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The Best & Most Scenic Short Walks in West Yorkshire

· Joseph Sheerin · Culture

West Yorkshire’s natural beauty has never been so easy to see.

Ilkley Moor

If you fancy a quick, easy ramble across West Yorkshire, these calf-friendly wanders across breathtaking countryside are a must.

Walking doesn’t have to be a feat of endurance, not one bit. There are oodles of rewarding rambles across, through and around West Yorkshire that are a doddle to do. In fact, each one of these five short walks clock in at less than 5 miles, so the next time you fancy a leisurely stroll with beautiful scenery, you’re spoilt for choice. Dig out those walking boots and discover the beauty of God’s Own Country on your doorstep.

The Five Rise Locks Walk

The Five Rise Locks Bingley

Credit: Tim Green licensed under Creative Commons for commercial use.

West Yorkshire’s canals are a great bet for your next walk as you’ll find on this circular route to The Five Rise Locks. It’s just 2.1 miles along flat, easygoing terrain that takes you around one of the Seven Wonders of the Waterways. Start your hike from Bingley Station and cross the bypass to reach the canal towpath. Geese and water-hens may appear as you meet the Three Rise Locks and cross North Bog to reach the Five Rise Locks – the views here are a bonus.

The walk starts at Bingley Railway Station, Wellington Street, Bingley, West Yorkshire, BD16 2NA. Check out the route.

Chevin and the Surprise View Circular

Otley Chevin Surprise View

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The Otley Chevin is a surefire hit if you’re looking for a relaxing ramble in West Yorkshire – and it offers a big ol’ surprise right from the start. The 2.7-mile walk kicks off at the Surprise View – stop to appreciate the vista across the valley before you head to the top of the ridge. You can see for miles to Simon’s Seat, the White Horse and Almscliffe Crag on a clear day. Then it’s a woodland wander through to Yorkgate Quarry, the nature reserve and back to the start.

The walk starts at Yorkgate Road, Otley, Leeds, West Yorkshire, LS21 3DG. Check out the route.

Almondbury Common Circular

Castle Hill, Huddersfield

Credit: Alan Burnett licensed for commercial use under Creative Commons.

At just 3.9-miles long, this fantastic circular walk around the outskirts of Huddersfield is one of the best short walks in West Yorkshire. It kicks off at the ruins of a Scheduled Ancient Monument – Castle Hill is a 12th-century, motte-and-bailey castle with two Iron Age hill forts and a deserted medieval village. But that’s just the start, you’ll also get to trot your way across Almondbury Common, through Molly Carr Wood and over Farnley Hill – what a treat.

The walk starts at Ashes Common, Huddersfield, West Yorkshire, HD4 6TE. Check out the route.

The Hawley Wood Circular

Hawk Stones, Lydgate, Todmorden

Credit: Tim Green licensed under Creative Commons for commercial use.

The outskirts of Todmorden offer up a very rewarding 4.3-mile jaunt across beautiful moorland. The start has a gradual 200-metre climb, but from there it’s all plain sailing with easygoing terrain all the way up to the fascinating gritstone outcrops. First off, you’ll reach the cliff-side Hawk Stones before you head across to the gravity-defying Great Bride Stones. Take a minute to enjoy the scenery before moseying downhill with show-stopping views of Calderdale.

The walk starts at the bottom of Stoney Royd Lane, Lydgate, Todmorden, West Yorkshire, OL14 8EP. Check out the route.

Addingham High Moor Circular

Cow and Calf

Whatever your experience, this 2-mile walk through Airedale is an enriching excursion. It starts with a short 60-metre climb, but from then on it’s glorious views all the way. Head across open moorland, pass millstone lumps and rocks, all the way to Black Hill with its views towards Wharfedale. You’ll join a well-trodden path towards Ilkley Moor, passing the Addingham High Moor trig point, and toodle over to the ancient Doubler Stones before you go back to the start.

The walk starts at Lightbank Lane, Keighley West Yorkshire, BD20 0NL. Check out the route.