Running routes with a view

When it comes to beautiful views, treadmills can't compete with trails in the great outdoors. We’ve hand-picked some of our favourite running routes with a view, so you can enjoy stretching your legs that little bit more.

An aerial view of Blickling Estate

Blickling, Norfolk 

Set in Norfolk’s beautiful Bure meadows, this trail offers sweeping views of the impressive Jacobean house and the surrounding parkland, woods and fields. If you’ve got a light step you might get to spot some of the local wildlife – barn owns can often be seen hunting in the woods during daylight hours.

Bubbling river passing over granite stones

Castle Drogo, Devon 

This is perhaps the most famous walk on Dartmoor, but it also makes a great running trail. Begin beneath the imposing bulk of Castle Drogo – the last castle to be built in England – and follow the Hunter's Path high above the River Teign. Passing through woodland, over packhorse bridges and across open commons, there’s plenty to keep you interested.

The view from the Gorge walk

Cheddar Gorge, Somerset 

A run at Cheddar Gorge isn’t for the faint of heart, but if you’re fit enough to manage the climb you’ll be rewarded with spectacular views from the top. This route takes you on a loop around both sides of the gorge, or for a gentler route you can stick to running along the bottom of the valley.

Clumber park and Church in the summer

Clumber Park, Nottinghamshire 

Running is great exercise, and it’s even better when there’s a view to go with it. At Clumber you can explore acres of parkland, heathland and woods and get fit at the same time. The area is mostly flat with a few small inclines, and you can get all the details of the different routes from the visitor information point.

jetty into Derwent water with oak trees

Derwent Water, Cumbria 

Pull on your trainers and enjoy a gentle run along the quiet side of Derwent Water before heading through the tranquil parkland at Brandelhow, birthplace of the National Trust in the Lake District.

View from Divis and the Black Mountain

Divis and the Black Mountain, County Antrim 

If you’re after sweeping views, the Black Mountain ridge trail is hard to beat. You’ll need to be reasonably fit as there are some steep sections and parts that are rough underfoot, but it’ll be worth all the effort when you get to the top and see the city of Belfast sprawled out at your feet. You might also be able to spot the Antrim Plateau to the north, Scotland to the east and Mourne Mountains to the south.

Fountains Abbey ruins in summer with river in the foreground

Fountains Abbey, Yorkshire 

There are 800 acres of countryside to explore at Fountains Abbey, so you’ll never be short of somewhere to run. For a good leg stretch try a five-mile loop around the estate, taking in the dramatic Abbey ruins, the elegant 18th-century water garden and the quiet wilderness of the deer park. Wherever you go, you’re sure to get some great views along the way.

The Sycamore tree at Hadrian's Wall

Hadrian's Wall, Northumberland 

Head out for a run along Hadrian’s Wall to the iconic Sycamore Gap to enjoy magnificent views of Hadrian's Wall country, explore natural wilderness and follow in the historic footsteps as you return via the Roman Military Way.

Visitors running at Kingston Lacy, Dorset

Kingston Lacy, Dorset 

Kingston Lacy’s 8,500 acres are laced with trails, so you’ll never be short of somewhere to explore. The Woodland Trail is a handy three-mile loop that leads you among the trees and along old carriage drives that were created by the Bankes family. You’ll be treated to stunning views of the house and parkland, and you might even come across the estate's herd of Red Ruby cattle along the way.

View across the South Downs from Leith Hill

Leith Hill, Surrey 

Leith Hill has been a popular picnic spot since the 19th century, thanks to the panoramic views from the top. You might not carry a hamper on your runs, but it’s still worth the climb on a clear day to see 13 counties stretching out below you. This also happens to be the highest point in south east England, so you’ll definitely have earned that sense of achievement.

Afternoon summer sun on the Cage at Lyme, Cheshire

Lyme, Cheshire 

Lyme is a great training spot, especially if you head out to some of the less-visited corners of the park. On this trail you'll be rewarded for your efforts with spectacular views over to the Peak District and the Cheshire plains. You might even spot Lyme's red deer herd who often spend their time in the east of the park.

Sheep grazing on the Polesden Lacey estate in summer

Polesden Lacey, Surrey 

Take a run at Polesden Lacey and you'll be rewarded by stunning views over the Surrey Hills. This trail takes you through a wooded valley, past historic farmsteads and over rolling downland. There are a few slopes in places so you'll be able to test your stamina too.

The bay at Porthdinllaen, Llŷn Peninsula

Porthdinllaen 

There’s nothing better than a coastal trail to blow away the cobwebs. This run will reward you with stunning views in all directions as you follow it out along the Porthdinllaen headland – an outstanding wildlife haven. Grey seals are a particular highlight and can often be seen hunting for fish along this stretch of coastline.

Run with friends at Sheringham Park

Sheringham Park, Norfolk 

At two miles long, this is a fairly easy leg stretch for regular runners, with some undulating terrain to add in a bit of interest. Sheringham’s landscape gardens were designed in 1812 by Humphry Repton, and now offer stunning countryside vistas as well as views towards the coast.

A view from the Bund at Speke Hall

Speke Hall, Liverpool 

Why pound the treadmill when you could be running along a coastal reserve path? Explore the full Speke Hall estate on this two-mile route and let the fine views of the Wirral, North Wales and Liverpool’s city centre skyline inspire you.

Runners at Barafundle Bay, Stackpole

Stackpole, Pembrokeshire 

Stackpole is the perfect spot for getting fit while still being able to enjoy the view. If you’re looking for a challenge, try this six-mile route that leads you around serene lily ponds, up onto wild coastal headlands and across beaches of golden sand. You can even end your run with a paddle in the sea.

Spring sun through the trees at Toys Hill, a natural area owned by the National Trust in Kent

Toys Hill 

Running at Toys Hill provides great views of the Weald of Kent. This 6km Run England route will take you through Toys Hill and past Emmetts Garden, with some beautiful scenery to enjoy as you run.