Britain's best autumn pub walks

Head into the British countryside this autumn for a seasonal ramble through golden forests and woodlands, before dropping into a country pub for a well-earned rest.

The Brotherswater Inn at the end of Brothers Water from Caudale near Hartsop, Cumbria
Published: September 8th, 2020 at 10:30 am
Summer Sale Offer | Get 3 issues for just £5 - save 67% off the shop price

Government restrictions around COVID-19 vary across the UK. We strongly advise checking local restrictions before visiting.


Walks are made all the better with a midway break at a cosy country pub, especially in the autumn months. We've gathered some of our favourite hikes in the UK for experiencing autumn colour, from rusty-hued riverside rambles to brilliant beech woods, each starting, ending or pausing midway at a traditional country inn.

The River Teign surrounded by autumnal foliage, near Fingle Bridge in Dartmoor National Park, Devon, England
The River Teign runs past the Fingle Bridge Inn in Dartmoor National Park – the perfect spot for a mid-walk break Getty

Enjoy the seasonal colours during your walk, followed by a hearty pub meal or local ale with our guide to the best autumnal pub walks in the UK.

Greek butter bean and tomato soup

Rydal and Grasmere, Cumbria

Rydal Water, Lake District, Cumbria
Experience exquisite reflections of autumn colour in the still waters of Rydal Water at Grasmere in the Lake District

On this six-mile walk in Wordsworth country, the Lake District's autumn hues rival those of New England. The route starts and finishes at Rydal, home to the Badge Bar – the perfect conclusion to a day on the trail.

View the route and map

Padley Gorge, Derbyshire

Padley Gorge, Yorkshire
Abandoned millstones are an incongruous sight in the woodland glades of Padley Gorge Getty

Enjoy an absorbing woodland amble en route to a striking post-industrial landscape veiled by Peak District trees. Extend the route with a three-mile diversion to Grindleford for a midway pint the at the cosy Sir William inn.

View the route and map

Llanbedr Woods, Gwynedd

Beautiful old stone bridge in the Snowdonia national park, North Wales.
Pont Cwm-yr-Afon on the Afon Artro near Llanbedr Getty

Now a Conservation Area, the oak woods hugging the hillsides above Afon Artro form a fine example of temperate forest that once covered most of Wales. Pass through this ancient woodland teeming with wildlife in north-west Wales with this 6.5-miles walk, especially glorious in late summer and autumn when the woods are filled with colour and foraging creatures. For a well-deserved drink, head to The Victoria Inn in Llanbedr.

View the route and map

Burnham Beeches, Buckinghamshire

Burnham Beeches in autumn
Beech trees and a carpet of leaves in full autumn colour in Burnham Beeches in Buckinghamshire Getty

Take a walk through the historic Burnham Beeches National Nature Reserve – one of the best examples of ancient woodland in Britain. The forest is best explored in the autumn months with a midway lunch stop at a traditional country pub – pick from the Blackwood Arms or the The Jolly Woodman.

View the route and map

Grizedale Forest, Cumbria

Weatherlam and The Old Man of Coniston in Autumn (Fall) viewed across Grizedale Forest
View of the Old Man of Coniston across Grizedale Forest ©Getty

Find magical sculptures among the trees on this eight-walk through hilly Lake District forest. The Eagles Head offers hungry walkers a chance to refuel before continuing not he trail.

View the route and map

Church Stretton, Shropshire

Autumn hills surrounding Church Stretton
Autumn hills surrounding Church Stretton Getty

History surrounds you in this ancient pocket of Shropshire, inhabited since Saxon times. Walk its age-old tracks, root around in its cavernous antiques market and end the day at a tradition country pub – why not try the Kings Arms or the Bucks Head.

View the route and map

Highmeadow Woods, Gloucestershire

Wild boar
Look out for wild boar in the woods Getty

Thread through the Forest of Dean's autumnal trees, stopping off half way at the White Horse Inn, before winding back on a woodland path.

