Bath Canal Walk
This is a popular walk along the Kennet and Avon Canal from Bath to Bradford on Avon. It's about a 10 mile walk along the towpath taking you from Somerset into Wiltshire on the southern fringes of the Cotswolds AONB. On the way you'll pass pretty locks, lots of barges, delightful little cottages, interesting villages, and attractive parks and gardens.
The walk starts at Bath locks situated at the start of the Kennet and Avon Canal. You then head north towards Bathwick passing through tunnels as you go. At Bathwick you pass the lovely Sydney Gardens which are worth a slight deviation from the canal to explore. The gardens are the only remaining eighteenth-century pleasure gardens in England.
The path continues to the village of Bathampton where you can take a small detour to visit the Toll Bridge over the River Avon. The bridge and toll house are both Grade II listed. There's splendid views from the bridge down to the beautiful weir below.
At Bathampton you turn south to Claverton. The little village has a Grade II listed pumping house and a church which dates from the 13th century.
You continue south towards Monkton Combe, passing the Dundas Aqueduct which carries the Kennet and Avon Canal over the River Avon on the Somerset Wiltshire border. It's a real highlight of the walk with great views over the river and the surrounding countryside from the elevated position of the aqueduct. You can virtually explore this section of the canal using the google street view link below.
The route then heads to Limpley Stoke and Freshford, passing Conkwell Wood on the way. The final section takes you into Wiltshire where you will pass the impressive Avoncliff Aqueduct and Barton Farm Country Park before finishing in Bradford Upon Avon. Barton Farm is worth exploring if you have time. It includes historic buildings, craft shops and tea rooms while the farmhouse, granary and tithe barn of the original Barton Farm date back to the 14th century.
There's lots of good options for extending your walking around the canal. At Bathampton you can pick up the tremendous Bath Skyline Walk where you can enjoy fabulous views over the city.
Bath Canal Walk Ordnance Survey Map - view and print off detailed OS map
Bath Canal Walk Open Street Map - view and print off detailed map
Bath Canal Walk OS Map - Mobile GPS OS Map with Location tracking
Bath Canal Walk Open Street Map - Mobile GPS Map with Location tracking
Bath Canal Walk Pubs/Cafes
In Avoncliff be sure to investigate the noteworthy Cross Guns Inn. The pub dates all the way back to 1550 and is a splendid example of Cotswold stone and expert masonry. Indoors there's old gables, wooden beams, stone floors, and cosy roaring fires to warm yourself next to on colder days. Outdoors there are lovely terraced gardens with fine views of the railway aqueduct and the canal. It's the perfect spot to relax in on warm summer days. You can find the pub at 159 Bradford Road with a postcode of BA15 2HB for your sat navs.