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Wilderness Walking – National Parks of the UK

  • Enjoy some of the finest hiking in Britain on this tour of National Parks in Scotland and England
  • Discover the amazing contrast of landscapes from the majestic mountains of the Highlands to the rolling Dales of Yorkshire
  • Try the various Scottish and English delicacies such as whisky in the Highlands, cream tea in Yorkshire and Kendal Mint Cake in the Lakes
  • 9 nights accommodation in country inns and hotels
  • All meals, from lunch on Day 1 through to lunch on Day 7 (Meals included indicated as B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner
  • The services of an experienced and knowledgeable guide / driver throughout
  • All transport throughout the trip starting in Aviemore and finishing in Penrith
  • Water taxi across Loch Lomond on day 4
  • Ferry across Windermere on day 8
  • Boat trip on Ullswater on day 10

Blue Graded Walking Holidays

Blue graded walking holidays are suitable for fit and experienced hikers. We walk at a good pace and you can expect to be out for 6-8 hours a day. You will not always be on a path and the terrain underfoot can be rough and boggy, including boulder fields and mountain tops. Some of the daily walks will involve a mountain ascent of over 3000ft / 900m high. Daily distances will be typically up to 16km but may be longer occasionally. Daily hike details are available in the itinerary.

This walking holiday is based from a variety of welcoming accommodations from award winning pubs and inns to a grand lakeside hotel.

Accommodation is a choice of double or twin rooms with ensuite facilities. If you require a single room see below.

Great food is of paramount importance on all Wilderness Scotland trips and we will enjoy excellent regional cooking throughout this all- inclusive trip.

Single Supplement

There is no single person supplement charged to solo travellers however you will be required to share a room with another person of the same sex. If you wish to reserve a double room for single occupancy a supplement of £345 is charged. Availability of single rooms is limited so please request this at the time of booking and we can check if a single room is available for you.

You will be met by your Wilderness Scotland Guide at Aviemore Railway Station at 10:00am on Day 1 of your trip. The trip will finish and you will be dropped at Penrith Railway Station at 3.00pm on the final day. Your guide will meet you in the centre of the station. It is a small station so your guide should be easy to find and holding a Wilderness Scotland sign.

Trip Details

New for 2018! Hike in the best scenery to be found in Scotland and England on this unique tour of 4 National Parks

In Scotland, we will hike in the wild Highlands in the Cairngorms and then Loch Lomond and the Trossachs. We then head to England to explore Northumberland, the charming and rugged Yorkshire Dales and the Lake District.

They may be relatively small areas, but the National Parks are incredibly diverse. In the Cairngorms you will find vast rolling mountains with glens filled in by heather and pine forests. In Loch Lomond and the Trossachs silvery lochs and rugged green peaks await you. Moving on into England we find moors and fields lined with stone walls and old barns. Finally in the Lake District – a recently designated UNESCO World Heritage Site – we hike on the fells that inspired the romanticist poetry of William Wordsworth.

We spend at least 2 nights in each location, staying in charming country Inns and hotels. During each day you will be accompanied by an expert guide experienced in hiking in each of these regions as we venture to the summits of fine hills and mountains.

Trip Itinerary

Day 1 – Rothiemurchus and the Cairngorms

We meet at the train station in the small town of Aviemore, in the Cairngorms National Park. We begin the trip with a favourite local hike over Meall a Buachaille. The route first takes us through a pass with beautiful Caledonian pine forest and the remarkable ‘Fairy Lochan’ before we reach a small bothy at the head of the pass. We climb steeply but steadily from here on a good trail all the way to the summit, which offers wide-ranging views of the Cairngorm mountains and north to the Moray Coast. Completing the circuit, we then transfer across the National Park to the pretty village of Ballater in Royal Deeside. (L, D)

Hike details: 9km, 550m ascent, 4-5 hours

Day 2 – Lochnagar & Loch Muick

The peak of Lochnagar in Royal Deeside is thought by many to be the finest in the Cairngorms. Its northern flank boasts spectacular cliffs that perfectly frame the small loch that gives the mountain its name. There are many options for great hikes in the shadow of Lochnagar, ranging from a circuit of the loch to hikes up the various peaks surrounding it, including Connacraig, which offers outstanding views. Of course, there’s also Lochnagar itself! Our guide will select a route to best show off the qualities of this beautiful glen and the princely peaks that surround it. (B, L, D)

Hike details: From 12km – 20km, up to 930m ascent, 4-7 hours – depending on route chosen

Day 3 – Braemar Glens then transfer to Loch Lomond

This morning we enjoy a final Cairngorms hike, starting near the village of Braemar. We do a low level circuit through the nearby glens and woods. Starting with a wonderful waterfall where Queen Victoria was fond of picnicking, our hike takes us up Glen Quoich. We hike through a deep cleft in the hillside which brings us into Glen Lui, finishing near the Linn o’ Dee waterfall. We then head south as we transfer to Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park. Our accommodation is in the village of Balmaha nestled on the shore of the loch, a staging point on the famous West Highland Way trek. (B, L, D)

