GPS Cycle and Walking Routes

South Downs Walks

Use the links to view full route information including elevation profiles, interactive maps and GPS downloads.
You can also view an overview map of all the routes in the using the South Downs Walk Map>>

Route NamePhotoDistanceDescription
Amberley Circular Walk6 miles (9.5 km)The delightful village of Amberley is located at the foot of the South Downs,in the Horsham District of West Sussex. There's lots of lovely walking trails to follow through the surrounding countryside and along the River Arun. View Full Details>>
Amberley to Arundel12 miles (20 km)A popular riverside walk along the River Arun from Amberley to Arundel. The walk takes you along a delightful waterside footpath and includes a visit to the splendid Arundel Castle and Arundel Park on the return leg. View Full Details>>
Angmering Park Estate Woods5 miles (8 km)The expansive area of woodland surrounding the Angmering Park Estate has miles of public bridleways and footpaths for walkers and cyclists to try. As well as the sheltered paths through the pretty woods there are some nice open fields and good views across the surrounding countryside to enjoy. The area is particularly magical in the spring when there are carpets of bluebells to see. View Full Details>>
Arundel Castle and Arundel Park9 miles (14 km)This circular walk takes you through the parkland and countryside surrounding this restored medieval castle in West Sussex. The walk starts near the castle and picks up the Monarch's Way long distance walking trail to take you into Arundel park. You'll pass Swanbourne Lake and follow footpaths through woodland and grassland to the River Arun. The route then follows a lovely riverside footpath back towards the castle. You'll pass the splendid Arundel Wetland Centre where you can look out for a wide variety of wildlife including water voles and rare geese. The castle itself is well worth visiting with lovely gardens and a fascinating history, though there is a fee for entry to the grounds. View Full Details>>
Beachy Head4 miles (6 km)This exhilarating walk takes you along the highestchalksea cliff in Britain, at Beachy Head on the South Downs. The cliffs rise to a height of 162 metres (531ft) with fabulous views along the coast to West Sussex and Dungeness in Kent. View Full Details>>
Bignor Hill7 miles (11.2 km)This walk or cycle climbs to Bignor Hill from the village of Amberley in West Sussex. It's a moderate climb of about 3.5 miles, following the South Downs Way for the duration of the route. It's a good path which is also suitable for cycling. If you prefer a shorter walk then you could park at the car park just half a mile west of the hill, and start your climb from there. View Full Details>>
Birling Gap2 miles (3 km)Visit Birling Gap and enjoy a splendid coastal walk to the Belle Tout lighthouse. The area is run by the National Trust so there are great facilities with a good sized car park, cafe, shop and visitor centreon the cliff top. This walk starts from the Birling Gap car park just a mile south of East Dean at the end of Birling Gap Road. From here you can pick up the trails along the The South Downs Way to the lighthouse. Belle Tout has been used many times in films and tv because of the spectacular location. It has been called 'Britain's most famous inhabited lighthouse'. There's fantastic views along to the nearby Beachy Head and 500 acres of open chalk grassland with a wide variety of butterflies and wildflowers to look out for. View Full Details>>
Black Down4 miles (6 km)Climb to the highest point in the South Downs on this challenging route in Sussex. The area is run by the National Trust and includes a series of well defined paths taking you to flower-rich meadows, ancient woodland and copses. There are fabulous views over the Weald from the Temple of the Winds, at the southern end of Black down. The English Channel can also be seen through the River Arun gap on a clear day. The circular route below starts at the car park near the Temple of the Winds and takes you north across Black Down to Boarden Door Bottom. View Full Details>>
Brighton to Lewes7 miles (11.2 km)A walk across the South Downs from Brighton to Lewes using a mixture of roads and footpaths. There's splendid views across the Downs and a visit to the Castle Hill Nature Reserve to enjoy. View Full Details>>
Brighton Way54 miles (87 km)A super route though the South Downs from Horley to Brighton. The trail passes Crawley, Haywards Heath and Burgess Hill before finishing on the south coast. The walk has several train stations dotted along the route so you can easily do this one in manageable sections. Highlights include the Ardingly Nature Reserve and reservoir near Balcombe. The walk also climbs Ditchling Beacon where there are fabulous views of the South Downs. View Full Details>>
