Kenilworth Circular Walk - Castle and Abbey Fields
A short circular walk around the Warwickshire town of Kenilworth, visiting St Mary's Abbey, Abbey Fields and Kenilworth Castle. It's a delightful area for a stroll with historic ruins, the Finham Brook, a pretty lake and attractive parkland.
Start the walk from the castle car park where you can pick up footpaths taking you around the ruins and the Elizabethan Gardens. In the gardens you will find a marble fountain and an ornate aviary with great views towards the Castle Keep.
You can also explore John of Gaunt's 14th century Great Hall which played host to medieval monarchs and Tudor kings. The 18 metre climb to the tower gives great views over the site and the surrounding town.
After exploring the castle grounds the walk then heads east into Abbey Fields Park where you can pick up a footpath along the pretty Finham Brook, a tributary of the River Sowe. The route then heads to St Nicholas Church and the Abbey of St Mary. Near here you will pass a museum charting the history of the abbey, located in the old barn. The abbey dates from the 12th century with the ruins of the ancient gate house, cloisters and barn the highlights.
After exploring the ruins you can follow nice footpaths along the lake before returning to the car park.
To extend your walk you could continue east along the Finham Brook and visit the nearby Kenilworth Common Nature Reserve. Here you will find gorse, heather and two waymarked trails where you can look out for kingfishers on the brook.
Another good option is to pick up the long distance Warwickshire Centenary Way which runs right past the castle. Following it south will take you through the countryside to Warwick where you can visit the picturesque Warwick Castle.
Three other long distance trails also run through the town. You can pick up the Midland Link, Coventry Way or Warwickshire Millennium Way to further explore the countryside surrounding the town.