Walking Routes in Lancashire

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The Forest of Bowland

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 Lancashire Walks
Route NamePicDistanceDescription
Beacon Fell Country Park2 miles (3 km)Explore 271 acres of woodland, moorland and farmland in the Forest of Bowland AONB. Beacon Fell is situated 266 metres (873 feet) above sea level giving fabulous views of Morecambe Bay and the Isle of Man (on a clear day). There are several miles of lovely woodland walking trails and an excellent visitor centre with a wealth of information. Beacon Fell is situated a few miles north of Preston.
Bolton Rotary Way Footpath50 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.
Bridgewater Way38 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.
When complete the Bridgewater Way will also be open to cyclists.
Bronte Way44 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.
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
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.
Burnley Way40 miles (64 km)Explore the rivers, canals, reservoirs and moorland around Burnley on this varied circular walk.
Cumbria Coastal Way182 miles (293 km)Explore the wonderful coastline of Cumbria on this splendid long distance path. The walk begins at Silverdale and runs through a series of fascinating Cumbrian coastal towns and villages, before finishing near Gretna on the border with Scotland. Spectacular cliff tops, peaceful estuaries, beaches, mountains, rivers and canals are all features on this popular route.
  • Silverdale, Lancashire
  • Arnside
  • Grange-over-Sands
  • Greenodd
  • Ulverston
  • Barrow-in-Furness
  • Askam-in-Furness
  • Kirkby-in-Furness
  • Broughton-in-Furness
  • Millom
  • Ravenglass
  • Seascale
  • St. Bees
  • St. Bees Head
  • Whitehaven
  • Workington
  • Maryport
  • Allonby
  • Silloth
  • Abbeytown
  • Burgh by Sands
  • Carlisle
Walk highlights include Morecambe Bay, the Solway Firth, the Lake District mountains, the red sandstone cliffs of St. Bees Head, a waterside section along the River Eden into Carlisle and views of Hadrian's Wall.
The video below shows the lovely views from Grange-Over-Sands and Arnside. From here you can see the Lake District Mountains and Morecambe Bay in the distance.
The walk has been designed for all abilities with very few strenuous climbs. It is also very accessible with train stations and bus routes dotted along the route. The walk is well waymarked with a dark green and yellow disc.
Forest of Bowland Walk68 miles (109 km)A circular walk around the Forest of Bowland AONB in Lancashire. You start at Caton and visit Slaidburn, Clitheroe and Garstang before returning to Caton.
The walk begins with a lovely riverside stretch along the River Lune from Caton to Hornby. You continue to Slaidburn before following the River Ribble through Clitheroe and climbing Longridge Fell for some splendid views. The next section takes you to Calder Vale and then onto Garstang, passing Beacon Fell which is well worth a slight detour from the trail (see video). The final section takes you from Garstang to Caton passing Nicky Nook with its fabulous viewpoint (see video) and the Barnacre and Grizedale Reservoirs.
Hodder Way27 miles (43 km)Follow the River Hodder on this stunning waterside walk through the breathtakingly beautiful Forest of Bowland.
The walk begins at Great Mitton and heads north through Whitewell, Newton and Slaidburn before a wonderful section around Stocks Reservoir finishes the route.
Hyndburn Clog31 miles (50 km)A circular walk around Blackburn and Accrington in Lancashire, visiting a series of reservoirs and the Leeds and Liverpool Canal.
Jumbles Country Park2 miles (3 km)Enjoy a short stroll around Jumbles Reservoir in this pretty country park in Bolton. The park is set within the beautiful West Pennine Moors with a lovely waterside footpath around the reservoir. There are also good facilities with a visitor centre and cafe.
The park is located just a couple of miles north east of Bolton city centre, near to the Lancashire village of Chapeltown. If you have time you could continue your walk along the Witton Weavers Way to the nearby Wayoh Reservoir and Nature Reserve.
Lancashire Coastal Way65 miles (105 km)Travel along the beautiful Lancashire coast from Silverdale to Freckleton on this fairly easy walk.
