15 Best Walks In Gloucester (Hikes & Nice Walks)

15 Best Walks In Gloucester (Hikes & Nice Walks)

By will

Are you looking for the best walking trails in Gloucester? Look no further!

Gloucester is home to some of the most beautiful and picturesque trails in the country.

From the stunning views of Alney Island Nature Reserve to the historical Gloucester and Sharpness Canal, you’ll be sure to find the perfect walk for you.

I’ve put together a list of the best walks in Gloucester, including hikes and nice walks, so you can start exploring and enjoying the outdoors!

Alney Island Nature Reserve

Alney Island Nature Reserve
Photo by Pauline E

Alney Island Nature Reserve is a tranquil haven, providing an opportunity to escape the hustle and bustle of the city and reconnect with nature. It is located in Gloucester, and this nature reserve is a haven for birdwatchers and walkers.

The island features a variety of habitats, including grassland, marshland, and wetland. It’s easy to access from the city centre and is a great place to take a peaceful stroll. The reserve also offers several walking trails and boardwalks, which provide stunning views of the river Severn and the surrounding countryside.

Visitors can also enjoy a picnic in the meadows and take part in a variety of wildlife-spotting activities. With its peaceful atmosphere and abundance of wildlife, Alney Island Nature Reserve is an ideal spot for a relaxing walk or hike.

Robinswood Hill

Trigpoint, Robinswood Hill, Gloucestershire
Photo by Bob G

Experience the breathtaking views from Robinswood Hill and marvel at the beauty of the Gloucestershire countryside.

Located near Gloucester, this hill was declared a Local Nature Reserve in 1995 and is home to some of the most spectacular views in the county.

Walkers can enjoy the beauty of the grassy hills, meadows, and woodland, with several trails of varying lengths.

On the summit of the hill, visitors can admire the stunning views of the River Severn, the Malvern Hills, and the Cotswold Hills.

Surrounding Robinswood Hill is ancient woodland featuring a variety of trees and shrubs, including ash, oak, and beech.

The site provides a haven for a number of wildlife species, from red kites to an abundance of wildflowers.

There is also a central picnic area, making it the perfect spot for a family day out, and visitors can spot the ancient Iron Age Hill Fort which is located near the summit.

Whether you’re looking for a gentle stroll or a more challenging hike, Robinswood Hill is an amazing place to explore the best of Gloucestershire’s natural beauty.

Gloucester and Sharpness Canal

Gloucester and Sharpness Canal
Photo by Philip Halling

Just a short distance from Robinswood Hill lies the Gloucester and Sharpness Canal, a popular destination for those who wish to explore the unique beauty of this area.

Stretching for 16 miles, it is the longest canal in the country without a lock, and walking its length provides a peaceful and enjoyable experience.

From the canal, you can take in a stunning view of the River Severn and the surrounding countryside.

The canal is also home to a variety of wildlife, including otters, kingfishers, and herons, making it a great spot for nature lovers.

Along the path, you will also find a number of cafes, pubs, and shops, perfect for taking a break or picking up a souvenir to remember your visit.

For those who want to stay longer, there are also several boat moorings along the canal, meaning you can make it a longer journey and explore the natural beauty at a more leisurely pace.

Sudeley Castle and Gardens

A visit to Sudeley Castle and Gardens is a must-see for anyone looking to explore the area’s rich history and natural beauty. Located near the village of Winchcombe in the Cotswolds, Sudeley Castle is a truly unique and beautiful attraction, boasting over 1,000 years of history.

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The castle itself is situated in acres of beautiful gardens and surrounded by a picturesque landscape of rolling hills and meadows. The gardens are a delight to explore, with a variety of different paths and trails to take you through the grounds. The breath-taking views of the surrounding countryside and the nearby River Windrush provide a perfect backdrop for a leisurely stroll.

Inside the castle, visitors can take a tour of the many rooms and learn about the history and heritage of the family who once owned the estate. The castle is also home to a range of fascinating artifacts and artworks, giving visitors an insight into the life and times of a bygone era.

With its tranquil atmosphere and stunning architecture, the castle and its grounds are an unforgettable experience.

The Cotswold Way

Take a journey along the Cotswold Way for a unique and stunning experience – stretch your legs through the rolling hills and meadows of the Cotswolds, while admiring the gorgeous views of the countryside.

The Cotswold Way is a 102-mile national trail that runs through the heart of the Cotswolds, a picturesque range of hills in Gloucestershire. The route passes through ancient villages, historic sites, and captivating landscapes.

