Heading out into the great outdoors for a long walk is a great way to spend some time in the fresh air with the whole family. However, if you have either wheelchairs or buggies with you then it’s essential that you plan the route you want to take to ensure you don’t get stuck at a stile or immovable gate. In total, there are almost 50 great routes to take which have nothing to obstruct a buggy or wheelchair user – here is our round-up of some of the best:
Reb Nab to Wray Castle
Exploring one of the most picturesque parts of the Lakes, this route hugs the wooded shoreline of Windermere, taking you to the majestic Wray Castle. Starting at Reb Nab car park the route heads north through the trees of Arthur Wood where you can see the nature of the Lakes up close. Along the route you’ll find many spots for a picnic, or there is a café at Wray Castle. The route is 5km (3.1 miles) long and suitable for all.
A shorter route, at just 2km (1.2 miles long), this walk will keep you close to the water. Starting at the Ravenglass car park you’ll start by heading away from the village, crossing a viaduct and passing a couple of beaches on the way. After that, the path is a mix of sand and pebbles, and can flood at high tides, so check the tide times before you set out on this route. You’ll then reach the beautiful sands of Saltcoats, a really peaceful and tranquil place to visit.
Thanks to the tarmac paths and open spaces, this route is popular with both cyclists and walkers, and at 2.75km (1.7 miles), it’s suitable for the whole family. On this route you’ll enjoy spectacular views of Loughrigg Tarn, reportedly a favourite place of poet William Wordsworth. If you visit in the summer months you’ll see that the surface of the Tarn is covered in water lillies. Be aware, there is a slight gradient on this route.
A route suitable for most people, this forest road takes you through the wildest and least inhabited valley in the Lake District. It’s also a very long route at 18.5km (11.5 miles) although you can always double-back on yourself at any point to make the route shorter. The route starts from Bowness Knot car park and will take you past the beautiful glacial lake of Ennerdale, which is 50 metres deep! This is one of the quietest places you can visit, even in the summer months, but there are no facilities so take all the food and drink you will need with you.
A short but steep walk this is one to try if you feel like working on your arm muscles, pushing a buggy or wheelchair. The reward for doing so is great – get to the top and you’ll be treated to one of the very best views across the entire Southern Lakes. The route starts in the main Lake District National Park car park and climbs for just 0.5km (0.3 miles) up Scouts Scar. It is steep at a gradient of 1:6 for 100 metres.