This walk visits Portsdown Hill in the city of Portsmouth. The long chalk ridge is located just above Portsmouth and Fareham in Hampshire. On the hill you can visit the historic Fort Widley and enjoy fine views down to Portsmouth Harbour below.
The walk starts from the car park and view point, located on Portsdown Hill Road, just to the east of the fort. From here you can pick up footpaths heading west to the fort where there is another public path circling around the fort. The fort was built in the mid 19th century on the recommendation of the Royal Commission on the Defence of the United Kingdom. It was designed, along with the other Palmerston Forts on Portsdown Hill, to protect Portsmouth from attack from the rear. Today the Fort is home to an equestrian centre run by Peter Ashley Activity Centres.
After rounding the fort the route then heads east to explore Candy's Pit where there are some woodland trails and a cave. Back at the car park you will find a nice burger fan where you can pick up some refreshments and then sit and enjoy the views on one of the benches. To the north you can see the Forest of Bere, with the South Downs visible in the distance. Butser Hill can also be seen on a clear day.
You can extend your walking in the area by heading west and visting Fort Southwick, which is the highest point on the hill. Our Fareham Walk visits Fort Nelson where there is an interesting museum and another fine viewpoint. The medieval Portchester Castle is also nearby and is another great way to learn about the history of the area while enjoying some nice coastal walking trails.