Cheshire is a popular destination for a weekend retreat, since the area combines convenient access to both Liverpool, Manchester and the motorways which adjoin the two (and indeed, the rest of the country) and yet retains the sense of rural remoteness which makes it possible to truly forget one's troubles.
The county, to be sure, is home to its share of high-octane fun. From racing events to Jeep Safaris, all the way to adrenaline-fueled dance festivals like Creamfields. But what about those of us that would rather spend our downtime unwinding? Fortunately, the county is just as equipped when it comes to relaxing activities – indeed, perhaps even more so.
With that in mind, let’s take a look at some of the activities one might find in Cheshire.
Go for a walk!
Cheshire is one of several counties included inside the Peak District. If you’d like to go for a walk, there are few better places in which to do it – particularly if you happen to live locally. But even if you don’t, the scenery is spectacular and the trip well worthwhile for those who want to get out and about for the weekend.
If you’ve not yet been convinced of the merits of walking, then it’s difficult to know where to begin. Walking carries with it enormous health benefits. It is a low intensity exercise that anyone can do (and indeed, should do). It helps to burn fat, to build muscular strength, improve posture and combat the threat posed by obesity, heart disease and diabetes. But perhaps more importantly than that, it’s a lot of fun, too!
Leaving the peak district to one side, Cheshire boasts a number of spectacular walks. Some offer quite a challenge, others are a little more leisurely – your choice will depend upon your ability and experience.
In the former category lies the Sandstone Trail, which is among the most popular long-distance walks not only in Cheshire, but in the country. This thirty-three-mile sandstone pathway has been extended since its first opening in 1974, and split into three distinct sections of around eleven miles each, allowing walkers to conquer its entirety over the course of around three days. The trail runs across the Cheshire plain, rising to a peak which allows walkers the opportunity to see for miles around and now links with Frodsham and Whichurch, allowing walkers to take advantage of the facilities along the way.
If you’re looking for something a little less strenuous, then Biddulph Valley Way might appeal. It is a mere 2¼ miles in either direction and so can be completed in an afternoon. It follows the route of a railway line, which was once used to transport coal between Congleton and the Potteries. The terrain is forgiving and consists of flat, compacted stone – so there’s no tremendous exertion required. All you need to is take in the view of the surrounding countryside. This route is notable in particular for the railway viaduct which hangs over the top of Dane-in-Shaw pasture.
So, if you’re looking for a place to unwind and get away from it all, then a walk through Cheshire will allow you to do exactly that!
Go for a spa day
There are few better ways to unwind than with spa days in Cheshire. While such breaks are largely marketed toward women, a growing number of men are also embracing the wonderful world of massages, hot stones and scented oils. And why not? Like women, men also have muscles which can grow tense, they also have minds which can grow stressed and they also have skin in need of exfoliating.
Cheshire is blessed with more than its fair share of spa services – though some, it must be said, are better than others. If you're looking for extra convenience, then you might combine the retreat with a stay in one of the region's hotels. There are many hotels in Cheshire and a few of them come equipped with built-in spa facilities. Of these, among the most prestigious is Carden Park, a luxury manor whose spa can cater for a range of different needs. On offer are short, early-morning pampers, between or nine and ten, as well as ones later in the evening, after six – the choice depends entirely on when you’d prefer to get up. Alternative, you might consider a daylong event, where groups of six or more can receive a treatment all at once. This might be of special interest to those looking to organise a stag or hen party!