston.
There's nice woodland trails through Fineshade Woods in the ancient Rockingham Forest area and you will also enjoy fine views of the River Welland as you approach Stamford.
The route passes through a series of picturesque towns and villages including Wardington, Catesby, Braunston, Ashby St Ledgers (with its impressive Manor House),West Haddon and Middleton.
Please use the links below for handy pdf guides to the walk.
Jurassic Way section 1
Jurassic Way section 2
Jurassic Way section 3
View Full Details>>
|Kennet and Avon Canal Walk||76 miles (122 km)||A splendid waterside walk from the Thames at Reading, through Thatcham, Newbury, Hungerford, Pewsey, Devizes, Bradford on Avon to Bath. Most of the walk follows the towpath making for an easy, relaxing walk.|
The route of the Kennet & Avon Canal takes you through some of the nation's best loved landscapes, including West Berkshire - an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty - and the southern tip of the rolling Cotswolds. Highlights include the delightful Thatcham Nature Discovery Centre, Caen Hill Locks (video below), Cane Avoncliff Aqueduct, Claverton Pumping Station, numerous pretty canalside villages and the historic city of Bath. View Full Details>>
|King Alfreds Trail||9 miles (14 km)||Take a pad and pencil with you on this delightful circular walk around Pewsey and take brass rubbings of the engraved plaques along the route. The plaques have been developed by Wiltshire Walking for All and feature images of animals, insects and plants that you might see on the walk. The route also includes a pleasant waterside section along the Kennet and Avon Canal.|
Good places to stop for refreshment include Pewsey Wharf and the pub by the village green at Wilcot. View Full Details>>
|Ladybrook Valley Interest Trail||10 miles (16 km)||This walk follows various brooks from Cheadle to Disley via Hazel Grove.|
You start off at Abney Hall Park in Cheadle. The park has lovely grounds and the interesting Abney Hall built in 1847 and makes for a fine start point. From here you follow the Micker Brook to the grand Brammall Hall. Bramall Hall is one of Cheshire's grandest black and white timber-framed Tudor manor houses and also has 70 acres of beautiful parkland. The trail then joins the Lady Brook, following it to Poynton Park in Hazel Grove where you will walk alongside the attractive Poynton Lake. The final section takes you along Norbury Brook to Middlewood, before crossing the Macclesfield Canal and finishing at Disley. View Full Details>>
|Lambourn Valley Way||22 miles (35 km)||Travel from Oxfordshire into Berkshire along the Lambourn Valley Way and enjoy woodland, parkland and a series of quaint towns and villages. |
The walk starts at the Bronze age fort at Uffington Castle and heads south across the Lambourn Downs before following the River Lambourn through Lambourn, Boxford and Speen before a lovely stretch along the Kennet and Avon Canal takes you into Newbury. View Full Details>>
|Lancaster Canal||57 miles (91 km)||Follow the Lancaster Canal from Preston, in Lancashire, to Kendal, in Cumbria, on this splendid waterside walk or cycle. From the canal there are fine views of the Silverdale Coast, the Forest of Bowland AONB and the lovely Wyre countryside. The route passes Garstang, Lancaster and Carnforth before finishing at Kendal. View Full Details>>|
|Leeds and Liverpool Canal||126 miles (203 km)||Enjoy waterside cycling and walking along Britain's longest single canal. It runs for 126 miles across the Pennines, passing many villages, towns and cities with a fascinating heritage and industrial history. There are also umpteen pretty locks, viaducts and some wonderful countryside to enjoy. |
Walkers can enjoy the whole route from Leeds to Liverpool, while there are several sections for cyclists too. If you are on a bike then you can follow Sustrans National Cycle Route 66 from the start at Leeds to just outside Silsden. There's another Sustrans section around Barnoldswick and from Nelson to Burnley in Lancashire. The section from Chorley to Adlington is also open to cyclists.
Highlights on the route include the impressive 5 rise locks at Bingley, Wigan Pier and the lovely Foulridge Reservoir in Colne. Near Burscough you'll pass the wonderful Martin Mere Nature Reserve where you can look out for otters, flamingos, beavers and thousands of water loving birds. You can also link up with the Rufford Branch of the canal and head to Rufford Hall. View Full Details>>
|Leeds Canal Walk||13 miles (21 km)||Enjoy a stroll from Leeds city centre to Kirkstall and Shipley on this waterside walk along the Leeds & Liverpool Canal. There's lots of pretty locks, lovely Yorkshire countryside and views of the River Aire which runs alongside the canal.|
It's a 13 mile walk but it starts at Leeds train station and finishes at Shipley rail station so you can catch the train back at the end of your outing.
The walk begins next to the train station and the Granary Wharf shopping centre in Leeds city centre. You can pick up the canal just to the south of the station and follow the towpath west towards Kirkstall. You'll pass the Kirstall Valley Nature Reserve before coming to the famous abbey. You can cross the bridge and visit the abbey park and explore the fascinating ruins. The Cistercian monastery was founded in 1152 and is now a Grade I listed building and Scheduled Ancient Monument. There is a visitor centre with interactive exhibits which illustrates the history of the abbey and the lives of the monks.
The canal continues west passing Bramley Hall Park where there are some nice woodland trails on the south side of the canal. Shortly after you come to Rodley where you will pass the Rodley Nature Reserve on the northern side of the River Aire. The wetland reserve includes water features, woodland, grassland and scrub. It's a great place for birdwatching with little grebe, tufted duck, gadwall, shoveler, kingfisher, dipper, oystercatcher, lapwing and common tern to look out for.
The next stage takes you from Rodley to Apperley Bridge where you will pass Calverley Woods. The woods have a network of footpaths and mountain bike trails and include bluebell woodland, an old walled garden and hidden grottoes.
The last stage takes you past Buck Wood and into the market town of Shipley where the route finishes. The town played a significant role in the Industrial Revolution and, in particular, the growth of the textile industry. Look out for a number of old canal-side mills as you finish the walk.
To extend your exercise you could continue west and visit Saltaire where you will find a fascinating Victorian model village and UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The Aire Valley Towpath also runs through the area and will take you all the way to Bingley. View Full Details>>
|Leeds to Shipley||12 miles (20 km)||This route follows the tow path of the Leeds Liverpool Canal from lock 1, where the canal joins the River Aire, to Shipley rail station View Full Details>>|
|Lichfield Canal||1 miles (1.5 km)||Enjoy an easy walk along a section of the Lichfield Canal Heritage Trail. It runs along a recently restored section of the Lichfield Canal in Lichfield, Staffordshire. The walk starts from just south of Darnford Park. You then follow the canal west past the Borrowcop Locks Canal Park.|
Just to the east the canal links with the Coventry Canal where there are nice cycling and walking trails along the towpath. The Heart of England Way also crosses this section of the canal. You can pick it up near Darnford and follow it south towards Sutton Coldfield. Following it north west will take you through the city to the cathedral. Here you can learn about over 1300 years of history in the only medieval three-spired Cathedral in England. The route then heads west through the countryside towards Burntwood. View Full Details>>
|Limehouse Cut||3 miles (4.5 km)||Follow the Limehouse Cut canal on this waterside walk or cycle in East London. It's a nice route for anyone looking for an easy, safe cycle ride or walkers looking for a pleasant stroll in the city. Look out for wildlife including coot, swans, ducks and cormorants on the way.|
The route starts from the Limehouse Basin, next to the River Thames in the London Borough of Tower Hamlets. Here you can see the road swing bridge at the entrance to the Thames. When tall masted boats either arrive or leave the basin, Narrow Street traffic is stopped. From the basin you follow the Lea Valley Walk north east along the canal through Bow Common, Bromley and Bow. The cycle route finishes at 3 mills studio but if you are on foot you can continue along the River Lea Navigation to the Olympic Park where you can explore the site on a number of footpaths and cycling trails. You could also continue along the Lea Navigation and visit the nearby Hackney Marshes just to the north of the Olympic Park.
