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Best Walking Routes in Hampshire

Jul 06, 2022
Hampshire is home to some spectacular coastal and countryside scenery, and the best way to explore is on foot. With over 140 miles of public footpath scattered throughout this south-east location, you’ll be spoilt for choice when it comes to walking routes.


Whether you fancy tackling a long-distance walk or a shorter stroll, our list of the seven best walking routes in Hampshire has all the inspiration you need. 
 

Denny Wood

Admire the New Forest’s landscape with this gentle 3-mile walk through Denny Wood. These ancient heathland woodlands are home to an abundance of wildlife, where wild deer roam freely between towering oak and birch trees. Whatever time of year you visit, a walk through this wood will not disappoint.

Solent Way

Solent Way is one of Hampshire’s most idyllic walking routes, offering spectacular views over Solent, the Isle of Wight, and the surrounding countryside. This walking route stretches from Milford-on-Sea to Emsworth Harbour and is divided into eight sections. Along the way, you’ll pass by harbours, seafronts, and other delightful views. If you’re looking for the best coastal walks in Hampshire, Solent Way should be at the top of your list.

St Catherine’s Hill

Enjoy a picturesque 4-mile walk up St Catherine’s Hill, located on the outskirts of Winchester. The walk begins outside Winchester Cathedral and takes you above the town, where you can witness lovely views over the River Itchen and the South Downs. Once you’ve reached the top of the hill, you can extend the walk by exploring the east side or strolling along the banks of the River Itchen.

Finchdean

Searching for the best circular walks in Hampshire? In that case, try out the Finchdean circular walk. This 7.2km loop trail starts and finishes in the pretty hamlet of Finchdean, East Hampshire, and includes wonderful stretches of open downland and woodland.

 

Along the route, you’ll be able to spot a huge range of wildflowers, as well as herds of deers. When you return to Finchdean, relax with a drink and a bite to eat at The George Inn, the hamlet’s charming country pub.

Meon Valley

Wickham is one of Hampshire’s top hiking spots, boasting several scenic walking trails. If you want to explore some of Wickham’s brilliant surrounding countryside, consider walking the Meon Valley trail. This 10-mile route is a favourite for many walkers, cyclists and horse-riders.

 

Taking you from Knowle to West Meon, the trail follows a disused railway line that provides a flat surface for walking. Along the way, you can take in splendid views of the Meon Valley and spot a variety of wildlife, such as egrets and butterflies.

Shipwrights Way

If you want to try out a slightly longer walking route, Shipwrights Way is the perfect choice. This trail stretches for around 50 miles and takes walkers through a mix of woodlands, fields and bridleways. The route runs from Alice Holt Forest down towards the seafront at Portsmouth, connecting many of East Hampshire’s quaint towns and villages.

Blackwater Valley

Situated between Aldershot and Swallowfield, Blackwater Valley offers one of the best riverside walks in Hampshire. This route features a long-distance path that meanders along the River Blackwater, revealing gorgeous views of wide-open fields. The walk is almost entirely flat and passes through several paddocks and across a long footbridge. There’s plenty of wildlife to look out for, such as birds and dragonflies.