15 Best Walks in Hampshire (Hikes & Nice Walks)

15 Best Walks in Hampshire (Hikes & Nice Walks)

By will

Hampshire is a beautiful English county, filled with rolling hills and lush forests.

If you’re looking for an escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life, Hampshire offers some of the best walks in the country.

From stunning coastal paths to peaceful woodland trails, there’s something here for everyone.

In this article, we’ll show you fifteen of the best walks in Hampshire – from easy jaunts to more challenging hikes; there’s sure to be something that will make your heart race and give you a sense of freedom.

1. The South Downs Way

Grazing by the South Downs Way
Photo by Colin Smith

The South Downs Way is one of the most spectacular walking routes in Hampshire.

Stretching over 100 miles, it takes you through some of the country’s most breathtaking countryside, with views across the rolling hills that will leave you in awe.

From ancient woodlands to rolling chalk downland, it’s no wonder this route is a popular destination for hikers and nature lovers alike.

As you wander along the path, you can take in the beauty of wildflower-covered meadows and admire how the landscape changes from open fields to dense woodland areas.

With a variety of trails to choose from – ranging from easy strolls to more challenging hikes – there’s something here for every kind of walker.

Whether you’re looking for a leisurely stroll or an adventurous trek, The South Downs Way has something for everyone.

So go ahead and explore all this magical area has to offer!

2. Jane Austen Circular Walk

Chawton church
Photo by Robin Webster

If you’re looking for a stroll with a literary twist, the Jane Austen Circular Walk is an ideal choice.

This seven-mile walk takes you through the picturesque Hampshire countryside, evoking the same scenes that inspired many of her novels.

As you wander along the paths and trails, you can almost imagine yourself in one of Austen’s beloved stories.

The path begins at Chawton Church near Alton and follows an anti-clockwise route around the village before heading back to Chawton.

Along the way, you’ll pass lovely old buildings such as Chawton House and see Chawton Great Wood – a great spot for nature lovers.

You’ll also find plenty of places to stop for refreshments or take in some stunning views across the rolling hills of Hampshire.

This delightful walk offers a unique glimpse into Austen’s world and will leave even non-literary fans feeling inspired.

From its charming villages to its beautiful countryside, it’s easy to see why this area was so special to Jane Austen—and why it continues to be enjoyed by visitors today.

3. The Clarendon Way

The Clarendon Way on Beacon Hill
Photo by Bill Boaden

The Clarendon Way is a fantastic option for anyone looking for a great walk in Hampshire.

Spanning almost 30 miles from Winchester to Salisbury, this route takes you through the picturesque countryside of the South Downs National Park.

From ancient woodland and rolling hills to quaint villages and sweeping views across lush valleys, there’s something for everyone along this stunning trail.

As you make your way along The Clarendon Way, take time to stop and admire the landscape around you.

Enjoy the tranquility of being surrounded by nature as you follow gentle paths that lead you up hilltops and down into valleys.

Admire wildflowers blooming in meadows and spot wildlife, including deer, badgers, and foxes.

With plenty of refreshment stops on the route too, there’s no need to worry about running out of energy before reaching your destination!

Along The Clarendon Way, you’ll be rewarded with some truly breathtaking scenery – perfect for restoring your spirits after a busy week or simply taking some time out in the great outdoors.

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So why not take a journey along this idyllic trail and discover what Hampshire has to offer? You won’t be disappointed!

4. Rhinefield Walk

The Rhinefield Walk is a stunning trek through the countryside of Hampshire.

With its rolling hills, ancient trees, and picturesque views, this 5-mile route is perfect for anyone looking to escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.

The walk begins at the beautiful Rhinefield Ornamental Drive in Brockenhurst.

This drive offers sweeping views of the surrounding area and gives hikers an opportunity to take in some of Hampshire’s most breathtaking scenery.

