South Downs Way

Description

    SW
  1. Name South Downs Way
  2. Length of trail 163 km, 101 miles
  3. Length in days 8 days
  4. Start of trail Eastbourne
  5. Traildino grading EW, Easy walk, nature trail

South Downs Way

101 miles, 162 km, 8 days

National Trail

The South Downs Way is a National Trail, like its northern neighbour, the North Downs Way.

The Way is one of the most popular walks in England. The 100 mile or so start in Bournemouth, and here the walker is offered two choices. The coastal path runs along spectacular chalk cliffs, among them the Seven Sisters. This stretch is for walkers only. The inland leg is also accessible for cyclists and on horseback, as is the rest of the trail up till its end point in the historical city of Winchester.
 
The Downs essentially is a range of broad hills, mostly bare, cultivated with crops and grassland, offering good views over a patchwork of fields on both sides. The path mostly stays on the crest of the hills, but often dips into North South running ceasures where one usually has to cross, often in perilous  circumstances, busy roads. That's one thing to mention: sandwiched between London and the cities in the south, this is a busy part of the country. 
 
Originally, the chalk hills offered a rich and varied biosphere for all sorts of rare plants and insects, but these days, the only places you may spot these living treasures, are sites protected by conservationist organisations. All the rest of the country is quite dullified, the result of the interaction of farmers wishing to earn a decent living and consumers wishing to pay low prices.
 
Accommodation on the trail itself is scarce. A few Youth Hostels and the odd village. Most of the villages lie in the lowlands, way off the path. But the before mentioned suicide road crossings come in handy here, because regular bus services will carry you off and on the trail, into the villages and even seaside resorts like Brighton.
 
It may be lovely weather on the downs, with all kinds of birds and warblers whirling around, and even Red Kite and Raven in the air. But there also may be ferocious winds and rains, which, in a open landscape, is surely going to test your guts: be well prepared. 
Select some tracks
South Downs Way, 161km
South Downs Way (Inland Route), 13km