At the stadium the Hertford Union Canal heads west to Victoria Park. This is another good option for extending your exercise. View Full Details>>
|Limestone Link||36 miles (58 km)||Starting at Cold Ashton in St Catherine's Valley, Gloucestershire follow the Limestone Link from the Cotswolds to the Mendip Hills in Somerset.|
The walk first heads south towards Batheaston where you join the River Avon and the Kennet and Avon Canal for a lovely waterside stretch to Monkton Coombe. You will also pass near to Little Solsbury Hill, made famous by the Peter Gabriel song 'Solsbury Hill'.
The second section of the path then takes you through the Mendip Hills AONB with fabulous views of the Chew Valley, Burrington Combe limestone gorge, Dolebury Warren Iron Age Hill Fort, the waterfall at Hallatrow and the final stretch through Burrington common the main highlights. View Full Details>>
|Llangollen Canal||49 miles (79 km)||Enjoy a waterside walk or cycle along the Llangollen Canal. The canal runs from Llangollen in Wales to Hurleston near Nantwich in Cheshire. You can walk along the canal towpath from start to finish, while cyclists can enjoy the section from Llangollen to Chirk using National Cycle Network routes 85 and 84. This first section starts at the wonderful Horseshoe Falls just to the west of Llangollen. You then head through Llangollen to the wonderful Pontcysyllte Aqueduct where the canal is carried over the valley of the River Dee. The magnificent structure is the longest and highest aqueduct in Britain and a World Heritage Site. There are wonderful views of the Dee valley and up to the medieval Castell Dinas Bran from this major highlight on the route. You can explore the Aqueduct by clicking on the google street view link below.|
You continue to Chirk where you will pass the National Trust owned Chirk Castle. The castle has award-winning gardens and a 460 acre estate to explore so is well worth the small detour from the canal.
The next section runs to Ellesmere passing Hindford and the pretty Frankton Locks on the way. At Frankton Junction you can pick up the Montgomery Canal which runs to Newton. When you reach Ellesmere you will pass close to the lovely Ellesmere Country Park where you can enjoy lakeside and woodland walks.
You continue east to Whitchurch passing the delightful Colmere Country Park, the Ellesmere Canal and Bettisfield on the way. The final section runs from Whitchurch to Hurleston passing Marbury (with its series of meres) and Wrenbury. View Full Details>>
|Louth Canal||11 miles (18 km)||Enjoy a waterside walk along the Louth Canal from Louth to Tetney Marshes. Along the way there's the lovely scenery of the Lincolnshire Wolds countryside and nice views of the River Lud. You can walk the length of the canal along the towpath which runs for about 12 miles.|
The walk starts from the interesting market town of Louth in the Lincolnshire Wolds. It's a very pretty town with Georgian streets including several fine buildings such as Louth Manor House and many others dating from 17th century onwards. Other highlights include St. James church where you can climb the tower for nice views over the town. You should also visit the interesting Louth Museum, the Greenwich meridian line plaque and the delightful Hubbard's Hills park.
You can pick up the canal towpath on the eastern side of the town and follow it north east towards Keddington and Alvingham. On your right hand side around Keddington you can take a short detour to visit the remains of Louth Abbey which dates from 1139.
At High Bridge the canal turns towards the North West, passing Conisholme Fen and Covenham Reservoir. The final sections takes you over Thoresby Bridge before passing Tetney Lock and finishing at Tetney Marshes Nature Reserve on the Humber Estuary. The RSPB reserve makes a lovely end to the walk. It's situated on the north Lincolnshire coast and includes coastal mudflats, salt marsh, dunes and saline lagoons. The reserve is a fantastic place for bird watching with brent geese, knots, golden plovers, redshanks and sanderlings to look out for.
The Silver Lincs Way long distance trail also starts in Louth and runs all the way to Grimsby. You could pick this up and follow it to the delightful Hubbard's Hills with it's lovely woodland trails along the River Ludd. View Full Details>>
|Lunesdale Walk||34 miles (54 km)||This figure of eight walk takes you on a tour of the beautiful scenery around Carnforth.|
The trail takes in a series of waterways including the Lancaster Canal and the Rivers Lune, Hindburn, Wenning and Roeburn while also passing through several pretty towns and villages. Starting in Carnforth you will pass Swarthdale, Melling, Roeburndale, Hornby, Arkholme and Capernwray. You can also enjoy views of Morecambe Bay with the Cumbrian Mountains making a spectacular backdrop. Part of the walk also passes through the stunning Forest of Bowland AONB with its fabulous landscapes, woodland, hills and variety of wildlife. View Full Details>>
|Lydney Harbour||4 miles (6 km)||Enjoy a walk along the Lydney Canal and Lydney Harbour on this delightful waterside stroll in Gloucestershire. There's nice views over the River Severn towards Sharpness on the opposite side and the two Severn Bridges further down. It's an idyllic spot with well marked footpaths and lots of birdlife to look out for on the water.|
The walk starts from Lydney Train Station on the Dean Forest Heritage Railway. You can catch the old steam train from Lydney Town and then pick up the footpath along the canal to the harbour. It's a pleasant waterside stroll with lovely views across Saniger Sands on the Severn towards the end of the walk.
To extend your walking in the area you can head to the Lydney Park Estate where there are beautiful gardens, woodland trails and a fascinating Roman temple.
Lydney is also located near to the Forest of Dean where there are miles of nice cycling and walking trails to try. The Devil's Pulpit and the Coleford Milkwall and Parkend railway path are two highlights of the area and located not far from Lydney. View Full Details>>
|Macclesfield Canal||26 miles (42 km)||Follow the towpath of the Macclesfield Canal from Marple to Kidsgrove on this waterside walk in Cheshire. Along the way there's lots of interesting lock structures, old bridges, pretty villages, nice pubs and great views of the surrounding Cheshire countryside. The 27 mile canal runs from Marple in Greater Manchester to Kidsgrove in Staffordshire, where it links with the Trent and Mersey Canal.|
You start of at Marple Canal Locks near to Marple train station. It's a wonderful start to the walk with the fascinating flight of sixteen locks a truly impressive sight. The canal then heads south through the town before branching off to the south west while the adjacent Peak Forest Canal branches off to the south east towards Disley.
The canal continues south towards Middlewood and Bollington, before entering Macclesfield itself. After passing through the eastern edge of the town you head out into the countryside again, passing Bosley Locks before coming to Congleton. The Bosley locks are one of the highlights of the route with an impressive flight of twelve canal locks.
The final section runs from Congleton to Kidsgrove where the canal links with the Trent and Mersey Canal.
The canal is one section of the Cheshire Ring Canal Walk which follows six historic canals through Cheshire, Greater Manchester and Staffordshire.
Along the route of the canal there's plenty of opportunities to make short detours and visit some of the area's attractions. For example, around Congleton you can visit the lovely Astbury Mere Country Park and enjoy a waterside walk around the pretty lake. Around Bosley you will find Bosley Reservoir and the climb to Bosley Cloud.
Also of interest is the Middlewood Way. The cycling and walking trail runs parallel to the canal from Macclesfield to Marple. View Full Details>>
|Macclesfield to Marple - Middlewood Way||11 miles (18 km)||Follow the Middlewood Way - a lovely off road cycle and walking path running from Macclesfield to Marple and passing by the Macclesfield Canal. View Full Details>>|
|Maelor Way||24 miles (38 km)||This splendid walk takes you from the Shropshire/Cheshire border into Wales.|
The path starts at Grindley Brook near Whitchurch and heads west to Penley in Wales, passing around the pretty Hanmer Mere on the way. You continue to Overton and then Erbistock where you join the River Dee and then the River Ceiriog to Chirk before the final waterside section leads to the finish point at Bronygarth.
