Walks in the South Downs National Park

By Kev Reynolds

Guidebook with 40 circular walks throughout the South Downs National Park, exploring the beautiful chalk hills between Eastbourne and Winchester. The walks range from under 5 miles to 11 miles, including Beachy Head and the Seven Sisters, Ditchling Beacon and hundreds of prehistoric sites. Accessible all year, but wild flowers best in spring.



Accessible in all seasons but spring and early summer are best for wild flowers and birdsong.


Eastbourne, Alfriston, Washington, Storrington, Amberley, Arundel, East Meon, West Meon; and easy access from Brighton, Worthing, Chichester and Winchester.


Walks to suit all ages and abilities; no difficulties apart from some short steep uphill and downhill sections.
Must See

Must See

From Beachy Head and the Seven Sisters to the Hampshire Downs near Winchester; villages like Alfriston, Amberley and East Meon; viewpoints like Seaford Head, Bostal Hill, Ditchling Beacon, Harting Down, Beacon Hill and Salt Hill, historic sites such as Cissbury and Chanctonbury Ring and Old Winchester Hill.
3 May 2016
17.2 x 11.6 x 1.3cm
  • Overview

    Guidebook to 40 day walks in the South Downs National Park. The walks, which are designed to suit all abilities, are dotted all over the National Park and range from 4¾ miles (7.5km) to 11 miles (17.5km). Each walk is circular, and where possible begins and ends at a place accessible by public transport.

    With some of the most iconic landscapes in southern England, including the white chalk cliffs of Beachy Head and the Seven Sisters, and such well-loved landmarks as Ditchling Beacon and atmospheric ancient monuments like the Cissbury Ring, walking in the park proves a delightful experience mile after mile.

    Step-by-step route descriptions are accompanied by 1:50,000 OS mapping. Also included is information on the plants and wildlife of the Downs, as well as handy practical information on accommodation, car parking and public transport.

  • Contents

    The essential Downs
    Plants and wildlife of the Downs
    Walking on the Downs
    Using the guide
    Public transport and car parking
    Where to stay
    The Country Code
    The Walks
    1 Eastbourne to Birling Gap and East Dean (9½ miles)
    2 Butts Brow to Jevington and Friston (7 miles)
    3 Jevington to Friston Forest and the Long Man (7½ miles)
    4 Jevington to Alfriston and Wilmington (8½ miles)
    5 Exceat to East Dean and the Seven Sisters (8 miles)
    6 Exceat to the Cuckmere Valley and Alfriston (7 miles)
    7 Exceat Bridge to Cuckmere Haven and Seaford Head (6½ miles)
    8 Alfriston to The Long Man of Wilmington (5 miles)
    9 Alfriston to Bostal Hill, Alciston and Berwick (7 miles)
    10 Bopeep to Bishopstone (7½ miles)
    11 Glynde to Beddingham Hill, Firle Beacon and Bostal Hill (11 miles)
    12 Glynde to Mount Caburn and Saxon Cross (6 miles)
    13 Southease Station to Rodmell and Telscombe (7½ miles)
    14 Cooksbridge to Plumpton Plain and Buckland Bank (10 miles)
    15 Hassocks to the Clayton Windmills and Ditchling Beacon (10 miles)
    16 Devil's Dyke to Edburton Hill and Poynings (6½ miles)
    17 Devil's Dyke to Mile Oak Barn and Edburton Hill (6½ miles)
    18 Wiston to No Man's Land (6½ miles)
    19 Findon to Cissbury Ring (7 miles)
    20 Washington to Chanctonbury Ring (4¾ miles)
    21 Washington to Kithurst Hill (7½ miles)
    22 Chantry Post to Myrtle Grove Farm (7 miles)
    23 Storrington to Parham Park and Rackham Hill (7½ miles)
    24 Amberley to The Burgh (6¾ miles)
    25 Burpham to Angmering Park (6 miles)
    26 Arundel to South Stoke and Burpham (8 miles)
    27 Bignor Hill to Sutton (6¼ miles)
    28 Bignor Hill to Slindon (7¾ miles)
    29 Duncton to Barlavington and Sutton (5 or 6 miles)
    30 Singleton to Littlewood Farm (5½ miles)
    31 West Stoke to Kingley Vale and Stoughton (6½ miles)
    32 Compton to East Marden (5 miles)
    33 Harting Down to Beacon Hill and Telegraph House (5 miles)
    34 East Meon to Salt Hill (5 miles)
    35 East Meon to Small Down (6 miles)
    36 West Meon to Brockwood Copse (5 miles)
    37 West Meon to Old Winchester Hill and Henwood Down (9 miles)
    38 Exton to Warnford and Beacon Hill (6 miles)
    39 Exton to Lomer Farm (6½ miles)
    40 Cheriton to Tichborne (6½ miles)

    Appendix A Route summary table
    Appendix B Useful addresses
    Appendix C Bibliography

  • Updates
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    Walk 2:
    Please note that the signpost indicating the way to West Dean that stood on the edge of Friston Forest after leaving Jevington, mentioned on p34, no longer exists. Neither does the oak post at the four-way crossing ½mile further on.
    The way ahead through the forest on the broad ride is clear, as is the four-way crossing, so continue to follow directions in the book. After crossing Snap Hill, the way descends to a crossing track. This is now metalled. Over this continue up the slope ahead as per the guide, eventually leaving the trees to a broad open view that includes Friston Water Tower seen across the valley. Descend the grass slope to enter more forest in Butchershole Bottom, and shortly come onto a very narrow tarmac lane alongside the grounds of Friston Place.
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Kev Reynolds

A lifelong passion for the countryside in general, and mountains in particular, drives Kev's desire to share his sense of wonder and delight in the natural world through his writing, photography and lecturing.

Claiming to be The Man with the World's Best Job, he has enjoyed a fruitful partnership with Cicerone since the 1970s, producing over 50 books, including guides to five major trekking regions of Nepal, and to numerous routes in the European Alps and Pyrenees, as well as walking guides for Kent, Sussex and the Cotswolds.

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