View the route and map

Peel Crags and Sycamore Gap, Northumberland

Sycamore Gap, Northumberland
In an ideal world you would walk this route on an early autumn evening Getty

Embrace a romantic Roman hike along Hadrian’s Wall in Northumberland National Park before returning to the Twice Brewed Inn for a hearty pub feast.

View the route and map

Monsal Dale, Derbyshire

This walk takes you through the River Wye's twisting, wooded gorge, deep in the White Peak ©Getty
This walk takes you through the River Wye's twisting, wooded gorge, deep in the White Peak Getty

Ramble the high tracks and waterside paths of Monsal Dale in the Peak District National Park. The walk starts and finishes on the edge of Little Longstone where autumn walkers can refuel with drinks and food at one of two delightful pubs – the Monsal Head Hotel or the Packhorse Inn.

View the map and route

Birks of Aberfeldy, Perthshire

Aberfeldy Birks, Perthshire, Scotland
Aberfeldy Birks, Perthshire, Scotland Getty

When Robert Burns came to visit Aberfeldy in 1787, he was so impressed by the spectacular waterfalls and birch woods outside that he wrote a poem celebrating the area’s natural beauty. Today, a 4½ mile circular path allows you to follow in his footsteps and be equally inspired by this amazing place – experience this jaw-dropping gorge path, ending the walk at either The Fountain or the Black Watch.

View the route and map

Delamere Forest, Cheshire

Delamere Forest
This autumn walk includes not only magical autumn colour but a shimmering lake and cosy pub, too

Graded forest roads offer easy ways to explore the beautiful the mixed woodlands of Delamere Forest. Here and there your paths cross primeval meres – atmospheric relics of the Ice Age. Experience striking autumn contrasts on this gentle walk in Cheshire's ancient green heart, stopping of for a half-way pint at The Carriers Inn.

View the route and map

Forge Valley Woods, North Yorkshire

Kingfisher autumn
The woodland supports a wide variety of bird species, including, blackcaps, treecreepers, nuthatches and kingfishers Getty

This beautiful nature reserve on the banks of the River Derwent in the North York Moors National Park was once home to iron smelting. Today it's a peaceful spot, so go quietly and you may see an otter or kingfisher on your way to East Ayton, where there are two country pubs – the Denison Arms and Ye Olde Forge Valley Inn.

View the route and map

Gosforth, Cumbria

Wasdale Head Inn in Wasdale, Cumbria
Take a hike in the hills then make for the Wasdale Head Inn Alamy

The venerable Wasdale Head Inn, hidden within the valleys and mountains of the Lake District, has housed some of Britain's best novelists and poets – find out what inspired these great writers with a five-mile walk.

View the route and map

Norham Castle, Northumberland

Norham Castle, Northumberland
Norham Castle was painted many times by Joseph Turner Getty

Visit Norham Castle on the banks of the River Tweed and enjoy a historic woodland and riverside stroll through the village and surrounding countryside. Finish at Norham itself, an attractive and peaceful village, with the Mason Arms a perfect spot for a post-walk meal or refreshment.

View the route and map

Ratho, Edinburgh

The Bridge Inn sits on the banks of The Union Canal, Ratho
The Bridge Inn sits on the banks of The Union Canal, Ratho Alamy

The great thing about this pub walk is that you don't need a map. Simply step out of the Bridge Inn pub door, cross the river on the old stone bridge and join the towpath. The canal stretches east to west and offers miles and miles of trail. Autumn is a great season to visit, as the trees' rusty leaves cast rippled reflections on the surface of the canal.

Teign Gorge, Devon

HannicoHannicombe Wood, Dartmoormbe Wood
The route returns through Hannicombe Wood Getty

Take an autumn walk from Castle Drogo to the Fingle Bridge Inn. The route passes through Piddledown Common and Fingle Wood, a one of England’s largest woodland restoration projects.

View the route and map


Sponsored content