Hurley Loop Walk
The Hurley Loop Walk is a wonderful trail that meanders along the Thames before heading uphill into dense woodland and open fields, returning through the quaint, historic village of Hurley.
To get to the start of Hurley Loop Trail, use postcode SL6 5NB to reach Hurley’s free village car park, which has enough space for about 50 cars. If using public transport, Courtney Buses provide the 239 bus service, a 30-minute ride from Maidenhead, leaving approximately every 2 hours.
|When to do|
April - September
Hurley Riverside Park
At Hurley Lock or the Black Boys Inn (if you stop for a drink)
Hurley Loop Walk
Hurley Loop Route Description
The Hurley Loop trail starts and finishes at the information board in the car park.
Take the footpath that starts behind you, signed ‘Public Footpath to the River’, with the church on your right, and Tithecote Manor on your left. Follow the trail to the river and go up the first set of steps on the bridge. Then, turn left onto the Thames Path. Do not actually cross the bridge, unless you want to climb to the top and admire the views before coming back down!
Walk for 1.2mi alongside the Thames. Follow the gravel path, and when it ends continue into the next field via the wooden gate on the right. This area is Hurley Riverside Park, a popular place for camping in the summer.
Just before a private road, the footpath dips down to the right, very close to the river, with a fence on your left. At the end of the fence take the footpath to the left, marked ‘Wokingham Way’. Follow the path for the next 0.3mi until you meet the main road at Black Boys Inn. The Inn is a great place to stop for refreshments!
Walk in front of the Black Boys Inn and along the footpath to the left for about 66ft, until you see the trail on the other side of the road. Cross with care and go through the metal kissing gate and continue uphill for the next mile, staying right at the fork for the ‘Knowl Hill Bridleway Circuit’.
After a mile take the path on your left, through the wooden gate, for 0.3mi. It is signed with a cement marker for ‘Public Footpath for Honey Lane’. Don’t forget to turn around and admire the views from the top! Sheep often graze in these well-maintained fields, and red kites often soar overhead.
As the driveway dips down to the left, look for the narrow footpath on your right labelled ‘Chiltern Way/Berkshire Loop’. You will soon be returning to the woods!
After a quarter of a mile you will reach a wooden gate. Pass through the gate and turn right onto the trail in front of you, past the house on your left. Shortly after the house, take the trail to the left at the fork. Follow this trail over a muddy track until you reach another fork. Then, take the trail to the left until you reach Clifton House at the top.
Turn left at Clifton House and walk along the track for 0.3mi. As the track dips down look for the narrow footpath on your left marked with a wooden post and a yellow arrow. If you take the track downhill to the right, you’ve gone too far.
Follow this trail downhill, crossing back over the muddy track, until you reach a small lane. Pass through the metal kissing gate opposite. Follow this grassy path all the way along the right side of the field until you reach the metal kissing gate in the corner, next to a giant oak tree. Continue through the gate and follow the trail through the woods, then out the gate on the other side.
Walk directly across the field in front of you and through another metal kissing gate on the other side. Turn right on the track, then immediately left onto a grassy trail with fields on your right. Continue to follow the path straight ahead, crossing another trail at the halfway point, until you reach a gate in the left corner of the field. Pass through this gate into the woods and take the trail on the left, following the fence line until you reach a gate on the other side.
Continue through the gate on the clearly marked trail, between two fences, directly down the hill ahead of you. Cross the road at the bottom with care and continue straight ahead for another half a mile, through the village of Hurley, until you reach the car park where you started. Take your time and admire the historic cottages along the way. Stop into one of the local pubs or the village farm shop for refreshments!
Walking route highlights
The Village of Hurley
This small rural town is a charming stop along your hike for a rest and exploration. Considered to be largely an agricultural area, you’re sure to find delightful cheese shops, freshly made bread and shops even selling wool sweaters. The weir at Hurley Lock is also considered one of the best kayaking spots for freestyling in the U.K.
There are plenty of historic monuments to see while visiting Hurley, from The Olde Bell Inn, which is the oldest still-working inn in Britain, to the old manor estate of Hall Place, which is now the home of Berkshire College of Agriculture.
Recently named one of the best places to live in 2020, Hurley is full of charm from the stunning old houses and architecture, to the immaculate layout of the town where everything is within walking distance. There is truly no better place to take in the beauty of the River Thames.
The church near the trailhead was built c. 700AD, and is definitely worth a visit either before or after you hike.
If you fancy a picnic along the river, the village store sells sandwiches and snacks.
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