Butser Hill1 miles (1 km)Climb to the highest point on theSouth Downs on this walk near Petersfield. View Full Details>>
Chanctonbury Ring4 miles (6 km)Climb to this early Iron Age hill fort on the South Downs and enjoy wonderful views over the surrounding countryside and coast. The hill is also an important area for flora and fauna, including the protectedGreat Crested Newt which can be found in the dew pond on the hill. View Full Details>>
Cheesefoot Head7 miles (12 km)This circular walk visits a large natural amphitheatre near Winchester before exploring the surrounding area on a network of footpaths. It's an undulating route with some moderate climbs and lovely views over the South Downs, The New Forest, the Isle of Wight and Butser Hill. View Full Details>>
Cissbury Ring2 miles (3 km)Visit this historic hill fort in West Sussex and enjoy terrific views over the South Downs countryside on this circular walk. It's a very beautiful place with rolling hills, patches of woodland, wildlife-rich chalk grassland, wildflowers in the summer and a series of good footpaths and tracks to guide your around the area. View Full Details>>
Clapham Wood2 miles (3.5 km)These mysterious woods are located in the ArunDistrict ofWest Sussex, next to the village of Clapham. The woods are most well known forparanormalactivity includingseveral UFOsightings. They also have some nice public footpaths to follow through the woods. The woods are surrounded by some lovely Sussex countryside and have bluebells growing in the spring. There's parking available at the south western corner of the woods. View Full Details>>
Cuckmere River and Cuckmere Haven10 miles (16 km)This lovely waterside walk takes you along the Cuckmere River from Alfriston to the beautiful Cuckmere Haven on the south coast. The walk starts in Alfriston and follows the riverside path to Exceat, passing the famous chalk White Horse on the way. You continue to the coast and Cuckmere Haven where you will find a shingle beach and wonderful views of the Seven Sisters Cliffs. The route then passes along the beach and picks up the South Downs Way to take you into the popular Seven Sisters Country Park. In the park there are 700 acres of parkland with wonderful views over the South Downs. View Full Details>>
Devils Dyke2 miles (4 km)This circular walk explores this beautiful valley near Brighton. The valley stretches for about a mile through the South Downs. It is thelongest, deepest and widest 'dry valley' in the UK. The area is criss crossed with footpaths and bridleways making it an ideal location for walking and mountain biking. As well as stunning views across the south downs you will pass lovely meadows with a variety of flowers, an Iron Age Hill Fort and the remains of a Victorian funfair. In the summer months you can enjoy a sea of pink Orchids with a variety of butterflies including Adonis blue, chalkhill blue and silver spotted skipper. You can easily extend your walk by heading east onto Newtimber Hill where you will find one of the finest examples of chalk grassland in the country, ancient woodland and rare plants and flowers such as burnt orchid and juniper tree. Also on the route is the Devils Dyke Pub where you can have some lunch while enjoying some wonderful views. View Full Details>>
Ditchling Beacon5 miles (8 km)Climb to the highest point in East Sussexand enjoy wonderful views of the Wealdand the Downs on this circular walk. The lovely chalk grassland of the area is covered with a variety of flowers and plants during the summer months. Look out for marjoram,thymeand different types oforchid with butterflies such as the Chalkhill Blue flying around them. View Full Details>>
Downs Link36 miles (58 km)This is a terrific walking or cycling path running from St Martha's Hill in Guildford to Shoreham-by-Sea. The trail is suitable for walkers and cyclists and links the North and South Downs National Trails. It runs for a distance of just under 40 miles on a fairly flat off road path with great views of the Low Weald countryside. View Full Details>>
Eartham Woods3 miles (5 km)This large area of beech woodland near Slindon has some nice footpaths to follow. The woods are a great place to see bluebells in the spring months. You may also see deer, woodland birds and various butterflies as you make your way through the forest. You can start your walk from the car park located at the south eastern end of the woods, just to the north of the village of Eartham. View Full Details>>
