The 5 Best British Circular Walks

Contours circular feature
Photo: Contours Holidays

There’s a comforting rhythm to walking a circular route. Beautifully unfolding with every step, these journeys allow you to discover remarkable scenery from different angles and create a mighty sense of fulfilment as you return to your starting point. They’re super convenient as well, as you can wander straight back to your car or to the station with return ticket in hand to carry on your day’s adventure.

To find some of the best circular routes around, we’ve teamed up with our friends at Contours Holidays to bring you five cracking walking routes to try in the UK. Contours will deal with your accommodation and luggage so you can simply enjoy the scenery. So, without further ado, grab your boots and let’s go…

Isle of Anglesey Coast Path, Wales

Anglesey Photo: Contours Holidays

Difficulty: Moderate to demanding
Distance: 140 miles
Time: 8 – 16 nights

Walking the Isle of Anglesey Coast Path offers a captivating mix of terrains, from gloriously sandy beaches to epic rugged cliffs. You can expect an ever-changing panorama of the Irish Sea and Snowdonia to unfold as you walk this truly scenic masterpiece of a route.

The path winds through charming villages and ancient sites and, in the months of May and June, you may spot puffins as they head back inland for breeding season. And from spring through to autumn, you be spoilt by a tapestry of gorgeous wildflowers.

Fancy walking this route without the hassle? Contours offer multiple self-guided holiday options along this stunning trail. Ranging from eight to 16 nights, their Isle of Anglesey holidays equip you with everything you need including accommodation, maps and guidebooks, but allow you to take the journey at a pace that’s completely tailored to you.

Borders Abbeys Way, Scotland

Contours Circular borders abbey way
Photo: Contours Holidays

Difficulty: Moderate to demanding
Distance: 68 miles
Time: 5 – 8 nights

One thing’s for sure, the Scotts know how to do scenery, and the Borders Abbeys Way is no exception. This incredible trail meanders through luscious rolling hills, picturesque valleys and ancient woodlands, offering a diverse terrain for walkers. Expect to be met by panoramic vistas showcasing the Eildon Hills and the Tweed Valley, creating a visual feast.

The trail is adorned with a carpet of wildflowers such as bluebells and primroses in spring, while you can often spot red squirrels and roe deer that grace the wooded sections. The Borders Abbeys Way promises hikers a harmonious blend of Scottish history and enchanting landscapes.

Contours offer multiple self-guided holiday options along this breathtaking trail, including dog friendly routes. Ranging from five to eight nights, you can pick the length and pace that suits you, while Contours take care of everything else, even looking after your luggage.

Cotswolds Highlights Trail, Midlands

Cotswolds highlights trailPhoto: Contours Holidays

Difficulty: Easy to demanding
Distance: 45 miles
Time: 4 – 7 nights

Fancy a quintessential English countryside experience? The Cotswolds Highlights Trail presents an array of charming villages, rolling meadows and ancient woodlands. Idyllic views of honey-coloured limestone villages with thatched cottages create postcard-perfect scenes.

As you rack up the miles on this stunning path, you’ll encounter diverse wildflowers and rich birdlife. This picturesque journey offers glimpses of historic estates and lush pastures, encapsulating the timeless beauty of the Cotswolds, making it a truly serene walking experience.

Contours offer self-guided holiday options along the Cotswold Highlights Trail, ranging from three to nine nights. Hand over the burden of arranging accommodation and routes, and enjoy a hassle-free, relaxing walking holiday that you can take at your own leisurely pace.

Land’s End Round, South England

Land's End Round Contours CircularPhotos: Contours Holidays

Difficulty: Moderate
Distance: 60 miles
Time: 5 – 7 nights

Embarking on the Land’s End Round route promises a captivating coastal journey that’ll etch an everlasting imprint in your memory. From imposing cliffs to pristine sandy beaches, this walk offers dynamic scenery to take your breath away. Majestic views of the Atlantic Ocean unfold, accompanied by dramatic rock formations and hidden coves to explore.

This delightful coastal path is adorned with hardy wildflowers such as thrift and sea aster, adding beautiful bursts of colour to the landscape. You can also see historic landmarks such as the Minack Theatre, along with a sense of accomplishment as you traverse the most westerly point of England.

Contours offer multiple self-guided walking holidays along Land’s End Round, ranging from five to seven nights. They also offer 24-hour support should you need anything during your stay or along your route, so you can relax on your well-deserved break.

Lakeland Round, North England

LaklelandPhoto: Contours Holidays

Difficulty: Moderate to demanding
Distance: 74 miles
Time: 6 – 13 nights

The Lakeland Round in Northern England is famous for being an incredibly picturesque journey through diverse English landscapes. The trail navigates through the serene Lake District, offering a mix of terrains from lush valleys to rugged fells. You can expect no less than eight mountain passes, twelve lakes, and many delightful villages on your way through this UNESCO World Heritage region.

Walk through vibrant meadows filled with heather and foxgloves, and spot red deer and native Herdwick sheep that dot the hillsides. As you traverse charming villages and ancient woodlands, the Lakeland Round delivers a perfect blend of natural beauty and cultural richness.

Contours offer multiple holiday options along and around the Lakeland Round, including dog friendly trips. All you need is your luggage and your trusty hiking boots, booking with Contours takes the stress away from needing to find and book accommodation and planning your route.

Lakeland Contours Circular routes Photo: Contours Holidays

Ready to Make the Rounds?

Explore the countryside at your own pace on a self-guided holiday with Contours. Enjoy the freedom to set your own pace and take breaks as you please – say goodbye to fixed schedules and group dynamics. Craft your walking adventure with friends and family, choose a trail, and tailor the itinerary to match your speed. Share your dates, and Contours will handle all the arrangements, equipping you with all the information to be your guide on your personalised journey.

For more information and to browse the full range of self-guided holidays, head over to the contours website.