Help keep our trails and parks open during COVID-19 by committing to social distancing. Some trails or park services may be closed this weekend so check with local authorities before heading out.
Learn more

#2 of 2 Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty in Wiltshire

Best trails in Cranborne Chase and West Wiltshire Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty

126 Reviews
Looking for a great trail in Cranborne Chase and West Wiltshire Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, Wiltshire? AllTrails has 20 great hiking trails, trail running trails, walking trails and more, with hand-curated trail maps and driving directions as well as detailed reviews and photos from hikers, campers, and nature lovers like you. Just looking to take a quick stroll? We've got 12 easy trails in Cranborne Chase and West Wiltshire Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty ranging from 0.9 to 14 miles and from 101 to 846 feet above sea level. Start checking them out and you'll be out on the trail in no time!
Description

Cranborne Chase is a chalk plateau in central southern England and is the sixth largest AONB in the country. As some of the wooded areas in the chase are centuries old, they possess a diverse ground flora that is associated with such sites. The area is one of the richest in southern England for numbers of lichen species; over 160 have been recorded. The landscape of Cranborne Chase varies from where the chalk downland rises sharply to the rounded summits of Breeze Hill. The park is home to another prominent top, Melbury Hill above Melbury Abbas. There are many walking paths that offer visitors vast lookouts to the surrounding areas.

Show more
Map of trails in Cranborne Chase and West Wiltshire Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty
Park information
Acreage:
16,640 acres
Contact
+44 1785 619185
Helpful links
Top trails (20)
#1 - Cranborne Chase Circular
Cranborne Chase and West Wiltshire Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty
easyYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(8)
Length: 14 mi • Est. 6 h 41 m
#2 - Broad Chalke and Fifield Downs
Cranborne Chase and West Wiltshire Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(20)
Length: 7.2 mi • Est. 2 h 53 m
This peaceful journey explores the rolling chalk downs within Cranborne Chase AONB, with plenty of nature and glorious views along the way. The final stretch takes you alongside the River Ebble, a beautiful chalk stream still used for growing watercress. The walk has several climbs and descents throughout. Whilst some of the tracks are surfaced with stone or tarmac, some of the paths are unmade and can get very muddy or slippery after rain and in the winter months. There are no stiles on route but you will need to negotiate some single gates and two kissing gates. The majority of the route crosses arable land so there is no livestock for most of the way, but you will cross one pasture at the end of the walk, which sometimes holds cattle. The kissing gates and cattle pasture can be avoided by following a stretch of village road instead, if you prefer. There are two short stretches of path that are very narrow (and maybe a bit overgrown in summer) so the route would not be suitable for pushchairs or disability buggies. There are lots of game birds in the area so take care with dogs. Allow 3.5 hours.Show more
#3 - The Bath Arms and Longleat Estate
Cranborne Chase and West Wiltshire Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray Star(22)
Length: 4.9 mi • Est. 2 h 34 m
A walk from The Bath Arms in Crockerton, near Warminster in Wiltshire. NOTE: The Bath Arms pub may be closed, but the walking route itself is fully open (just park on the roadside). The walking route explores the beautiful surroundings of the Longleat Estate, a stunning area of mixed woodland with a large lake at its centre. The walk has several climbs and descents throughout, including a couple of fairly steep sections. There are a couple of sections walking on village roads and a country lane without pavements, so take care of the traffic at these points. A few sections within the woodland can get very muddy at times so good boots are a must. There are no stiles, kissing gates or livestock on route, making it ideal for dogs and families (although not suitable for pushchairs). Some sections of path on the return leg are quite narrow so could be prone to becoming a little overgrown in the late summer. Approximate time 2.5 hours. Show more
#4 - Heavens Gate Circular
Cranborne Chase and West Wiltshire Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty
easyYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray Star(11)
Length: 1.7 mi • Est. 55 m
#5 - Fontmell and Melbury Downs Circular Walk
Cranborne Chase and West Wiltshire Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty
moderateYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(12)
Length: 4.2 mi • Est. 2 h 21 m
#6 - Grovelly Wood
Cranborne Chase and West Wiltshire Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty
easyYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray Star(10)
Length: 3.3 mi • Est. 1 h 48 m
#7 - Melbury Beacon and Downs
Cranborne Chase and West Wiltshire Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty
easyYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray Star(6)
Length: 2.4 mi • Est. 1 h 20 m
A short but fairly strenuous circular walk taking in a chalk downland area of natural beauty which is managed by the National Trust. The walk starts from Spread Eagle Hill and heads out climbing quite steeply to the top of Melbury Hill, giving views for miles around across the surrounding downland, and then returning along Compton Down. The area is well known for its butterflies, orchids and glow-worms. The walk follows paths around the steep sloping downland and the paths will get slippery and muddy after wet weather. There are two stiles and a couple of gates. The first stile is open underneath for dogs to pass through, but the second stile is more enclosed so dogs may need a lift over and it also has a steep drop on the opposite side so some people may also need a hand! Dogs are welcome on the downs as long as they are under close control as the area is grazed with cattle. The area is very isolated so there are no refreshment or toilet facilities. Approximate time 1 to 1.5 hours.Show more
#8 - Mere Down Circular
Cranborne Chase and West Wiltshire Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty
easyYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray Star(6)
Length: 4.3 mi • Est. 2 h 30 m
#9 - Kingston Lacy
Cranborne Chase and West Wiltshire Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty
easyYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarGray StarGray StarGray Star(3)
Length: 2.3 mi • Est. 1 h 6 m
#10 - East Woodlands and Longleat Woods
Cranborne Chase and West Wiltshire Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty
easyYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow StarYellow Star(7)
Length: 1.6 mi • Est. 51 m
Showing results 1 - 10 of 20