This is a beautiful walk through some fabulous English and Welsh countryside. It also has several waterside streches along the two rivers with a stroll along the Llangollen Canal near Chirk to enjoy also. View Full Details>>
|Market Weighton Canal||11 miles (17.7 km)||Follow the Market Weighton Canal from the town of Market Weighton to the Humber Estuary on this waterside walk in the East Riding of Yorkshire.|
Starting in the town centre follow the Weighton Beck south west for about 1.5 miles and you will join with the canal. You then follow canalside footpaths south to the village of Newport where you can stop for refreshments in one of the cafes or pubs. The final section takes you from Newport to the Humber Estuary where there are nice views of Whitton Island and the Lincolnshire countryside on the other side of the River Humber.
At the end of the route the canal links with the Trans Pennine Trail. If you wanted to extend the walk you could pick up the trail and head west along the River Ouse toward Goole. Heading east would take you towards Brough along the Humber.
To extend your walking from the Market Weighton end you could pick up the Yorkshire Wolds Way and follow it north into the lovely Londesborough Park. View Full Details>>
|Marple Canal Locks||1 miles (2 km)||This easy walk takes you along a particularly lovely section of the Peak Forest Canal in Marple. You'll pass the Marple Lock Flight consisting of a flight of sixteen canal locks over the course of about 1 mile. It's a splendid sight with lots of boats to see in the summer months and nice views of the surrounding countryside.|
The walk starts from Marple Memorial Park where there's a car park, tree sculptures, sensory gardens and nice views towards the Peak District hills. From the car park follow footpaths leading down to the canal where you can pick up the towpath and head north, passing the lock flight. The walk passes Brabyn's Park before finishing at Marple Aqueduct. The structure was built to carry the lower level of the Peak Forest Canal across a length of the River Goyt. It is the highest canal aqueduct in England and the highest masonry-arch aqueduct in Britain.
You can extend the walk by continuing along the Etherow Goyt Valley Way which will take you west along the river towards Bredbury. Etherow Country Park is also very close by. There's more nice waterside trails along the River Etherow here.
The Macclesfield Canal also starts at the locks. You can follow it south through the countryside to Bollington. View Full Details>>
|Mersey Valley Timberland Trail||22 miles (35 km)||This walk runs from Lymm to Runcorn, following the Bridgewater canal for much of the route.|
The trail starts off on the canal at Spud Wood just outside Lymm. You then head through the pretty town and around Lymm Dam before rejoining the canal to Appleton Park where the trail takes you alongside Appleton Reservoir. A couple of pleasant woodland sections take you to Daresbury with the final leg passing through Runcorn and finishing on Runcorn Hill View Full Details>>
|Mid-Wilts Way||68 miles (109 km)||A 68-mile walking route that takes in some of Wiltshire's finest countryside and downland areas. The walk runs from the village of Ham (near Inkpen) to Mere (near Warminster).
You will visit a series of pretty villages including Wilton, Wootton Rivers, Oare, Seend Cleeve, Keevil, Steeple Ashton, Bratton, Upton Scudamore, Horningham and Kingston Deverill. The walk includes several hill climbs with fabulous views of the Wiltshire countryside. This includes a climb to Cley Hill in the Cranborne Chase AONB. The hill is owned by the National Trust and commands great views over Wiltshire and Somerset.
There are also long waterside sections along the Kennet and Avon Canal and a section through Longleat Center Parcs towards the end of the walk.
The route is now officially open and has been waymarked with discrete MWW discs. The Visit Wiltshire website has some excellent downloadable guides . Please note the route has recently been extended so this link does not include the full current route. View Full Details>>
|Midland Link||20 miles (32 km)||Enjoy lakes, canals, woodlands and historic villages on this waymarked walk through the Worcestershire and Warwickshire countryside.|
The walk begins at the Forehill picnic site, just outside Birmingham, and heads to Tanworth-in-Arden on country lanes and footpaths. This section of the walk passes the three man-made reservoirs at Earlswood lakes and the interesting Transport Museum at Wythall with its extensive collection of buses, battery electric vehicles and a miniature steam railway.
From Tanworth-in-Arden you continue east towards the village of Lapworth, passing the 17th century Umberslade Hall and Park on the way. The mansion is a a Grade II* listed building and is surrounded by parkland and lakes.
At Lapworth you join the Stratford Upon Avon Canal for a short waterside stretch which takes you to Kingswood Junction where the Stratford-upon-Avon Canal meets the Grand Union Canal. A short stroll from Kingswood takes you onto another major highlight on the walk, as you reach the moated manor house of Baddesley Clinton. This medieval manor house dates from the 15th century and includes a pretty garden with lakeside walks.
The final section of the walk then takes you to Kenilworth, passing through the peaceful Hay Wood and the village of Wroxhall on the way. You finish at the impressive Kenilworth Castle described by architectural historian Anthony Emery as 'the finest surviving example of a semi-royal palace of the later middle ages, significant for its scale, form and quality of workmanship'. The castle dates from the 16th century and includes a beautiful Elizabethan Garden with a bejewelled aviary and marble fountain. View Full Details>>
|Millennium Way||41 miles (66 km)||Travel across the width of Staffordshire and visit Stafford, Colwich, Rugeley, Yoxall and Barton Under Needwood on this splendid walk. Much of the walk follows the Staffordshire and Worcestershire Canal and the Trent & Mersey Canal making for a pleasant and fairly easy waterside walk. View Full Details>>|
|Monmouthshire and Brecon Canal||37 miles (60 km)||Follow the Monmouthshire and Brecon Canal from Brecon to Newport on this super waterside walking and cycling route. Walkers can enjoy the whole route along canal towpaths while cyclists can follow National Cycle Network routes 4, 47 and 49 from Newport to Pontypool. The cycle path is wide and well surfaced so it's a lovely, safe ride. The cycle section runs for about 12 miles. |
The whole route runs from Brecon to Newport passing through the beautiful and dramatic scenery of the Brecon Beacons National Park. The first section runs from Brecon to Talybont-on-Usk via Pencelli. It's a 6.5 mile walk with views of the River Usk and the pretty Brynich Lock.
The canal continues to the delightful Llangynidr locks and then on to Cricklehowell and Abergavenny. There's an opportunity here to visit Abergavenny Castle Meadows and Linda Vista Gardens with a small detour from the canal.
The next section runs from Abergavenny to Pontypool, passing the noteworthy Goytre Wharf, with its historic limekilns.
The final section runs from Pontypool to Newport via Cwmbran. This section is open to cyclists. The route finishes in Newport near the castle. View Full Details>>
|Montgomery Canal||35 miles (56 km)||Enjoy easy waterside cycling and walking along the Montgomery Canal through Powys and Shropshire. The whole of the route can be walked while cyclists can enjoy the section from Newtown to Welshpool along National Cycle Network route 81. It's a great ride and suitable for families and people of all abilities. |
Starting in Newtown you follow the River Severn towards Llanllwchaiarn and the start of the canal. You then follow the towpath north passing the Pwll Penarth Nature Reserve and a series of pretty villages including Abermule and Berriew where the canal is carried over the River Rhiw aqueduct. The route continues to Welshpool passing Powis Castle and the Llyn Coed y Dinas Nature Reserve. It's a super section of the canal with wildlife such as otters and water voles to look out for.
From Welshpool you continue north to Arddleen and Four Crosses where you cross the Vyrnwy Aqueduct. It's a highlight of the route with splendid views of the River Vyrnwy to enjoy.
