Tetbury - Highgrove Estate - Westonbirt Arboretum - Tetbury

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The walk starts from the small Cotswold town of Tetbury, famous for its antique shops. It proceeds onto the Highgrove Estate, home of Prince Charles since 1981. You cannot see the house itself, as it is hidden well by trees, but you will walk through the heart of the estate and see the Prince's beef herd of Aberdeen-Angus females and Angus bulls.

You will then continue onto Westonbirt Arboretum, which is a wonderful collection of trees from all over the world, set in beautifully landscaped countryside. It also has a wide variety of birds, animals and wildflowers. It is well worth visiting in October or November, when it is famous for its autumn colour spectacular. The arboretum is a major visitor attraction for which there is a charge to visit, but the walk follows public rights of way which pass right through the heart of the arboretum and which can can be walked along free of charge.

On the return journey, you will pass through Westonbirt Village and the impressive Westonbirt House, which is now a girls' boarding school, then back through the Highgrove Estate.

England - South West England - Gloucestershire - Cotswolds

Features

Birds, Butterflies, Flowers, Mostly Flat, Public Transport, Stately Home, Wildlife, Woodland
20/10/2015 - Peter Metcalfe

An enjoyable walk on a lovely warm, sunny, late October day. However, some notes: 1): At point 6 - there were some lively horses that took exception to our 2 dogs (who were on leads & well behaved) So we went straight on (shortest & safest route) to the road & missed point 7. 2): According to the Arboretum's website the Old Arboretum (the downs) is out of bounds to dogs & the path (points 11 to 14) dogs have to be on leads. So at point 11 we carried on & joined the Macmillan Way through the Silk Wood which was absolutely wonderful, very busy, but still good. After leaving the woods we turned left along a path to Willesley & then onto Westonbirt village - rejoining the walk at point 15. Added about a mile to the walk but worth it.

02/08/2015 - Peter Newman

For info at the moment and for the next few months we believe, the Bridleway along past the Arboretum plant shop is closed as they are installing a tree top walkway. Today there was no warning of this at the arboretum end and we walked through only to find we could not get out at the main road end due to it being fenced off and closure signs! Have emailed them as it's possible someone has taken a closed sign down, but don't go that way even if there is no sign as you can't get out and have to turn back! Otherwise a good walk.

02/01/2012 - Graham Beale

We completed this walk today. It took us about 4 hours with about three tea stops during the route. It is a lovely walk (despite the intermittent wind, hail and rain!) through undulating Cotswold countryside. Certainly recommend. A few things to note however: Just before stage 17 after passing the golf course on your right, you'll come to a gate with a red sign which states there is no public access. I can only assume this is incorrect, as the stile pictured on the stage 17 guidelines can only be accessed by passing through this gate. I can only assume that the sign is meant to be restricting cars going on the track to the right rather than ramblers going onwards. After going through the stile at stage 17 you'll meet about 3 electric fences - which you'll have to step over or under. There's a sign facing the other direction which states that the white tape fence isn't electric - but we spotted a battery connected to it, so we avoided touching it. Another thing to watch out for after stage 24 is the bridleway via Wormwell Lane. If it has been raining, this track turns particularly muddy and you'll need good walking shoes plus gaiters if available. On a dry day, it should be fine.

17/11/2011 - Andy Packer

I did this walk with my partner on a brillinat fine dry day during the middle of October. We are both quite strong hill walkers, so found a flat walk quite a nice and easy change. This did however mean that whilst there is plenty of wildlife to see and the arboretum is splendid, there are not many views. I would also recommend the end of October as a better time of the year to go as the Arboretum was just starting to change colour, another 2 weeks would have made it much more Autumnal. The walk took us 3hrs and 12mins. I do have some updates to the route which I feel may help others to navigate it. They are - Waypoint 18 - There are two kissing gates but only one mentioned in the guide which had me stumped as I started to search for the left hand edge of the field before we were in said field. Waypoint 19 - There is no need to do a U turn, the stile is obviously on the left. Waypoint 29 - The stile in the field is heavily overgrown and as such we could not see it. We used the gate just to the left of it (and then found the stile afterwards) Waypoint 29 - The field that you cut diagonally across was freshly ploughed with no perimeter reserved for the footpath. It is the farmers duty to leave the footpath accessible, or offer an alternative, neither was done so we walk straight across the ploughed field. I did also GPS track this walk, you can see my route around it as well as other interesting details by visiting my Trimble page, just click this link - http://www.trimbleoutdoors.com/ViewTrip/1384438

20/08/2011 - Walkingworld Administrator

Our thanks to Sean Meek for his update for this walk. August 2011. Adrian (Admin)

19/08/2011 - Robert Greybrook

Forgot to mention in earlier comments - no sign of the aggressive Alsation, just a small noisy Jack Russell!

18/08/2011 - Robert Greybrook

Using GPS the distance was 8.7 miles, taking a walking time of 3.05 hours. Excellent walk, with a few minor problems. Waymark 18:Go through field, head straight across to kissing gate, continue straight ahead to next kissing gate, keeping to LH edge of field, go over new stile (no fp sign yet) and almost immediately on the left is another new stile, go over this then follow waymark 19. Waymark 20 : On passing the tree on left, would be better saying on passing woods on your left. Waymark 29 to 30: The footpath diagonally across field is badly maintained and is cropped across the path, I have reported this to Gloucestershire CC

04/11/2009 - DENNIS M DOWNEY

I did this walk on Saturday 31st October 2009, with a coach party of visitors from North Wales, who commented on the wide variety of stile types on this walk. Dennis Downey Walkherefordshire.com

23/04/2009 - Sean Meek

I would guess the missing sign is just after waymark 22 - just after the alsation, as this is the only time the walk goes through a field with horses. There are two gates here - the correct gate to go through heads into the horse field, crosses a stile on the other side and then onto the road. The other gate leads onto a track which could also be followed along the side of the field to the road, but this is obviously private. However, I couldn't blame anyone for taking the wrong gate here as the gate into the field is very difficult to open and it's not the easiest gate to climb either.

16/04/2009 - Christopher Leach

Beautiful walk. Excellent. All very easy to follow. Beware at about stage 22. There is a fairly aggressive alsation dog at the farm house. Also there is a waymark sign missing for the way through through the field with the horses. We went slightly astray and were told off by a haughty lady with her horses. She did redirect us and all was well after that. Embarrassing though as we are middle aged responsible walkers!!

23/06/2008 - Bernie Pottrell

This walk has rapidly become my wife's and my favourite walk and we have walked it at various times of year. Just a couple of things I'd mention. Whilst all the farmer's we have met on this walk so far have been very friendly and chatty, they do like their electric fences! Just keep your eyes peeled, because some of them are not easy to spot, especially those within feet of stiles!! Oh, by the way, the path between WP24 and WP 25 can get a little (well, a lot really!) muddy after rain. Despite this, we have yet to discover a more delightful way of spending a Sunday afternoon. Thanks for this one Mr. Meek!!

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