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3 Hilly Walks in the South West

Walks with a great payoff... By Cotswold Outdoor
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In anticipation of the forthcoming South West Festival, we’ve teamed up with the National Trust to select 3 of the most popular hilly walks in the South West. Get your walking shoes ready and decide which of these will be your next outdoor adventure.

Old Harry Rocks

Difficulty: Easy
Walking Time : 1 - 2 Hours
Distance: 3.5 Miles
©National Trust Images/John Miller ©National Trust Images/Chris Lacey;

This Dorset-based circular walk with one steady climb is around 3.5 miles (5.6km) in length and is the perfect way to get outdoors and enjoy the beautiful South West coastline.

Providing panoramic views along the Jurassic Coast, on a clear day you will see across Poole Bay to Bournemouth, Hengistbury Head and the Isle of Wight. You’ll also get to see one of Dorset’s most famous landmarks Old Harry Rocks, a wave carved rock formation and further along The Pinnacles.

Don’t forget to keep your eyes peeled for the local wildlife from peregrine falcons circling above to chalk grassland flowers found in the short grass.

There’s even a reward at the end of the walk where you can treat yourself to a pub lunch at Bankes Arms.

Maps and information on the Old Harry Rocks Walk »

2. Cheddar Gorge

Difficulty: Moderate
Walking Time: 1 - 2 Hours
Distance: 4 Miles
©National Trust Images/Jim Elliott; ©National Trust Images/Ross Hoddinott

This walk takes in the spectacular natural sight of Cheddar Gorge and is 4 miles (6.4km) in length, taking an estimated 1 hour 40 minutes to complete. The walks includes some rough sections and some steep climbs, so if you’re looking for a bit more of a challenge this is one to consider.

Cheddar Gorge is England’s largest gorge measuring almost 400ft in depth and 3 miles in length. This circular walk allows you to explore and see the gorge from many viewpoints.

Don’t forget to look out for buzzards gliding overhead and the specialised plants and flowers that nestle themselves within the gorge.

Maps and information on the Cheddar Gorge Walk »

3. Bath Skyline

Difficulty: Moderate
Walking Time: 1.5 - 4 Hours
Distance: 3 or 6 Miles
©National Trust Images/Chris Lacey

Based in Somerset this walk offers two main routes either 3 miles (4.75km) or 6 miles (9.6km) in length and taking 1.5 hours to 3.5 – 4 hours respectively to complete. The walk has some steep spots so is ideal if you’re looking for an extra uphill challenge.

Both circular walks have vantage points which allow you to get enviable views of the World Heritage Site Bath and beyond as well as a family discovery trail providing the perfect opportunity to get outdoors and create your own adventure amongst the views, flowers, fauna and wildlife.

Maps and information about the Bath Skyline walk and its family discovery trail »

In partnership with

National Trust

We are proud to be the Official Outdoor Retail Partner of the National Trust. With our quality equipment and expert advice combined with National Trust’s enduring care and access to a huge range of special outdoor places, we hope to inspire and grow everyone’s connection with the outdoors.