Autumn colour is a natural tonic to beating the winter blues @NationalTrustNI #GreatNIwalk.

Great NI Walk 8 September to 24 October

Autumn colour is a natural tonic to beating the winter blues

New research from the National Trust has found that the kaleidoscope of natural colours experienced on an autumn walk makes people feel happier, healthier and calmer (84%) at a time when more than 40% admit to feeling down as the nights draw in.

The conservation charity released the findings as part of its Great NI Walk 2014, which launched this week with an invitation to enjoy a rainbow of walks. Shades of blue you find on walks by water or when the landscape is coloured by the evening’s darkening sky were found to help soothe away stress (36%), while the greens of hilltops and pine woodlands leave people feeling more connected with the natural world (52%).

Renowned colour psychologist, Angela Wright, was commissioned to produce a report alongside the findings assessing the importance of autumnal colours experienced in different environmental landscapes.

Angela said: “Natural colour schemes can inspire us and lift our spirits. Autumn, combined with the rich light at this time of the year, is a flamboyant blaze of intense colours with each affecting us in a different way

“People are more susceptible to the effects of aesthetic influences in the natural world than to any other colour sources.

“Fresh air, exercise and the sense of getting away from it all play a positive role in improving our well-being. However, it’s the colours that we experience which are the most powerful tonic to affecting our mood.”

Despite more than 70% of people finding that autumn walks help to combat winter blues, almost half (48%) admit to not going on enough walks during the autumn months with almost a third (32%) claiming it’s because they rarely get the chance to go on a stroll.

National Trust Wildlife and Countryside Adviser, Phil Davidson, said: “Autumn bursts with colour and life. It’s the best time to see nature and wildlife at its most spectacular, but it’s also a time of change and reflection.

“This season is the perfect time of year for walking. The trees and landscape start to turn every shade imaginable which lifts your spirits; it’s cooler, but not cold, and you could get a misty morning with those familiar damp smells or a clear, crisp day when everything appears to shine brighter.

“The National Trust looks after some beautiful gardens and landscapes, and our role as a conservation charity is to maintain these fantastic places.”

To help encourage more people to make the most of the autumn palette the National Trust has unveiled its top walks inspired by the colours of autumn. Chosen by Trust rangers, they showcase the rainbow of colours and scenery that can be enjoyed across England, Wales and Northern Ireland this September and October.

Top autumn colour walks

  1. Purple – The colour purple dominates the mountain of Divis in Northern Ireland in the autumn which is set in the heart of the Belfast Hills. The purple-coloured and wonderfully named Devil’s-bit Scabious carpets much of the landscape through September until October.
  2. Red – Home to around 200 red squirrels, autumn is the best time of year to see them on Brownsea Island in Dorset. Enjoy spotting them while walking amongst ornamental red and scarlet oaks.
  3. Orange – Take a sunset walk at Nant Gwynant in Snowdonia, one of the most dramatic valleys in Wales, and see the ancient oak and ash as they turn a vibrant orange.
  4. Yellow – The Speke Hall estate appears to glow yellow during the autumn months. The trees are decorated with yellow leaves in the ancient woodland and grasses turn a yellow-brown as they dry up for the autumn.
  5. Green – The seven million coniferous trees across Cragside in Northumberland keep the estate a fresh green while autumn changes the landscape around it.
  6. Blue – Walking through Carding Mill Valley in Shropshire, visitors can see blue-tinged hills standing tall in the distance. As the nights draw in during the autumn months, the skies become a dark blue colour. The water in the stream and the waterfall appear to shine brighter and the heather takes on a blue tinge.
  7. Russet – The raised boardwalk at Wicken Fen in Cambridgeshire and lush grass droves allow easy access to a lost landscape where visitors can enjoy the vibrant russet tones of the sedge in the late autumn months.

This year’s Great NI Walk takes place at National Trust Places all over the country from 8 September to 24 October. In addition to the top colour walks, there are downloadable walks on the National Trust website and details of walking events.

The National Trust is encouraging the nation to join in and enjoy the autumn colours by getting out and sharing their vibrant walking photos on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook using the hashtag #GreatNIwalk.

To find out more and download the National Trust’s walks, visit www.nationaltrust.org.uk/greatNIwalk  For Northern Ireland walking events visit www.nationaltrust.org.uk/NIwalking

divis Divis Mountain - Walking

Love Belfast
Belfast guide to restaurants, bars, nightclubs, concerts, events, hotels, entertainment, special offers, news, gossip, travel, festivals and culture. http://lovebelfast.co.uk

Related Articles

‘Keep a Giant’s step apart’ – Giant’s Causeway announces reopening plans

Visitors to the Giant’s Causeway World Heritage Site are being encouraged to keep a ‘giant’s step’ away from others when it reopens on Friday 3 July. The...

National Trust to phase reopening of gardens and parklands in Northern Ireland with advance booking needed to limit numbers and maintain public safety

A number of gardens and parklands in Northern Ireland will begin reopening from June 3 to those who have booked tickets in advance. Only members...

Enjoy Easter break at home, urges National Trust Director General

Stay at home this Easter, urges Hilary McGrady, at what is traditionally one of the charity’s busiest times The Trust looks after some...

Leave a Reply

Stay Connected

81,848FansLike
60,888FollowersFollow
164,556FollowersFollow
- Advertisement -

Latest Articles

Down Royal to welcome Envoi Allen again as Cheltenham hero starts out over fences

For the second year in a row, Gordon Elliott will send stable star Envoi Allen to Down Royal for his first start of the...

WEIGH TO GO: BELFAST PERSONAL TRAINER LAUNCHES ONLINE FITNESS BUSINESS

Tired of FAD DIETS and LAZY personal trainers, Belfast based PT Anthony McKenzie, has launched 'The Onyx Lifestyle'  https://www.theonyxlifestyle.com/ The range of tailored online fitness & body guides...

How to Choose Tobacco of the Highest Quality

No matter what anyone would have you believe, tobacco is one of the finer things in life. It is a delicacy that many indulge...

How to Efficiently Manage Your CBD Business

If you own your own CBD business, you know that the competition out there is plenty, and a lot of it is good too....

COVID Volunteer Response Captured in New Photography Series

Volunteer Now launches new ‘Ordinary People – Extraordinary Times’ Photographic Series celebrating Northern Ireland’s COVID volunteer heroes Volunteer Now, the lead organisation for promoting and...