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27 walking holidays! Our guide to UK walking festivals this summer and autumn

Airing boots highly recommended between walks Although we tend to pack Inappropriate Heels when tottering off on our outdoor hols (and that’s just the men), we’ll usually be found with walking boots crammed into the rucksack too.

Our love of the striding is such that we have a special category just for sites in a walkers’ paradise, we implore Tolkien fans to hike the Pennines in furry slippers with nowt but cream crackers for sustenance and we have chivvied people out and about in winter (it helps offset the effects of this ).

If you’re up for a walking holiday this summer or autumn, we've listed 22 walking festivals below and have included info on them and walking events for the rest of 2014. But to get the blog off on the right foot we’ve picked five of our faves first up:

Guildford WalkFest , until 27 July

Already on the move and running until the end of next week, this is the eighth year of Guildford WalkFest’s range of free walks in and around the Surrey Hills AONB. The 38 walks cover all abilities with two each day and three per day on weekends, and all abilities of walkers should find something to lace the boots up for; the shortest walk is a half-mile stroll around Guildford and there’s one walk suitable for people of limited ability.

Stay at Long Acres Caravan and Camping Park , where there are lots of opps for additional walks in the surrounding countryside and where dogs are welcome too. Long Acres is at Lingfield which has several other established walking trails including an 11-mile trek across the Low Weald to Oxted . Pitches start from £14.50.

Campsites in Surrey

Black Combe Western Lake District Walking Festival , 18 – 24 August

The fell of Black Combe is on the western edge of the Lake District and the west coast of Cumbria where the national park meets the sea. Wander on seven days’ worth of walks around Millom, Haverigg, Duddon Valley and Eskdale, including hikes to the summit of Black Combe, coastal walks and nature trails, and walks for all ages and abilities.

Black Combe. Pic by Silence-is-infinite. Stay at Silecroft Caravan Park , three miles from Millom in the south-west corner of Lake District National Park and 200 metres from a sandy beach; your tootsies might also like to sink into the on-site Jacuzzi after a day on the fell. Electric touring pitches are available throughout the festival from £25 a night. Tent trekkers can pitch up at Moss Side Farm Camping at nearby Broughton-in-Furness, which has non-electric tent pitches in August from £12 a night.

Campsites in Cumbria

Corwen Walking Festival , 30 – 31 August

Even the less energetic might manage this festival of two days in the Clwydian and Dee Valley AONB, especially as there are other events on hand including skills lectures in the day and entertainment in the evening. Sturdy sorts can do a full day walk but there are several shorter walks available on both days including a Corwen town history walk, high level ridge walk around Berwyn and one to Corwen’s seventeenth century Rug Chapel (all walks are free but the chapel has an admission charge of £3.40 per adult).

Stay very close by at Hendwr Caravan Park , a working farm on the edge of Corwen and at the foot of the Berwyn Mountains, with grass and hardstanding pitches with optional electric starting from £18 – 21 a night. You can order a newspaper in advance for Sunday brekkie and the park has a stream running through it for fishing and dabbling tired feet.

The stream at Hendwr Caravan Park Campsites in Denbighshire

Pendle Walking Festival , 30 August – 7 September

We like Pendle . And we’re quite fond of the Pendle Walking Festival too, the biggest free walking festival in the UK and this year celebrating the fiftieth anniversary of the Forest of Bowland AONB.

The seventy walks in this year’s festival include the country’s newest long distance walking trail in the Lancashire Witches Walk, a circular walk around Pendle Hill, an easy mile and a half ghost walk and a walk around the Pendle Sculpture Trail. Download the programme here [pdf].

Stay 16 miles away at Preston’s Beacon Fell View with views over the Ribble Valley, a heated indoor pool, family bar and adults-only lounge bar. Its three-bedroom Boland caravan is available for a week from 30 August from £455 for up to eight people.

Less than ten miles from Pendle at West Yorkshire’s Haworth, Stones Cottage Farm has non-electric tent pitches for campers without cars from £12 a night and standard non-electric pitches from £15.

Campsites in Lancashire

Scottish Borders Walking Festival , 31 August – 6 September

Tsk to a clash with witch walks in Pendle, but if you’d prefer to go a little further north, the Scottish Borders Walking Festival is the biggest in Scotland and has its twentieth birthday this year. It’s hosted this year by Jedburgh and Denholm and has four or five walks a day of varying lengths and abilities, from £4 – 8 each, and entertainment laid on the evening.

Camping pod at Border Forest Caravan Park Stay 14 miles away in a Northumberland camping pod at dog-friendly Border Forest Caravan Park in Otterburn, which has Kunekune pigs, Shetland ponies and direct access from its bridge over the burn to Kielder Forest and Pennine Way for more walkies. Pods are available throughout the festival from £35 a night; dogs are allowed.

Campsites in the Scottish Borders

Campsites in Northumberland

22 more walking festivals

White Cliffs Walking Festival , 21 – 27 August, Kent

Ceredigion Walking Festival , 3 – 29 September, Ceredigion

Bradford on Avon Walking Festival , 5 – 7 September, Wiltshire

The Valleys Walking Festival from September 6 – 21, South Wales

Kielder Challenge Walk , 13 September, Northumberland

Bedfordshire Walking Festival , 6 – 14 September, Bedfordshire

South Pennines Walk and Ride Festival , 6 – 21 September

Mendip Hills Walking Festival , 11 – 14 September, Somerset

Thames Path Challenge , 13 – 14 September, London

South East Cornwall Walking Festival , 13 – 20 September, near Looe , Cornwall

Barmouth Walking Festival , 13 – 22 September, Gwynedd

Amber Valley and Erewash Walking Festival (Autumn Footprints) , 13 – 28 September, Derbyshire

Seven Wonders of the Oswestry Hills (fundraising walk for Shropshire Wildlife Trust) , 16 September, Shropshire

Welsh International Four Days' Walks , 17 – 20 September, Powys

Kington Walking Festival , 18 – 21 September, Herefordshire

The Great South West Walks , 20 – 28 September, south-west England

Swanage and Purbeck Walking Festival , 20 – 28 September, Dorset

Richmond Walking and Book Festival , 21 – 29 September, North Yorkshire

Pateley Bridge Walking Festival , 25 – 28 September, near Harrogate , North Yorkshire

Ross-on-Wye Walking Festival , 26 – 28 September, Herefordshire

Pickering Walking Festival , 26 – 28 September, North Yorkshire

North Pennines Walking Festival , 27 September – 5 October

2014 walking festivals and events

Walking festivals 2014

The Ramblers: info on walking festivals

The Ramblers: events