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30 walking routes exploring the North Wessex Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB). The routes are between 7 and 20km through this peaceful rolling chalk landscape covering parts of four counties: Berkshire, Hampshire, Wiltshire and Oxfordshire, with descriptions to reach the highest points in each one.
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This guidebook to 30 walks in the North Wessex Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) explore walking routes between 7 and 20km in length, through Berkshire, Hampshire, Wiltshire and Oxfordshire.
The name 'Wessex' brings to mind Alfred the Great, Saxon hordes and chalk downs sculpted into ancient forts. And while that is all true, the North Wessex Downs are also accessible hills that rise above the towns and rural plains of southern England and roll gently west from Reading and Basingstoke to Swindon and down past Malborough to Andover.
From chalk white horses, to Avebury hill fort, neolithic barrows, ancient villages tucked next to babbling rivers in the shadow of the Downs and long panoramic views from county high-points; the walks in this guidebook offer fantastic half and full days for walkers of all abilities. Alongside detailed route descriptions and OS maps, is a wealth of detail on points of interest along the way, as well as practical information on the area from public transport links, to ideal refreshment stops on each walk. The result is an ideal companion to exploring both the popular and untouched corners of the North Wessex Downs.
We are always grateful to readers for information about any discrepancies between a guidebook and the facts on the ground. If you would like to send some information to us then please use our Feedback form. They will be published here following review by the author(s).
|Plants and wildlife|
|Where to stay|
|Food and drink|
|Walking in the North Wessex Downs|
|Waymarking, access and rights of way|
|Protecting the countryside|
|Using this guide|
|Berkshire Downs East|
|Walk 1 Chapel Row, Bucklebury and Stanford Dingley|
|Walk 2 Ashampstead and Yattendon|
|Walk 3 Aldworth|
|Walk 4 Shillingford, Wittenham Clumps and Dorchester on Thames|
|Walk 5 Blewbury and the Astons|
|Walk 6 West Ilsley and Farnborough|
|Walk 7 Ardington and the Hendreds|
|Walk 8 Great Shefford, Chaddleworth and East Garston|
|Walk 9 Lambourn and Eastbury|
|Walk 10 The Ridgeway and the Letcombe villages|
|Walk 11 Compton Beauchamp, Woolstone and the Uffington White Horse|
|Walk 12 Ashbury and Bishopstone|
|Walk 13 Ramsbury and Littlecote|
|Walk 14 Mildenhall and the River Kennet|
|Walk 15 Marlborough and Savernake Forest|
|Walk 16 Ogbourne St Andrew, Rockley and Barbury Castle|
|Walk 17 Fyfield Down and the Devil’s Den|
|Walk 18 Avebury|
|Vale of Pewsey|
|Walk 19 Cherhill and Oldbury Castle|
|Walk 20 Heddington, Oliver’s Castle, Roundway Down and Morgan’s Hill|
|Walk 21 Alton Barnes and the Wansdyke|
|Walk 22 Knap Hill and Oare|
|Walk 23 Martinsell Hill and Wootton Rivers|
|Walk 24 Great Bedwyn and Wilton|
|North Hampshire Downs|
|Walk 25 Tidcombe and Hippenscombe Bottom|
|Walk 26 Inkpen and Walbury Hill|
|Walk 27 Ashmansworth and Faccombe|
|Walk 28 St Mary Bourne and the Bourne Valley|
|Walk 29 Ecchinswell and Ladle Hill|
|Walk 30 Kingsclere and Hannington|
|Appendix A Route summary table|
|Appendix B Useful contacts|
|Appendix C Further reading|