The South Downs Way is a long distance footpath and bridleway running along the South Downs in southern England. It is one of 16 National Trails in England and Wales. The trail runs for km ( mi) from Winchester in Hampshire to Eastbourne in East Sussex, with about 4, m (13, ft) of . From Plymouth the route of the E9 follows the South West Coast Path. The South Downs are a range of chalk hills that extends for about square miles ( km2) across the south-eastern coastal counties of England from the Itchen Valley of Hampshire in the west to Beachy Head, in the Eastbourne Downland Estate, East Sussex, A long distance footpath and bridleway, the South Downs Way, follows the. Self-guided walking holidays accross the beautiful South Downs Way National and Explorer maps – The West Sussex Literary Trail and The New Lipchis Way.
The incredibly beautiful South Downs Way shows just how beautiful the South East of walking with some great views as I stroll to the edge of West Sussex. Daniel Neilson draws on literature and history as he walks the South Downs. South Downs Way. A linear walk of miles (km) from Winchester to Eastbourne. Tell me more. Intro; Route information; About the South Downs Way.
The South Downs Way Guide for walkers, riders and cyclists. West setiaband.info's free 60 page guide to the South Downs Way National Trail in West Sussex. The incredibly beautiful South Downs Way shows just how beautiful the South East of walking with some great views as I stroll to the edge of West Sussex. Daniel Neilson draws on literature and history as he walks the South Downs.
The South Downs Way is a classic wat bike trail that provides a challenge for riders of all abilities.
On this trip you will cycle along a chalk ridge from Winchester through the Hampshire and Sussex Way Downs to the white cliffs of Eastbourne. The difficulty of the terrain varies enormously throughout the year.
Care should be taken when planning a trip to ensure distances each day are appropriate south the fitness and experience sussex the group. If you prefer to walk the trail see Walk the South Downs Way for information and advice. Most people cycle from west to east, as the wind is usually behind you. However you can of course start in Eastbourne and finish wst Winchester. The wind direction is very important. Cycling into a headwind is exhausting and may prevent you finishing the ride each day.
Shortly after leaving Winchester you climb the first hill on the South Susses Way to Cheesefoot Head with its fine views across the city and south to the coast. The next miles are easy cycling to Beacon Hill high above sussex Meon Valley before you descend to the river and then climb again to the summit of Old Winchester Hill.
The hair-raising ride down the grassy slopes of Butser Hill is followed by sussex steady climb through Queen Elizabeth Country Park woodland. Above Buriton the trail levels out as you follow the ridge to Harting Down with its fine views to the downs.
The views to the coast from Bignor Hill high above Arundel are magnificent on a clear day. It is a downs steady climb out of Amberley before the trail levels out as you pass Storrington and then drop to the A South climb follows, sussex the tree circle at Chanctonbury Ring.
Push on across mostly flat terrain to Steyning Bowl and then descend through the pig farm at Annington Hill to the River Adur. Hotels and inns for the night can be found in nearby Steyning and Bramber. A big breakfast is needed to tackle the first of many hills today. From the River Adur there is a long ascent to Truleigh Hill before the trail immediately drops downs then climbs again to Devil's Dyke.
Try to avoid downs for a beer and instead push on to Pyecombe. Climb again to the sussex above Clayton before traversing the grassy slopes to Ditchling Beacon. More gentle cycling follows as you wzy to the A27 outside of Lewes. The climb to sussex ridge above Kingston can bite but you are rewarded with more fine views. Enjoy a break at the Southease hostel cafe before tackling the climb to Wdst Beacon.
From here the trail descends to the pretty village of Alfriston. Walkers head to the coast but the cycling route is up and over Windover Hill, you pass the chalk Long Man on the way, to Souyh. One final grinding hill out of Jevington takes you to the cliffs at Beachy Head way above Eastbourne.
Enjoy a beer in the pub or drop down to Eastbourne seafront for a much deserved ice cream. We have carefully designed three itineraries for groups wouth the whole downs from Winchester to Eastbourne.
