Discover the National Forest at Your Own Pace on a Self-Guided Walking Holiday
Nestled in the heart of England, straddling the counties of Derbyshire, Leicestershire and Staffordshire, the National Forest is the perfect destination for walkers looking for a gentle walking holiday in beautiful, varied countryside. It offers a rich diversity of landscapes, from gentle hills and beautiful woodland tracks to winding waterside paths and rolling agricultural land. Within relatively short distances the landscape can change, making it an interesting area to walk, with varied walking terrain and full of heritage.
Our self-guided walking holidays are perfect for gentle ramblers, looking for a peaceful escape, far from mass tourism. Daily mileage is typically between 6 and 10 miles and our walking routes follow well used paths and tracks.
Self-guided walking holidays around the National Forest
All of our walking holidays are self-guided. This means that you are free to set your own pace, setting off when you wish and taking your time along the way. Linger longer in the places that interest you, without feeling pressured to keep to a group's timetable.
Choose from 2 night short walking breaks to a 10-day adventure, walking the National Forest Way, which takes you through the National Forest.
We can offer both single and multi-destination walking holidays, as well as a self-catering, single centre option for those that prefer to settle into a single base, enjoying circular walks each day. Simply contact us today to start planning your perfect self-guided walking holiday
PHOTO CREDIT: DIANE JARVIS
Walking in the National Forest
With well-marked paths and easy terrain, the National Forest is perfect for newer or more senior walkers, seeking a gentle walking holiday, rather than a strenuous hike. Unlike some walking holiday destinations, you are never far from civilisation in the National Forest, with charming villages and towns along the way offering coffee stops, picnic supplies, and local village pubs for lunch.
In the northeast of the region, the craggy Charnwood landscape almost has a moorland feel in places, with gorse and even bilberries in places. Charnwood boasts the highest points in Leicestershire and offers far reaching views. It is also the Eastern end point of the National Forest Way, a long distance walking path, which crosses the National Forest. On the Derbyshire and Staffordshire borders, to the south of the National Forest, the landscape is flatter, with delightful paths alongside the River Trent and the Trent and Mersey Canal. The heart of the National Forest was once the centre of the mining industry. Today, the landscape has been transformed by the creation of woodlands and the restoration of part of the Ashby Canal.
Discover sights and scenes
Walkers will discover plenty to explore along the way, including castles, wonderful country gardens, stately homes, steam railways and heritage museums. Visit the site of the Battle of Bosworth and uncover the story of the death of King Richard iii. Take a look around the home of Erasmus Darwin in Lichfield, a bustling little foodie city. Enjoy the tranquility and marvellous sculptures at the National Memorial Arboretum. Or simply sit back and enjoy a relaxing cruise down the canal.
Nature lovers will delight in the diversity of flora and fauna on offer on our walking holidays. Old pillboxes have been turned into bat shelters along the River Trent. Visit the beaver colony in South Derbyshire or spend time birdwatching in one of the many bird hides along the way. The National Forest woodland floor is carpeted in bluebells and wild garlic in late Spring and wild orchids can be found in many areas throughout the region.
PHOTO CREDIT: DIANE JARVIS
PHOTO CREDIT: DIANE JARVIS
The National Forest Way – Long Distance Path
Lovers of long distance walks will enjoy the challenge of completing the National Forest Way, one of England's newest long distance paths.
This long distance walking trail winds for 75 miles through the National Forest, from east to west, taking in some of the main sights along the way. The eastern end point is at Beacon Hill Country Park in Leicestershire. The western end point is the National Memorial Arboretum in Staffordshire. We offer holidays along parts of the National Forest Way and also offer walking holidays to guests that would like to walk the entire National Forest Way. Please contact us for more information.
Free luggage transfer
We carry the bags for you.
We transfer your luggage every morning to your next hotel. We just ask you to keep the weight down to around 15kg per bag, so that they are not too heavy for staff to lift.
Easy to follow routes
All our holidays are self-guided. Travel at your own pace and enjoy the journey.
We provide a comprehensive Holiday Guide Book for your National Forest cycling tour. This includes detailed instructions and suggestions on what to see and do every day. We even provide information on places to enjoy lunch or a piece of cake each day.
Magical holiday. Totally recommended. Extremely helpful at every stage. We did a walking holiday. The routes were clear and very enjoyable. The luggage transfers worked perfectly
Phil and Jill