Escape to the countryside and discover some of the best walks in and around Leeds this Bank Holiday

We’ve researched so you can walk.

It’s time to pull on your walking boots and get out and about in the great outdoors.

As the second May Bank Holiday weekend approaches, many of us will be looking for the best Aperol Spritz to enjoy in the sun.

And don’t get us wrong, we will be doing that too, but sometimes it’s refreshing to have some outdoor activities planned to offset those…alcohol emissions! 

Fortunately, Leeds and its surrounding areas boast an abundance of scenic walks, perfect for a day of countryside exploration. 

So stick with us as we take you through the top walks to discover, from historic landmarks to sprawling parks. 

Harewood House

Image: Harewood House

Nestled amidst the Yorkshire countryside, Harewood House offers a perfect blend of history and natural beauty. Explore the estate’s extensive grounds, which include woodland trails, beautifully maintained gardens, and a scenic lake.

If you have children, there is an adventure playground they can get lost in, while you can marvel at the stunning architecture of the house itself. There’s a gorgeous 10km walk that loops around the estate offering beautiful views throughout. You can end your walk at one of the cafe’s conveniently located near the car park.

Golden Acre Park

Image: Golden Acre Park

Situated just a short drive from Leeds city centre, Golden Acre Park is a hidden gem waiting to be discovered. Grab an ice cream and take a leisurely stroll around the park’s tranquil lake.

Burrowed in the park is a bird spotting hut where you can spot wildlife, from ducks and swans to squirrels and rabbits, making it an ideal destination for families.

Otley Chevin

Image: Flickr

For panoramic views of the surrounding countryside, head to Otley Chevin. With a variety of walking trails ranging from gentle slopes to more challenging hikes, there’s something for every ability.

Reach the Chevin summit and be rewarded with breathtaking views stretching as far as the eye can see. It doesn’t just offer walks, but it is steeped in history, homing fossils and sculptures and is a natural playground for your little ones.

Tip: Head to the car park on York Gate road for the best sunset views!

Ilkley Moor

Lace up your hiking boots and venture onto Ilkley Moor, a rugged carpet of heather-covered moorland. Whether it’s a long walk you’re after, or you just want to explore the famous Cow and Calf rocks, which offer exceptional views of the landscape below, make sure you treat yourself to something sweet or refreshing from The Cow and Calf overlooking the valley.

Be prepared, as you might need to familiarise yourself with the well-known Cow and Calf song before your visit!

Roundhay Park

As one of the largest urban parks in Europe, Roundhay Park offers endless opportunities for outdoor adventure. Wander through scenic gardens, or rent a boat to paddle around the tranquil lake. With playgrounds, cafes, and even a tropical world, there’s no shortage of activities to keep the whole family entertained.

Kirkstall Abbey

Image: Kirkstall Abbey

Step back in time and explore the historically-rich ruins of Kirkstall Abbey. Wander through the abbey and its courtyards before strolling towards the adjacent parkland which provides a peaceful getaway from the vibrant life of Headingley. 

Bolton Abbey

Just a short drive from Leeds, Bolton Abbey offers a charming setting for a Bank Holiday walk. Take a walk through its trails along the banks of the River Wharfe, go back in time whilst visiting the abbey itself, and pass through the ancient woodlands walked by the monks themselves! A must-do whilst there is to visit the famous stepping stones whilst enjoying a picnic by the riverbank.

Right, I’m thirsty, Aperol Spritz anyone?

Read more: Middleton Woods – discover one of Leeds’ best bluebell beauties this May

Featured image – Bolton Abbey

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