Ridgeway National Trail
136 km / 85 miles
One of the links in a prehistoric route, often called the Greater Ridgeway, from The Wash to the South Devon Coast, comprising the Wessex Ridgeway (Lyme Regis to Overton), Ridgeway National Trail (Overton to Ivinghoe), Icknield Way (Ivinghoe to Thetford) and Peddars Way (Knettishall to Hunstanton).
The Ridgeway is a trail of two contrasting halves, separated by the Thames. The western part of this National Trail largely follows the route of a prehistoric ridge track along the crest of the North Wessex Downs and passes many historic sites, including Barbury, Liddington, Uffington and Segsbury Castles (hill forts), Wayland's Smithy (long barrow) and Uffington White Horse. The Oldest Road publication explores this ancient heritage in words and pictures and the BBC weblink has video clips. Much of the Trail here is along a broad track which used to be rutted, but it has been resurfaced and protected against motorised traffic by regulations. Near the start of the route, that is at the Sanctuary, is the Avebury World Heritage Site (a joint Site with Stonehenge).
The eastern part at Streatley crosses and then follows the River Thames for five miles before heading east into the Chiltern Hills, mainly along the north-western escarpment. The walking on the eastern half is more varied, along tracks and paths, across open downland, and through farm and woodland, passing Nuffield, Watlington, Chinnor, Princes Risborough (see Swan's Way), Wendover and Tring.
The waymarked Ridgeway Link (7.5 miles and coincident with the Icknield Way Path on OS mapping) is a linking route from the Chilterns Gateway Visitor Centre near Dunstable to the finish of Ridgeway National Trail at Ivinghoe Beacon where there are no visitor facilites. The Link uses the route of the existing Icknield Way Path that has been upgraded to make it stile-free and steps have been added on a steep section.
At Wendover the waymarked Chiltern Link (8 miles and on OS mapping) leads to Chesham (see Colne Valley Way, Colne Valley Trail & Ebury Way). The Ridgeway is linked at Ivinghoe Beacon with the Greensand Ridge Walk by the Two Ridges Link (8 miles and included on OS mapping) that in turn also connects with the Icknield Way Path. The Ashridge Estate Boundary Trail (16 miles) is a waymarked circular route coincident in part with the east end of the Ridgeway. The Beacon View Walk (5 miles) provides a link between the Ridgeway and the Grand Union Canal Walk.
The LDWA National Trails Register offers certificates for completers of several British National Trails.
Strider News - August 2017 (Publication Update)
A new Adventure Atlas has been produced by Geographers' A-Z Map Co Ltd isbn 978-1782571582 priced at £8.95 and available via this website.
Publications, Badges and Certificates:
You can use the interactive controls to zoom in and out and to move around the map, or click on a path or a marker for more info.(interactive map help)
Walking Support Providers:
Accommodation within 5 Km of this Path:
Click to show 15 more Paths Marked on OS mapping
Click to show 20 more Other Paths