The Ridgeway

  • Featured Walks /
  • The Ridgeway

Share

The Ridgeway National Trail follows a historic trading route that has been used by travellers, herdsmen and the military for thousands of years. Almost entirely off road this walk starts at Overton Hill, close to Avebury and the largest Stone Circle in Europe. From here you walk broadly north east through some of Southern England's finest countryside as you cross the Wessex Downs of Wiltshire and Oxfordshire before ending your journey at Ivinghoe Beacon in Buckinghamshire.

If you prefer to cycle the trail see Cycle The Ridgeway for information, advice and the group support we provide.

  • 85 miles / 136 kms
  • 6965 feet / 2123 metres
  • 7-8 days
  • Avebury - Ivinghoe Beacon

Itinerary

The walking distances each day will vary depending on the accommodation you choose each night. Large groups may need to use hotels and inns in towns and villages nearby. On all days there are country pubs to stop for lunch although a small diversion from the trail is usually needed. Alternatively the hotels and inns you stay with can provide a packed lunch, which you collect on departure.

Avebury Stone Circle, Avebury, Wiltshire, England

Avebury to Ivinghoe Beacon

Day 1 - Avebury to Ogbourne St George - 12 miles / 19 kms
Day 2 - Ogbourne St George to Sparsholt - 14.5 miles / 23 kms
Day 3 - Sparsholt to Compton - 15.5 miles / 25 kms
Day 4 - Compton to Wallingford - 13.5 miles / 22 kms
Day 5 - Wallingford to Aston Rowant - 14 miles / 22.5 kms
Day 6 - Aston Rowant to Wendover - 13 miles / 21 kms
Day 7 - Wendover to Ivinghoe Beacon - 12.5 / 20 kms

The Ridgeway National Trail, Wiltshire, England

Part 1: Avebury to Goring

Day 1 - Avebury to Ogbourne St George - 12 miles / 19 kms
Day 2 - Ogbourne St George to Sparsholt - 14.5 miles / 23 kms
Day 3 - Sparsholt to Compton - 15.5 miles / 25 kms
Day 4 - Compton to Goring - 8.5 miles / 13.5 kms

Oxford skyline, Oxford, Oxfordshire, England

Part 2: Goring to Ivinghoe Beacon

Day 1 - Goring to Wallingford - 7 miles / 11.5 kms
Day 2 - Wallingford to Aston Rowant - 14 miles / 22.5 kms
Day 3 - Aston Rowant to Wendover - 13 miles / 21 kms
Day 4 - Wendover to Ivinghoe Beacon - 12.5 / 20 kms

From the Beacon there is a 20 minute road walk to Ivinghoe village pub for a celebratory drink or a 3.5 mile walk back along the trail to Tring train station.

There is parking at the start of the trail near Avebury although it is a little isolated. There is also a car park in Marlborough. For groups travelling to Avebury by train there are stations at Swindon, with connections to Bristol and London Paddington, and Pewsey with services from Plymouth, Taunton, Newbury, Reading and London Paddington.

The half way point is Goring. There are services from Goring & Streatley train station to Oxford, Reading and London Paddington.

At the eastern end of the trail there are train stations at Wendover, with services to Aylesbury and London Marylebone, and Tring with connections to Milton Keynes, Northampton, Watford Junction and London Euston.

Hotels & Inns

We have listed some of the better hotels and inns with links to TripAdvisor where you can read customer reviews and check prices and availability. If you like an early start, when booking accommodation check the time breakfast is served in the morning. All should be able to provide packed lunches. For those finishing late, check when evening meals end.

Marlborough is a compact, pretty town with a good range of restaurants and pubs. It is worth considering spending the night here before starting your walk. You can walk along a bridleway from Marlborough to the start of The Ridgeway but that adds 2.5 miles to your first day and purists will be upset as you miss the first two miles of the trail. When you arrive at Ivinghoe Beacon the closest hotels and inns are in Aldbury and Tring, which are a 3.5 mile walk or short taxi transfer back along the trail.