View of the Weald from Brenchley

View of the Weald from Brenchley

David Hodgkinson

Walking in Tunbridge Wells

With some of the best landscapes in the country and a fantastic choice of public footpaths, the best way to see the glorious countryside of Kent and Sussex that surrounds Royal Tunbridge Wells is on foot.

By slowing down and absorbing the scenery around you, you’ll gain a new perspective and see so much more.

Here you can roam for miles or take a gentle stroll; walk with the family or wander freely.

Some of the Best Walks in the Kent Countryside 

The marked long distance walking routes around the Tunbridge Wells region are some of the best walks in Kent, an area ideal for walking, rambling, tramping and strolling!

The Tunbridge Wells Circular Walk has 27½ miles (44.3 km) of paths surrounding the town, with link paths to the Royal town centre.

This provides a real challenge for those who want to spend several days in the area.

Alternatively, it can be tackled in smaller portions for a more leisurely walk through Kent country.

The trail passes quite a few points of interest along the way, such as Groombridge Place Gardens and the outstanding Chagall windows at All Saints' Church in Tudeley, acting as a good introduction to some of the sights of the local area.

Rest assured, there are some refreshing and inviting inns along the Tunbridge Wells Circular Walk too!

The Wealdway walk runs across the counties of Kent and Sussex across the chalk ridges of the North and South Downs and through the Weald stretching for almost 80 miles (126.8km).

It begins from Old Father Thames, our famous river at Gravesend in North Kent, and wends its way through Royal Tunbridge Wells before finally running out of land at the seaside in Eastbourne, Sussex.

The Sussex Border Path, as its name suggests, runs along the county borders of Kent, West Sussex and East Sussex, over the South Downs towards East Grinstead, passing south of Royal Tunbridge Wells to Bewl Water and Hawkhurst and then finishing on the coast in Rye.

The 150 mile walk meanders through unblemished countryside and quaint villages with inviting and friendly pubs offering good traditional food and beer.

Visit the Inspiration for Winnie The Pooh

True Pooh fans can enjoy a game of Poohsticks on Pooh Bridge near the village of Hartfield, a short 20 minute drive away.

Nearby, Ashdown Forest is the creative birthplace of Hundred Aker Wood in AA Milne's Winnie the Pooh stories.

The Forest is a protected reserve made up of 2,500 acres of rare and threatened heath habitat interwoven with small trails and bridleways to enjoy.

Some of the Best National Trails in the UK

If you are a keen hiker who loves a challenge the National Trails of the North Downs Way and South Downs Way are within easy reach.

You only need to walk a section of these trails to make a wonderful day out in the countryside.

Alternatively, stay longer, walk further and really explore. The trails link to an extensive rights of way network across Kent and Sussex.

Local Walks in the Countryside

Many of the local walks start from the villages and towns such as Goudhurst, Paddock Wood, Lamberhurst and Cranbrook, with their rich history and heritage they are captivating places to stop and linger.

There’s no rush, so pause, take the time to discover more about our rural villages.

Explore Kent has lots of downloadable walking guides, find their link below. Here is a sample of three in the area.

  1. The Goudhurst walk (A Walk Through Time) is a ten mile circular route that goes through the village and out through ancient woodland awash with bluebells in the spring. South of the village there are stunning views of the fields, orchards, oast houses and woods.
     
  2. The Cranbrook Walk is just three miles and takes you into the Wealden farmlands and up to Sissinghurst.
     
  3. The town of Paddock Wood is the starting point for the 5½ mile circular Paddock Wood walk that includes farmland and woodland.

Walking for Everybody

Walking the Tunbridge Wells Common and Rusthall Common trails are the perfect way to discover the amazing wildlife and plants that live on the the doorstep.

There are shorter routes for those with little legs at Dunorlan Park, Broadwater Warren RSPB Nature Reserve and Hargate Forest. Also find a few short toddler walks on the Explore Kent website.

What will you see and hear down in the woods?

Can you identify that birdsong, plant or leaf?

The Forest Way is an old disused railway track that runs from Groombridge to Forest Row passing through classic Wealden countryside with panoramas of the rolling hills.

There are several circular walks leading off Forest Way into the adjoining countryside and because it is a flat trail it is accessible to all.

For information on walks, countryside and green spaces which are accessible to those using wheelchairs, mobility scooters, pushchairs and buggies, visit accessiblecountryside.org.uk

You set the pace

Did you know that at least 70% of Tunbridge Wells Borough is designated as High Weald Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, giving it a unique and protected status?

Walking is a free and healthy activity and there is always something to appreciate in all seasons.

So what are you waiting for?

Grab your walking boots, get out and explore our spectacular countryside.

Further details of all the above routes and other local walks, as well as accommodation within easy reach of the routes, can be obtained by contacting the Tourist Information Centre.

Ordnance Survey maps cover the local area and give details of all the footpaths with public access too.

External Links

Tunbridge Wells Circular Walk
Ashdown Forest
The Wealdway
The Sussex Border Path
North Downs Way and South Downs Way
Explore Kent
Forest Way
RSPB Broadwater Warren

Further Recommendations

Local woodland and nature reserves
Tours and sightseeing

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Number of items: 59

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  1. Add Pashley Manor Gardens to your Itinerary

    Pashley Manor Gardens

    Type

    Garden

    Ticehurst, Wadhurst

    At Pashley you will discover 11 acres of beautiful borders and vistas - the culmination of a lifetime of passion for gardening and an admiration of the tradition of the English country garden.

