England’s ten National Parks are unique with exciting and different activities to enjoy in each. From a heritage rail trip across the Yorkshire Dales to boating in the Lake District, this is CLC World’s top 10 things to do in England’s National Parks.
The drama of the Lake District
If you take like a duck to water, then you’ll love the Lake District. The lakes are vast meres surrounded by dramatic landscape which you can enjoy from your kaya, canoe or raft. If you’d like someone else to guide you across the waters, why not take a cruise on one of the team-powered liners so you can sit back and truly admire the views. CLC World has two club resorts there, perfect accommodation for your getaway.
Stroll the South Downs
Characterful market towns pop in to view as you climb the green, rolling hills of the South Downs. Great for a cream tea or browse in an antique shop. The woods are bustling with wildlife, get the kids a nature-spotting book and see what they can find.
The 100 mile-long South Downs Way is well-marked with posts depicting an acorn a sign you’re on track.
Exmoor by foot or bike
Exmoor is perfect for a memorable bike ride. The Tour of Britain was held in Exmoor, and you can follow the same 56-mile trail they did. Or if you prefer, put on your walking boots and head out along the South West Path with a section of the South West Coast Path from Minehead to Porlock Weir.
Chuffing good time on the North York Moors
The North York Moors covers both coast, town and countryside. If you want to see the raw beauty of the heather-clad moors, hop aboard a steam train with the North York Moors Railway. Get all nostalgic in the comfort of a vintage carriage.
The Broads are calling
Meandering across Norfolk and Suffolk, The Broads National Park is renowned for picturesque waterways across seemingly endless flat lands. It’s a great place for a boating holiday or, as it’s so level, for cycling and walking holidays for all ages. There are pretty villages, castles, museums and more to enjoy en-route.
Dare to visit Dartmoor
Is that a howl, I hear? Could it be the dreaded Hound of the Baskervilles? No, but Dartmoor was the inspiration for the Sherlock Holmes story. If you’d like to be a Victorian sleuth, then give Letterboxing a go. It involves treasure hunting and orienteering, and has been enjoyed by many since 1854. Discover stashes across Dartmoor.
Ancient stories of the Peak District
A divinely beautiful corner of England, with ancient forests, fells and stately homes, the Peak District has many stories to tell. It was the UK’s first National Park and is celebrating 70 years in 2021. Discover fantastic activities and places to visit with the Park’s anniversary magazine.
Horse around in the New Forest
Wildlife abounds in the New Forest National Park. Many deer, ponies and pigs graze freely in the Park and they’re joined by butterflies and warthogs. Get a bird’s eye view of all this natural beauty from an open-top bus on a New Forest Tour, or let the kids horse around on a Woodland Adventure Day.
Yorkshire Dales from the carriage
Take in the scenic beauty and historic landmarks from a heritage train, where everyone has a window seat. Running between Settle and Carlisle, take in the panoramic views from atop the Aten Gill Viaduct, pass the three peaks of Pen-y-ghent and venture through the Upper Eden Valley. Great for train and nature enthusiasts.
Roman walls in Northumberland
On the northern edge of Northumberland National Park is Hadrian’s Wall, a magnificent frontier from the Roman Empire. Stretching from coast to coast, it is 73 miles long across the land from the Solway Firth to Wallsend on the River Tyne. Dramatic landscape is dotted with the remains or milecastles, forts, observation towers and the wall itself. Take a step back in time.