The route continues through Pant and Maesbury Marsh before finishing at Frankton Locks in Shropshire. Here you can pick up the Llangollen Canal and enjoy more waterside walking. View Full Details>>
|Neath Canal||3 miles (5 km)||This section of the Neath Canal makes for a lovely waterside cycle or walk. It runs along the National Cycle Network route from the parking area at Craig Nedd, Resolven to Glynneath. You'll pass pretty locks and bridges with views of the River Neath along the way.|
St Illtyd's Walk runs through Resolven so you could pick this up and head to the nearby Melincourt Falls to extend your walk. View Full Details>>
|New Lipchis Way||37 miles (60 km)||This is an exceptionally lovely walking trail that runs from Liphook, in Hampshire, to East Head at the entrance to Chichester Harbour. The path takes you through some of the loveliest parts of West Sussex including greensand ridges,
Wealden river valleys, heathlands, high chalk downland and then finally the coastal plain at Chichester.|
The first section of the walk runs from Liphook to Midhurst, passing through Woolbeding Common before a waterside section along the River Rother takes you to Midhurst.
From Midhurst you continue south through countryside and woodland to Singleton where you will find the fascinating Weald & Downland Open Air Museum. The museum covers 50 acres, with around 50 historic buildings dating from the thirteenth to nineteenth centuries, along with gardens, farm animals, walks and a lake.
The next section then takes you to Chichester, and includes a climb to the top of St Roche's hill where you can enjoy splendid views of the South Downs. Soon after you join a short easy section along a dismantled railway line through Lavant and onto the beautiful cathedral city of Chichester.
The final section then takes you along the Chichester Ship Canal and the Chichester Channel to West Wittering with splendid views of Chichester Harbour as you go. View Full Details>>
|Newry Canal||20 miles (32 km)||Enjoy a walk or cycle along the Newry Canal on this waterside route in Northern Ireland. The route follows National Cycle Network Route 9 along the canal towpath from Newry to Portadown. It's about 20 miles and makes for a nice, easy cycle or walk. The route passes a series of old stone bridges and pretty locks. The views of the surrounding countryside are great and you should also see lots of water loving wildlife along the way.|
The route begins in Newry town centre and heads north to Jerretspass, Poyntzpass and Scarva before finishing in Portadown. Highlights on the route include Lough Shark and Brackagh Nature Reserve near Portadown. A good place for refreshments is the lovely village of Scarva. The canalside village is well known for its park with a bandstand and prize winning floral displays. You can enjoy a snack at the tea rooms and visitor centre.
At Portadown this route links with the Lough Neagh circuit which runs around the largest freshwater lake in Britain and Ireland. View Full Details>>
|North Cheshire Way||70 miles (113 km)||Starting at Hooton Station, near Ellesmere Port, follow the North Cheshire Way through Frodsham, Northwich, Knutsford and Wilmslow to the finish point at Disley. |
Highlights on the walk include:
|Nottingham Canal||8 miles (13 km)||Enjoy a walk or cycle along this pretty canal in Nottingham. The route runs along the Erewash Valley Trail from Langley Mill to the outskirts of Nottingham. It's a nice flat ride which is ideal for families.|
The route starts at Langley Mill and heads south to Cossal and Trowell. This area has now been declared as a nature reserve which attracts lots of dragonflies, damselflies and birdlife. On the Trowell section are the remains of Swansea bridge, one of the original stone bridges, which was built around 1793–95. From here you can see the original stone built lock keepers cottages.
The route finishes very close to Wollaton Park where you can extend your outing. The large country park consists of an exquisite Elizabethan mansion surrounded by acres of parkland, woodland, lakes, formal gardens and the deer park.
The video below shows the Erewash Valley Trail which includes this section along the Nottingham Canal. View Full Details>>
|Nutbrook Trail||10 miles (16 km)||This easy cycling and walking trail runs from Long Eaton to Heanor along the Erewash Canal and a dismantled railway line. It runs for about 10 miles and is part of National Cycle Route 67. It's a great one for families or anyone looking for a safe, flat ride or walk. |
The route starts in Long Eaton next to West Park and follows the Erewash Canal north through Sandiacre and Stapleford. It's a pleasant section along the canal towpath with pretty locks and old stone bridges.
Just after Stapleford you leave the canal and bear west toward Ilkeston along a dismantled railway line. You'll pass through the pretty Manor Floods Nature Reserve where there is a nice lake and lots of wildlife to look out for. The final section takes you through the lovely Shipley Country Park to the finish point at Heanor. It's a great park with 700 acres of woodland, lakes and parkland.
To extend your outing you could pick up the circular Erewash Valley Trail and further explore the Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire countryside on your bike or on foot. View Full Details>>
|Oxford Canal Walk||77 miles (124 km)||Follow the Oxford Canal from Oxford to Coventry on this splendid waterside walk. You follow the towpath of the canal for the duration of the route meaning this is a fairly easy walk (providing you don't do at all at once!)|
You will pass through Thrupp, Lower Heyford, Banbury, Cropredy, Braunston Turn and Rugby before finishing at Hawkesbury Junction in Coventry.
The peaceful south Midlands countryside, a series of pretty locks and several excellent canal side pubs make this walk a fantastic experience. Highlights include the delightful Port Meadow at the start of the route in Oxford, great views of the River Cherwell through Oxfordshire and the stunning gardens at Rousham Park. View Full Details>>
|Oxford Green Belt Way||52 miles (84 km)||The Oxford Green Belt Way was created by CPRE Oxfordshire to celebrate its 75th anniversary and 50 years of Oxford's Green Belt. The circular walk takes you through some lovely Oxfordshire countryside and historic villages, with peaceful waterside sections along the River Thames and the Oxford Canal. |
The walk begins on the outskirts of Oxford and visits Horspath, Garsington, Abingdon, Kidlington and Beckley. There are excellent views of Oxford’s Dreaming Spires, Otmoor, Foxcombe Hill and Wytham Woods.
Attractions on the route include Harcourt Arboretum at Nuneham Courtenay. Here you will find a 10-acre woodland and a 37-acre meadow full of wild flowers.
The route passes the RSPB nature reserve at Otmoor where you can enjoy a nature trail and look out for thousands of wildfowl.
Near Horspath you will pass through Shotover Country Park with its ancient woodland, flowery meadows, marshes, ponds and bracken-covered slopes. You can climb Shotover Hill for wonderful views of the surrounding countryside.
There are also lovely waterside stretches along the River Thames, the Oxford Canal and around Farmoor Reservoir.
For those interested in history the 12th century ruined abbey at Godstow is also of note. View Full Details>>
|Paddington Canal||13 miles (21 km)||Follow the Paddington Arm of the Grand Union Canal from Paddington to Hayes, on this waterside walk or cycle through West London. The canal is a great way to escape from the hustle and bustle of the city and enjoy some pleasant scenery. There's tree lined paths, pretty locks, lots of barges and plenty of water loving wildlife to look out for on the way.|
You can start the walk from Paddington Basin just to the north of Paddington Station or at Little Venice just to the south of Warwick Avenue tube. Little Venice is very pretty with narrowboats, water cafes and a good selection of restaurants and bars. You can virtually explore the area using the google street view link below.
From Little Venice you head west passing Westbourne, Kensal Green, Harlesden and Alperton. Shortly after Alperton you come to the Horsenden Hill open space which is worth a small detour. The park includes nice walking trails including a hill climb with fine views over the city of London.
The next section sees the canal turn south through Northolt where you will pass Northala Fields. The pleasant park consists of four artificial hills made out of the rubble from the old Wembley Stadium. There's nice views from the hills with other features including fishing lakes, streams, wetlands and wildlife ponds.
The canal continues south through Southall before finishing at Hayes where the Paddington Arm joins with the main branch of the Grand Union Canal. Here you can extend you exercise by continuing to Yiewsley and Uxbridge where the canal runs along the River Colne. View Full Details>>
|Peak Forest Canal||15 miles (24 km)||Travel from Derbyshire into Greater Manchester on this waterside walk along the Peak Forest Canal. The route runs from Buxworth in Derbyshire to Ashton-under-Lyne in Greater Manchester. On the way you'll pass a series of pretty locks with nice views of the surrounding countryside. It's about a 15 mile walk from end to end.|
You start off in the village of Buxworth and head north towards Bridgemont and New Mills with views of the River Goyt. Around New Mills you can visit the splendid Torrs Riverside Park and Millennium Way. Here you will find a beautiful river gorge with a fabulous 160 metre long walkway elevated over the water.
