Old Winchester Hill Circular Walk

Difficulty
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Moderate
Duration
This reflects the estimated time the majority of users will take on this trail. If you are slower, add time to the top-end figure. If you are fast, then you may complete this route faster than this time range.
2-2.5h
Distance
This reflects the return distance of this route as measured by the GPS file.
7.2 km
Elevation
This reflects the total elevation gained throughout this route as measured by the GPS file. This includes all ascents and descents, and is higher than what is quoted in most route guides, which simply measure the distance between the starting-point and high-point of the route.
234 m
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Directions to Trailhead
Old Winchester Hill Circular Walk

The Old Winchester Hill Circular Walk takes you on a journey through the English countryside. Prepare yourself for some down and uphill walking as you wander along the rolling hillsides. This breathtaking walk will display why it is so popular among locals and tourists alike.

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Route Description for Old Winchester Hill Circular Walk

This beautiful walk along the countryside does have a few mentionable challenges along the way. One challenge is the up and down hill nature of this walk, which has one steep slope measuring about 150 m. It is not incredibly strenuous, however, it is good to know, so you can come prepared by wearing proper walking shoes. The other small challenge is navigating gates and stiles, however, these are found during most walks in the English countryside.

The beauty of this walk is the incredibly captivating scenery that surrounds you as you wander along the path. Rolling hills blanketed by bright green grass can be seen across the distance as you make your way through this area. Keep your eyes open for any wildlife that could be wandering the same path along with you .

This walk begins at the carpark, where you will cross the road and veer left, coming across a small path on the South Downs Way. Take this path and continue until you reach the first gate. At this gate, continue to follow the path. You will pass through two more gates as you follow the South Downs Way.

After travelling for 400 m, you will arrive at a cluster of barns. Turn left and follow the tarmac road, indicated by the South Downs Way sign, until you reach a bridge. Continue over this bridge and upon arriving at another barn, turn right to remain on South Downs Way. You will follow a road that is laced with a wire fence that will open up into a meadow, and you will go right as you begin to go uphill.

Follow a path lined with trees for 750 m until you get to the wooden barrier. You will see a small gap. Head through this small gap, which takes you to a road, leaving South Downs Way. Turn right onto the road.Continue following the signs for South Downs Way and you will come across 3 houses where the path will begin to go downhill slightly. Pass through the stile and prepare yourself for the steep climb. Another stile will appear, head through it, and make your way through a treed area. In the next little bit, while following the path, you will pass through multiple stiles and gates. At almost the end of the walk, you will come across a seat, where you will be rewarded with stunning, open views of the surrounding area. Continue for about 200 m to arrive back at the car park where you began.

Trail highlights

Old Winchester Hill

Old Winchester Hill is a 164 acre National Nature Reserve located opposite Beacon Hill. An Iron Age hill fort sits atop the summit of the hill and Bronze Age barrows can also be seen. Butterflies and bird life are abundant on the hill as well as several species of orchid.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long is the walk at Old Winchester Hill?

The walk at Old Winchester Hill is 7.2 km and would take about 2.5 - 3 hours to complete.

Is the Old Winchester Hill Walk dog friendly?

Yes, dogs are allowed to accompany their owners on the Old Winchester Hill walk.

Is there adequate road signage?

Yes, on the Old Winchester Hill Walk there is great signage.

Is the walk steep at all?

There are steep areas of the walk over the rolling hills on the Old Winchester Hill path and the elevation reaches 234 m.

Insider Hints for Old Winchester Hill Circular Walk

  • If you cannot get into the designated car park, there is a church and pub nearby that has parking that you are allowed to use
  • Head over in the summer months and you may catch a glimpse of chalkhill blue and meadow brown butterflies
  • Look for the Meon Valley railway line that has since been abandoned but holds stories of trainloads of fruit chugging along this area to get to the markets
  • Stop at the Shoe Inn nearby for a pint and home-cooked meal after your walk
  • Beside the Shoe Inn is the Southwick Brewhouse, which used to be the Golden Lion Pub previously used by Montgomery and Eisenhower when they were planning the Normandy Invasion. This has since been closed and transformed into a Victoria Brewery museum and shop.

Getting to the Old Winchester Hill Circular Walk Trailhead

To get to the Old Winchester Hill Circular Walk from Petersfield, head South on Tilmore Road toward Station Road. Take A3, Chalton Lane and East Meon Road to Droxford Road. In 18.2 km, arrive at your destination.

Route Information

  • When to do

    April - October

  • Backcountry Campsites

    No

  • Pets allowed

    Yes

  • Family friendly

    No

  • Route Signage

    Average

  • Crowd Levels

    Moderate

  • Route Type

    Circuit

Old Winchester Hill Circular Walk Elevation Graph

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