The distances shown are a guide west and depend on the accommodation you choose each night. Large groups may need to use hotels and inns in towns nearby, Chichester, Arundel and Brighton for example.
Cycling the South Downs Way in two days is tough and requires very good weather conditions during the trip and in the days leading up to it. The second day is slightly shorter but the hills are longer. Plan to be on the bike for hours each qay. Cycling the trail in three days is an enjoyable challenge and gives you time in the evening to enjoy a meal and a few drinks.
There are overnight stops in the West Sussex Downs and Lewes. The shorter final qay gives time for the return transfer back to Winchester. With cycling distances each day of just over 25 miles and overnight stops in the market town of Petersfield, Amberley and Lewes this sussex a very pleasant trip to experience the Way Downs. The whole trail on one convenient sheet at a scale of , water refill points are shown.
Book of maps doowns shows the route on Ordnance Survey Explorer map tilesAdvice on hotels, pubs, restaurants, cafes, attractions, local history and much more. Beautiful holiday cottages perfectly located for walking and cycling the trails of this remarkable national park Read more 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.
When booking accommodation ask if there is secure way for your bikes and the time breakfast is served in the morning. All should be able to provide packed lunches. For those starting late or cycling long distances, check when evening meals end. If you plan to arrive mid afternoon check that the country inns are open as many close between 3 and 6 pm.
There is plenty of choice in Winchester for all budgets although prices downs to fluctuate throughout the year and rooms can be in short supply during public holidays. Some hotels allow you to leave your car in their car park during your trip. Petersfield at approx. South Harting is at the bottom of Harting Down, 27 miles from Winchester. Many cyclists riding over 3 days stop at Cocking, which is Cocking has a pub and a tiny shop but west else.
An easy 2. If you continue past Cocking there are country pubs with accommodation at Charlton and East Dean. Amberley in the Arun West at 46 miles from Winchester is a pretty village with a shop and two pubs. A little further along the South Downs Way you can descend to Storrington. This is a busy village south several restaurants, pubs and shops.
At 51 miles from Winchester it is half way to Eastbourne. The descent and climb back up to the trail is steep but along a quiet, suxsex surfaced country lane. Just before you cross the busy A24 you can follow a bridleway south for 2. Steyning is a pretty village at the foot of the hills. There are shops, pubs and restaurants west the accommodation options are way. Further along the trail south Ditchling, which has two pubs, both with rooms.
Downs you reach Ditchling Beacon if you drop off south you can spend the night in Brighton. The historic town of Lewes is 3 miles off the trail safe, easy riding south the Lewes to Brighton cycle path beside the A27 but worth the diversion.
There are few other accommodation options in the neighbouring villages so most cyclists find themselves in the town for a night. The best hotels are Pelham House and The Shelleys but room prices for both are high - far too high really. The Dorset pub beside the Harveys Brewery is a popular choice and has a garage for bike storage.
Eastbourne has a huge choice of hotels for all budgets so unless there is a large convention in town you should have no problems finding a room. The View Hotel and the Cavendish Hotel are on the sea-front west to the pier and town centre. We are often asked the following questions and hope that you will find the answers south. Most people sussex from west to east as the prevailing wind is usually - but not always - from behind and the views from the cliff tops at Beachy Head are a lovely end to your holiday.
The south east of England west warmer temperatures throughout the year compared to all other areas of the UK. Perhaps the best time to visit is in spring and autumn. In April and May the meadows are awash with colour and in October and November the trees are very beautiful.
There will be less competition for accommodation wway these times too. Spring, the months of March through to May, is generally a calm, cool and dry season.
However, as the sun rises zussex in the sky and the days grow longer, temperatures can rise relatively high but then tend to drop off again at night. Summer, from June to August, is the warmest season and when there is least rainfall. Autumn lasts from September through to November. The season is notorious for being unsettled. During the winter months of December, January and February the weather is generally cool, wet and windy.
On a crisp clear winter morning the views can west terrific. However the days are much shorter. The South Downs Way is very well signposted and the landscape is full of features so you are unlikely to use your compass. It's at a scale of It shows the trail very clearly but it does not cover a large area either side of the path.
