8 absolutely stunning walks around London
You can’t beat a stroll through the English countryside. It’s good exercise, good for your mind, and good to the soul. London is home to many great walking routes. However, you may prefer something more rural. This means that you will feel like you are in the middle of nowhere and not just a few minutes away from a bus stop. Zone 6 offers plenty of greenery and tranquility.
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Take a walk along the Seven Sisters’ white beaches to get smacked, or wander through Box Hill valleys for breathtaking views. Get your hiking boots on and go on one these beautiful walks in the countryside near London. A stop at one these great pub gardens is a good idea if you feel thirsty.
The Kentish Coast
Length of the trip: 9.8 miles
Start: Ramsgate – Trains from St Pancras International Charing Cross and London Victoria
You’ll be able to breathe in salty sea air while you stroll along the Kentish coast. The route includes the historic coastal towns Ramsgate, Broadstairs, Margate, and several scenic bays. Follow the Thanet coastal path and you can choose to walk up or down the chalky cliffs. Many former smugglers’ caves are available for fossil hunting or rock pooling, as well as numerous beachside cafes.
Post-walk pub : Quench your thirst by a pint Kentish Kolsch at Xylo. This microbrewery/taproom boasts spectacular views over Margate Sands.
Chess Valley of the Chilterns
Length of the route: 9.9 miles
Start: Chorleywood station, Metropolitan, Trains from London Marylebone
End: Chesham station (Metropolitan Line)
Chess Valley in Chiltern Hills doesn’t have any chess masters. But it used to produce a lot a watercress. It was fed by a sparkling chalk stream. This stroll follows the river through rolling meadows. There are also woods carpeted with tiny yellow celandines.
The George & Dragon Post-walk Pub: The George & Dragon is a historic coaching inn located on High Street that offers real ales, a log fire and gigantic burgers.
Length 13.2 miles
Start and end: Marlow. Trains from London Paddington to Marlow, changing at Maidenhead.
The Thames isn’t all grey and muddy, with its industrial landscapes surrounding it. This loop takes you through beautiful country around Marlow, Buckinghamshire’s Georgian village. Pleasant meadows will be found along this section of the river. Along the route, you will pass numerous historic pubs as well as historic manor house.
Post-walk pub. Tom Kerridge’s The Hand & Flowers has two Michelin Stars. For a fantastic selection of draught ales, bar snacks, and signature cocktails, stop by the bar.
A South Downs Ridge and Seaford Head
Start: Glynde – Trains from Victoria
End: Seaford (trains up to Victoria).
This beautiful, long walk is an alternative to the Seven Sisters clifftop trek (see below). This route follows the South Downs Way. It winds along a ridge, a river valley, and curves around Seaford Head. Seaford Head overlooks the Seven Sisters’ white bluffs. The George Inn in Alfriston is a pub dating back to 14th century.
The Wellington: Old-school pub with 10 real ales.
Sussex’s Devil’s Dyke
Length 10.1 miles
Start: Hassocks – trains from London Bridge (Blackfriars), St Pancras International and London Victoria
End: Upper Beeding. Bus to Burgess Hill and Shoreham-by-Sea on Sundays. Train to London Victoria.
You can join the hang gliders or kite-flyers to take in the stunning view from Devil’s Dyke. It is the highest point in the South East. This stage of the South Downs Way is spectacular. It involves three steep hills, with a lot of ups. The path passes through Saddlescombe Farm which is part of the National Trust. Here, The Wildflour hosts afternoon tea and serves slabs homemade cake.
The Rising Sun in Upper Beeding, Upper Beeding, is a local favorite. It’s known for its warm staff, delicious beers, large portions, and beautiful garden.
Length of 6.8 miles
Start and stop: Box Hill and Westhumble stations (trains from London Victoria).
Admire the magnificent views at this popular beauty spot before heading to Juniper Top and Bottom. To reach Box Hill’s top, the trail begins, you must first hop across 17 River Mole stepping stones. When you reach Juniper Bottom, the endorphins kick in – that may be why the trail is called “Happy Valley”.
Post-walk bar: The Tree on Box Hill is a charming pub with a large beer garden and an appealing menu. You may also enjoy a glass Juniper Hill wine at Denbies Winerie, just one mile down the road.
Goring Gap & the Thames Path
Länge: 5 miles
Start at Goring & Streatley station. Trains from London Paddington.
End: Pangbourne, trains to London Paddington
This stretch of the 184 mile Thames Path is great for anyone who wants to enjoy a quiet rural stroll. It starts in Goring in Oxfordshire, where the Thames Valley is constrained by the Berkshire Downs. The footpath, marked by acorn symbols, follows a curve of the river as the water flows south. It passes wildflower meadows along with woods and the Hartslock Nature Reserve that is home to rare orchids.
Post-walk pub. Pangbourne’s seventeen-century, picturesque inn The Swan (Shooters Hill), RG8/7DU serves modern gastro grub. Enjoy a table on the riverside patio or warm up by one of its open fireplaces.
Oak Trail of Epping Forest
Length 6.6 miles
Start and stop: near Theydon Bois station, Central line
Enjoy a walk through the beautiful woods near the city. Essex’s Oak Trail is marked with occasional green-labeled posts. It takes walkers from the M25 to Epping Forest’s 6,000-acre northern realms. Here, giant crowns have been formed by gnarled Beeches. You will also pass an Iron Age earthworks and a deer sanctuary – legend says that Boudicca defeated the Romans here. It’s an enjoyable ramble.
The Queen Victoria, Coppice Row (CM16 7ES), by Theydon Green is a post-walk bar that serves ales from McMullen Hertfordshire brewer.
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