Along the way, you’ll pass by a variety of trees such as oaks, beeches, and yews that have been standing for hundreds of years.

If you’re feeling adventurous, you can take a detour down toward Queen’s Bower Lake during your hike.

The crystal clear waters of this lake provide a tranquil setting that will make you forget all your worries and make you feel like you’re walking in paradise.

As you continue along the path, be sure to look out for wild deer or other wildlife that might be lurking nearby.

When you reach Burley Beacon at the end of your journey, take a moment to admire the views before heading back home with a sense of accomplishment.

5. St Catherine’s Hill Walk

If you’re looking for a scenic and peaceful walk in Hampshire, then look no further than St Catherine’s Hill.

This delightful hilltop walk offers beautiful views of the surrounding countryside, with its rolling hills, lush pastures, and picturesque villages.

The path is well-marked and easy to follow, making it suitable for all ages and ability levels.

The highlight of this hike is the summit – an open meadow with sweeping panoramic views across the county.

Here you can take in the beauty of the landscape from this elevated viewpoint, or simply sit back and relax in the warm sunshine.

As you make your way back down again, keep an eye out for wildlife such as rabbits, deer, and foxes who call this area home.

With its fresh air and unspoiled scenery, St Catherine’s Hill is a great spot to escape into nature and truly appreciate all that Hampshire has to offer.

6. Meon Valley Walk

Next on the agenda for a remarkable walking experience in Hampshire is the Meon Valley Walk.

It is an incredible 18-mile circuit, which begins and ends in the picturesque village of Warnford.

This walk takes you through some stunning countryside with views of lovely English villages, rolling hills, and ancient woodland.

You will also pass by many churches, castles, and other historic sites along the way.

The route follows the River Meon, so you can expect plenty of opportunities to take a break and enjoy the river’s serenity – it’s an ideal spot for a picnic or just relaxing after a long day of adventure.

The trails are well-marked with signs pointing out the best routes and taking you through some charming hamlets such as East Meon and West Meon.

You’ll be sure to see plenty of wildlife along your journey including birds, deer, and rabbits!

As if that wasn’t enough, this area is famous for its cider production so make sure you don’t miss out on one of its specialties!

Whether it’s a leisurely stroll or an energetic hike, the Meon Valley Walk offers something for everyone wanting to explore nature in Hampshire.

Don’t forget your camera to capture all those memorable moments from this captivating walk!

7. Queen Elizabeth Country Park Loop

Queen Elizabeth Country Park loop is one of the best walks in Hampshire. It’s a stunningly beautiful trek, with plenty to explore and discover along the route.

The path takes you through lush forests, fields of wildflowers, and breathtaking views of the South Downs.

You’ll come across some breathtaking vistas, including panoramic views of the Solent and Portsmouth Harbour.

And if you’re lucky, you might even spot some wildlife – deer, badgers, and foxes are all common sights in this area.

The Queen Elizabeth Country Park loop is a great walk for hikers of all abilities. It’s relatively easy going with plenty to stop off and take in along the way.

There are several picnic spots, a few pubs, and also a café at the end of the loop if you need to refuel after your journey.

So whether you’re looking for an invigorating stroll or just a leisurely wander, this is definitely worth checking out!

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8. Blackwater Arboretum Loop

The Blackwater Arboretum loop is a perfect way to experience the beauty of Hampshire’s countryside.

This 5-mile walk takes you through the woodland, meadow, and open grassland, offering stunning views of the landscape as you go.

The route includes some gentle inclines, but nothing too strenuous, and it’s suitable for all ages and abilities.

As you wander around the loop, you’ll come across a variety of wildlife. Look out for songbirds, rabbits, and squirrels along the way.

You may even spot deer grazing in the woods at certain times of the year.

If you’re lucky enough to come across one of these majestic creatures, be sure to take your time and soak up the atmosphere around them – it’s truly magical!