East Meon13 miles (21 km)This village in East Hampshire has some nice walks across the South Downs to try. This walk from the village centre uses the South Downs Way National Trail to visit two of the highlights of the area. You start by following a country lane south west to Coombe Cross, about half a mile from the village. Here you can pick up the South Downs Way and follow it south to Salt Hill and Wether Down,one of the highest hills in Hampshire, rising to 234 metres (768ft) above sea level. View Full Details>>
Firle Beacon4 miles (6 km)This circular walk takes you to the splendid Firle Beacon in the South Downs. The route makes use of the The South Downs Way and various bridleways and country lanes to take you to the beacon from the pretty village of Firle. View Full Details>>
Friston Forest5 miles (8 km)Enjoy miles of cycling and walking trails in this large forest on the South Downs near Eastbourne. There are trails for mountain bikers ranging from gentle off road trails to an exhilarating single track ride. There are two fairly easy waymarked trails for walkers. Look out for wildlife including rare butterflies and deer. View Full Details>>
Harting Down3 miles (5.5 km)This large area of chalk downland on the South Downs is managed by the National Trust. It's a wonderful place to go for a walk with splendid views over the downs and an abundance of flora and fauna. The area is covered with wild herbs, wild flowers and pyramidal orchids attracting butterflies such as the Duke of Burgundy fritillary and the Grizzled Skipper. View Full Details>>
Haslemere Circular Walk8 miles (13 km)This fine circular walk takes you around the Surrey town of Haslemere. It's a varied walk with woodland, heathland and hills climbs to enjoy. From the high points you can also enjoy fine views across the lovely countryside of the South Downs National Park. View Full Details>>
Highdown Hill and Highdown Gardens3 miles (5 km)This walk visits Highdown Gardens before climbing Highdown Hill in the South Downs. The walk begins at the car park at Highdown Gardens. Both the gardens and parking are free, though you are free to make a donation if you wish. You can then follow a series of footpaths through the park with its beautiful collection of rare plants and trees. The chalk gardens are situated on Downland countryside with wonderful views towards the sea. Highlights include two pretty ponds with fish, toads and newts, a Himalayan Birch Bark Cherry Avenue, a Rose Garden and a Herb Garden. View Full Details>>
Hinton Ampner1 miles (1 km)Explore the beautiful gardens surrounding this stately home near New Alresford in Hampshire. Here you will find cloud topiary, a walled garden, a sunken garden and fabulous views over the South Downs. You can also extend your walk into the wider estate. Head east towards Joan's acre wood where you will find ancient woodland and an abundance of wildlife. View Full Details>>
Houghton Forest4 miles (6 km)These woods near Arundel have good mountain bike trails and some nice footpaths to try View Full Details>>
Itchen Way31 miles (50 km)Follow the River Itchen from its mouth at Woolston to its source near Hinton Ampner on this beautiful waterside walk. View Full Details>>
Kingley Vale National Nature Reserve4 miles (7 km)Enjoy a walk around this interesting and beautiful Nature Reserve in the South Downs, near Chichester. There are well defined paths with fabulous views over the South Downs towards the south coast. The reserve also contains one of the finest yew forests in Europe, including a grove of ancient trees which are among the oldest living things in Britain. View Full Details>>
Lavington Common3 miles (5.5 km)Enjoy a peaceful stroll across the Lavington and Duncton Commons on this easy walk near Midhurst in West Sussex. There's miles of good footpaths taking you across attractive heathland and woodland. It's a great place for wildlife with woodlark, nightjar, tree pipits, stonechat and reptiles including the rare sand lizard. The site also includes Merlin's Wood with its tunnel of rhododendrons. You can pick up the trails from the car park on Duncton Common Road. Heading west will take you across Lavington Common while heading east takes you across Duncton Common where there are more woodland trails and a pretty stream. View Full Details>>
Lewes6 miles (9 km)This circular walk around the county town of East Sussex includes riverside paths, lovely views of the South Downs and a visit to Lewes Castle. The attractive town is located a few miles north east of Brighton, in a pretty area of the South Downs. As such there's several good options for walkers with some good hill climbs and waterside walks along the River Ouse to enjoy. View Full Details>>
Lewes to Alfriston11 miles (18 km)A lovely walk from Lewes to Alfriston, first following the River Ouse before picking up the South Downs Way. It's a varied walk running for about 11 miles with flat riverside paths preceding some moderate climbs into the surrounding hills. From the high points there are tremendous views towards the south coast. View Full Details>>
