The Handy Stuff

Looking for a City Escape? Here are 10 Country Walks Near Manchester

Ah, country air. You'd think it's hard to come across near Manchester, but you'd be wrong. These country walks are close to the City Centre (and well connected by public transport, woop).

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Getting fed up of the city air? We've collected our favourite places to walk near Manchester for a crisis like this.

These country walks near Manchester City Centre will have you conviced you're deep into the countryside - oh, and a load of them all well-connected by public transport.

Want to get even more lost in nature? Make it a staycation and find a holiday cottage in the Peak District, with most under an hour drive from Manchester City Centre.

1. Tegg’s Nose Country Park

About an hour’s drive out of the city centre, this spot is definitely one of our favourite places to walk near Manchester. Arrive at the visitor centre and prepare for a 2.5-mile walk filled with epic countryside views – oh, and you’ll be rewarded with the best view at the summit.


  • Pay and display car park
  • Bike racks available
  • Picnic Benches
  • Public toilets (incl. Disabled & baby change)
  • Tegg’s Nose Tea Room

2. Medlock Valley Way

Starting nice and central at Manchester Picadilly station (right by The Waldorf), this walk can stretch up to a staggering 12 miles if you feel like it. Use the River Medlock as your guide as you walk riverside all the way to Moorside.


  • Riverside views
  • City Centre and Countryside walking

3. Philips Park

This forest walk near Manchester is filled with ancient woodlands and tonnes of wildlife; it’ll feel like miles away from the city centre. We’d set off on a 2.5 mile walk to explore the park, but if you’re up for a long gander, divert to the Waterdale area before re-joining the route at the formal gardens. This country walk near Manchester is just half an hour’s drive from the city centre.


  • View of River Medlock
  • Bowling Green
  • Children’s Play Area
  • Community Orchard

Weather ain't in your side for a nature walk? Check out our favourite indoor activities in Manchester.

4. Mayfield Park

If you’re looking for a city centre walking spot in Manchester, this one definitely fits the bill. Opened back in September 2022, it’s Manchester’s first new city park in over 100 years – so definitely worth a visit. Located next to Manchester Picadilly station, this super central park is next to loads of eateries, bars and more – like its neighbour, Escape to Freight Island.


  • Public toilets
  • Play Area
  • Close to public transportation

5. Etherow Country Park Woodland and Waterways

This serene and beautiful woodland walk will take you around mill ponds, rivers and streams – not to mention the views of Goyt Valley. This country walk near Manchester is well connected by public transport, located right next to bus routes (serving Compstall village), and just over a mile walk from Marple train station.


  • Public toilets
  • Café/Pub nearby
  • Dogs permitted (must be on a lead)
  • Great views

6. Two Faces of Rivington

A popular place for walking near Manchester, at the Two Faces of Rivington you can choose from which kind of walk you fancy, The southern loop of the walk (around 3 miles along wooded tracks in the park), or the northern loop (3.5 miles over rougher terrain on the edge of moorland outside the park). Or feel free to combine the two walks, creating a 6.5-mile round trip. This country walk is near to Manchester, just a 35-minute drive from the city centre.


  • Public toilets
  • Café/Pub nearby
  • Dogs permitted (must be on a lead)

And if the kids don't fancy a trip out, you can try out one (or more) of these 25 things to do with kids in Manchester.

7. Peel Tower

The perfect option for those travelling by train, this walking spot is just 45 minutes from the city centre. Arrive at Ramsbottom station and begin your walk and prepare yourself for sweeping views as you approach the Sir Robert Peel monument. And it only gets better from there – you'll walk past moors, streams and rivers – leading the back to the start of the loop (and the perfect opportunity to stop at the pub of course).


  • Pub nearby
  • Great views

8. Oldham Way

This one is for serious walkers – the ones that arrive prepared with backpacks full of snacks, and water and wear the appropriate footwear (could never be us). The trail loops 40 miles through the beautiful countryside of Oldham, winding through the moors and travelling alongside the route of a steam tramway. This is a great place to walk near Manchester, you'll genuinely feel miles away from bustling city life.


  • Great views
  • Perfect for keen walkers

9. Worsley Village

Explore the quaint and cute Worsley Village during this 3-mile circular walk. The village is known for the Bridgewater Canal and the mock Tudor buildings which line the picturesque streets. You wouldn’t believe that this countryside escape is just 20 minutes driving from Manchester city centre, you'll feel like you’re in that cute town in The Holiday – where's Jude Law when you need him?


  • Close to the city centre
  • Short walk
  • Public Car Park on Barton Road
  • Pubs/Restaurants nearby

10. The South Pennine Water Trail

Drive 35-minutes north of the city centre and arrive at Hollingworth Lake, ready for a 5 mile walk with scenic views of the Pennines – although, there is an alternative 2.5-mile walk instead. This circular route showcases the amazing countryside walks near Manchester, walking through the Ealees Valley, Littleborough and along the Rochdale Canal towpath – beware, the final stretch can be a little challenging (but totally worth it for the amazing views).


  • Toilets on-site
  • Café/Pub nearby
  • Dogs permitted (must be on a lead)

If you're keen on touring local areas, why not read our ultimate guide on becoming a tourist in your own city?

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