Autumn is upon us. The leaves are changing colour and the mist is rolling in. There is no better time to live in the countryside. We have scoured England, Scotland, and Wales to find the best. They range from woodlands and city parks, to the Welsh countryside, and many are near some of our best country pubs. They all have one thing in common – they’re beautiful places to live and explore.
1. Carding Mill Valley, Shropshire
“Take a walk across the wildlife-rich heathland and enjoy the views across the Shropshire Hills,” says the National Trust.
The area is known for autumn walks up through the valley, following the curve of the stream, which leads up to the heathland. Many ramblers choose to walk up through the village of Church Stretton, where house prices range from £120,000 for a flat to £750,000 for a four bedroom detached home.
2. Stourhead, Wiltshire
“Stourhead Estate on the Wiltshire-Somerset border is the perfect day out for everyone,” says Visit Wiltshire.
Owned by the National Trust for 70 years, the site comprises of the stately family home as well as the world-famous gardens which are stunning in autumn.
“A breathtaking 18th century landscape garden with lakeside walks, grottoes and classical temples is only the beginning. You can also visit Stourhead House, a Palladian mansion with a fantastic regency library and beautiful art collection.”
3. Isle of Skye, Scotland
The Isle of Skye is popular with walkers, climbers and whisky drinkers.
“Skye is one of the top locations in Scotland to visit. It is famous for its scenery and landscapes that will take your breath away. The Island of Skye is 50 miles long and the largest of the Inner Hebrides. The capital is Portree,” says Isle of Skye.com.
A medium-sized terraced house will cost around £125,000, while a large family home with outbuildings will cost up to £700,000.
4. Ladybower, Peak District
In the heart of the Peak National Park, the Ladybower reservoir has over two million visitors per year.
“The outstanding beauty of the area acts as a magnet for walkers, cyclists, fell-runners and those people who just come to relax and enjoy the countryside,” says Discover Derbyshire. They recommend a six-mile walk along clear tracks along the edge of the reservoir. It takes in the remains of Derwent village, which was flooded to make the reservoir.
Properties in the Hope Valley can cost upwards of £1,500,000 for a large family home with six bedrooms, down to a one or two bedroom terrace for £150,000.
5. Llyn Gywnant, Snowdonia
Not only are there beautiful walks around this lake, but several routes can be taken from the lake all the way to the top of Snowdon, the highest mountain in Wales and England.
“Standing tall over the village of Llanberis, Snowdon is a part of a close-knit family of jagged peaks and can offer views of Snowdonia, Anglesey, Pembrokeshire and Ireland,” says Visit Snowdonia.
Property in the village of Llanberis is more affordable than some of our other locations, with three-bedroom detached homes costing less than £450,000. A two-bedroom terrace can cost under £100,000.
6. Richmond Park, London
“Every year millions of Londoners and tourists visit Richmond Park, the largest of the capital's eight Royal Parks and the biggest enclosed space in London,” says Royal Parks.
Visitors will be familiar with the sights and sounds of Richmond Park including Red and Fallow Deer, as well as the far-reaching parkland. It’s popular with families, walkers and cyclists.
A premium detached home in this area could cost upwards of £9,000,000. Prices start at £725,000 for a semi-detached home with two or three bedrooms.
7. Dovedale, Peak District
The Stepping Stones in Dovedale are an icon of the Peak District National Park. There are lots of popular walks for hikers and dog walkers, including an easy 4km/2.5m walk from the village of Ilam to the stepping stones. The stones cross the River Dove, which has carved a path through the limestone rock over the years. Follow the walking route here.
8. Bodium, East Sussex
No matter if you are planning a visit to the stunning Bodium Castle or would like a countyside walk, Bodium in East Sussex is a good choice. Instead of heading into the castle grounds, walkers can skirt the moat, taking in the view, and head over a stile instead. The five mile walk is across country fields and tracks. After all that exercise, walkers can tend to their thirst at The Castle Inn pub, opposite the Bodium Castle car park.
9. Winkworth Aboretum, Surrey
“When autumn arrives, Winkworth bursts into colour, its yellows, oranges and reds painting a breathtaking picture across the landscape,” says the National Trust. “For the best views, seek out the viewpoints on the edge of the Magnolia Wood, the top of the Azalea Steps, the lakeside Boathouse and the eastern Meadow.”
Walkers of all ability are catered for, with an ‘access for all route’ right through to a ‘challenging’ walk.
10. Laugharne Castle, Wales
Inspired by the poetry of Dylan Thomas, this walk follows the Carmarthenshire section of the Wales Coast Path, taking in the landscape that inspired Thomas’s writing.
The walk follows “the coast path past the writing shed, where Dylan worked, and the Boathouse, where the family later lived,” says writer David Atkinson. “The trail loops the Taf Estuary, then back into Laugharne by St Martin's Church, where Dylan and Caitlin are buried.”
Properties in nearby Carmarthen cost up to £650,000 for a six-bedroom home, and range to £90,000 for a two-bed flat or terrace.
For properties near great walks, start your dream home search with Fine & Country.