Soon after New Mills you come to Disley where you can take a small detour and visit the wonderful Lyme Park. The expansive deer park has great views of the surrounding Peak District Hills.
The canal continues north through Marple where you will come to the impressive Marple Aqueduct and a flight of sixteen locks. It's one of the highlights on the walk and a nice spot to stop for some refreshments.
The next stage runs through Romiley and Hyde before finishing at Ashton-under-Lyne where it links with the Ashton Canal.
The canal also links with other long distance trails. You can pick up the Goyt Way at New Mills and enjoy another waterside walk along the riverside path.
There's also the Cheshire Ring Canal Walk which visits five other canals and the lovely Tame Valley Way. View Full Details>>
|Peatlands Way||50 miles (80 km)||This waymarked circular walk takes you through the moorland and lowland raised bogs around the town of Thorne near Doncaster. The walk visits Crowle, Belton, Epworth, Haxey, Kirk Bramwith and Sykehouse. You will also cross the famous Thorne and Hatfield Moors, wildlife sites of national and European importance. The walk includes some easy waterside sections along the River Don and the New Junction Canal. View Full Details>>|
|Pocklington Canal||9 miles (15 km)||Enjoy an easy waterside stroll along this lovely canal in East Riding of Yorkshire. The canal runs for about 9 miles from the town of Pocklington to East Cottingwith where it joins the River Derwent. It's an easy flat walk along the towpath with some delightful scenery to take in. Along the way you'll pass a number of locks and bridges with nice views of the surrounding countryside. The area is great for wildlife with part of the canal falling within the Lower Derwent Valley National Nature Reserve. Look out for swans, ducks, kingfishers and dragonflies.|
The route starts just south of Pocklington town centre where Canal Lane meets York Road. It then passes Bielby, Melbourne and Storwood before finishing at Cottingwith Lock at East Cottingwith.
The Wilberforce Way runs along the canal so it's possible to extend your walk along this long distance footpath. It can be followed from the centre of Pocklington to start your walk.
Just to the west of Pocklington you can enjoy miles of wide woodland trails in Allerthorpe Woods. View Full Details>>
|Regent's Canal||9 miles (14 km)||Follow the Regent's canal through Regent's Park and Central London on this pleasant waterside cycling and walking route.|
Starting at the Little Venice basin in Maida Vale, you follow the canal into Regent’s Park where you will find the famous Zoo. You then pass through Camden, with its popular market, before continuing towards the East End. The route then passes the revived Mile End Park with its arts pavilion, terraced gardens and green bridge with views of Canary Wharf. You finish at the River Thames at Limehouse Basin.
You can extend your outing by picking up the Jubilee Greenway circular walk. The waymarked trail visits some of the capital's best parks and most famous landmarks. It uses the canal for part of the route.
At the western end the canal joins with the Paddington Canal, an arm of the Grand Union Canal. You can follow the towpath west through Little Venice to Westbourne, Alperton, Harlesden and Hayes. View Full Details>>
|Ripon Canal||3 miles (5 km)||Enjoy a short, waterside stroll along the Ripon Canal, on this easy walk in North Yorkshire. The canal runs for just over two miles, from the cathedral city of Ripon, to the River Ure, near Newby Hall. Along the way there are pretty locks and nice views of the surrounding countryside. At the end of the canal you will find the wonderful Newby Hall. The 18th century house is open to the public from 21 March until 1 October. It's a lovely spot with the grounds including views over the River Ure, extensive herbaceous borders and woodland walks. |
The canal forms part of the long distance Ripon Rowel which takes you on a tour of the countryside and villages surrounding the city. You can continue along the trail to extend your walk.
Just to the west of the canal is the splendid Studley Park and Fountains Abbey where there are miles of footpaths taking you around beautiful parkland and gardens. View Full Details>>
|River Wey Navigation||20 miles (32 km)||Follow the River Wey Navigation towpath from Godalming to the River Thames at Weybridge on this super waterside walk. The whole of the route is suitable for walkers while cyclists can enjoy a super waterside section in Guildford. |
You start off in Godalming and pass Guildford, Sutton Park, Pyrford and Byfleet before finishing in Weybridge where you can pick up the Thames Path. There's lots of pretty Surrey countryside to see and a series of pretty locks and bridges on the way. View Full Details>>
|Rochdale Canal||33 miles (53 km)||Follow the Rochdale canal from Manchester to Sowerby Bridge on this waterside route through Greater Manchester and Yorkshire. It starts in the city centre of Manchester and runs for about 33 miles through the Pennine Hills. The canal is an excellent way to see the Pennines without too much effort as the towpath is largely flat.|
You start off in Manchester just to the north of Piccadilly train station at the Castlefield Basin. The canal then heads to Rochdale passing through Failsworth and Chadderton on the way. Near Rochdale you will pass the lovely Hollingworth Lake which is worth a small detour.
The route continues through Littleborough to Todmorden where there is the opportunity to visit Stoodley Pike. The challenging climb to the monument gives gives great views over the surrounding area.
The next section runs from Todmorden to Hebden Bridge giving wonderful views of Calderdale and the Pennine Hills. If you have time you could visit the wonderful Hardcastle Crags just north of Hebden Bridge. Here you will find streams, beautiful waterfalls and the fantastic Gibson Mill.
The final stretch runs from Hebden Bridge to Sowerby Bridge passing the pretty village of Mytholmroyd. The canal then joins the Calder and Hebble Navigation Canal which is also great for a walk or cycle. You can continue along the towpath to nearby Brighouse to extend your exercise. View Full Details>>
|Royal Military Canal Path||27 miles (43 km)||This walking route runs from Pett Level to Seabrook along the Royal Military Canal. Constructed in the early 19th century as a defence against a possible invasion by Napoleon, the canal-side path now makes for a nice easy walk.|
The route starts off on the coast at Pett Level and heads inland towards Winchelsea and then onto Rye. The path then heads to Hythe via Appledore before finishing at Seabrook just outside Hythe.
Highlights on the route include the lovely Rye Harbour Nature Reserve near Rye. The reserve includes saltmarsh, lagoons, grazing marsh, shingle and reedbeds. You can also visit the ruins of Henry VIII's Camber Castle. The Device Fort was built to protect the Sussex coast against French attack in the 16th century. View Full Details>>
|Sandstone Trail||32 miles (51 km)||This is a popular walk that runs through Cheshire and Shropshire from Frodsham to Whitchurch.|
The path starts in Frodsham and heads south to Frodsham Hill with lovely views over the Cheshire Plain and the Mersey Estuary. You continue to Delamere Forest with its 2,400 acres of mixed deciduous and evergreen woodland and Blakemere Moss, a lake around 1 km in length.
From Delamere you continue south towards Beeston Castle in Tarporley. With an exhibition detailing 4000 years of the castle's history and 40 acres of woodland trails, Beeston is a major attraction on the walk. Soon after you will come to Peckforton Castle, which is actually a country house built in the style of a medieval castle. It is now used as a luxury hotel.
The path then heads through the lovely Peckforton Hills, passing the Bickerton Hills and Hampton Green before joining the towpath of the Shropshire Union Canal to Grindley Brook and then onto the finish point at Whitchurch.
To extend your walking on the trail you could try our circular walk from Frodsham which uses the Delamere Way to create a loop around the town. View Full Details>>
|Sheerness Way||6 miles (9 km)||Opened in 2011 this super, circular cycle and walking route, follows a series of safe, traffic free paths around Sheerness on the Isle of Sheppey.|
You will run along the attractive Isle of Sheppy coast and Sheerness beach, while there is also a pleasant waterside section along the Queenborough Lines or the canal bank as it is known locally.
This is a nice family cycle ride as it takes place on flat, off road paths. Walkers looking for an easy circular walk will also find it suitable.
