10 BEST Walks Near Nottingham

Rocks and views

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Nottingham has loads of great walks, maybe you’ve already explored lots of local places and are looking for somewhere different to visit?  

Having lived in Nottingham for a large part of my life I’ve done lots of wonderful walks in and around the city. I’ve recently been venturing further afield to other beautiful outdoor spots that are still aren’t too far away from my home.

You might have noticed if you follow me on social media, I’ve recently been doing weekly of evening local adventures. It’s a brilliant time of day to get out and visit those popular places that are much quieter in the evening. 

Here are 10 wonderful walks that you can do near Nottingham. These locations are ideal for a last-minute adventure as you don’t need to plan too far ahead and they are also handy when the weather seems to change its mind all the time.

Whether you are looking for somewhere to go for a day hike without a long drive or maybe even go for an evening adventure, these are all great places to add to your adventure bucket list.

Let me know in the comments whether you know any more places near Nottingham that are great for walking.

 

Map for walks near Nottingham + top tips

For each location, I’ve included details for walks you can do, for places like the Peak District as you can see the list of walks is endless so feel free to visit my second website which is dedicated to the Peak District – peakdistrictwalks.net

To give you a rough idea for planning I’ve included approximate driving times from Nottingham city centre, so depending on where you live it might be more or less. See map below for walk locations.

Walk Locations Map 

Top tips for your walks

Even if you’re just planning a short walk from Nottingham, it’s worth being prepared in case it’s a beautiful day and you want to extend your walk. Here are a few essential items to pack on your walk.

It’s worth investing in some comfy footwear for your walk, you can get a range that’s suitable for hillwalking and local trails – check out these models on sale here with Cotswold Outdoors. For my local walks in summer, I opt for a hiking shoe, but winter I normally swap to lightweight boots for those muddy paths!

  • Small backpack (20-30 litres is a perfect size) to carry everything in, much easier than a handbag
  • Snacks + water bottle – (I use a Water-to-Go filter bottle, means I can refill from streams on the walk)
  • Small first aid kit – handy for any small cuts or blisters that appear from no-where – a few kits here from basic to camping ones!
  • Waterproofs – you never know what the weather will do. Check out the summer range from Cotswold Outdoors here.
  • Suncream + sunglass (it’s amazing how quickly you can get burnt on a walk, even in the shade!)

10 Walks near Nottingham

Peak District National Park

Stepping stones on the Chee Dale walk
Stepping stones on the Chee Dale walk

Time from Nottingham: 45-90 minutes (depending on where in the Peak District you go)

Location: Castleton, Peak District (central location)

The Peak District is a wonderful place to visit on a day trip from Nottingham. It’s a pretty huge National Park, covering 555 square miles so there is lots to explore.

From Nottingham, the Derbyshire White Peaks is closer for a shorter trip but even the furthest northerly points aren’t too far if you’re doing a longer day hike.

Dovedale near Thorpe is a beautiful place to explore but it can be really busy so if you fancy a stepping stones walk then why not try Chee Dale stepping stones instead, hidden under the Monsal Trail they are a real treat!

I also now have a brand new website with all the best Peak District walks, go check it out and see which walks you can add to your list – I highly recommend Wolfscote Dale, Tideswell Dale and Mam Tor (for starters!).

High Tor in Matlock Bath, Derbyshire

Person walking along edge of rocks
Walking along Giddy Edge near Matlock

Time from Nottingham: 50 minutes

Location: Matlock Bath, Derbyshire, DE4 3PQ

Matlock is a small town on the outskirts of the Peak District but a popular place to visit, the town sits on the River Derwent which winds its way through the town and makes a great place to visit for an evening walk when the town is quieter.

I did a lovely circular 6-mile/10 km walk from Cromford as an evening walk a few weeks back and absolutely loved how quiet it felt, exploring caves and enjoying nature and wildlife. The route went off the beaten track from the town but then looped past some popular spots included High Tor and Giddy Edge overlooking the town below.

Here’s the online route I did but I’ll be looking to add the full walk soon so look out for it or drop me an email if you have any questions in the meantime.

The best thing about this route was definitely the fish and chips at the end in Matlock – a perfect way to end a walk!

Bradgate Park, Leicester

Walking in Bradgate Park, Leicester
Walking in Bradgate Park, Leicester

Time from Nottingham: 45 mins

Location: Bradgate Park, Newtown Linford, Leicester, LE6 0HE

Bradgate Park is not too far from Nottingham although it took me a while before my first visit. It’s home to lots of deer, similar to Wollaton Park where they roam free in the park.

There are a few different entrances and from each one you can explore the park, heading to the highest point for great views of the city. It’s a popular place with locals so even on an evening expect to see dog walkers and runners in the park but because it’s so big there’s loads of space for everyone.

