There are several very good reasons why the Ribble Valley has been designated an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, and if you pull on the wellies and stride out over hill and dale you’ll soon find them.
The local area offers a range of great walks suited to both Sunday strolls and serious rambles, all offering plenty of opportunities to kick the leaves, snap the scenery and reward yourself with a roast (all the best walks involve a pub!).
The Ribble Valley ‘Walks with Taste’ offer a selection of trails that start and end at a public house or hotel with restaurant. Hurst Green village is blessed with one of the best pubs around – The Shireburn Arms. This 5.4mile walk takes between 2.5-3 hours and is dog friendly, as is the pub. The walk takes your through local woodlands and along long stretches of the picturesque River Ribble and over the stunning Ribchester Bridge.
Another favourite has to be the famous Tolkien Trail, a six-mile walk which starts and finishes at the war memorial opposite The Shireburn Arms and takes in stunning Stonyhurst College, historic Cromwell’s Bridge as well as scenic stretches of the River Hodder and the River Ribble.
We also particularly like one in nearby Mitton that starts and finishes at The Aspinall Arms. It’s just 3 miles long but takes in some fantastic scenery and historic Mitton Hall, now a country house hotel and worth popping into to admire the amazing interiors.
(Ribchester Bridge Image by Peter McDermott)