Lewes to Eastbourne20 miles (32.2 km)A long walk from Lewes to Eastbourne taking in some of the loveliest South Downs scenery. The route runs for about 20 miles, beginning with a riverside walk along the River Ouse to Southease where you pick up the South Downs Way. You can then follow the long distance trail all the way to Eastbourne, passing Firle Beacon, Alfriston, the Cuckmere River, the Long Man of Wilmington, Windover Hill and Jevington. There's much to enjoy with riverside trails, wonderful views to the coast from the high points and a nice coastal section into Eastbourne at the end. View Full Details>>
Long Man of Wilmington5 miles (8.5 km)Climb to this iconic figure on Windover Hill on this splendid circular walk in the South Downs. The walk begins in the village of Alfriston on the Cuckmere River and follows the South Downs Way to the Long Man. It's a fairly easy climb on a good path with splendid views of the South Downs and the coast to enjoy. From the high point you descend to Litlington passing the delightful Lullington Heath Nature Reserve on the way. It's a lovely area made up of chalk heath with heather, bell heather and gorse bushes. At Litlington you pick up the Vanguard Way and enjoy a lovely waterside section along the Cuckmere River which takes you back to Alfriston. View Full Details>>
Meon Valley Trail9 miles (15 km)This peaceful cycling and walking trail runs along a disused railway track from West Meon to Wickham. There are splendid views of the beautiful Meon Valley and the River Meon to enjoy as well as a variety of wildlife including butterflies, redwing and egrets. View Full Details>>
Midhurst Way19 miles (31 km)Starting at the striking Arundel Castle, head north through some beautiful Sussex countryside to Midhurst. View Full Details>>
Mount Caburn4 miles (7 km)This walk visits the delightful Mount Caburn Nature Reserve in the South Downs. You can reach the reserve by following a footpath from the centre of Lewes. It's just over 2 miles to the reserve from the town with the route crossing the River Ouse before passing Malling Down Nature Reserve, Ranscombe Camp hill, Oxteddle Bottom and Caburn Bottom. View Full Details>>
New Lipchis Way37 miles (60 km)This is an exceptionally lovely walking trail that runs from Liphook, in Hampshire, to East Head at the entrance to Chichester Harbour. The path takes you through some of the loveliest parts of West Sussex including greensand ridges, Wealden river valleys, heathlands, high chalk downland and then finally the coastal plain at Chichester. View Full Details>>
Old Winchester Hill9 miles (14 km)This walk takes you up the 197 metres (646ft) Old Winchester Hill in the South Downs. The hill and surrounding area is a National Nature Reserve with a wide variety of butterflies and wildlife to look out for. These include buzzards, kites, roe deer and foxes. The area is made largely of chalk grassland with extensive scrub and many orchid species. There is also an Iron Age hill fort and earlier Bronze Age barrows and burial mounds. View Full Details>>
Parham House2 miles (4 km)Explore the parkland and gardens surrounding this Elizabethan House near Storrington and Amberley. The gardens include a four-acre Walled Garden, herbaceous borders, a glasshouse, vegetable garden, orchard and a 1920s Wendy House. You can also enjoy a stroll in the extensive pleasure grounds which include a lake, a 19th century summer house, a maze, specimen trees and wild orchids. View Full Details>>
Queen Elizabeth Country Park5 miles (8.5 km)Explore 2000 acres of open access woodland and downland in the South Downs on this circular walk or cycle in Hampshire. Queen Elizabeth Country Park is Hampshire's biggest country park with 20 miles of trails for walkers, cyclists & horse riders. Highlights in the park include Butser Hill - the highest point on the South Downs with views to the Isle of Wight. There is also a Visitors Centre where you can sign up for a guided walk. View Full Details>>
River Adur and Bramber Castle4 miles (6 km)Follow a waterside path along the River Adur to Bramber Castle on this walk in West Sussex View Full Details>>
Selborne Common2 miles (3.5 km)This circular walk visits Selborne Common and Selborne Hill, one of the highest points in the county ofHampshire. The common is owned by the National Trust and has a number of nice woodland trails to try. In the woods you can see a variety of wildflowers including yellow archangel,wood spurge andwood anemone. Also look out for lots of butterflies such as Duke of Burgundy,silver-washed fritillary andpurple emperor. Notable birds to see include buzzard,sparrowhawk,stock dove,tawny owl, green woodpecker andgreat spotted woodpecker. From the high points you can enjoy lovely views over the South Downs. View Full Details>>
