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Book on British Hiking?

I am looking to buy some kind of guide on hikes or walks in Britain for a friend of mine, as a gift. She is reaching a milestone in life (getting her doctorate) and we talk about doing a trip like this someday, so I thought it would be a meaningful gift. Can anyone recommend a book on this subject, be it a guidebook or more of a picture book? Thanks!

Posted by
5574 posts

There are lots of books on this topic. My personal collection centers on Scotland, so I'll give you a starting point with them. Lonely Planet has a couple. I have one call Walking in Scotland by Bardwell et al. It's an excellent guidebook that outlines a lot of walks and grades them. You'll find it on Amazon.com. I have a lovely picture book called Walking in the Scottish Highlands by AA Publishing. I could only find it on amazon.co.uk. It has beautiful photos and lots of walk suggestions. (Remember, walking=hiking in the UK). I have a book that's tells the story of walking in Sutherland call The Sutherland Trail. It too is only available on amazon.co.uk. Also, you can find Walk Sutherland is a book of 50 graded walks. I also have a great book, Wild Scotland that will tell you about the plants, animals, birds etc. Also on amazon.co.uk. Pam

Posted by
521 posts

As Pamela says, there are many to choose from. Dozens and dozens of them, hundreds, thousands? But as a meaningful gift for a milestone event you can't do any better than Wainright's Lake District guides and his many other books, including the Coast to Coast walk. See the wikipedia article on the man himself for the reasons why: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alfred_Wainwright

Posted by
5663 posts

I would second the A. Wainwright "A Coast to Coast Walk". The pictorial and narrative guide to the walk from St. Bees Head on the Irish Sea to Robin Hood's Bay on the North Sea is a classic book and walk. The Wainwright book includes hand drawings and sketch maps. Doing the walk would be a capstone adventure holiday. The coast to coast walk is eat, walk, see, drink and socialize. Full English breakfasts, hike and enjoy the scenery, and share a pint with like minded walkers at the local pub.

Posted by
2638 posts

Here is a website for the national trails in the UK ~ http://www.nationaltrail.co.uk ~~~ . There are a lot publications regarding walking the trails in the UK, you can find out about some at this website. A friend and I are busy planning our trip to walk the Cotswold Way, we are so excited.

Posted by
389 posts

Thanks, everyone! There did seem to be a lot of books, but I figured if I asked here I could narrow it down a bit. Thanks for the website, too. I can't give that as a gift, but I can bookmark it for if we ever get to the planning stage.

Posted by
2349 posts

Neither of these will give you specifics, but would be great mood reading: Paul Theroux, "Kingdom by the Sea." Bill Bryson, "Notes from a Small Island."

Posted by
389 posts

Thank you. I should add that her defense is in a week from tomorrow, so if I want the gift to be timely, I can't order from Britain.

Posted by
3319 posts

I will echo the recommendations for A. Wainwright. His books are not only beautiful but very useful in and around the Lake District which, in my opinion, offers the best hiking in England! He has many different books for different places in that area. We have used them for years...