You start off at Silverdale and head south to Morecambe Bay passing Warton and Bolton-Le-Sands. You then head towards Lancaster and along the River Lune to Glasson.
The next section takes you to Knott End on Sea where you catch the ferry to Fleetwood and continue south towards the world famous seaside resort of Blackpool with the iconic tower and pleasure beach.
The final section runs through the pretty resort of Lytham St Annes with Fairhaven lake at Ansdell and the landmark windmill on Lytham front the highlights. You finish soon after at Freckleton.
Lancaster Canal57 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.
Lancaster to Caton6 miles (9 km)This easy short ride or walk follows the River Lune and NCN route 69 from Lancaster to Caton. The whole route is traffic free, following a riverside path to Caton. As such it is ideal for families.
Lune Valley Ramble16 miles (26 km)This lovely easy walk follows the River Lune from Lancaster to Kirkby Lonsdale in Cumbria. As well as the stunning riversde scenery there are wonderful views of the South Lakeland fells and the beautiful Crook o' Lune.
The route is bounded by high moors and limestone hills with the Ingleborough, Whernside and Leck Fells making a magnificent backdrop to the walk.
Lunesdale Walk34 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.
Oldham Way40 miles (64 km)Enjoy the canals, reservoirs and countryside around Oldham on this splendid circular walk.
Pendle Way45 miles (72 km)Follow the Pendle Way through Lancashire and visit Barnoldswick, Thornton-in-Craven, Wycoller, Reedley, Newchurch and Pendle Hill on this challenging walk.
Pennine Bridleway120 miles (193 km)This fabulous 120 mile long trail runs through the beautiful Derbyshire Peak District, through Lancashire and on into Yorkshire.
It is suitable for mountain bikers, horse riders and walkers taking you on a tour through some of the most beautiful parts of the country. The trail generally runs along dismantled railway lines, tracks and quiet roads passing through moorland, open fields and purple heather moors with the Pennine Hills providing a splendid backdrop.
Highlights on the route include several picturesque reservoirs and the eye catching 1300 ft Stoodley Pike Hill in Yorkshire.
For more information on this route, including accomodation and holiday ideas please click here
Preston Guild Wheel21 miles (34 km)This circular cycling and walking route takes you on a tour of the parks, rivers, docklands and countryside around Preston in Lancashire.
Route highlights include the delighful Avenham park with its riverside gardens and a stretch along the Riversway Docklands and Marina. There are also long waterside sections along the River Ribble and a visit to the peaceful Brockholes Nature Reserve.
Ribble Way65 miles (105 km)Follow the River Ribble through the beautiful Ribble Valley from its mouth at Longton, near Preston, to the source at Gayle Moor in Yorkshire.
You start at Longton just to the west of Preston and follow the river through Ribchester and Clitheroe before reaching Gisburn. The path then crosses from Lancashire into Yorkshire before passing through the stunning Yorkshire Dales national park and finishing at the source at Gavel Moor near Ribblehead.
The route passes through a variety of landscapes including tidal marsh, open moorland and limestone gorges.
Richmond Way60 miles (97 km)Travel from Lancaster Castle to Richmond Castle on this lovely walk through Lancashire and Yorkshire. You will travel through the lower Lower Lune Valley with a long riverside section at the start. You then head through the moorlands and fells of the Pennines and on into the valleys of the Yorkshire Dales National Park. Finally, you follow the River Swale into the historic market town of Richmond - gateway to the Yorkshire Dales National Park.
The walk passes Ingleton (with its waterfalls), Ribblehead Viaduct, the picturesque Yorkshire village of Hawes and Castle Bolton.
Rossendale Way41 miles (66 km)This circular walk takes you on a tour of the lovely Rossendale area of Lancashire and Greater Manchester.
The path passes Haslingden, Whitworth, Stubbins and Healey with a series of attractive reservoirs including Cowpe and Calf Hey real highlights. The walk also takes you through the delightful Healey Dell Nature Reserve with waterfalls and wildlife to enjoy here. The views of the South Pennine hills are also splendid and make a fine backdrop to the walk.