You’ll enjoy views of the Severn Valley, the Black Mountains, and the Malvern Hills. Along the way, you’ll have the chance to explore some of England’s most picturesque villages, including Tetbury, Stow-on-the-Wold, and Burford.

The trail also takes you through the Cotswold Water Park, a 40 square mile area of lakes, canals, and wetlands. There are plenty of opportunities to take a break and enjoy a picnic or a beer in the many traditional English pubs along the route.

Whether you’re looking for a leisurely stroll or a challenging hike, the Cotswold Way is the perfect way to explore the beauty of the Gloucestershire landscape.

Cleeve Hill

Climbing Cleeve Hill, the highest point in the Cotswolds, offers spectacular views of the surrounding countryside. This is one of the best walks in Gloucester, and the hike itself is relatively easy, making it suitable for all ages.

The hill itself is located near Cheltenham, and is the highest point in the Cotswolds, at 1,083 ft above sea level. As you ascend Cleeve Hill, you will be able to admire the stunning views of the surrounding countryside, including the nearby town of Cheltenham.

Once at the summit, there is a toposcope, which is a stone map of the area, showing you some of the famous landmarks and mountains in the area.

Cleeve Hill is also home to a variety of wildlife, including rare species of birds and butterflies, so keep an eye out for them while you are there.

There are also plenty of other attractions nearby, such as the Cheltenham racecourse and the Cleeve Hill Golf Club, so you can make a day of it.

All in all, Cleeve Hill is a great place for a walk, with its stunning views and abundance of wildlife, making it one of the best walks in Gloucester.

Highnam Woods

After a lovely hike up Cleeve Hill, why not take a leisurely stroll through Highnam Woods?

This beautiful woodland, located on the outskirts of Gloucester, is the perfect place to relax and take in the scenery.

The woods are full of life, and the sheer variety of flora and fauna is simply breathtaking.

As you wander through the tree-lined pathways, you’ll be sure to spot plenty of birds, butterflies, and other wildlife.

The trees provide plenty of shade, with the occasional clearing providing breathtaking views of the surrounding countryside.

Highnam Woods is also home to some fascinating historical sites, such as the remains of a Norman castle.

It’s said that the castle was once home to the infamous outlaw, Robin Hood.

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Whether this is true or not, it certainly adds a unique charm to the area!

For those looking to stretch their legs a little further, there’s also a network of footpaths leading away from the woods, providing plenty of opportunity for exploration.

So why not take a wander through Highnam Woods and see what you can find?

The Severn Way

For a truly epic experience, nothing beats the Severn Way – a scenic hiking route that stretches for over 100 miles along the River Severn. This scenic path takes hikers through some of England’s most stunning countryside, winding through ancient woodlands, rolling hills, and lush green valleys.

After crossing through Gloucester, the path then heads east, crossing into the Forest of Dean and onto the Wye Valley. Along the route, hikers can enjoy breathtaking views of the Severn Estuary and the Welsh Mountains, as well as passing through numerous quaint villages and historic sites.

The Severn Way is a great option for those looking for an adventurous trek, as well as a leisurely stroll. With numerous access points, you can choose to take a short day-walk, or if you’re feeling particularly brave, you can embark on a full-fledged multi-day hike.

The route is well marked and there are plenty of places to take a rest and enjoy a picnic, so no matter your level of experience, you’re sure to find a way to enjoy the majestic beauty of the Severn Way.

May Hill

Leaving the Severn Way behind, I’m now looking to one of Gloucester’s most iconic hills, May Hill. It stands at a modest height of 320 meters. May Hill is a perfect spot for a hike or leisurely walk. Its gentle slopes make it a great place for an easy stroll. The views of the surrounding countryside make it well worth the effort.

As I make my way to the top of the hill, I can see why it has become such an important part of Gloucester’s history. The hill has been a popular spot for centuries. Its summit offers stunning views of the Cotswolds and the Severn Valley. On a clear day, you can see all the way to the Black Mountains in Wales.

Stroud Valleys Walk

The next stop on my Gloucestershire adventure is the Stroud Valleys Walk, a breathtakingly beautiful hike that winds through lush valleys and rolling hills.

The Stroud Valleys Walk is about 7.5 miles long and takes about 3 to 4 hours to complete.

Starting at the edge of Stroud, the route takes you through the picturesque valley of the river Frome, where you can admire the rolling hills, meadows, and woodlands of the Cotswolds.

Along the way, you’ll pass through charming villages, old mills, and ancient churches.

It’s the perfect walk to appreciate the beauty of nature and the history of the area.

