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Mountain less than 5 hours away from London?

My fiancé and I are going to be in the UK for ten days in July and we are hoping to climb a mountain.

We’ll start out in London and then hope to spend two days max on this side trip.
Any recommendations where we should go?

Ideally we don’t want to go more than 5 hours away by train or car—and the location of lodging and the mountain are in close proximity. Less transit hassle. But if you know an excursion company that assists with this kind of stuff that is great too!

We’d love to climb Snowdon in Wales, but it might be too far away—especially for train.


Posted by
9110 posts

Climb? There isn't a mountain in the UK you can't walk up in a few hours.

Mt Snowdon is a five-hour drive from London, maybe six depending on traffic outbound. It's thirty-five hundred feet. It'd be a bus-train affair to get to the approach point.

Ben Nevis is the highest peak n the country and it's only about a thousand feet higher. I'm sure you could get to Fort William by train but have no idea what would happen next. It'd burn the most of the day, however. It'd probably take twelve hours to drive it.

Staying in England, the highest peak is in the Lake District somewhere and it's got to be under thirty-five hundred - - maybe Scarfell Pike. It's a good seven hours to get up there by car. Otherwise it's also a bus-train combo.

They're all nice little hikes/walks, but are non-events as far as climbing goes.

Staying closer to London, there's nothing close to two thousand feet.

I'd look for a better use of twenty percent of a very short visit.

Posted by
33314 posts

The UK doesn't really do "mountains". Big hills, yes.

Snowdon, while called a mount, is a walk up and down rather than a climb. In fact, because a train runs up to nearly the summit, you only have to walk one or none direction.

kma, you give no hint in your incomplete profile where you are coming from. Are you flatlanders for whom Snowdon will seem like Everest, or are you regular climbers who wouldn't break a sweat?

Posted by
4535 posts

First thing I thought of is the movie "The Englishman that Went up a Hill and Came Down a Mountain." Not a Hugh Grant fan, but it's a great movie.

Posted by
4637 posts

I would not underestimate British mountains. Although not too high in absolute height above see level but they look much bigger especially Scottish ones. You need to be prepared for weather changes etc. Ben Nevis shortened more lives than one would expect considering its height.

Posted by
521 posts

Scotland would be best (here's why), but is too far. Snowden is nearer, but still a bit of a drive and likewise the Lake District.

You may want to take a look at the Peak District, in the centre/north of England, and the Brecon Beacons in south Wales. They are roughly 4 hours and 3 hours from London by car and both have lots of walking opportunities that can be very challenging if you want.