Five of the best nature and history walks in Britain

Five of the best nature and history walks in Britain

Turn a walk into a mission on trails that reveal pilgrims’ paths beside the North Sea, red kite in Hertfordshire, and bronze age Yorkshire


History walk: Pentre Ifan to Castell Henllys, Pembrokeshire

The northern reaches of Pembrokeshire are home to a pair of fascinating locations that take visitors back to Britain’s distant past. Pentre Ifan is a neolithic burial chamber in the shadow of the Preseli Hills. Originally backed by a mound, the chamber’s colossal 5,500-year-old stones now stand exposed, a 16-tonne capstone somehow still balancing on three uprights.Just a few miles away, Castell Henllys Iron Age Village recreates a 2,000-year-old settlement, with four roundhouses constructed on the foundations of buildings unearthed by archaeologists.A five-mile circular walk between the two could start at Pentre Ifan, three miles east of the coastal village of Newport. Head north along a minor road before taking a footpath and bridleway to cross the Afon Nyfer. Footpaths beyond the A487 will take you close to the entrance of Castell Henllys.To return, head south along a footpath and bridleway to the promontory fort of Castell Llwyd. Cross the Nyfer and the Brynberian, zigzagging west along country lanes, a track and a footpath to Pentre Ifan.

Nature walk: Broxbourne, Hertfordshire

Although it may not be a species native to Britain, and can play havoc with woodland wildflowers, the Reeves’s muntjac deer is a delight to see. Brought over from China to Bedfordshire’s Woburn Park in 1838, the tiny fawn-coloured deer – about the size of a large dog – soon escaped and have been spreading across southern England ever since.

Though wary of humans, you may spot one on this 11-mile guided walk through the 140-hectare Broxbourne Woods, Hertfordshire’s only national nature reserve. The tour is led by local adventurer, photographer and film-maker Jamie Barnes, who will share his extensive knowledge of muntjac deer and other local wildlife. He’ll also give insights into spotting clues and tracks left by animals.

The ancient woodland is a Special Area of Conservation and includes tracts of sessile oaks and hornbeams. As well as muntjac, it’s home to roe deer, badger, great crested newt and the rare purple emperor butterfly. Look up and you might see buzzards, red kites and woodcocks.

Pilgrimage walk: East Lothian to Berwickshire

Launched in 2017, the Forth to Farne Way is one of Britain’s more recently waymarked pilgrimage routes. Stretching 72 miles from North Berwick in East Lothian to Holy Island (Lindisfarne) in Northumberland, it marks the southern end of a route that was popular with medieval pilgrims: from the Bishopric of St Andrews to Holy Island via a ferry across the Firth of Forth. Along the way, they were treated to some of Britain’s most sumptuous coastal landscapes.



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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