Windsor - The Great Park - Staines

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Despite being quite close to London and never far from civilisation, this linear walk takes in a remarkable variety of landscapes. The first part starts in Windsor under the shadow of the castle and makes its way into Windsor Great Park. The park was first used as a royal hunting forest in Saxon times and has been developed and landscaped over the centuries. Deer are still kept in the park and you'll usually be lucky enough to see some, although they are shy and tend to keep away from the main paths. At the end of the Long Walk from Windsor is the Copper Horse statue of George III on top of Snow Hill. This hill also provides views which stretch across to the Chilterns in one direction and London in the other; the City and Wembley Stadium are both visible on clear days.

The walk makes its way out of the park and then via footpaths to the quintessentially English Englefield Green, with a pub on one side of the village green and cricket matches on summer days. At the edge of the village the walk passes the Air Force Memorial. This is a very peaceful memorial commemorating over 20,000 airmen and women who lost their lives during the Second World War. It is worth a short diversion and also has the best views of the walk from the roof of the tower.

The route now drops back down into the Thames Valley via the National Trust woodlands at Coopers Hill, to Runnymede. The walk passes the 1957 memorial to the signing of the Magna Carta and then crosses meadows to the banks of the Thames, which is then followed all the way into Staines.

England - South England - Berkshire - Thames Valley

Features

Cafe, Castle, Flowers, Great Views, National Trust, Pub, Public Transport, River, Tea Shop, Toilets, Wildlife, Woodland

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