  2. Add Spa Valley Railway to your Itinerary

    Spa Valley Railway

    Type

    Steam Railway

    Royal Tunbridge Wells

    Spa Valley Railway takes you on a picturesque railway journey through through the beautiful Wealden countryside from Tunbridge Wells to High Rocks, Groombridge and Eridge

  3. Tunbridge Wells Circular Walk

    Type

    Waymarked Trail

    Tunbridge Wells

    The Tunbridge Wells Circular Walk is a 27.5 mile (44.3km) route that explores the wide variety of fertile and beautiful countryside around Royal Tunbridge Wells, a town within the High Weald Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty on the borders of Kent and East Sussex.

  4. Add Chalybeate Spring to your Itinerary

    Chalybeate Spring

    Type

    Spa

    Royal Tunbridge Wells

    Visitors came to see and be seen in fashionable Tunbridge Wells, but above all to 'take the waters'.

  5. Add Groombridge Place and The Enchanted Forest to your Itinerary

    Groombridge Place and The Enchanted Forest

    Type

    Garden

    Royal Tunbridge Wells

    Groombridge Place near Tunbridge Wells offers a fun day out for all the family with award winning gardens, and the Enchanted Forest, with its giant tree swings and other exciting thrills to discover.

  6. Add Sissinghurst Castle Garden to your Itinerary

    Sissinghurst Castle Garden

    Type

    Garden

    Cranbrook

    Famous, stunning gardens set in the remains of a large Elizabethan house amidst the unspoilt Weald countryside.

  7. Add Bedgebury National Pinetum & Forest to your Itinerary

    Bedgebury National Pinetum & Forest

    Type

    Forest

    Goudhurst

    Bedgebury National Pinetum & Forest is a magnificent place for healthy outdoor activities.

  8. Add Cranbrook Union Windmill to your Itinerary

    Cranbrook Union Windmill

    Type

    Windmill

    Cranbrook

    The tallest surviving smock mill in the British Isles, measuring 72 feet to the top of the cap.

  9. Add St. Mary's Church Lamberhurst to your Itinerary

    St. Mary's Church Lamberhurst

    Type

    Church / Chapel

    Royal Tunbridge Wells

  10. Add Salomons Estate to your Itinerary

    Salomons Estate

    Type

    Museum

    Royal Tunbridge Wells

    Salomons Estate – Kent’s undiscovered gem

    Constructed by Decimus Burton for Sir David Salomon, it was the first house in Britain to use domestic electricity.

  11. Add Bewl Water to your Itinerary

    Bewl Water

    Type

    Lake / Reservoir

    Lamberhurst

    Set in the heart of the High Weald and surrounded by 800 acres of outstanding natural beauty, Bewl Water is the perfect place to watch the seasons change and to enjoy some healthy family fun for all ages.

  12. Add Kino Cinema Hawkhurst to your Itinerary

    Kino Cinema Hawkhurst

    Type

    Cinema

    Hawkhurst

    Kino is the UK's first purely digital cinema with the full HD experience.

  13. Add Cranbrook Museum to your Itinerary

    Cranbrook Museum

    Type

    Museum

    Cranbrook

    A 'must' for every visitor to the Weald.

  14. Add Trinity Theatre and Arts Centre to your Itinerary

    Trinity Theatre and Arts Centre

    Type

    Theatre

    Royal Tunbridge Wells

    Located in a converted Grade A listed church by the noted architect Decimus Burton, Trinity Theatre hosts a varied programme of art exhibitions, theatre, films, dance, opera and music productions.

  15. Add Bowles Outdoor Centre to your Itinerary

    Bowles Outdoor Centre

    Type

    Adventure Park / Playground

    Eridge Green

    A day and residential outdoor centre with accommodation offering rock climbing, skiing, snowboarding, canoeing and development courses and fun!

  16. Add High Rocks to your Itinerary

    High Rocks

    Type

    Natural Feature

    Tunbridge Wells

    Acres of breathtaking sandstone rocks interlinked with bridges provide a scenic walk in a tranquil woodland setting.

  17. Add Scotney Castle to your Itinerary

    Scotney Castle

    Type

    Garden

    Lamberhurst

    Not one but two houses! Victorian country house and ruined 14th century moated castle set in one of England's most romantic 'picturesque' style gardens.

  18. Add The Queen's Hall Theatre to your Itinerary

    The Queen's Hall Theatre

    Type

    Theatre

    Cranbrook

    Providing entertainment in the heart of the Kent Weald.

  19. Add Temper Temper The Chocolate Experience to your Itinerary

    Temper Temper The Chocolate Experience

    Type

    Cookery School

    Tunbridge Wells

    Have a go at making your own delicious confections!

  20. Hawkhurst Fish Farm

    Add Hawkhurst Fish Farm to your Itinerary

    Hawkhurst Fish Farm

    Type

    Fish Farm

    Hawkhurst

    Carp fishing for the family with a choice of 7 lakes, cafe and pottery.

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