Marlow to Hurley River Walk
This easy riverside walk takes you from Marlow to Hurley along the Thames Path. The route runs for a distance of just over 2 miles on a flat waymarked path. As such it's perfect for a pleasant afternoon stroll.
The walk starts on Marlow Bridge and heads east past the delightful Higginson Park which is worth a small detour. The riverside park is a popular local attraction with its pretty gardens and maze.
The path continues to Temple Lock and Temple Lock Island. It's a noteworthy and scenic spot on the river, having first built by the Thames Navigation Commissioners in 1773. Shortly after passing the lock you come to Hurley Lock, another significant and picturesque lock on the Thames. Here the river splits into a number of channels with several weirs between wooded islands.
Just to the south of the lock you can stroll into the small village of Hurley. You'll pass the historic remains of Hurley Priory, a former Benedictine priory which sits on the banks of the river. The long narrow nave of the priory church survives and is used as the Hurley parish church. It has mainly Norman windows and doorways. Also of note here is the Olde Bell Inn which dates from 1135. It is claimed to be the oldest hotel in the UK, and one of the oldest hotels in the world. The hotel is said to contain a secret tunnel leading to the village priory, which was used by John Lovelace, who was involved in the Glorious Revolution to overthrow King James II in the 17th century. The hotel was also used as a meeting point for Winston Churchill and Dwight D. Eisenhower during World War II. It's well worth exploring the whole site as other features include a kitchen garden, wildflower garden and a 16th century Tithe Barn. The inn is located close to Pinewood Studios and over the years, has seen a number of movie-star guests, including Mae West, Greta Garbo, Cary Grant, Errol Flynn, Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton.
After exploring Hurley you can return to Marlow the same way or turn it into a circular walk by heading north from Temple lock into the countryside. You could then pick up Lower Pound Lane and follow it back to Marlow, via Higginson Park.
To extend the walk you could continue onto Henley on our Marlow to Henley Walk.
Marlow to Hurley River Walk Ordnance Survey Map - view and print off detailed OS map
Marlow to Hurley River Walk Open Street Map - view and print off detailed map
Marlow to Hurley River Walk OS Map - Mobile GPS OS Map with Location tracking
Marlow to Hurley River Walk Open Street Map - Mobile GPS Map with Location tracking
The Riverside Restaurant in Marlow is a lovely location for some refreshments. There's a fine outdoor terrace which is ideal for warmer days. You can find it right next to Marlow Bridge at a postcode of SL7 1RG for your sat navs.
The Two Brewers is also located near the river in Marlow. The 18th century pub does great food and also has a nice beer garden. You can find it on St. Peter Street at postcode SL7 1NQ.
In Hurley there's The Old Bell. The pub is one of the oldest in the world with a history stretching back to 1135 when it was the guest house for visitors to the nearby Benedictine Hurley Priory. The fine old coaching inn includes a fantastic large garden area and a tithe barn. You can find them on the High Street at postcode SL6 5LX for your sat navs.
Further Information and Other Local Ideas
Higginson Park in Marlow is a nice place to visit in the town. The popular park attracts 1,000,000 visitors a year and includes riverside views and access to open countryside. There are also many fine trees and large expanses of lawn with formal flowerbeds and a brick in grass maze. It's another good option for refreshments with a nice cafe. You can find the park on the western fringes of the town, next to the river.
In Hurley there's the Hurley Loop Walk which will take you south to the woodland trails in Ashley Hill Forest and the Hurley Chalk Pit Nature Reserve.