Wessex Ridgeway

The Wessex Ridgeway is a superb walk of 137 miles (220kms), and part of a prehistoric trade route which once stretched right across England, linking the Norfolk coast to the Devon coast. The Wessex Ridgeway crosses the glorious downlands of Wiltshire and Dorset and links Marlborough and the ancient stone circle at Avebury to the sea, following as near as possible the line of the ancient route.

 

Bluebells carper the woodland floor, with a mossy tree trunk in the foreground

 

The Wessex Ridgeway divides neatly into two sections, so we offer two holidays, each of which offer fine walking in its own right.

This area is beautiful at any time of year, but visit mid-June to catch the wild orchids, which flourish on the chalk downland, at their best.

For much of the northern section the route sticks to high ground, so that it is necessary to drop down into the valley  to reach accommodation at the end of several walking stages. The additional mileage has been included in the distances detailed below.

 

Wessex Ridgeway (North)

Marlborough to Ludwell
8 nights; 7 days walking

We start this northern section of the Wessex Ridgeway from the attracive market town of Marlborough, with a short stage to the prehistoric stone circle at Avebury, leaving plenty of time to visit the National Trust's excellent Alexander Keiller Museum, and perhaps walk an additional loop which takes in the other ancient monuments associated with Avebury, such as Windmill Hill, Silbury Hill and West Kennet long barrow.

From Avebury the route takes us through the Vale of Pewsey, skirts the western escarpment of Salisbury Plain, circles the Iron Age hillforts of Battlesbury and Scratchbury high above the lovely Wylye Valley, then crosses the Great Ridge to reach the village of Ludwell on the northern edge of Cranborne Chase and close to the Wiltshire/Dorset border.

 

Standing sarcen stones at Avebury

 

Highlights of the walk include Avebury stone circle, Cherhill Monument and White Horse, Bratton Camp and the Westbury White Horse and the wonderful views from Scratchbury hillfort.

Approximate daily distances:
  •  Marlborough to Avebury - 7 miles (11 kms)
  •  Avebury to Devizes - 12 miles (19 kms)
  •  Devizes to Market Lavington - 12 miles (19 kms)
  •  Market Lavington to Edington (Westbury White Horse) - 13 miles (21 kms)
  •  Westbury White Horse to Heytesbury - 12 miles (19 kms)
  •  Heytesbury to Hindon - 8 miles (13 kms)
  •  Hindon to Ludwell - 11 miles (18 kms)

 

Wessex Ridgeway (South)

Ludwell to Lyme Regis
7 nights; 6 days walking

From Ludwell on the Wiltshire/Dorset border the route of the Wessex Ridgeway climbs over Win Green into Cranborne Chase and makes its way through pastoral scenery to cross the River Stour, before gaining high downland with extensive views over the Blackmore Vale. The route then passes over three of Dorset’s finest hillforts; Lambert’s Hill, Coney Hill and Pilsden Pen. A walk through meadows and along a river side path lead into the historic harbour and onto The Cobb, at Lyme Regis.

 

Expanse of downland grass sweeping down to woodland in the valley

 

Highlights of the walk include the view of Cranborne Chase from the summit of Win Green, the magnificent views from Pilsden Pen which stretch northwards to the Somerset Levels and southwards to the sea, and the walk out onto The Cobb.

Approximate daily distances:
  •  Ludwell to Shroton - 13 miles (21 kms)
  •  Shroton to Lower Ansty - 12 miles (19 kms)
  •  Lower Ansty to Sydling St Nicholas - 13 miles (21 kms)
  •  Sydling St Nicholas to Beaminster - 14 miles (22 kms)
  •  Beaminster to Lambert's Castle - 12 miles (19 kms)
  •  Lambert's Castle to Lyme Regis - 8 miles (13 kms)

     

     

    What's included in the price of this holiday?

WSX map

Holiday Options

33
Code:WRNSGP
Grade:3 - 2
Nights:8
Price:£760.00
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  • All of the above prices are per person, and based upon two guests sharing a double or twin-bedded room.
  • Single traveller supplement; £50 per night (More about single supplement).
  • Discounts available for parties of three or more guests.
Travel information - start

Rail: Swindon
Onward travel: Public bus ot taxi

Travel information - finish
Rail: Salisbury or Tisbury
Onward travel: Public bus ot taxi

More travel information

 

Holiday Options

33
Code:WRSSGP
Grade:3 - 2
Nights:7
Price:£655.00
transparent gif
 
  • All of the above prices are per person, and based upon two guests sharing a double or twin-bedded room.
  • Single traveller supplement; £50 per night (More about single supplement).
  • Discounts available for parties of three or more guests.
Travel information - start

Rail: Salisbury or Tisbury
Onward travel: Public bus ot taxi

Travel information - finish
Rail: Axminster
Onward travel: Public bus or taxi

More travel information

 

Currency Converter: All of our prices are in British pounds. To estimate the cost in another currency use the currency converter here.

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