When I visited I did a 3-4 mile loop of the park, but there’s more to explore so you can extend or shorten your walk if you prefer. Here’s the online route that I did on my walk. 

Rutland Water, Rutland

Rutland Water in Rutland

Time from Nottingham: 70 minutes

Location: Rutland Water, Empingham, Rutland, LE15 8QL

Rutland Water is one of the largest man-made lakes in Europe which makes it an ideal location for a walk by the water. If you’re up for a challenge you could walk the full 24 miles around the water or you could simply pick your route by turning around once your legs are tired!

In 2019, I walked the length of the Rutland Water from the dam along the northerly edge of the water as part of my 950-mile hike across Britain that I did to raise funds for Mind mental health charity. 

Rutland Water is home to a large number of different wildfowl species so if you enjoy wildlife it’s a great place for some birdwatching, look out for Mallard and Tufted ducks, Mute swans, Great-crested Grebes, Coots and you might even be lucky enough to see Osprey.

If you decide the 24-mile walk isn’t for you then you could always take your bikes instead, there is a fantastic track all the way around the water, perfect for cycling. Oh, and don’t forget your picnic for the all-important lunch stop!

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Clumber Park, Worksop

Flowers and lake at Clumber Park
Lake with views to St Mary’s church at Clumber Park

Time from Nottingham: 50 minutes

Location: Clumber Lane, Worksop, S80 3BA

Clumber Park is another fantastic place for a day trip from Nottingham, with beautiful lakeside walks to exploring the woodlands. Oh, and in the summer months, you will probably find someone selling ice-cream too – always a bonus on a walk!

As you walk around the lake, there’s a picturesque view of St Mary’s Church. And on your walk there are also many different wildfowl you can spot, from an insane amount of swans, there are also ducks, geese, coots, moorhens and grebes to look out for.

One of the highlights of Clumber Park is a beautiful ornamental bridge that takes you across the lake, several years ago this was badly damaged but you can see what a wonderful repair job they’ve done to mend the bridge.

Black Rocks, Cromford

Rocks and views
Views from the top of Black Rocks

Time from Nottingham: 50 minutes

Location: Cromford, Matlock, DE4 4GT

Black Rocks is another location that’s not too far away from the Peak District and the High Peak Trail. Go off the beaten track to explore the woods on the many different trails in the area, it’s easy to get lost but they aren’t too big so you can find your way back again!

For some stunning views, it’s worth hiking to the top of Black Rocks, it’s worth the extra effort!

Sherwood Pines, Mansfield

Pine trees in woods
Pine trees in the Go Ape area of Sherwood Pines

Time from Nottingham: 45 minutes

Location: Sherwood Pines, Edwinstowe, Mansfield, NG21 9JL

Sherwood Pines is a vast area of woodlands and if you’re looking for something shaded on a hot sunny day then it’s great for a walk and not too far from Nottingham.

As well as many different trails in the area, perfect for both walking and cycling. You can also include a fun activity you can do on your visit – Go Ape Sherwood is based in Sherwood Pines so you get to see the area from a tree-top perspective!

Carsington Water, Ashbourne

Wooden carving at Carsington Water
Wooden carving at Carsington Water

Time from Nottingham: 50 minutes

Location: Big Lane, Upper Town, Ashbourne, DE6 1ST

Carsington Water is popular for watersports but also a great place to spot wildlife with bird feeders on the water’s edge. You can see a range of different birds and wildfowl on the water, I even saw a woodpecker feeding last time I visited.

The walk around Carsington Water is around 8 miles around the whole reservoir or alternatively, you can do an out and back route and choose your own length of the walk. 

Burrough Hill, Melton Mowbray

Stone marker at Burrough-on-the-Hill
Stone marker at Burrough Hill

Time from Nottingham: 45 minutes

Location: Somerby, Melton Mowbray, LE14 2QZ

I visited Burrough Hill Country Park whilst on my E2W Challenge, whilst following the local trail the Leicestershire Round that goes directly through the old Iron Age fort.

The highlight is reaching the stone marker at 210 metres, not too tough to hike up to but since this is the highest point in the area on a clear day you can see for miles in all directions. You can see why they picked this spot for their Iron Age Fort!

Rufford Abbey + Country Park, Newark

Rufford Abbey
Rufford Abbey in Rufford Country Park

Time from Nottingham: 40 minutes

Location: Rufford Country Park, Ollerton, NG22 9DF

Located just outside of Nottingham, Rufford Country Park is a great place to explore for a day. As well as plenty of beautiful walks around the park, there are beautiful gardens, Rufford abbey and a children’s play area and maze to keep everyone entertained. 

It’s worth packing a picnic on a summer’s day then you can stay longer and enjoy the park and it’s surroundings.

Do you have any questions about these walks near Nottingham? Ask me in the comments below.

 
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