Seven Sisters Country Park3 miles (5.5 km)Explore nearly 700 acres of parkland and coast on this delightful circular walk through the South Downs. The Country Park is named after the famous Seven Sisters chalk cliffs on the Sussex Heritage Coast. On the route you will enjoy fabulous views of the Cuckmere river before heading towards the beautiful coastline. View Full Details>>
Slindon Estate7 miles (10.5 km)The Slindon Estate is a fantastic place for walkers and cyclists with miles of footpaths and bridleways to follow through the 1400 hectare estate. It is made up of a variety of habitats including woodland, downland, farmland, and parkland. All the while there are wonderful views over the Weald, the South Downs and the coast with the Isle of Wight beyond. View Full Details>>
South Downs Circular Walk8 miles (12.5 km)This terrific 8 mile circular walk visits some of the major highlights of the East Sussex area of the South Downs National Park. You'll take in Birling Gap, Seven Sisters Country Park, Friston Forest and the Cuckmere River and Cuckmere Haven. There's wonderful coastal views, riverside paths, woodland trails and some moderate climbs to enjoy on this varied route which is one of the best circular walks on the South Downs. View Full Details>>
St Catherine's Hill Winchester1 miles (1.5 km)Climb this small hill in Winchester for fine views over the town, the River Itchen and the surrounding countryside of the South Downs. It's a very pretty area with the chalk downlandcovered in wild flowers including bird's-foot trefoil, saladburnet, dropwort and several types of orchid. This attracts 25 different types of butterfly such as marbled white,chalkhillblue and brownargus. There are also the ramparts of anIron Agehill fort, a 17th/18th century mizmaze and a copse of beech trees containing the site of a 12th century chapel. View Full Details>>
St Gile's Hill Winchester1 miles (1 km)This short walk climbs to a fine viewpoint above the city of Winchester. From the top of the hill there are great views of the city's main highlights including Winchester Cathedral, the College and Wolvesey Castle. View Full Details>>
Truleigh Hill3 miles (5 km)This hill in West Sussex has a set of distinctive radio masts on the summit. You can park at a small parking area to the west of the hill and follow the South Downs Way past Beeding Hill to the top of Truleigh Hill. There's great views of the surrounding hills and countryside from the high points. You can turn it into a circular walk by following tracks across Bushy Bottom and then the Monarch's Way back to the car park. View Full Details>>
West Dean Estate4 miles (6 km)This walk takes you around the beautiful gardens, woodland and arboretums in the West Dean Estate near Chichester View Full Details>>
West Meon12 miles (19.3 km)The village of West Meon is in a splendid location for exploring the lovely Meon Valley and the South Downs. There's a number of waymarked walking trails passing through the area which can easily be picked up from the village. This 12 mile loop walk uses several of these trails to visit some of the highlights of the area. You'll enjoy climbs to Old Winchester Hill and Beacon Hill where there's fine views over the South Downs. View Full Details>>
West Sussex Literary Trail55 miles (89 km)This walk runs from Horsham to Chichester with many literary connections along the way. The walk begins at Horsham, near Percy Bysshe Shelley's millennium fountain, and heads through the South Downs to Chichester with its connections to William Blake and John Keats. View Full Details>>
Winchester River Walk4 miles (5.8 km)A lovely circular walk along the River Itchen and Itchen Navigation in Winchester. The route uses a section of the Itchen Way to take you along the Itchen Navigation before crossing St Cross Bridge and picking up the Clarendon Way to take you back into the city along the River Itchen. View Full Details>>
Woolmer Forest3 miles (5.5 km)This large area of heathlandand woodland has public footpaths to follow from the hamlet of Conford in the north eastern part of the site. It is a significant area with a diversity of habitats supporting twelve known native species ofreptilesandamphibians. Scenery includes oak-birch woodland, conifer plantations, open sandy heaths, and rough grazed pastures. There's lots of interesting plants and flowers to look out for. Also keep your eyes peeled for birds such as Dartford warbler and European nightjar. View Full Details>>

Panoramio: Photos are copyrighted by their owners