The route is easily accessible, starting and finishing at Sheerness-on-Sea railway station. View Full Details>>
|Sheffield Canal||4 miles (6 km)||Follow the towpath of the Sheffield Canal on this waterside walk in Yorkshire. The canal runs from the Sheffield Canal Basin in the city centre to Tinsley, next to the Meadowhall centre. Along the way there are a number of locks and stone bridges. It's quite a narrow towpath so it's probably best suited for walkers. The canal featured in the opening scene of the 1997 film The Full Monty. |
The route starts at the attractive Victoria Quays in Sheffield. You then head north east through Attercliffe, passing the Don Valley Stadium on the way. You then pass Tinsley Locks before finishing at Meadowhall. The huge indoor shopping centre has plenty of restaurants for refreshments at the end of your walk.
The River Don also runs to Meadowhall from the city centre so you could return along the Five Weirs Walk. This follows a waterside path along the river and is suitable for cyclists and walkers. View Full Details>>
|Shrewsbury Canal||3 miles (5 km)||This cycling and walking trail follows the route of the Old Shrewsbury Canal from the centre of Shrewsbury to Haughmond Hill at Uffington.|
The path starts at Castle Fields, just to the north east of the train station. It then heads through Ditherington and Heathgate before finishing at Uffington next to Haughmond Hill. It's a nice flat path running for about 3 miles with views of the River Severn.
The route runs along part of the long distance Shropshire Way and runs alongside the Severn Way. The are both good options for extending your walk.
You could also enjoy a climb to Haughmond Hill at the end of the route, where there are nice woodland trails and great views over Shropshire. View Full Details>>
|Shropshire Union Canal||66 miles (106 km)||Travel from the ourskirts of Wolverhampton to Ellesmere Port on this long distance waterside walk along the Shropshire Union Canal.|
The route starts at Autherley Junction in the Oxley area of Wolverhampton. You follow the canal north into the countryside, passing Pendeford Mill Nature Reserve where there are good bird watching opportunities.
You continue north to Brewood and Wheaton Aston before passing Belvide Reservoir. The canal enters Shropshire, passing Market Drayton before entering Cheshire where you pass Audlem with views of the River Weaver.
The route then passes through Nantiwch and Chester before finishing at Ellesmere Port where you join with the Manchester Ship Canal and the River Mersey.
The canal also links with the Llangollen Canal and the Montgomery Canal which run into Wales. View Full Details>>
|Solihull Way||19 miles (30 km)||Starting at Earlswood Lakes head through Solihull to Castle Bromwich Hall. The path first takes you over the Stratford Upon Avon Canal and then along the Grand Union Canal. You then pass through Elmdon Park and Sheldon Country Park and past Birmingham International Airport before finishing at the Jacobean Mansion at Castle Bromwich Hall. View Full Details>>|
|Somerset Coal Canal||2 miles (4 km)||Follow the Somerset Coal Canal from Tucking Mill to Combe Hay on this easy walk in the Cotswolds. Tucking Mill is just west of the village of Monkton Combe so you could just as easily start off from there. You then follow the Limestone Link for about 2.5 miles to the village of Combe Hay in the Cotswolds AONB. View Full Details>>|
|South Bucks Way||23 miles (37 km)||The South Bucks Way runs from Coombe Hill near Wendover to Denham near Uxbridge.|
You begin at the top of Coombe Hill with splendid views of the surrounding countryside and descend towards Great Missenden where you will pass the Abbey and join the River Misbourne. The route then follows the river through Amersham and Chalfont St Peter before joining the River Colne for the final stretch into Denham, where you finish by the Grand Union Canal. View Full Details>>
|South Cheshire Way||34 miles (55 km)||This is a splendid walk along canals and through wonderful Shropshire and Cheshire countryside from Grindley Brook, near Whitchurch, to Mow Cop near Congleton.|
The walk starts on the Shropshire Union Canal at Grindley Brook and heads to Marbury passing alongside the tranquil Marbury Meres as you go. The next stage takes you towards Wrenbury and then onto Coole Pilate where you cross the Shropshire Union Canal.
The path continues passing Weston and Haslington before joining the Trent & Mersey Canal at Malkin's Bank for some waterside walking. At Thurlwood you leave the canal and head towards Little Moreton Hall. Owned by the National Trust the hall is a moated 15th-century half-timbered manor house. The final section then takes you onto the finish point at Mow Cop finishing near the castle. View Full Details>>
|Staffordshire and Worcestershire Canal||46 miles (74 km)||Follow the Staffordshire and Worcestershire Canal from Stourport-on-Severn to Great Haywood on this easy waterside walking and cycling route. The walk starts at Stourport-on-Severn by the Staffordshire and Worcestershire Canal Basin near to the River Severn. You then head north to Kidderminster with views of the River Stour as you go. You continue to Kinver where you could deviate from the path to visit the splendid Kingsford Country Park and Kinver Edge,. The large area of woodland and heathland has miles of walking trails with wonderful views across the region.|
The next section takes you through Wolverhampton, passing the National Trust owned Wightwick Manor Gardens and Valley Park Nature Reserve.
You continue to Stafford before the final stretch to Great Haywood Junction, passing the beautiful Shugborough Park on the way. The 900 acre estate is well worth visiting with its expansive parkland and stunning gardens. At Great Haywood the canal links with the Trent and Mersey Canal. You could extend your walk into the Trent Valley and the Cannock Chase AONB.
The whole of the route is open for walkers while cyclists can enjoy a super section from Stourport to Kidderminster along National Cycle Network Route 54. It's an excellent choice for a safe, waterside cycle. View Full Details>>
|Standedge Trail||12 miles (19 km)||A lovely circular walk through Kirklees. The path starts off at Marsden, near the railway station, and heads towards Diggle before turning round and returning to Marsden. The route crosses the wonderful Marsden Moor Estate with its heather moorland and far reaching views over the Pennines and the Peak District. You'll pass near Black Moss and Redbrook Reservoir and enjoy a canal side stretch towards the end of the route. You'll also pass the noteworthy Standedge Tunnels. The canal tunnel was opened in 1811 and is the longest and highest canal tunnel in the United Kingdom.|
Your walking in the area can be extend along the Huddersfield Narrow Canal or by picking up the long distance Oldham Way which passes through the area. View Full Details>>
|Stourbridge Canal||3 miles (5.5 km)||Enjoy an easy waterside walk along this pretty canal in the West Midlands. The walk starts in the town of Stourbridge in the West Midlands and heads to Stourton Bridge in Staffordshire. Here the canal links with the Staffordshire and Worcestershire Canal. There's lots of pretty locks and some lovely countryside as you make your way into Staffordshire. View Full Details>>|
|Stover Canal||2 miles (3 km)||Follow the Stover Canal from Newton Abbot to Teigngrace on this short walk in South Devon. It's a nice easy stroll along the Templer WayStover Country Park. At the Newton Abbot end of the canal you can follow a waterside path along the River Teign to extend your walk. View Full Details>>|
|Stratford Upon Avon Canal||26 miles (42 km)||Enjoy waterside cycling and walking on this 26 mile canal which runs from Stratford Upon Avon to Birmingham. The whole route can be walked while cyclists can enjoy the sections from Stratford Upon Avon to Wilmcote at one end and through the outskirts of Birmingham at the other. |
The route starts in the centre of Stratford Upon Avon and passes through a series of pretty villages before entering the outskirts of Birmingham and finishing in King's Norton. There's lots of pretty locks and some lovely Warwickshire countryside to enjoy. Around Solihull you'll pass close to Earlswood Lakes which is well worth a small detour. You'll also pass close to the lovely Baddesley Clinton. Here you will find a moated manor house surrounded by gardens and woodland. Also, around Kingswood the canal links up with the Grand Union Canal Walk so you can easily pick up another super canal trail. View Full Details>>
|Swansea Canal||4 miles (5.7 km)||Enjoy an easy waterside cycle or walk along the Swansea Canal and River Tawe. The route runs from Clydach to Pontardawe along route number 43 of the National Cycle Network. The route uses the canal towpath and a riverside trail, passing locks and bridges on the way. Look out for a variety of wildlife including otters, kingfishers, dippers, ducks, moths, butterflies and beetles. View Full Details>>|
|Tame Valley Way||23 miles (37 km)||Follow the River Tame through Greater Manchester from Stockport to Denshaw on this waterside walk. The trail passes through Ashton-under-Lyne, Stalybridge and Mossley and includes woodland sections as well as the extended sections along the River Tame and Huddersfield Narrow Canal. Also of interest isReddish Vale Country Park, which sits right on the River Tame. View Full Details>>|
|Tavistock Canal||3 miles (4.5 km)||Enjoy a peaceful stroll along the towpath of the Tavistock Canal on this easy walk in West Devon. The route starts at Tavistock Wharf and heads through the outskirts of the town towards Crowndale Farm, passing West Bridge on the way. You continue to the pretty Shillamill Aqueduct before finishing at Lumburn where the canal meets the River Lumburn. Along the way you will pass pretty locks, canalside cottages and old stone bridges. There are also sections through woodland and great views of the surrounding Devon countryside. |
If you'd like to continue your waterside walking in this area then you could head to the nearby Grenofen Bridge and visit Double Waters where the River Tavy meet the River Walkham. You could also pick up the West Devon Way which passes through Tavistock.
