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Southampton

Hiking around Southampton

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One of England’s most important maritime cities, when you explore the walks around Southampton, you’ll be walking through sailing history. No matter where you ramble here, you’ll find boats tucked up creeks, ferries chugging across the Solent, cruise ships blaring horns and sailing yachts unfurling. A city soaked in history, you can discover old walls, historic harbours and even catch a ride across the water. 

Further afield, hikes in the Southampton area lead you into the glorious New Forest National Park’s eastern boundaries. Or you can follow trails alongside the Rivers Itchen, Test, Hamble and Blackwater to discover blissfully quiet riverbanks. 

As a fairly low lying area, there isn’t much in the way of hills around here, so explorations are fairly easy on the thighs. Wth so many footpaths, bridleways, tracks and lanes, you can ramble for as long as you fancy. Ready to start exploring?


Top 20 best walks and hikes around Southampton

    Map data © OpenStreetMap contributors
    1
    1
    Easy
    01:29
    3.55 mi
    2.4 mph
    125 ft
    125 ft
    Easy hike. Great for any fitness level. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels.
    View
    2
    Intermediate
    02:19
    5.51 mi
    2.4 mph
    225 ft
    225 ft
    Intermediate Hiking Tour. Good fitness required. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels.
    View
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  • 3
    Easy
    01:57
    4.69 mi
    2.4 mph
    125 ft
    125 ft
    Easy hike. Great for any fitness level. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels.
    View
    4
    Easy
    01:44
    4.22 mi
    2.4 mph
    75 ft
    75 ft
    Easy hike. Great for any fitness level. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels.
    View
    5
    Intermediate
    02:16
    5.42 mi
    2.4 mph
    175 ft
    175 ft
    Intermediate Hiking Tour. Good fitness required. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels.
    View
    6
    Easy
    01:51
    4.43 mi
    2.4 mph
    150 ft
    150 ft
    Easy hike. Great for any fitness level. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels.
    View
    7
    Easy
    01:47
    4.31 mi
    2.4 mph
    100 ft
    100 ft
    Easy hike. Great for any fitness level. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels.
    View
    8
    Easy
    01:12
    2.93 mi
    2.4 mph
    50 ft
    50 ft
    Easy hike. Great for any fitness level. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels.
    View
    9
    Intermediate
    03:22
    8.15 mi
    2.4 mph
    200 ft
    200 ft
    Intermediate Hiking Tour. Good fitness required. Mostly accessible paths. Sure-footedness required.
    View
    10
    Easy
    01:39
    4.03 mi
    2.4 mph
    50 ft
    75 ft
    Easy hike. Great for any fitness level. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels.
    View
    11
    Intermediate
    03:58
    9.71 mi
    2.4 mph
    125 ft
    125 ft
    Intermediate Hiking Tour. Good fitness required. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels.
    View
    12
    Intermediate
    02:55
    7.00 mi
    2.4 mph
    225 ft
    225 ft
    Intermediate Hiking Tour. Good fitness required. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels.
    View
    13
    Easy
    01:22
    3.32 mi
    2.4 mph
    75 ft
    75 ft
    Easy hike. Great for any fitness level. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels.
    View
    14
    Intermediate
    03:07
    7.48 mi
    2.4 mph
    250 ft
    250 ft
    Intermediate Hiking Tour. Good fitness required. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels.
    View
    15
    Easy
    01:30
    3.61 mi
    2.4 mph
    100 ft
    100 ft
    Easy hike. Great for any fitness level. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels.
    View
    16
    Easy
    01:47
    4.24 mi
    2.4 mph
    150 ft
    150 ft
    Easy hike. Great for any fitness level. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels.
    View
    17
    Intermediate
    01:03
    2.42 mi
    2.3 mph
    150 ft
    150 ft
    Intermediate Hiking Tour. Great for any fitness level. Mostly accessible paths. Sure-footedness required.
    View
    18
    Intermediate
    02:07
    4.92 mi
    2.3 mph
    300 ft
    300 ft
    Intermediate Hiking Tour. Good fitness required. Mostly accessible paths. Sure-footedness required.
    View
    19
    Intermediate
    01:56
    4.66 mi
    2.4 mph
    125 ft
    125 ft
    Intermediate Hiking Tour. Great for any fitness level. Mostly accessible paths. Sure-footedness required.
    View
    20
    Easy
    00:47
    1.91 mi
    2.4 mph
    50 ft
    50 ft
    Easy hike. Great for any fitness level. Easily-accessible paths. Suitable for all skill levels.
    View

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More Information

Walking around the Water

It’s hard to avoid some kind of water on your walks around Southampton as it’s not just on one waterway, but several. The city sits at the top of Southampton Water, which is the confluence of the Test, Itchen and Hamble. The Water is a major shipping zone, with vast container ships, car transporters, cruise ships, ferries, research vessels, and leisure craft all making prolific use of it. On sunny summer weekends, you can hardly see the water for the boats. 

You can catch the Hythe Ferry from Town Quay in the city and reach the New Forest at Hythe in just 10 minutes. From there, you can explore this corner of the national park as well as walk south to the Solent and its shingle beaches. On the east side of the Water, you can follow the shoreline south to the Hamble and beyond. If you fancy river walks, some of the best hiking trails in Southampton follow the Itchen and the Test rivers. 

Exploring parks

You find an amazing number of hikes in Southampton’s parks. To the north of the city centre, Southampton Common makes for a lovely place to amble. You can begin in the historic centre and walk to the common to seek out its three pretty lakes. To the north east, the Itchen Valley Country Park makes for a lovely place to walk to, particularly if you follow the Itchen from the city to get there. 

To the south east lies Royal Victoria Country Park and there’s the River Hamble Country Park to the north east of that. If you go a little further afield, you’re utterly spoilt for choice when it comes to woodlands, plantations and fields. If you fancy an even greater maritime adventure, you can catch a ferry from Southampton’s historic quay and reach Cowes on the Isle of Wight by catamaran in 30 minutes.


Southampton's best walks and hikes on the map

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