Staying active and local this JanuaryDate Posted: 14 January 2021
Many of us will be wondering how we can stay healthy this January during this difficult time. Whilst gyms are closed, there are many ways to keep your mind and body healthy without having to leave your local area.
We’ve put together a selection of our favourite walks, beauty spots and trails for you to explore this month. Many are in walking distance to local towns or cities so are easy to access. If you have a map or even a phone handy, it’s time to start planning!
There are plenty of beautiful walks to do in and around Cowbridge. With the coast only a stone’s throw away, the village has all the beauty of Wales right on its doorstep.
1. Nash Point Lighthouse Trail
This trail follows part of the Wales Coast Path and offers great views across the estuary. It’s great for walkers of all ages and experience at a comfortable 3.5 miles. For a country walk full of sea air, Nash Point is a great place to start.
2. Wales Coast Path
The Wales Coast Path runs the entire coast of the country but for a more lockdown-friendly option, there are plenty of shorter walks dotted along the coast of the Vale of Glamorgan. The coast path is easily accessible from villages such as Llantwit Major and Saint Athan and is also great for joggers.
3. Southerndown Headland
Further along the coast is the beautiful shoreline of Southerndown. The headland offers many places to explore from the Iron Age hill fort to Dunraven Castle. A walk around the headland is just under 2 miles so is great for little walkers too.
Sandwiched between the coast and the hills, Neath Port Talbot has a lot to offer both seasoned walkers and young families.
1. Mynydd Dinas
For great views and some light hill climbing, Mynydd Dinas is the ideal walk. At just 2.5 miles, even little legs will be able to manage this one. With a forest setting, there are plenty of areas to explore and make for great cover in the January weather!
2. Afan Forest Park
With various moderate walking routes and tricky hills, Afan Forest Park is great for the days you fancy a challenge and is also popular for mountain biking. With amazing views and varied terrain, the trails around this forest are ideal for active days out.
3. Margam Country Park
Margam Country Park is a great place for all the family, with easy to access trails and routes around the park. The trails make it great for walking in all types of weather so there’s no excuse! This is also a popular spot for joggers and runners.
Just a short distance from the coast, Bridgend has loads to offer locally. Many routes are great for families and offer spectacular views!
1. Ogmore Circular Walk
Following the Wales Coast Path, the Ogmore circular takes a round route along the cliffs, making for great photo opportunities. The walk is around 7 miles which is ideal for a long Saturday walk. Whilst not suitable for all, the views and sea air will persuade anyone to give it a go.
2. Candleston Castle
This walk takes you across sandy dunes, through woodlands to the ruins of Candleston Castle. Full of exciting places to explore, this walk is ideal for the whole family. If you fancy braving the chill down at the beach, it’s easy to follow the paths over the dunes down to Merthyr Mawr Beach.
3. Merthyr Mawr Warren
Also home to Candleston Castle, Merthyr Mawr Warren has plenty of walking routes for all ages and experience. Circular routes are also available, taking you across the dunes and along the Wales Coast Path with plenty of opportunities to drop down to Merthyr Mawr Beach.
Despite its status as a city, Cardiff is home to many green spaces and is always in a nearby to the countryside. With many walks to offer and great routes for bikes and families, Cardiff is not your typical city!
1. Taff Trail
The ever popular Taff Trail follows the River Taff upstream, ending in Pontypridd (or for a further walk, Merthyr Tydfil). If the 15.5 mile trek doesn’t appeal, shorter routes within Bute Park are ideal for families and children of all ages.
2. Tynycoed Wood
To the west of Cardiff and starting in Creigiau, the trail through Tynycoed Wood offers a sheltered walk and is suitable for all skill levels. At 3 miles it’s a happy medium for many casual walkers.
3. Rhydypenau Park & Roath Park
For a city centre walk with all the charm of country parkland, this walk takes you on a circular walk from Llanishen Reservoir to Roath Park. This city park offers wonderful views across the lake, as well as waterfalls and quiet trails through woodland.
4. Caerau Hill Fort
Beginning in Dinas Powys, this country walk makes for easy hiking, with its paths winding across farmland. Visit Caerau Hill Fort and the nearby ruined church whilst also enjoying views across Cardiff.
For more trails and walking routes, we recommend AllTrails.com! Investing in a map of your local area is also a great place to start – there are always places to explore right on your doorstep.
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