Headline walks in Warwickshire
Looking for an autumn walk worthy of front page news? Check out these 10 headline-grabbing walks from the highest points and best views to stunning autumn colour and pub stops
Baddesley Clinton National Trust
Enjoy the 45-minute estate walk in the grounds of this secluded moated Tudor country home (1.8m), a 5m walk to Packwood House, the Heart of England Way countryside walk (2.8m) and easy walk along the Grand Union canal via Rowington Church, the Heart of England Way and Kingwood Junction (3 – 5m). It’s £12 entry for adults and £6 for children (non members).
Kingsbury Water Park, Kingsbury
Does walking around 15 lakes and 600 acres of country park sound enough to tire you, the kids and the dog out? We thought so. There’s loads of gorgeous trails around this park along with birds and wildlife to spot. While swimming in the lakes isn’t allowed (they’re old gravel pits so can be really deep) there’s some areas to do water sports, a ridable miniature railway and bike hire available. Or just fill up a flask (hip or coffee, we won’t judge) and head out.
Burton Dassett Hills, near Southam
You like unspoilt, rolling hills with magnificent views? Here’s the place to come. This 100-acre Warwickshire council-owned country park has a series of rugged hilltops with panoramic views and Fox Covert – a small woodland with a surfaced footpath. Historic points of interest include the beacon, quarry remains and nearby 12th Century All Saints Church. On site there’s a car park with card payment parking machines and importantly, an ice cream van during weekends.
The Crabmill Canal and Country Trail, Preston Bagot
An easy 3.6 mile loop trail, this route takes you on a countryside loop from The Crabmill pub near to Henley-in-Arden taking in a canal lock, streams, and Preston Bagot church. There are a few stiles, so maybe not so good for pushchairs.
Oakley Woods near Bishops Tachbrook
One of the area’s largest accessible ancient woodlands, this 116-acre plantation woodland dates to the 16th century is very peaceful with two marked walking trails. There’s lots of wildlife to spot – 200 species were counted here by Warwickshire Wildlife Trust from minibeasts like wolf spider and red-tailed bumblebees to birds like the great spotted woodpecker and blackcap. Within the wood there’s Oakley Wood Camp – a scheduled ancient monument site believed to have been a Bronze Age or Iron Age fort.
Norton Lindsay to Gannaway Woods loop, nr Warwick
A walk that starts and ends at a pub is always a good thing. This one sets off from Warwickshire’s first community-owned pub, The New Inn, in the pretty village of Norton Lindsay. This mid-length 8km route covers rural footpaths, fields, with panoramic views across the English Civil War battle of Edgehill site on the edge of the Cotswolds. The walk is one of six circular walks from the pub included on their website here. Wellies advised, and a large gin when you get back (you definitely deserve it).
Draycote Water Reservoir Loop, Kites Hardwick, nr Dunchurch
I usually walk around here at least once or twice a week – it’s very peaceful after a frantic week at work, gazing out across the water, watching the sailing boats bobbing around. There’s alpacas too in some of the adjacent fields. It’s a 5 mile loop and takes around 1.5 hours, pretty flat with a path all the way around and there’s a handy car park. And it’s a good one for people who like fishing and twitchers – there are bird-watching huts dotted along the route. The play area is open for kids but dogs can’t be walked around the reservoir. Car parking is £5 all day or £3 for 2 hours. Need a pick-me-up afterwards? There’s Square Coffee nearby and The Waterside Restaurant onsite.
Packwood House National Trust
There are four walks: a circular walk around Packwood, Packwood House to Baddesley Clinton along the Stratford-upon-Avon Canal, the family-friendly Packwood welly walk with den building and wildlife spotting along the way, plus a gentle stroll from Packwood to St Giles. Open 10am – 3pm. Book ahead. It’s £5 to visit the grounds for adults and £2.50 for children (non members).
Piles Coppice Wood and Brandon Reach, near Binley Woods
Piles Coppice is an untouched beautiful ancient woodland off the A46 on the edge of Coventry/Rugby. Part of the Forest of Arden, it’s mentioned in the Domesday Book and was praised by woodland expert Oliver Rackham. It has incredible biodiversity, small-leaved limes and rare wildlife including bats, Red Data Book moths, the lesser spotted woodpecker and a fungus previously only recorded in Hampshire. A hidden gem, it links to Brandon Reach. Both are managed by Warwickshire Wildlife Trust.
Hartshill Hayes, Nuneaton
There’s more than 100 acres of beautiful woodland to amble about in here, with hill top, panoramic views over the Anker valley and four counties on a clear day. It’s mostly made up of ancient, hilly woodland and has an adventure play ground to really make sure you can tire the kids out. When you’ve finished your trek there’s a tea kiosk so you can grab a (well-deserved) coffee.