The Abbot's Way long distance trail will take you from the ruins of Tavistock Abbey to Buckfast Abbey, 22 miles to the east of the town. View Full Details>>
|Templer Way||18 miles (29 km)||Follow the Templer Way from Haytor on Dartmoor to the seaport of Teignmouth via Newton Abbot. The walk includes a wooded section through Yarner Woods near the route start and also visits the delightful Stover Country Park. With 14 acres of woodland, heathland, grassland, lake and marsh and a substantial variety of wildlife it is a real highlight on the walk.|
Shortly after passing Newton Abbot you will join the River Teign for a beautiful waterside section that leads to the finish point at Teignmouth.
The walk is named after the Templer family who constructed the Stover Canal and Tramway to transport granite from Haytor Quarry to the coast at Teignmouth. View Full Details>>
|Todmorden Centenary Way||22 miles (35 km)||This is a splendid circular walk through the beautiful Calder Valley in Yorkshire. The walk takes you across a series of atmospheric moors and past several lovely reservoirs, including Ramsden Clough and Warland reservoirs. There are also waterside sections to enjoy along the Rochdale Canal and a visit to Stoodley Pike. This 1,300ft hill includes the Stoodley Pike Monument at the summit. It was built in 1856 when peace was declared at the end of the Crimean War and is a major highlight on the walk. View Full Details>>|
|Trent and Mersey Canal||95 miles (153 km)||Follow the Trent and Mersey Canal through Derbyshire, Staffordshire and Cheshire on this long distance waterside walk. |
The route start at Shardlow near Long Eaton in Derbyshire and heads through Weston-on-Trent and Willington to Burton-Upon-Trent where you will pass the lovely Branston Water Park with its woodland, wetland and meadow. You continue to Alrewas where you will pass the National Memorial Arboretum. The Arboretum contains over 50,000 trees with nearly 300 memorials for the armed forces, civilian organisations and voluntary bodies who have played a part in serving the country.
The next stage takes you through Handsacre to Rugeley where you will pass the wonderful Cannock Chase Country Park. It's worth taking a short detour to explore the Cannock Chase AONB with miles of woodland walking and cycling trails, lakes, ponds and wildlife including deer and various birds to look out for.
You continue through the beautiful Trent Valley passing the National Trust Owned Shugborough Hall at Great Haywood. It is worth a visit with a grand hall, museum, kitchen garden, model farm and extensive parkland with follies, woodland and a Chinese House with two Chinese-style bridges.
The route continues through Weston to Stone before coming to the outskirts of Stoke-on-Trent where you will pass the splendid Trentham Gardens. Also in Stoke you will pass Westport Lake which is worth a small detour.
You continue north to Kidsgrove where you will find the Grade II* listed Rode Hall, surrounded by parkland and formal gardens. The hall and gardens are open to the public from April to September and are well worth a small detour from the canal.
The canal continues through Cheshire to Sandbach where you will pass close to the Watch Lane Flash Nature Reserve. Onward to Middlewhich and Northwhich where you will pass Marbury Country Park. It's a delightful area with magnificent Lime avenues, an Arboretum and the delightful Budworth Mere.
The final section takes you to Runcorn passing Barnton and Weaverham with views of the River Weaver. You finish near Runcorn where the Trent and Mersey Canal links with the Bridgewater Canal.
You can walk along the towpath for the whole route while cyclists can enjoy a long section through Stoke-on-Trent and a shorter section between Weston-on-Trent and Swarkstone. View Full Details>>
|Two Counties Way||56 miles (90 km)||Travel through Somerset and Devon on this beautiful walk from Taunton to Starcross. There is much to enjoy on this varied walk with peaceful waterside sections along the River Tone, the Grand Western Canal and the River Exe real highlights. Also stop for a visit at the lovely National Trust owned Killerton Estate. This 18th century house boasts a historic fashion exhibition and stunning gardens.
The route passes Wellington, Sampford Peverell, Tiverton, Bickleigh, Exeter and Powderham before finishing on the Exe Estuary at Starcross. View Full Details>>
|Two Ridges Link||8 miles (13 km)||This lovely, easy walk links The Ridgeway National Trail and the Greensand Ridge Walk.|
You start on Ivinghoe Beacon, with terrific views of the surrounding area, and head towards Slapton where you join the Grand Union Canal taking you to Leighton Buzzard. View Full Details>>
|Two Tunnels Greenway||11 miles (18.5 km)||This is a super, shared cycling and walking path making use of a disused railway path through Bath and the surrounding countryside. The path takes you through Bath and then on into some splendid Somerset countryside before following the Kennet and Avon Canal Towpath and the River Avon back into Bath. View Full Details>>|
|Ulverston Canal||1 miles (2 km)||This short canal runs from the centre of the Cumbrian town of Ulverston to the coast at Morcambe Bay. At just over a mile long it makes for a nice easy stroll with lovely coastal views to enjoy at the end. There's also nice views of the Lake District fells and water loving wildlife to look out for on the water.|
The canal links with the Cumbria Coastal Way where you can extend your walk. Heading south will take you to Bardsea with nice views over Cartmel Sands and Ulverston Sands. Heading north takes you to Greenodd with views over the River Leven.
At the town end of the canal you can pick up the Cumbria Way and head deeper into the Lake District.
Also near Ulverston is the fascinating Birkrigg Common. You can follow the Cistercian Way to Urswick Tarn and then explore the network of paths on the elevated common. Here you will find Carboniferous limestone, an ancient stone circle and wonderful views over the Furness Peninsuala. View Full Details>>
|Union Canal||31 miles (50 km)||Follow the Union Canal towpath from Falkirk to Edinburgh on this super, waterside cycling and walking route. The route follows National Cycle Network Routes 75 and 754 so is well signed throughout. At Falkirk you can link up with the Forth and Clyde Canal which will take you into Glasgow. |
The route starts at Falkirk near the train station and follows the canal to Linlithgow, passing Polmont and Muiravonside Country Park. Here you will find 170 acres of woodland and parkland with views of the River Avon. Also in Linlithgow you'll pass the splendid Beecraigs Country Park which has miles of woodland cycling and walking trails. You can also enjoy a stroll around Linlithgow Loch.
The next section runs from Linlithgow to Ratho, passing farmland, woodland and the settlements of Broxburn, Winchburgh and Philpstoun. You also pass the Almond Aqueduct which carries the canal 23 metres above the wooded River Almond gorge. Not far from here you will find the pretty Almondell and Calderwood Country Park with peaceful woodland and a lovely waterside trail running along the River Almond.