The Blackwater Arboretum loop is one of Hampshire’s best walks; an opportunity to explore nature and appreciate its beauty in all its glory.

So why not grab your walking boots and set off on this wonderful journey? You won’t regret it!

9. Fallodon Nature Reserve Loop

The Fallodon Nature Reserve loop is an idyllic and tranquil walk, situated near the historic town of Alton.

It’s a hidden gem in Hampshire, boasting lush green meadows, crystal clear streams, and majestic woodland.

This peaceful trail takes you around the reserve, offering stunning views all year round.

In summer months, visitors can enjoy a wide variety of wildflowers including orchids and ox-eye daisies that line the pathways.

The gentle course of the River Wey runs through the reserve; it’s a perfect spot for picnics or simply to admire the beauty of nature.

With its picturesque rolling hills, you’ll be amazed by its incredible natural scenery.

Take some time out to explore this tranquil haven, where you will find yourself surrounded by peace and serenity.

Whether you’re looking for an easy stroll around the reserve or a more challenging hike up into the surrounding hills, there’s something here for everyone.

Enjoy an unforgettable day out in the beautiful countryside that will leave you feeling refreshed and inspired!

10. Tall Trees Trail Circular

The Tall Trees Trail Circular is a stunning hike through Hampshire’s woodlands and heaths.

Meandering through the ancient trees of the New Forest, it’s a great way to escape into nature and enjoy some fresh air.

It’s an easy 3-mile route, with gentle inclines and declines making it suitable for all ages and abilities.

Along the trail, you’ll be surrounded by some of Britain’s tallest trees – including oak, beech, and Scots pine – that have stood in this area for hundreds of years.

You’ll also come across wildlife such as deer, badgers, and foxes that call this place home. Be sure to bring your camera to capture some of these majestic creatures!

At the summit of the trail you’ll come across a spectacular view over the surrounding countryside; take a moment here to soak up your surroundings before heading back down again.

With its enchanting scenery and peaceful atmosphere, this hike is sure to provide you with an unforgettable experience in Hampshire.

11. Brockenhurst Village Walk

Leaving the tall trees behind, we now turn to an idyllic village walk in Brockenhurst.

This charming village has been a popular destination for tourists for centuries. With its picturesque cottages and historic churches, it is easy to see why.

The walk itself is relatively short at just over two miles round trip. However, you can take your time and really soak in the atmosphere of this delightful village.

Along the way, you will pass quaint tea rooms, local produce markets, and even a traditional pub or two.

You’ll also come across some of Brockenhhurst’s oldest buildings such as the St Nicholas Church and Holly Tree Cottage.

This is a great opportunity to explore the area’s rich cultural heritage while taking in some stunning views of the countryside along the way.

Whether you are looking for a relaxing stroll or a more adventurous hike, there is something here for everyone!

12. Hayling Billy Trail

The Hayling Billy Trail is a wonderful place for a leisurely stroll and to take in the stunning scenery of Hampshire.

This 4-mile trail takes you along the banks of the River Langstone, through Hayling Island, and along the stunning West Beach.

The views are breathtaking as you pass by lush meadows, golden sand dunes, and salt marshes, perfect for wildlife watching.

The trail can be enjoyed at any time of year, whether it’s a summer’s day spent making sandcastles on the beach or an autumnal walk with friends taking in the changing colors of the trees.

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There’s something special about this place that just calls to you; it beckons you to explore its secrets and discover its hidden gems.

A visit here will no doubt leave you feeling refreshed and energized, ready to take on whatever life throws your way.

13. The Watercress Way

The Watercress Way is a great way to experience the stunning countryside of Hampshire. It winds its way through picturesque villages, rolling hills, and crystal-clear rivers.

The route takes you along the canal towpaths before heading into the glorious countryside and then back to the pretty village of Alresford.

Along the way, you can stop at various pubs, country inns, and tea rooms for a spot of refreshment.

