South Downs Way

The South Downs are the rounded, short cropped grass uplands that lie behind the chalk cliffs of the Channel coast. The paths are wide and unmistakable because the trail is also a bridleway. Guide books make this trail from east to west, but there is much to be said for the other direction. This way there is a magnificent climax after you descend from the downs and follow the swooping Sussex cliff-tops by Birling Gap, Seven Sisters and Beachy Head. Another reason is that the Hampshire section (a recent extension to the trail) is more wooded and enclosed while the eastern end is over true open downland.

Distance: 99 miles / 158 km

Grade: Easy

Direction: see text

7-8 days walking at 12-14 miles per day