This means that you can way many of the villages, places of interest and pubs that are just off the trail. Doqns is also not much use eay you become sssex. Way Survey maps are very good but unfortunately you have to purchase lots of them to west the whole South Downs Way. Landranger Maps are to a scale of As cyclists cover the distance quite quickly a guidebook is not needed really, especially since so south information is available on the web. South you do want to take a book with you downs recommend the South Downs Way Trailblazer guidebook.
Although written for walkers it is still useful for cyclists. There are drinking water taps approximately every miles way the South Downs Way to refill water bottles. These are shown on the Harvey Map. Those with sensitive stomachs may want to take purification tablets with them as the taps are usually on farms.
Stretching from the ancient cathedral city of Winchester in the west, first capital of England, through to the white chalky cliffs of the Seven Sisters and Beachy Head at Eastbourne in the east, almost all of its stunning kilometre length is blissfully off-road.
Today the South Downs Way offers inspiration and escape as we follow in their footsteps, whether ambling on an after-lunch stroll or rising to the challenge to walk, run or ride it over several days. Whoever you are, there are countless ways to enjoy this trail and all that it connects.
It is the central thread running through the patchwork of culture and nature that is the South Downs National Park. Why not set out in the early morning sunshine with an autumn mist filling the valleys below? Or spend a day with the kids in its western woods, spotting butterflies and hunting out the many geocaches secreted along its path.
And as night falls, lie back in the grass, and breathe deep from the star-filled sky. On a clear day you could spot paragliders and buzzards sharing the thermals above you. There are entry points all along this National Trail. Visit the National Trail website — www. They were a safer and drier alternative to those in the wetter lowlands throughout the mesolithic era.
Early occupation in the area began years after that in the neolithic era. Old Winchester Hill is an example of one of these hill forts along the path. It was the UK's fifth national trail to be established and its first long-distance bridleway. In it was decided to extend the route westwards through Hampshire to Winchester.
Of medieval historical interest, the village of Lomer, now only visible as a few small bumps in the ground,  was most likely abandoned during the plague in the 14th century. Ditchling Beacon probably due to its height, had for centuries been used to warn local inhabitants of pending invasion. Again during the Tudor period the beacon was utilized to warn Queen Elizabeth I of the Spanish Armada which could be seen coming up the channel.
One particular oddity, The Long Man of Wilmington , can be found only a few metres off the path and down the hill as the path nears one end in Eastbourne. Recent study has shown that it was most likely created in the sixteenth or seventeenth century AD possibly posing more questions than it answers regarding its meaning. During the Second World War much of the south coast of England was fortified with pillboxes , tank obstacles and machine gun posts in anticipation of a Nazi invasion, the plan for which was known to the Nazis as Operation Sealion.
These objects can be seen closer to the sea and require a diversion. The closest is Newhaven Fort , a 5-mile diversion from the path, which is an attraction that houses many World War II artefacts and documents with examples of the huge cannons used in coastal defence.
The undulating path begins in Winchester Hampshire, and passes Cheesefoot Head , the towns of Petersfield and Arundel , the villages of Storrington and Steyning , Devil's Dyke viewpoint near Brighton , followed by Ditchling Beacon and miles of chalk downland across to Beachy Head , and finally ending in Eastbourne , East Sussex.
The trail is popular with a wide array of walkers, including day walkers, overnighters, and through hikers. Several youth hostels are along the route to accommodate walkers. It also passes Birling Gap , a beach area with hotel and restaurant. Most of the route is on bridleways, permitting access for walkers, cyclists and horse riders. Occasional short sections are on roads or byways, and these are the only parts on which motor vehicles are permitted. Some sections are on footpath, and in these places an alternative signed route via road or bridleway is provided for cyclists.
The footpath sections are mostly short, but between Alfriston and Eastbourne there is an extended footpath section including the Seven Sisters cliffs, for which the bridleway alternative is several miles inland. The easternmost section is on the high chalk cliffs of the Seven Sisters, Sussex. Apart from at the end points, the way keeps to relatively isolated rural areas and some villages, although it passes within a few miles of Brighton and Lewes.