Days: 55 (20 rest days, including Christmas and New Year)
Paid accommodation: 40 nights
Free accommodation: 15 nights
Best food: Sunday Roast
Best drink: Cider
Favorite word: Pub
Favorite place: Jurassic Coast
United Kingdom in one word: Mud
Hiking in the UK was not our first idea when we had thought about the route. We were a bit worried about continuous rain, cold weather, high cost, and non-existent waymarking. Fortunately, we changed our mind and chose the alternative route of the E9 along the Southern coast of England. The weather was fantastic most of the time, it didn’t rain more than in other places, and the local hiking trails which make up the E9 were very well marked. The cost for accommodation was clearly higher than anywhere else in Europe, but mostly we got great value for our money.
In terms of landscape and sights, this part of the hike exceeded all our expectations. Gorgeous green meadows stretched to our left and right, high cliffs provided an excellent view over the sea and pretty old-fashioned villages were to be found everywhere along the route. The hiking paths were… well, challenging. Most of the time, we were walking on very precarious ways; muddy, soft, slippery and often quite steep. But all the efforts were worth it for the beautiful surroundings we found ourselves in every day.
Even though the British people are not famous for being overly warm and open, we had only positive experiences with the local population. They were very kind and helpful and we had great talks about our hike with people we met on the way. Our respective landlords and -ladies often went out of their way to support us, be it by driving us to a nearby pub for dinner or giving valuable advice for the upcoming parts of our hike. Hiking in the UK: A huge surprise – for the better!