Rolling farming pastures and rounded peaks fill the Ribble Valley, a rural borough and valley in Lancashire. Named after the River Ribble, the borough stretches north from the city of Preston and town of Blackburn, incorporating a large part of the Forest of Bowland, a popular hiking destination.
Ribble Valley is a rural landscape, where the fields are speckled with cows and the hiking trails sidestep swamps. It’s mostly heathland that’s shared by walkers and livestock, although there are also thick sections of woodland around Beacon Fell in the heart of the Ribble Valley. Traditional market towns like Clitheroe and Ribchester have a long history and are the main urban settlements in the borough. The most popular hiking trails are found in the Forest of Bowland, notably the area around Pendle and the routes that set off from Slaidburn.
Although the Ribble Valley is rural, it’s relatively well connected. The M6 motorway runs along the west of the borough and visitors can quickly access the area by taking the junctions for Longridge and Broughton. Blackburn and Preston have well-connected train and bus stations, with local services that stop in the villages of the Ribble Valley. Those coming from the north and the nearby Yorkshire Dales National Park can pass through Settle or Skipton to enter this green valley.
While the Ribble Valley borough was only established in 1974, the sweeping green valley has attracted visitors with its unspoilt nature for many centuries. The area was once a royal hunting ground and would attract nobles from across the north of England.