Six walks in Southern Bath

Our walks are centred on the historic parishes of Widcombe and Lyncombe which are part of The City of Bath.  The area is just a short hop over the River Avon from the centre.  This really is where the city meets the countryside and has for centuries been where Bathonians and visitors alike have come to enjoy the rural setting of Bath.

Where the City meets the Countryside

In the Middle Ages Widcombe and Lyncombe belonged to the Priory of Bath and there was a deer park in the area of the current Prior Park.  This is where Ralph Allen later established his showcase home and gardens (gardens only are National Trust).  There were also Georgian pleasure gardens from the 18th Century.  Widcombe and Lyncombe featured in Jane Austen novels, Henry Fielding and his sister Sarah lived here, and Thomas Hardy wrote of the countryside and fine views.  The parishes lie within the UNESCO World Heritage Site and are an important part of the setting of The City of Bath.

The area is a vibrant place to visit with local centres in Widcombe Parade and Bear Flat.  Both have an excellent range of pubs, restaurants and local shops, which will welcome weary walkers for some revitalising refreshment or a spot of retail therapy.

Whether you are interested in industrial heritage, interesting history, fine architecture, magnificent views or beautiful countryside, there is something here for everyone. Our aim is to encourage visitors and residents to explore the area, enjoy our walks and visit local attractions and businesses.  We are presenting six walks which will appeal to all ages and levels of fitness.

Under each walk we have provided you with two links.  The first is to some more information about the walk and what you will see. This is intended to help you decide which walk you would like to do.  The second link is for the detailed walk directions and map, and you should either print them off or make sure you have these instructions on your phone to take with you.  Enjoy your walk!

Walk 1: Beechen cliff circuit

This is a short (but at the start a steep) walk to the top of Beechen Cliff – the wooded cliff to the south of the city centre – returning through Magdalen Gardens. There are several viewing points along the top of the cliff giving fine views of the city. Allow 1 hour.

Link 1: more information about what you will see

Link 2: detailed walk instructions and map

Walk 2: Best of Widcombe views

This walk goes through varied countryside and gives good views of the city. It takes you through the old village of Widcombe before ascending alongside NT Prior Park Landscape Garden to reach the skyline, then descending to the canal and Widcombe Parade. Allow 2 hours.

Option B – a step-free access to Alexandra Park and the top of Beechen Cliff. If steps are a problem, then retrace back to Bear Flat and either continue down to the city or cross Wells Road at the traffic lights to catch a bus back to town.

Link 1: information about what you will see

Link 2: detailed walk instructions and map

Walk 3: Lyncombe Vale circuit

This walk starts with a steep climb and then crosses fields and open countryside, mainly along footpaths, giving good views.  Finally descending back to Widcombe Parade and the end of your walk. Allow 2 hours.

Link 1: information about what you will see

Link 2: detailed walk instructions and map

Walk 4: Historic Widcombe

This walk takes you through Bath Abbey Cemetery and then continues along lanes and footpaths to Combe Down, before returning through fields with good views of the city and beyond. Allow 2 ½ hours.

Link 1: information about what you will see

Link 2: detailed walk instructions and map

Walk 5: Tunnels and valleys

Visiting the vibrant local shopping area of Bear Flat, this walk takes in one of the tunnels on the Two Tunnels walking and cycling route – it is advisable to take a torch for this section.  There are no steps on this route but there is a step-over gate. A lovely walk through the lanes in the area.  Allow 1 ½ hours.

Link 1: information about what you will see

Link 2: detailed walk instructions and map

Walk 6: Smallcombe Wood

This walk starts along the Kennet & Avon Canal and includes a visit to Smallcombe Cemetery and Smallcombe Wood, one of Bath’s few ancient woodlands. You emerge into a meadow with fine views across the city. Allow 1 ½ hours.

Link 1: information about what you will see

Link 2: detailed walk instructions and map

The Six Walks printed leaflet download:

Printed copies of the leaflets (not the detailed maps or information) are available at local outlets as follows:

Bear Flat: The Good Bear Cafe, The Bear Hotel and Da Vinci Deli

Widcombe Parade: Deli, White Hart, RingoBells, The Ram, Fine & Dandy, Flamingo, Luca & Fig and Prior Park Garden Centre Cafe (parking only available when visiting the centre)

Walk directions and maps

Walk general information

Get out in the countryside and enjoy our walks

Overview map of the walks

This map shows an overview of all the walks we have selected.  This is not suitable as a walking guide. You should look at the detailed directions and map for the walk you would like to do.

Key – Walks Key – Attractions
 

1.   Beechen Cliff circuit

2.   Best of Widcombe views

3.   Lyncombe Vale circuit

4.   Historic Widcombe

5.   Tunnels and valleys

6.   Smallcombe Wood circuit

 

A.   Widcombe Parade Shops

B.   Bear Flat Shops

C.   Prior Park Landscape Garden (National Trust)

D.  Alexandra Park

E.   Lyncombe Hill Fields (FLHF)

F.   Bloomfield Green

G.  Bath Abbey Cemetery

H.  Perrymead Catholic Cemetery

I.    Smallcombe Cemetery

J.    St Mary Magdalen church

K.   St Thomas à Becket Church and Widcombe Manor

L.    Widcombe Crescent

M. Kennet & Avon Canal

N.  Two Tunnels/Lateral Park

 

Bought to you by the Widcombe Association and supported by