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Walking in the North Wessex Downs

30 walks exploring the AONB

By Steve Davison

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.


All year round: spring and early summer are best for wild flowers, butterflies and birds; in autumn the trees are splashed in golden-brown autumnal colours, while a frosty winter's day can give impressive clear views.


Marlborough, Lambourn, Great Bedwyn, Dorchester on Thames, Hungerford, Pewsey, Kingsclere The walks are also accessible from the following towns outside of the area: Didcot, Wantage, Swindon, Calne, Devizes, Andover, Basingstoke, Newbury and Reading.


Walks to suit most ages and abilities, with no difficulties apart from some short steep uphill and downhill sections. Can be muddy in winter.

Must See

Panoramic views; the highest points in Berkshire, Hampshire, Wiltshire and Oxfordshire; the rivers Thames, Kennet, Pang and Lambourn; picturesque villages with thatched cottages, historic churches and cosy pubs Prehistoric sites: Avebury, the Uffington White Horse, Neolithic and Bronze Age long barrows and Iron Age hill forts
15 Nov 2021
17.20 x 11.60 x 1.35cm
Guidebook to 30 circular walks in the North Wessex Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB). The routes, which range from 7 to 21km (4 to 13 miles), take in parts of four counties - Berkshire, Hampshire, Wiltshire and Oxfordshire.

The North Wessex Downs are accessible hills rising above the towns and rural plains of southern England and rolling gently west from Reading and Basingstoke to Swindon and down past Marlborough to Andover. The walks allow you to explore parts of the Ridgeway National Trail, the Kennet and Avon Canal and stunning historic sites such as Avebury, the 3000-year-old Uffington White Horse, impressive Neolithic long barrows and Iron Age hill forts.

Alongside clear route descriptions and OS maps are plenty of details about points of interest, 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.
Table of Contents
Steve Davison Cicerone author SDAVISON

Steve Davison

Steve Davison is a writer and photographer who has written a number of books, including eight guidebooks published by Cicerone. He has also written articles for a range of outdoor magazines and other publications. A keen hill walker for most of his life, with interests in nature, geology and the countryside, Steve is a qualified Mountain Leader and has also previously worked as a part time outdoor education instructor. He has been a member of the Outdoor Writers and Photographers Guild for a number of years. Find out more about him at www.steve-davison.co.uk.

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