10 of Britain’s best pubs with rooms in spectacular walking country

10 of Britain’s best pubs with rooms in spectacular walking country

Walk through gorgeous countryside, then head back for a pint, meal and somewhere to put your feet up

Old Dungeon Ghyll, Langdale, Lake District

Usually heaving with fell walkers enjoying a post Scafell Pike-high, this famous mountaineers’ pub is one of the classic venues in the Lake District. The drinking booths of the Hikers’ Bar are built into the old cow stalls of the 300-year old farm and inn. It’s a little rough round the edges, Elle Deco isn’t going to be shooting the bedrooms anytime soon, but the Langdale Valley setting is incredible, and staying here is to become part of legend. Every British climber – from Chris Bonington to the earliest pioneers of the sport – has stayed at this longstanding focal point of British mountaineering.
Doubles from £120 B&B, singles from £58, odg.co.uk

Running Horse, Surrey Hills

Although only 224m high, Box Hill is one of England’s must-do peaks, extremely popular with Londoners and southerners in the vicinity. To kickstart a stomp to the summit, the mighty breakfast at the Running Horse in Mickleham near the bottom should set you up. Returning for fab dinners of pan-roasted Atlantic scallops with pea velouté or lobster and crab risotto, eaten in a booth in the wood-panelled dining room, or among the locals outside, is the perfect reward. Upstairs there are also seven luxurious bedrooms.
Doubles from £89 B&B, or the Gatehouse cottage sleeps two from £130 a night B&B, running-horse.co.uk

Lord Crewe Arms, Blanchland, Northumberland

Tucked into steep, forested hills in the Northumbrian Pennines with paths leading on to open moorland, Blanchland is one of the most enchanting villages in the northeast. Here, the Lord Crewe Arms, originallybuilt as a guest house in 1165 for pilgrims visiting Blanchland Abbey, is a treat – glamorous but ancient-feeling. Its historic bones –thick stone arched windows, heavy beams and a medieval dining room – combine with contemporary touches, such as headboards clad in quirky landscape-patterned fabrics, and the food is fantastic. Situated near the border with County Durham in an Area Of Outstanding Natural Beauty, it has an inexhaustible supply of superb walking terrain, from five designated Dark Sky discovery sites for stargazing strolls, to High Force waterfall with its 21m drop, and Hadrian’s Wall.
Doubles from £219 B&B, lordcrewearmsblanchland.co.uk

The Bell at Skenfrith, Monmouthshire

Illustrated maps of six circular walks leading straight into the glorious Monmouthshire countryside are offered to guests at this 17th-century coaching inn. If it’s a family stay, try the Skenfrith Sleuth walk with puzzles to solve on the way to Skenfrith Castle, or the Knights Templar Trail, which crosses the border into England. There are 11 comfy bedrooms, too, and tasty food in the dining room, though walkers might prefer a local ale in the relaxed Dog and Boot Bar, complete with garden “pooch parlour” for rinsing muddy paws.
Doubles from £175 B&B (additional Z-beds for children £20 s night), thebellatskenfrith.co.uk

The Alice Hawthorn, Nun Monkton, North Yorkshire

In the Yorkshire countryside between Harrogate and York, this smart, food-focused pub recently added accommodation for the first time. The old Grade II-listed stone building sits on the village green of Nun Monkton, on the confluence of the rivers Ouse and Nidd, whose prime attraction is England’s tallest maypole. Really it’s the walking that people come for. Trails from the door are depicted in the pub’s handy booklet, including a substantial eight-miler to the Monks House, where Ann Brontë lived with her brother Branwell. Eight brand new garden rooms built from timber and four rooms above the bar feature a Scandie palette of creams and greys, rainfall showers and rustic furniture. In the revamped gardens, a wood-fired oven turns out sourdough pizzas topped with Yorkshire Fettle cheese, or barn-like dining spaces with beams draped in foliage are the setting for feasts of Yorkshire asparagus with hazelnut tortellini, or Dales lamb with cauliflower bhajis.
Doubles from £120 B&B, thealicehawthorn.com

The Ring of Bells, North Bovey, Dartmoor

Dartmoor isn’t short of fine walkers’ pubs, from posh ones in Boomer-friendly Chagford to ancient old farmhouses near the windblown tops of the moors. Striking a balance, tThe Ring of Bells lies in an accessible spot with fantastic walking on tap. Try the pub’s own booklet of circular walks from the door, between three and seven miles long, and then enjoy post-hike dinner options, including homemade goat’s cheese panna cotta or Brixham crab thermidor, all served in the pretty lawned yard or cosy nooks inside.
Doubles from £95 B&B, ringofbells.net

Andy Halliday

Andy is a camping expert with over 20 years of outdoor experience. He shares his expertise through his blog that features on his very own e-commerce camping gear store. He aspires to use his knowledge and experience to help disabled families get the most out of every trip they take.

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