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Suggestions for other walks
If you would like to contribute a suggestion, email us at walkers@weekwalks.co.uk

Covid Update
UK hospitalitiy is due to open on May 17th, and we have now booked two June walks - a two-day circuit from Pewsey Station staying in Avebury; and a 4-day hike through the Lake District (see below). Hotels are mostly giving a 'pay when you come' policy.

Penzance to St Ives
along the South West Coast Path Longships Lighthouse, Lands End

This is quite a rugged trip at times but with lots of variety.

Starting with a gentle walk out of Penzance, you visit various fairly sheltered places along the South Coast, walk into and out of the splendid Lands End, then up past Sennen and Zennor.

The final short section into St Ives is hard work, but makes a splendid finale.

It's three and a half days, staying at Porthcurno, St Just and Zennor. The National Trail Guide to the SWCP, Padstow to Falmouth has all the details.


Penzance to Falmouth
along the South West Coast Path Cadgwith

Another section full of variety. Starting with the wonderful Mounts Bay, you go via Prussia Cove to Porthleven. Sandbars and coves take you down to the Lizard and beyond to Cadgwith, which fulfils all your fantasies about little Cornish villages - they even catch fish!

As you continue, a 'drowned' coastline appears, and ferries need to be used at Gillan and Helford. Falmouth is a fine, thriving town to end the walk.

It's five days, staying at Porthleven, The Lizard, Coverack and Gillan. The National Trail Guide to the SWCP, Padstow to Falmouth has all the details.


Lake Geneva to Chamonix
along the Grande Randonnée 5 Chamonix

We asked Susanna Margolis, co-author of Walking Europe from Top to Bottom (see the Resources page) for a 'Week Walk' suggestion, and here it is:

"The legendary Tour de Mont Blanc, the seven- to ten-day loop around the mountain, is among the most popular (read: crowded) walks in the world, but you can avoid the crowds in a linear week-long walk of rigorous hiking and spectacular beauty that takes you to the mountain.

"By car, bus or boat, get yourself to
Saint-Gingolph - half in France, half in Switzerland - on the south shore of Lake Geneva. Find the red-and-white GR5 marker, and start heading uphill.

"This is the start of seven days of classic Alpine hiking, staying in mountain huts as well as small commercial hotels in towns where you can re-provision: Novel (hotel), La Chapelle d’Abondance (hotel), Refuge Plaine Dranse, Refuge Vigny, Sixt (hotel), Cantine de Moëde, Chamonix (hotel)."  Details are in Susanna's book.


The one that got away: the Julian Alps - Bled to Tolmin
(click the image for a larger version.)
the one view we got

This is the only picture we managed to take of the Julian Alps in Slovenia, before the weather closed in again. Slovenia had three weeks of almost continual rain in September 2017.

The 1:50,000 Sidarta map 'Julijske Alpe' map is essential; it's pretty accurate, and has details of the huts. Fly to Ljubljana airport, take a shared taxi to Bled. Start the walk with a bus to Krnica and go via the Pokljuska gorge and Kranjska Dolina, finally turning right off the road up the Medvedovec path to the Lipanska hut (6 hours, or get a taxi to that path, 1½ hours). Second day is to the Uskovnica hut via high route (mount Visevnik) or low (Rudno Polje). Day three goes down to Ukanc. Still raining, we gave up here, and went on the bus to Ljubljana (a lovely city to spend time in). To go on, take the cable car to Voglu, then over the top and down to the Razor hut. Day five, down to Tolmin and back to Ljubljana (an early bus, or shared taxi).


The Cotswold Way
hills and honey-coloured villages across the fields to Broadway

We walked 2½ days of this (from Cheltenham to Chipping Norton) in September 2014, and it is lovely - a justly popular walk. Sometimes along the scarp, sometimes down through villages, there is plenty of variety, and it really is pretty. Tidy, and manicured too.

For us, by the end it was a little too good to be true but, who knows, maybe we'll do another bit some time.

The Trailblazer Guide has all the information you could possibly want, including travel from outside the UK.


Jurassic Coast 1 - Exmouth to Weymouth
(click the image for a larger version, or see more photos on Flickr.)
West Bay, Jurassic Coast

A bracing walk on or below cliffs, this is about geology as well as scenery, and we were guided by the splendid
Official Guide to the Jurassic Coast.

It's 60 miles - five days with a train the previous evening to Exmouth - staying at Sidmouth, Seaton, Chideock and Abbotsbury, and train back from Weymouth. You also pass through Budleigh Salterton and Lyme Regis.

Sand and shingle, cliffs splendid, cliffs crumbling (that's where the fossils are), cliffs collapsed (walking through the resulting woods was the least interesting day), the Abbotsbury swannery and Chesil beach; there is lots of variety.


Jurassic Coast 2 - Weymouth to Poole
(click the image for a larger version, or see more photos on Flickr.)
Bat's Head, Jurassic Coast

This section is 34 miles; we did it in three days (including travel) and it was splendid, but tough! We stayed at West Lulworth and Langton Matravers (Worth Matravers would have worked better). After Langton we went north and along the Purbeck Way to Old Harry's Rocks; another way to shorten the walk is to get the number 60 bus from the ferry to the bus station (near the train station). Most of the harbour walk is good, though.

This is a sparsely-inhabited stretch, and B&Bs are rare: but for a four-day version, Kimmeridge is worth considering, as the MOD's Lulworth Ranges (just before there) are particularly hilly. (Check opening times here.) The guidebook mentioned above is great, as is the OS Explorer OL15 map, which covers the whole walk.


FUTURE PLANS
Here are some walks we have in mind for the future (but not booked!):
  • The Lake District. We are always nervous of the weather, but we are very tempted by these 4 days: Train to Ravenglass, steam train to Boot, then stay at Wasdale, Borrowdale, and Grasmere. Then we'll walk to Windermere and take a train back to London.

  • We really enjoyed St Cuthbert's Way, and one way to revisit that splendid Northumberland coast is to take a train to Alnmouth and walk north via Craster and Seahouses to Holy Island, where we can get a bus to Berwick for a train home.

  • Sometimes we feel that walks in the South of England can be a little tame, but the Saints Way looks adventurous. Going right across Cornwall from Padstow to Fowey through deserted country, there are lots of signs of old habitation. And at only 27 miles it could be done even in winter, maybe - three days plus travel to Padstow the previous afternoon.

  • We're also missing the Cornish Coast path! One bite-size section accessible by train that we haven't done yet is from Falmouth to St Austall, via (among other places) Polmear.

  • There are three short walks already on this site in Wiltshire chalk Country (Chalk Walk, Cranbourne Chase and Avebury to Stonehenge); we think that starting at Swindon and walking south and east to Andover across the geology could offer similar pleasures.

  • Looking further afield, this is the kind of map that gets us going:



    It's the Cévennes; south-ish, west-ish France. There has to be something good there! The SNCF stations mean that travel from the UK is very feasible.

  • Looking further afield, we were doing a jigsaw of a scene in the Tatra Mountains, fantasising about walking in it when we realised that we could! It's near Zakopane - rather further by train, but possible.


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