Trans Pennine Trail215 miles (346 km)This terrific walking and cycling trail runs from coast to coast across northern England entirely on surfaced paths. It starts on the Yorkshire coast at Hornsea and passes through Yorkshire, Derbyshire and Greater Manchester before finishing on the Merseyside coast at Southport.
Way of the Roses170 miles (274 km)This fabulous 170 mile national cycle network route takes you right across the country from west to east coast along off road paths and quiet country roads.
You start at Morecambe Bay in Lancashire on the west coast and head towards Lancaster where you join the River Lune for a lovely off road waterside stretch. You soon enter the beautiful Forest of Bowland Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. The landscape here is simply stunning and there is also a variety of wildlife to look out for on this section.
The route then continues into the equally wonderful Yorkshire Dales National Park with more gorgeous countryside and a series of charming Yorkshire villages to enjoy.
A real treat awaits near Ripon where you will pass the fascinating National Trust owned Fountains Abbey - this 12th century ruined Cistercian monastery is a real route highlight and is an ideal place to stop for a rest and refreshments.
From Ripon you continue through Yorkshire along the River Ouse taking you into the historic city of York.
The final stretch takes you through the beautiful Yorkshire Wolds with the lovely Millington Pastures and the interesting 17th century manor house at Burton Agnes Hall, two of the highlights. The route finishes on the prom at the coastal town of Bridlington.
Witton Country Park2 miles (4 km)This country park in Blackburn boasts nearly 500 acres of mixed woodland, parkland, grassland and farmland. The circular route below is suitable for walkers and takes you around the park and up to Billinge Hill where there are great views of the surrounding countryside. There is also a cycle track running through the park.
The Witton Weavers Way walking route also runs through the park so there is scope for continuing your walk. The park is located just west of Blackburn near to Pleasington railway station.
Witton Weavers Way31 miles (50 km)This circular walk starts and finishes in Witton Park near Blackburn. It's a lovely walk taking you first along the River Darwen and through Hoghton Bottoms towards Belmont with its attractive reservoir. There are splendid views of the 1496 ft high Winter Hill on this section.
At Jumbles Reservoir in Jumbles Country Park you will turn north passing along Wayoh Reservoir before climbing Darwen Hill where you will find Jubilee Tower. You can climb the 85 ft high tower for some splendid views of North Yorkshire, Morecambe Bay, Blackpool Tower, Cumbria, and the Isle of Man. The route finishes passing the town of Darwen and then descending into Witton Park.
Worthington Lakes4 miles (7 km)This lovely walk takes you around Worthington Lakes in Standish, Lancashire. You will pass along the footpaths around the three reservoirs that make up this country park and nature reserve. The park is located near Adlington and Chorley.
Wycoller Country Park3 miles (4.4 km)Enjoy a lovely walk through the beauitful Wycoller Country Park in Pendle. The park has a number of footpaths taking you along Wycoller Beck to Bank House and the remains of Wycoller Hall. There are great views of the Pendle Hills and a stroll through the delightful Wycoller Village to enjoy. No cars are allowed in the village and many of the old buildings remain preserved, making it a particularly peaceful and special place. The area has strong links with the Bronte sisters who referred to many of the nearby landmarks in books such as 'Wuthering Heights' and 'Jane Eyre'. The park is located just a couple of miles east of Colne.
If you wish to continue your walk both the Pendle Way and Bronte Way walking routes run through the park.
Wyre Estuary Country Park3 miles (5 km)Enjoy a walk along the network of accessible paths by the beautiful Wyre Estuary in this waterside country park near Blackpool. There are also peaceful woodland paths and bird hides where you can view a variety of wildlife. The park has a visitor centre, cafe and picnic areas.
Yarrow Valley Country Park2 miles (4 km)Enjoy a long, waterside walk along the River Yarrow in this splendid 700 acre country park in Chorley, Lancashire. The park has a number of well maintained walking paths and a visitor centre. It is located less than 2 miles from Chorley town centre.




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