This section provides advice and links for walkers and other visitors to the UK's outdoors on how to find visitor information; it includes many other sources of accommodation listings. It is aimed at helping walkers but may be useful to cyclists and horseriders visiting shared-use (multi-user) trails.
In the UK there is much more walker-friendly accommodation and other services available and useful to walkers than we list via our Search for Accommodation. An Internet search can lead quickly to accommodation in many areas. There are many other rural and urban ‘bed and breakfasts’ (B&Bs) that simply display a sign or rely on word of mouth.
The National Trails in England & Wales provide very extensive accommodation listings for each trail on its dedicated official website that is listed on our path pages. The central portal site is here - then when you select a trail, follow the 'Plan Your Visit' links for interactive maps and listings. If you are other walking other Long Distance Paths, some route publications include accommodation information. Some routes have a fuller dedicated accommodation list publication. Path pages on this site cover those we know of.
Local Tourist Information Centres (TIC’s), that have extensive accommodation lists online or that they may send out, are a good source of visitor information with staff with detailed local knowledge. VisitEngland provides a full list and contact details of England's TIC’s. VisitScotland provides a list and map of TICs in Scotland. Visit Wales provides a list of TICs in Wales. Telephone numbers can also be found in Yellow Pages. DiscoverNorthernIreland.com has a list of TICs and searchable online accommodation information (firstname.lastname@example.org). This site is operated by the Northern Ireland Tourist Board that covers the province.
Walkers are Welcome Initiative. Separate from the Walkers Welcome assessment scheme for individual places to stay, that is one of the Welcome Schemes - QIT with a quality mark, there is a Walkers are Welcome UK Network. This is a nationwide initiative launched in 2007 to encourage towns and villages to be ‘welcoming to walkers’. The network has expanded rapidly and there are now over 100 locations across the UK that have joined this community-led scheme to benefit from Walkers are Welcome accreditation. Its aims include making attractive destinations for walkers with top quality information on local walks, providing excellent local walking opportunities, ensuring that footpaths and facilities for walkers are maintained, improved and well signposted, contributing to local tourism plans and regeneration strategies, promoting the health benefits of walking and increasing participation, and encouraging the use of public transport.
Hostels. The traditional Youth Hostels Associations maintain networks of youth hostels and camping barns, and in some cases provide a booking service online, while independent hostels are increasing in numbers and provide an alternative network: Many of both styles of hostel are listed on our Search for Accommodation but are not bookable directly from this site - use the links and contact details provided. Hostels we list are located on our mapping where they are on or near a walking trail (LDP) or walking event on this website, and also listed on these pages.
England & Wales: The Youth Hostels Association Online hostel finder. Reservations: 0800 0191 700 and email@example.com. YHA is one of the leading budget accommodation providers in the UK. It aims to help all, especially young people of limited means, to travel and discover England and Wales by providing cheap, safe and secure Youth Hostels in coastal, countryside and city locations in over 200 locations. It is no longer necessary to be member of YHA to stay but membership provides substantial hostel discounts as well as a passport to a worldwide network.
Scotland: Scottish Youth Hostels Association Central bookings 0845 293 7373. Online hostel finder. Objective is to help all, but especially young people, to experience and appreciate the Scottish countryside and places of historic and cultural interest in Scotland, and to promote their health, recreation and education, particularly by providing low cost accommodation for them on their travels. Scottish Independent Hostels (SIH) is an Association of over 120 individual privately-run hostels across Scotland.
Northern Ireland: Hostelling International Northern Ireland (HINI) - Enquiries 028 9032 4733 and firstname.lastname@example.org. HINI is part of the International Youth Hostel Federation (IYHF) that provides holiday accommodation all over the province. Youth Hostels are located in Armagh, Belfast, Bushmills, Enniskillen, Newcastle, and Whitepark Bay. Almost all bedrooms are en-suite, and come in a range of sizes, from twin, up to six bedded, which are ideal for family breaks.
Independent Hostels UK is a network of 350 bunkhouses, hostels and camping barns. The network's handbook, the Independent Hostel Guide, is available online as a UK-wide hostel finder with maps, descriptions and contact details of all the hostels freely available. The parallel 2014 printed handbook, Independent Hostel Guide by Sam Dalley, ISBN 978-0956505835, £5.95 (+ £1.50 p&p), can be purchased online direct, or from the hostels, bookshops or via Amazon. This 528-page guide provides the ultimate reference to commercial hostels in the UK plus useful information on the worldwide hostel scene.
Hostels.com includes hostels in the UK and Ireland (enquiry form online). Hostel accommodation in over 100 holiday hostels across Ireland is listed by Independent Holiday Hostels of Ireland (00 353 1 836 4700 and email@example.com).
Budget Hotels. There are several nationwide budget hotel chains bookable online from their own websites, including Travelodge, Premier Inn, Days Inn, Ibis and some Wetherspoons pubs have accommodation.
Lightweight camping enthusiasts will find the the Backpackers Club useful. The club promotes backpacking for the benefit of its members and one of its membership benefits is its Farm Pitch Directory compiled by its members that lists pitches where members are welcome to camp for the night whilst backpacking, some in remoter areas. In Scotland, wild camping is often allowed, in England and Wales you do not have rights to wild camp without the landowner's consent.
Camping, Caravans and Motorhomes. The Camping and Caravanning Club has an extensive list of campsites and also lists many motorhome hirers. The Caravan Club lists 200 Club sites and 2,500 privately owned places to stay. Both clubs cover Britain (England, Scotland and Wales).
Bothies. The Mountain Bothies Association is a charity which maintains about 100 shelters in some of the remoter parts of Britain, with the most in Scotland. If you intend to visit a remote bothy, you should be proficient in map and compass and able to get yourself out of any difficult situation that might arise. Bothies provide very basic shelter - a 'roof over your head' but often no other facilities!
Online bookings sites act as booking agents for very large numbers of places to stay nationwide in a range of styles and many of these websites are searchable by location and rank accommodation by customers' review scores. These include Bookings.com, LastMinute, Laterooms, Expedia, E-Bookers, TravelSupermarket, TripAdvisor and Trivago.
The listings above are provided for information and do not consitute a recommendation or endorsement from LDWA, nor does LDWA handle feedback or comments on service quality. See our Terms & Conditions for website use.