Hike details: 16km, 400m ascent, 5 hours

Day 4 – Hiking Above Loch Lomond

Today we enjoy a hike on a rarely trodden route that offers perhaps the best views of Loch Lomond. A short transfer takes us to the pretty village of Luss on the west shore. Leaving the village we strike up a grassy ridge. The ascent is slow and steady from the start, with views expanding all the time. Near the top, it levels off for a bit and the views over Loch Lomond and its many wooded islands is nothing short of stunning. Pushing on to the summit, the loch views are replaced by mountain vistas as we gaze north towards the Arrochar Alps and across the loch to Ben Lomond. We return to Luss through a glen and have some free time to explore this picture-postcard village. We then jump on a late afternoon water-taxi, which takes us across Loch Lomond and back to Balmaha. (B, L, D)

Hike details: 12km, 725m ascent, 4-5 hours

Day 5 – Hiking in the Trossachs

We explore the north side of the National Park today, with a hike up an iconic peak that the author Sir Walter Scott claimed to offer the finest views in all of Scotland – and who are we to argue? This is another local favourite which follows a well-established trail. The ascent takes us through mixed forest and then onto open ground with views across the Southern Highlands. However, it was the vista over Loch Katrine that enamoured Sir Walter Scott to this hill – and we’re confident you’ll be suitably impressed too. Back at the inn, enjoy a pint with hikers on the West Highland Way – they are at the start of a trek north – but tomorrow we head south over the border into England. (B, L, D)

Hike details: 14km, 725m ascent, 5-6 hours

Day 6 – Hiking Hadrian’s Wall

We enjoy a leisurely transfer south and cross the border into England and Northumberland National Park. We also cross the historic border of the Roman Empire, still visible in the ruins of Hadrian’s Wall. Construction started on the wall around 1,900 years ago and some sections are still in remarkably good condition. After lunch in a nearby cafe we start walking from the remains of Housesteads Fort. Our hike today takes us to one of the best-preserved and most scenic spots on the wall – Sycamore Gap – which has featured on the big screen many times. After the hike, a short transfer takes us our third National Park – the Yorkshire Dales. (B, L, D)

Hike details: 6km, 150m ascent, 2 hours.

Day 7 – Hiking the Yorkshire Dales

Today we head to the village of Askrigg in beautiful Wensleydale. From Askrigg we will hike high along the valley walls to the the village of Aysgarth. Here we admire Aysgarth Falls before wandering back to Askrigg along the peaceful riverside. We will stop at a local tearoom for lunch with a chance get a bite of the delicious local Wensleydale cheese! (B, L, D)

Hike details: 18km, 320m ascent, 5-6 hours

Day 8 – Hiking the Yorkshire Dales and transfer to the Lakes

An early start for our last morning in the Dales – we begin in the Eden valley, which is dominated by the limestone plateau at Orton and Great Asby. This wild and wonderful landscape is home to rare plants and dwarf trees which have adapted to survive in this harsh environment. With the remains of ancient stone circles and forts there is plenty to see as we wind our way across the limestone pavements. On returning to the village of Orton, we visit the local chocolate shop and its tiny factory. We then transfer west into the Lake District. This afternoon we’ll take a small ferry across Lake Windermere before visiting Hill Top, Beatrix Potter’s 17th-century farmhouse.(B,L,D)

Hike details: 6km, 200m ascent, 2 hours

Day 9 – Hiking the Lake District National Park

Today we’ll hike to St Sunday Crag in the Fairfield group of the Eastern Fells. Starting from Patterdale we’ll follow a long ridge that takes us to a craggy summit with dramatic gullies and beautiful views to the ridges of Helvellyn. Then w head west along the ridge to Deepdale Hause before a steep climb takes us over Cofa Pike to Fairfield. We’ll descend to Grisedale Tarn, the legendary resting place of the crown of the king of Cumbria. We’ll also visit the Brothers Parting Stone which marks the place William Wordsworth last saw his brother John. Hiking back down the valley we admire the rocky crags on either side, keeping an eye out for rock climbers as we go. Back at the comfortable inn we’ll enjoy a farewell dinner this evening. (B, L, D)

Hike details: 15km, 750m ascent, 5 – 6 hours

Day 10 – Final Hike then Depart

After breakfast this morning we’ll stroll a short distance to board a traditional steamer that will ferry us half way up Ullswater to Howtown. From here we’ll hike back to Glenridding. We’ll pass through forests and over and on to rocky beaches following the shoreline of the lake enjoying the view as we go. There will be time to stop for lunch at a local café before arriving back at the van. We’ll then transfer to Penrith Railway Station to end the trip at 3:00pm. (B, L)

Hike details: 11km, 250m ascent, 4 hours

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Prices and Dates

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2018 Trip Dates

Trip Date
Price
Availability
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22nd Jul - 31st Jul 2018
£2,195
4 place(s) left
9th Sep - 18th Sep 2018
£2,195
4 place(s) left

2019 Trip Dates

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Price
Availability
Trip Status
 
5th May - 14th May 2019
£2,195
8 place(s) left
23rd Jun - 2nd Jul 2019
£2,195
7 place(s) left
15th Sep - 24th Sep 2019
£2,195
8 place(s) left
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Next trip: 22nd July

Duration: 9 night(s)

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Location: Multi-Location

Comfort: Classic

Difficulty: 5

Trip Photos

Upper Glenfeshie, late winter, Cairngorms National Park, Scotland.Hiking UK National Parks-1-3Hiking UK National Parks-1-4Hiking UK National Parks-1-5Dynamic light over Uath Lochans, Glenfeshie, Scotland.VE13736Hiking UK National Parks-2-2Hiking UK National Parks-3-2VE14279VE20067VE23644VE24055
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