Wherever you are in England, you’re never more than 70 or 80 miles from the coast (tops for the most central place are a couple of villages in Leicestershire and Derbyshire – there are friendly debates!)So even if you don’t walk a coast itself, you can walk towards the coast in a few days or weeks (stopping at pubs and bed-and-breakfasts on the way).
The England Coast Path has recently opened where you can walk year round (weather permitting). Most walks take from 3 hours to 2 days and are accessible by public transport – from golden beaches and marshes to wildlife-rich estuaries. Keep dogs away from cliffs and read the countryside code to keep dogs safe near livestock. Put on your vegan walking boots, and enjoy these trips!
Westering is the story of a journey from Norfolk’s East Coast to Wales, via the Fens, Leicestershire and the Midlands. Learn of medieval villages, the ghosts of Roman soldiers, valleys drowned for reservoirs, ancient forests and the resilience of nature and birds, landscapes of loss and the psychology of walking.
The Salt Path is a wonderful book about a couple whose life changes when he is diagnosed with a serious illness, and at the same time they lose their home and job. So with nothing to lose, they decide to walk the 630 mile South West Coast Path, which turns out to be healing for both of them.
Coasting is the story of Elise, who spent a lot of time crying on buses. Despite graduating from university with a job and shiny new flat and budding relationship, she felt totally fed up. So she decides to run 5000 miles around the British coast, despite no experience, never having pitched a tent and not even being able to read a map. She ran for 301 days, seeing England at its most wild and wonderful.
Alfred Wainwright’s Coast-to-Coast Walk is taken by thousands of walkers each year. Depending on which way you, it starts (or finishes) at St Bees (Cumbria), then ends when you paddle your feet in the East Yorkshire village of Robin Hood’s Bay. Around 200 miles, this walks the width of northern England to see fells and waterfalls and also takes in the North Riding of Yorkshire. The walk takes a few weeks, with some companies transporting your luggage to bed-and-breakfasts on the way, so you only have to deal with a rucksack on your travels.
Pocket Mountains publish lovely little guidebooks for coast and country walks through England, Wales and Scotland. Small enough to fit in your pocket, these have gorgeous cover art.