The route is suitable for walkers of all abilities, with plenty of flat sections for those who prefer an easy stroll. There are also some challenging climbs if you’re feeling adventurous.

Whatever your fitness level, you’ll be rewarded with incredible views over the valley and surrounding hills.

Keep your eyes peeled for wildlife too; this area is home to deer, badgers, foxes, and a variety of birds including buzzards and kestrels.

At 16 miles long and taking around 5 hours to complete, The Watercress Way offers a wonderful day out in Hampshire’s beautiful countryside.

If you’re looking for an enjoyable but slightly challenging walk that provides breathtaking scenery as well as plenty of opportunities to explore quaint villages, this trail should definitely be on your list!

14. Farley Mount And Parnholt Circular

Farley Mount and Parnholt Circular are one of Hampshire’s best walks. It offers a unique combination of breathtaking scenery, history, and wildlife.

The route begins at Farley Mount Country Park, where you’ll be greeted by stunning views of the South Downs National Park.

From here, the path leads you to Parnholt Wood, an ancient woodland full of wildflowers and birdsong.

As you make your way around the circular route, you’ll come across some interesting historical sites such as an Iron Age fort and a Roman villa.

You’ll also have spectacular views over the surrounding countryside and glimpses of wildlife along the way.

This walk will give you a wonderful sense of freedom as well as provide plenty of opportunities to take in nature’s beauty.

Whether it’s a leisurely stroll or a challenging hike, this walk has something for everyone – so why not enjoy it?

15. Dogmersfield And Basingstoke Canal

For those looking to continue their exploration of Hampshire’s finest walks, Dogmersfield and Basingstoke Canal are the perfect destinations.

This route offers a truly unique experience, with stunning views of nature that will take your breath away.

You’ll also get to experience an interesting mix of industrial and rural sights as you stroll along this historic waterway.

The walk itself is relatively easy and suitable for most levels of ability. It starts from the car park on Lock Lane, where you can follow the towpaths all the way to Greywell Tunnel.

The views along the canal are breathtaking; look out for wildflowers, birds, and other wildlife throughout your journey.

This walk is a great way to explore Hampshire’s rich history and culture, as well as take in some wonderful scenery – making it a memorable outing for all ages.

With its beautiful natural surroundings and fascinating heritage, Dogmersfield and Basingstoke Canal really do have something for everyone.

So why not come explore it today?

Best Walks in Hampshire – Final Thoughts

As a final word on the best walks in Hampshire, I can confidently say that these are some of the most beautiful and enjoyable hikes and walks to be found anywhere in the UK.

The South Downs Way is an epic trek through some of Hampshire’s most dramatic scenery, while Jane Austen’s Circular Walk takes you through some of her most beloved locales.

The Clarendon Way, Rhinefield Walk, St Catherine’s Hill Walk, Hayling Billy Trail, and The Watercress Way all offer stunning views across the county’s rolling hills and valleys.

And finally, Farley Mount and Parnholt Circular and Dogmersfield and Basingstoke Canal provide a quiet respite from the hustle and bustle of modern life.

No matter what your experience or ability level when it comes to walking or hiking, Hampshire has something for you.

Whether you’re looking for a leisurely stroll or a challenging climb, there’s no shortage of breathtaking routes to explore.

I’d recommend any one of these 15 best walks in Hampshire – you won’t be disappointed!

So come on out – take in the fresh air and experience nature at its finest! You won’t regret it!

FAQs

What are some easy walks in Hampshire?

Some easy walks in Hampshire are Lepe Loop, The Test Way, and Shipwrights Way.

What are the best circular walks in Hampshire?

Some of the best circular walks in Hampshire are Jane Austen Circular Walk, Tall Trees Trail Circular, and Farley Mount And Parnholt Circular.

What are some good family walks in Hampshire?

Some good family walks in Hampshire are Tall Tree Trail, Fleet Pond Circular Walk, and Meon Vally Tail.

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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.