With its variety of terrain and interesting landmarks, the Stroud Valleys Walk is an ideal choice for a fun and leisurely day out.

Woodchester Park

After finishing the Stroud Valleys Walk, why not take a leisurely stroll around the beautiful Woodchester Park? This park is full of history and beauty, and it’s a great place to enjoy nature.

Woodchester Park is situated in the Cotswolds, and it’s been in existence since the 1700s. The grounds are full of majestic trees, lush meadows, and tranquil streams that make it a perfect spot for a peaceful walk.

There are also a variety of interesting attractions. You can explore the ruins of an old manor house, an orangery garden, and the Victorian walled garden. The park also has many trails and pathways, so you can easily explore it on foot.

You may even spot some wildlife along the way. All in all, Woodchester Park is a great place to spend an afternoon. It makes for a wonderful and enjoyable walk.

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Saperton Valley

Experience the beauty of Saperton Valley with a leisurely stroll through its lush meadows and tranquil streams. The valley is located just outside of Gloucester and is home to a variety of wildlife and plants.

You can take a walk along the riverbank and spot kingfishers, herons, and other birds. The landscape is stunning with rolling hills, ancient woodlands, and meadows full of wildflowers.

The valley is also home to a variety of trees, including oak, beech, and ash. As you wander through the valley, you’ll be able to appreciate its natural beauty and peaceful atmosphere.

You can also take a picnic and sit among the trees and enjoy the scenery. Saperton Valley is a great destination for a peaceful and enjoyable walk, surrounded by nature.

Malvern Hills

Take in the awe-inspiring views of the Malvern Hills as you explore the rolling hills and ancient woodlands.

The Malvern Hills are a range of hills in the English counties of Worcestershire and Herefordshire, which form the ancient border between the two counties. The hills are composed of some of the oldest rocks in the country, ranging in age from 600 million to 1.8 billion years old.

The highest point in the range is the Worcestershire Beacon at 425m above sea level.

The Malvern Hills are a great area for walking, offering a variety of routes and terrain. Whether you want to take a leisurely stroll or a challenging hike, there are plenty of options to choose from.

There are several designated paths, including the Worcestershire Way and the Herefordshire Trail. There are also numerous natural trails to follow, and visitors can explore the area via ancient woodland trails, bridleways, and public footpaths.

With stunning views of the surrounding countryside, and a variety of self-guided walks available, the Malvern Hills are an ideal spot for anyone looking for an invigorating outdoor adventure.

Gwen and Vera’s Trail

Discover the beauty of the Malvern Hills on Gwen and Vera’s Trail, a picturesque path through the rolling hills of Worcestershire and Herefordshire.

This unique walk was named after two of the Malvern Hills’ most prominent conservationists, Gwen and Vera Cox. It begins at the Wyche Cutting before heading to the top of the Worcestershire Beacon.

Along the way, hikers will be treated to stunning views of the Severn Valley and the Welsh Hills. There are plenty of opportunities to spot wildlife, as the trail passes through meadows and along streams.

The trail also boasts a variety of historical points of interest, including a fifteenth-century church and the ruins of a Norman castle.

This is the perfect walk for those looking to explore the natural beauty of the Malvern Hills and immerse themselves in its history and culture.

Gloucester Heritage Urban Trail

Embark on a journey through Gloucester’s rich history by taking the Heritage Urban Trail! This 4.2-mile loop trail passes by some of Gloucester’s most iconic sites, including the historic courthouse, First Baptist Church, and the riverfront boardwalk.

As you follow the trail, you’ll be treated to a variety of sights, such as the city’s impressive art murals, beautiful parks, and stunning views of the harbor. The trail is great for all levels of hikers, and there are plenty of benches along the way to take a rest.

There’s also a variety of wildlife to observe, making this a great choice for nature lovers. Whether you’re looking for a leisurely stroll or an energizing hike, the Heritage Urban Trail is the perfect way to explore Gloucester.

Conclusion

I’ve had a great time exploring some of the best walks in Gloucester.

From the beautiful Robinswood Hill to the scenic Malvern Hills, there’s something here for everyone.

Whether you’re looking for a relaxing stroll or a challenging hike, there are plenty of options to choose from.

I’m sure I’ll be back to enjoy more of these incredible walks soon.

I’d highly recommend them to anyone looking to explore the great outdoors and take in the beauty of Gloucester.

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About the author

Will is an avid hillwalker and traveler. You may find him surfing in Cornwall or hiking in the Yorkshire Dales.