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8 great sunday afternoon walks


8 GREAT SUNDAY AFTERNOON WALKS 

There are a few things Sunday afternoon walks should always include: panoramic views, good company, easy ascents and, of course, a muddy boot pub or tea house along the way to rest the feet and wet the whistle. Here, we asked our experienced staff at Snow+Rock where they like to ramble on the weekend.


1. North Downs Way, South East England

James Reader, Snow+Rock Copywriter: “Start at Gomshall railway station (GR: TQ089478) and head up Colekitchen Lane to find the North Downs Way. From here, follow the trail in an easterly direction and finish at Betchworth railway station (GR: TQ210512). This mild 16km walk can be easily ambled in 4-5 hours. You’ll get stunning views on Box Hill, World War II pillboxes and vistas of Surrey’s rolling countryside. You can even take a detour through the vineyards of Denbies Wine Estate for some sunny Sunday lunching!”

2. Grasmere, Lake District

Rory McCrea, Snow+Rock Covent Garden: “An easy but beautiful circular walk from Grasmere is the Alcock Tarn Loop. After William Wordsworth’s cottage, the route has some steep sections but there is a bench part way up, ideally placed for a breather with some great views over Lake Grasmere. The tarn itself is a great place for a picnic and the route back down has another conveniently-placed bench. Afterwards, you can explore the village’s pubs and tea shops. It’s about 6km with 2-3 hours of walking – add an extra hour if you’re taking children!”

3. Stanmer Park, South Downs

Doug Watson, Snow+Rock Brighton: “For a pleasant afternoon walk in Brighton, head to Stanmer Park (A27, near University of Sussex). Head north though Stanmer Great Woods until your reach the open fields on top of the South Downs at Ditchling Beacon. Next, take a right onto the South Downs Way. Shortly after, take another right to drop back south through Millbank Wood. If you’re lucky, you’ll spot the picturesque dew pond and water well back into Stanmer. Afterwards, it’s hard to find an excuse not to have a cream tea in Stanmer Park House! It takes about 2.5 hours and parking is free. There are plenty of options from Stanmer Park that loop back, from woodland strolls to longer day routes.”

4. Clwydian Hills, North Wales

Mike Hughes, Snow+Rock Wirral: “For an afternoon walk, I recommend the Clwydian Hills. Between Mold and Ruthin, the area is often overlooked by walkers passing through to Snowdonia. Those that do head to the Clwyds, most travel to Moel Famau. It’s pretty, but if you want to avoid the crowds and find yourself, the Penycloddiau Circular is a high-level forest route with spectacular views.”

5. Monsal Trail, Peak District

Simon Ashmore, Snow+Rock Manchester: “For a short Sunday afternoon walks with plenty of good pubs close by, try the Monsal Trail – an old railway line that has been opened up with tunnels lit along the way. It can be done in short sections or joined up to make a bigger walk!”

6. Lost Valley, Glen Coe, Scottish Highlands

James Reader, Snow+Rock Copywriter: “From the car park on the side of the A82 (GR: NN170568), cross the River Coe (tread carefully when descending the steep section before the bridge) and follow the trail south into Coire Gabhail (the ‘Hidden Valley’), heading for Stob Coire Sgreamhach. The route in and out of the valley is only 4km, but its prehistoric charm means you can take your time exploring its ancient trees, gigantic toadstools, cascading waterfalls and two-storey-high boulders – just watch your step, especially alongside the river and on the smoother and more rugged terrain. You should be back in the car park within 2-3 hours. Pay a visit to the award-winning Clachaig Inn on your way back for some unbeatable Highlands hospitality!”

7. South West Coast Path, Devon

Rowan Edwards, Snow+Rock Exeter: “There’s nothing better than a walk by the sea to work up an appetite for your Sunday roast. A nice jaunt from Teignmouth to Dawlish is suitable for the whole family and there are plenty of spots to stop off for a refreshing pint!”

8. Virginia Water, Surrey

Alicia Sellers, Snow+Rock Online: “Virginia Water is my favourite walk because it offers a plethora of history in just five miles. It’s great for a springtime Sunday afternoon and you can try and spot where movies such as Robin Hood were filmed! It takes 2-3 hours and starts and finishes in the car park east of the lake (GR: SU980688). Don’t forget to stop off for a drink in The Wheatsheaf afterwards!”


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