Here are 7 of the best walks in West Yorkshire

The winter weather is upon us and new research has revealed the best winter walks to enjoy around the Leeds and West Yorkshire area, including the Yorkshire Dales, Lotherton Hall and Roundhay Park.
Cow and Calf Rocks at  Ilkley.Cow and Calf Rocks at  Ilkley.
Cow and Calf Rocks at Ilkley.

From country estates, historic houses and parks nearby the city, Visit Leeds has rounded up the very best wintry walks in the area, to enjoy this Christmas and beyond.

Dales Way Link

For stunning scenery that’s sure to take your breath away, then the Yorkshire Dales is a trip you can’t miss. If you’re a seasoned walker who wants a full-day challenge then the 20-mile Dales Way Link is the perfect route to take.

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Set in the stunning Lotherton estate just outside of Leeds, Lotherton lights up for ChristmasSet in the stunning Lotherton estate just outside of Leeds, Lotherton lights up for Christmas
Set in the stunning Lotherton estate just outside of Leeds, Lotherton lights up for Christmas

Pick a crisp, frosty morning and set off at dawn to journey through Leeds northern greenspaces, the Market town of Otley, through valleys and up into the Dales before ending up in the picturesque town of Ilkley at the famous Cow and Calf Rocks before sunset.


Lotherton is an Edwardian estate just outside of Leeds. A walk around the grounds and gardens during the winter months is truly beautiful and if it gets too cold you can always pop inside to the on-site Stables cafe. This year, Lotherton has brought back its Christmas experience for all the family and an interactive woodland walk is part of this; allowing visitors to follow the twinkly lights through the history and magic of the estate to really make you feel festive.

Temple Newsam

Temple Newsam is a country estate in the heart of Leeds and offers a sense of escapism for city-centre dwellers and visitors alike. With more than 1,500 acres of Capability Brown landscapes gardens, woodland and park areas, there’s plenty of wintry scenery to enjoy.

Harewood House

Harewood House is a stunning Georgian property just outside of the city. To fully enjoy all Harewood has to offer, the five-mile circular walk around the property is a great place to take it all in.

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Kicking off at the Muddy Boots Cafe in Harewood, the route will offer stunning views of the estate in all its glory, and the deer park where you might even catch a glimpse of Rudolph and his friends. The walk is fully lit up too, making it an even more magical experience.

Roundhay Park

One of the biggest parks in Europe, Roundhay Park may be Leeds’ worst kept secret. Roundhay sits less than four miles from the Tipi’s and Ice Rinks of the city centre and offers more than 700 acres of parkland, lakes, woodland and gardens to explore. This year, Roundhay Park is home to a festive illuminated trail – taking you through the grounds to see magical light installations and sculptures that are sure to put you in the Christmas spirit.

Kirkstall Abbey

Another favourite landmark is the ruins of the 800 year old Kirkstall Abbey, which offers amazing views through the parkland and the grounds. It’s a great place for a brisk wintry walk. Just three miles out of the city centre, the outstanding collection of buildings look truly magical whether covered in frost or bathed in winter sunlight, and the visitor centre is the perfect place to warm up after you’ve delved into the history of the monastery.

Meanwood Valley Local Nature Reserve

For those that really want to stretch their legs then the seven-mile Meanwood Valley Local Nature Reserve may be the answer. Starting on the northern outskirts of the city centre, this signposted walk takes you from an urban landscape into meadows, along water courses and into woodland.