Purton - Slimbridge Wetlands Reserve - Purton
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Purton lies close to the banks of the River Severn, near the start of the Gloucester and Sharpness Canal. The canal opened in 1827 and at the time was the widest and deepest canal in the world, giving access to Gloucester and avoiding a dangerous bend in the Severn at Arlingham.
Slimbridge Wetlands Reserve covers an area of three square kilometres between the canal and river, upstream from Purton. About 500,000 square metres of this is landscaped, where the world's largest collection of ducks, geese, swans and flamingos can be visited by the paying public.
From Purton, the walk follows The Severn Way, following the canal towpath as it steers its way around the reserve. The towpath is followed as far as the swing-bridge at Shepherd's Patch, which carries the road leading to the Slimbridge Visitor Centre. You could divert off-route and visit Slimbridge, but really need to spend a whole day here to take in everything it has to offer. Anyway, you may be lucky enough to see some of the birds while walking along the edge of the reserve.
After leaving the canal, the walk follows a pleasant and easygoing route back to Purton across fields and along country lanes. The Tudor Arms is passed shortly after leaving the canal, which was awarded CAMRA's 'Gloucester Country Pub of the year' for three consecutive years from 2007 to 2009. Food is served all day, so this is a great place to stop along the route.
England - South West England - Gloucestershire - Severn Estuary
Birds, Mostly Flat, Pub, River, Wildlife
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