The final section takes you from Ratho in Edinburgh. The first few miles take you through farmland before entering the suburbs of Edinburgh. You soon come to Slateford Aqueduct which carries the canal over the Water of Leith. It is the second largest aqueduct in Scotland at 180 metres long and 18 metres tall. The route ends at Lochrin Basin in the city centre of Edinburgh. View Full Details>>
|Wakefield Canal||9 miles (14 km)||Follow the Wakefield Branch of the Aire and Calder Navigation Canal from Wakefield to Castelford on this waterside walk in West Yorkshire. The towpath is quite open for much of the way so there are nice wide ranging views of some beautiful countryside to enjoy. The route finishes at Castlefield railway station so you can return easily by public transport.|
Cyclists can enjoy the section of the canal from Southern Washlands to Altofts.
The walk starts on the River Calder in the centre of Wakefield, near Kirkgate railway station. Follow the river east and then north and you will soon come to the canal and the Southern Washlands Nature Reserve. The pretty canal passes right past the reserve which has a series of lakes and lots of wildlife to look out for. Cyclists can pick up the towpath here too.
The route continues to the notable Stanley Ferry Aqueducts. The impressive Victorian structure was built in 1839 to take the Aire and Calder Navigation over the River Calder. The more modern one was built in 1981.
After passing the aqueducts the canal bends round to the east, passing Altofts and Whitwood before coming to Castleford.
Part of the route follows the long distance Trans Pennine Trail. You can use the trail to extend your walking in the area to the north of the canal and the River Calder.
Just to the south of Wakefield you can enjoy more waterside trails around Pugneys Country Park.
To continue your canal walking head south to the Barnsley Canal which runs from Walton to Royston. View Full Details>>
|Walsall Canal||8 miles (13 km)||Enjoy a waterside walk or cycle along the Walsall Canal on this easy route in the West Midlands. The canal runs for about 8 miles through western Walsall with a nice towpath to follow along the water. It makes for a pleasant afternoon stroll or a nice flat ride suitable for beginners or families. Along the way you'll pass a series of pretty locks, interesting old mills and the Tame Valley Canal. Near the start of the route you pass close to Walsall Arboretum which is well worth a small detour.|
The route starts at Birchills Junction just to the east of Reedswood Park. You can also pick up the canal from the train station or bus station. It's about 5-10 minute walk from both.
You follow the canal south through Birchills before turning west towards Darlaston. Here you pick up a section of the Monarch's Way heading to Moxley before finishing at Ryders Green Junction where you meet the Wednesbury Old Canal.
If you would like to extend your exercise you could pick up the Birmingham Canal and head west towards Dudley, passing the Sheepwash Nature Reserve. View Full Details>>
|Weighver's Way||9 miles (14 km)||This is a terrific, challenging walk from Littleborough to Catley Lane Head, Rochdale.|
The path begins at the lovely Hollingworth Lake and heads through Littleborough along the Rochdale Canal. The next section climbs to the beautiful Watergrove Reservoir which is a lovely place to stop for a picnic. You then pass Whitworth on your way to the splendid Healey Dell Nature Reserve. This attractive reserve sits in the Spodden Valley and right on the route. It is a real trail highlight with water mills, wildlife, picnic areas and the 1867 Healey Dell Viaduct. Shortly after the route finishes at Catley Lane Head. View Full Details>>
|Wendover Canal Arm||7 miles (11 km)||This walk follows the Wendover Arm of the Grand Union Canal from Wendover to Bulbourne. It's a pleasant stretch of canal, running for about 7 miles, with nice countryside views.|
The walk starts in the centre of Wendover, heading north towards Halton and passing the Weston Turville Reservoir on the way. You then turn north east, passing Buckland Wharf and Drayton Beauchamp before coming to the lovely Tring Reservoirs. You'll pass Marsworth Reservoir where there are good opportunities for bird watching. Look out for grebes, bitterns, peregrine falcon, pied flycatcher and ringed plovers on the water. The canal finishes shortly after at Bulbourne but there is the option of continuing you walk along the Grand Union Canal. Heading north will take you past Marsworth towards Cheddington and Leigton Buzzard. Heading south will take you into Berkhamsted.
Other good walking options around Wendover include the expansive Wendover Woods. There's miles of good walking and cycling trails to be found here.
The long distance Aylesbury Ring also runs through the area. View Full Details>>
|Wey South Path||36 miles (58 km)||Follow the Wey River and the Wey and Arun Canal on this wonderful waterside walk through Surrey and Sussex. The route starts off in Guildford and heads south to Rowly and then onto Billinghurst. This section passes through Sidney Wood and the delightful village of Loxwood. There's some pretty locks and the picturesque Drungewick Aqueduct to admire here.|
The walk continues towards Pulborough before passing through the delightful Amberley Wild Brooks wetland with its variety of interesting wildlife. The route then comes to an end near Amberley in Sussex.
Much of the walk follows canal side towpaths with footpaths and minor roads making up the remaining sections.
Please click here for more information View Full Details>>
|Wilts and Berks Canal||2 miles (3 km)||Enjoy a stroll along this pleasant section of the Wilts and Berks Canal in Swindon. The walk starts in the town centre and follows the canal towpath to West Leaze Farm. On the way you'll pass the River Ray and the Rushey Platt Nature Reserve where you can look out for the water-vole. The canal runs on to Melksham via Wootton Bassett and Chippenham. Near Chippenham there is a section of the National Cycle Network running from Pewsham to Lacock Abbey. You can see this on the video below.|
To extend your walk you could try our Swindon Canal Circular Walk and visit the nearby Lawns Park and Queen's Park. View Full Details>>
|Woking to West Byfleet||9 miles (14 km)||This easy cycle or walk follows the Basingstoke canal and National Cycle route 221 from Brookwood, near Woking, to West Byfleet.|
You start at Pirbright Bridge, Brookwood and head east along the towpath through Woking and then onto the finish point at West Byfleet. With pretty locks and woodland views, this tree lined path makes for a nice relaxing ride or stroll. Also there are train stations at either end of the route making it easily accessible. View Full Details>>
|Worcester and Birmingham Canal||31 miles (50 km)||Follow the Worcester and Birmingham Canal from the vibrant centre of Birmingham, through the green hills of Worcestershire, to the cathedral city of Worcester. After leaving Birmingham you enter the countryside and will encounter a series of locks including Tardebigge Locks. With 30 locks in about 2 miles, Tarddebigge is the longest in the country, and also one of the steepest. |
This is a nice easy waterside walk, suitable for all walkers.
Highlights on the route include the chocolate factory at the pretty model village of Bournville. It's well worth a short detour from the towpath to explore the village with its historic buildings and pretty little park.
Around Droitwich Spa the canal links with the Droitwich Canal which will take you west through the town into the surrounding countryside. View Full Details>>
|Wychavon Way||42 miles (67 km)||Follow the Wychavon Way through the Worcestershire countryside on this 40 mile walk.|
The walk begins at Holt Fleet, on the River Severn, with the opening section of the trail running to Droitwch Spa. You will enjoy a waterside stroll along the River Severn and pass through the village of Ombersley before arriving at Droitwich Spa where you cross the River Salwarpe.
From Droitwich, the walk continues through the countryside towards the village of Fladbury. This section includes a short stroll along the Worcester and Birmingham Canal and woodland walks through Grafton and Old Yew Hill Woods.
The final section of the walk runs from Fladbury to Winchcombe and includes a waterside walk along the River Avon and visits to the villages of Ashton under Hill and Cropthorne whose church dates back to the 12th century. You'll also pass Bredon Hill near Ashton under Hill where you can visit the Iron Age Hill Fort of Kemerton Camp and a small stone tower known as Parsons Folly at the summit. There's splendid views of the Malvern Hills as you pass through the Cotswolds and finish at the historic town of Winchcombe. View Full Details>>
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