Find your feet this May with Hertfordshire's Year of Physical Activity
It's National Walking Month, time to lace up your boots and take to the trails! To give us the walking inspiration we need, we've asked our friends from the Herts Sports Partnership for their top tips on getting out and about on foot this month.
We’re blessed in Hertfordshire to have a 3,200 km long network of foot and cycle paths, more than 50 open spaces with Green Flag status, plus miles of towpaths just waiting to be explored. This month we’re celebrating the Hertfordshire Year of Physical Activity and National Walking Month, and are sharing all the fantastic walking opportunities there are in the county.
The warmer months are the perfect time to embrace the great outdoors, so make May the month to ditch your sedentary behaviours. Walking is a great gateway into physical activity for those just starting out - it’s free and it’s low impact, and accessible to the majority of people regardless of fitness level. And if variety is the spice of life, then walking is the activity that just keeps on giving! To keep up to date with a range of walking activities available across Herts – from Health Walks to fun and engaging family events – visit the Hertfordshire Year of Physical Activity page on Facebook.
Explore Rights of Way
There are over 3,200km of Rights of Way in Hertfordshire, just waiting to be explored! You can download walking maps from Walk 4 Life or Walking in Herts. But, if you’d prefer to join a friendly group to help you get out into the countryside then the Hertfordshire Health Walks, local Ramblers groups, U3A, local footpath societies and the Friends of the Hertfordshire Way are all a great places to start.
Look for wildlife
There’s so much more to walking in the countryside than breathing in the fresh air and burning a few calories. Why not broaden your knowledge of local wildlife, including birds, bats and bugs? It’s International Dawn Chorus Day on the May 7th so if you are any early bird there are lots of events you can join and learn to recognise some of the distinctive bird songs. To find a multitude of fun activities visit Herts and Middlesex Wildlife Trust website, and Walks & More listing plenty of FREE events for all the family to enjoy.
Learn local history
If you’re new to the area or you’re interested in learning more about the history of green spaces in Herts, then there’s plenty to whet your appetite. You can take yourself on a self-guided tour using green spaces maps available from the Countryside Management Service website – or sign up for a history tour at your local museum.
Join Hertfordshire’s biggest walking group
There are over 60 Hertfordshire Health Walks taking place across the county every week. Between 30 and 90 minutes and suitable for all abilities, there is a walk for everyone to enjoy. Led by trained and insured leaders, the walks are a great way to make new friends, explore countryside on your doorstep and beyond, while giving your health a boost. Visit Hertfordshire County Council's website to find your nearest walk. On May 14th we’re hosting a countywide Mass Health Walk to celebrate National Walking Month. To join this record attempt visit our Facebook page to find a list of over 25 Health Walks happening on this day.
Plan your perfect day out
Find out what Hertfordshire’s green spaces have to offer by visiting the Parks Herts website. There are over 50 Green Flag awarded green spaces in Hertfordshire, all with excellent facilities and lots of activities on offer, whether you want a day out with the kids or fancy yoga in the Park.
Dates for your diary
- May 5th-13th – Stevenage Walking Festival
- May 14th – Hertfordshire’s Mass Health Walk (various locations across the county, visit www.hertfordshire.gov.uk/healthwalks for more information)
- May 14th – 20th – Hatfield Walking Festival
- May 19th – Jun 3rd – Chilterns Walking Festival
- May 21-25th – Walk to School Week – help your kids keep active and healthy by walking the school run.
- May 12th – 21K4CA, Christian Aid Sponsored Walk, starting in Wodson Park Leisure Centre, Ware
- May 12th – DENS 10-mile sponsored walk, starting at Berkhamsted School
PLUS! Visit Walks & More for lots of FREE and themed walking activities across Herts.