Map

South Downs Way

Books

The Book Depository
United Kingdom
The Book Depository
United Kingdom
  • South Downs Way
  • Easy-to-use folding map and essential information, with custom itinerary planning for walkers, trekkers, fastpackers and trail runners Read more
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  • Stanfords, United Kingdom
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Stanfords
United Kingdom
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The Book Depository
United Kingdom
2019
  • Also available from:
  • Stanfords, United Kingdom
  • De Zwerver, Netherlands
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Stanfords
United Kingdom
2019
  • Sussex: AA 50 Walks
  • Walking is one of Britain`s favourite leisure activities, and AA 50 Walks in Sussex features a variety of mapped walks of two to ten miles, to suit all abilities. The book features all the practical detail you need, accompanied by fascinating background reading on the history and wildlife of Sussex, and clear full colour mapping for ease of... Read more
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The Book Depository
United Kingdom
  • Batsford's Walking Guides: South Downs
  • Batsford's Walking Guides is an exciting new gift series of walking books, aimed at the weekend, family walker. These small-format, portable, hardback books have an attractive retro feel, with nostalgic line drawings and hand-drawn maps. Each of the 20 walks have been carefully selected to appeal to family walkers, most are circular and... Read more
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  • Stanfords, United Kingdom
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Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • South Downs - 20 Country Walks For All The Family
  • Batsford`s Walking Guides is an exciting new gift series of walking books, aimed at the weekend, family walker. These small-format, portable, hardback books have an attractive retro feel, with nostalgic line drawings and hand-drawn maps. Each of the 20 walks have been carefully selected to appeal to family walkers, most are circular and none... Read more
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The Book Depository
United Kingdom
  • Also available from:
  • Stanfords, United Kingdom
  • De Zwerver, Netherlands
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Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Meon Valley, Portsmouth, Gosport & Fareham OS Explorer Map OL3 (paper)
  • Meon Valley, Portsmouth, Gosport and Fareham area of south Hampshire on a detailed topographic and GPS compatible map OL3, paper version, from the Ordnance Survey’s 1:25,000 Explorer series. Coverage extends from the coast to Owslebury and East Meon, and includes part of the South Downs National Park, a section of the South Downs Way National... Read more
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The Book Depository
United Kingdom
2021
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  • Stanfords, United Kingdom
  • De Zwerver, Netherlands
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Stanfords
United Kingdom
2021
  • South Downs National Park Short Walks Made Easy - 10 Leisurely Walks
  • 10 carefully curated walks in the Lake District/South Downs National Park for the casual and less experienced walker, with a focus on Accessible routes, Quieter areas, Parking and public transport options, Info for dog walkers, Telling the stories behind the walk, Nature notes, Refreshment stops & Taking your time. Read more
De Zwerver
Netherlands
2021
  • Wandelgids South Downs National Park | Ordnance Survey
  • 10 carefully curated walks in the Lake District/South Downs National Park for the casual and less experienced walker, with a focus on Accessible routes, Quieter areas, Parking and public transport options, Info for dog walkers, Telling the stories behind the walk, Nature notes, Refreshment stops & Taking your time. Read more
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  • Also available from:
  • Stanfords, United Kingdom
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Stanfords
United Kingdom
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The Book Depository
United Kingdom
  • Also available from:
  • Stanfords, United Kingdom
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Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Everest England
  • A unique hill-walking guide with a culminative ascent of the height of Everest, written in Peter Owen Jones` unique descriptive style. Scaling the peaks of Everest, the world`s highest mountain, is the ultimate physical and mental challenge that the human race can aspire to. But as it takes years of preparation and a minimum of £25,000 to... Read more
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The Book Depository
United Kingdom
The Book Depository
United Kingdom
The Book Depository
United Kingdom
  • West Sussex: A Dog Walker's Guide
  • A leisurely stroll in the countryside is always a pleasure for dog walkers. But after leaving the familiar local routes there are always the worries of suddenly finding a field full of sheep, or a busy road, not to mention the difficulty of knowing which pubs and cafes will welcome dogs. Here is a collection of 20 tried and tested circular... Read more
  • Also available from:
  • Stanfords, United Kingdom
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Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • West Sussex: A Dog Walker`s Guide
  • A leisurely stroll in the countryside is always a pleasure for dog walkers. But after leaving the familiar local routes there are always the worries of suddenly finding a field full of sheep, or a busy road, not to mention the difficulty of knowing which pubs and cafes will welcome dogs. Here is a collection of 20 tried and tested circular... Read more
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The Book Depository
United Kingdom
  • Also available from:
  • Stanfords, United Kingdom
  • De Zwerver, Netherlands
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Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Chichester, South Harting & Selsey OS Explorer Map OL8 (paper)
  • Chichester, South Harting and Selsey area of Sussex and Hampshire on a detailed topographic and GPS compatible map OL8, paper version, from the Ordnance Survey’s 1:25,000 Explorer series. Coverage along the coast extends from Pagham westwards across Selsey Bill and Hayling Island to Langstone Harbour, and includes part of the South Downs... Read more
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More books…

Maps

The Book Depository
United Kingdom
  • Also available from:
  • Stanfords, United Kingdom
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Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Eastbourne & Beachy Head AA Walker`s Map 30
  • Eastbourne and Beachy Head at 1:25,000 in a series of Walker’s Maps published by the AA with the cartography from the Ordnance Survey’s Explorer series. Coverage includes Seven Sisters and the Cuckmere Haven, the start of the South Downs Way, Seaford, Newhaven, Alfriston, Firle, Glynde, Ringmer, Uckfield, Buxted, Heathfield, Herstmonceux,... Read more
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The Book Depository
United Kingdom
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Chichester and the South Downs 1810-1920 (3-map set)
  • Map No. 197, Chichester and the South Downs 1810-1920 (3-map set), in the Cassini Historical Series of old Ordnance Survey mapping of England and Wales at 1:50,000 in a format designed to offer a convenient comparison with the present day coverage from the OS, and most locations in three different editions. Old historical maps have been... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
2017
  • South Downs Way A-Z Adventure Atlas
  • The South Downs Way at 1:25,000 in a series of handy A5 size Adventure Atlases from Geographers` A-Z Map Company with cartography from the Ordnance Survey’s Explorer series. The atlas shows the whole course of this national trail from Winchester to Eastbourne, with the variants via the Beachy Head and the Seven Sisters, or via Jevington.To see... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Chichester and the South Downs 1810-1813
  • Map No. 197, Chichester and the South Downs 1810-1813, in the Cassini Historical Series of old Ordnance Survey mapping of England and Wales at 1:50,000 in a format designed to offer a convenient comparison with the present day coverage from the OS, and most locations in three different editions. Old historical maps have been combined so that... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Chichester and the South Downs 1919-1920
  • Map No. 197, Chichester and the South Downs 1919-1920, in the Cassini Historical Series of old Ordnance Survey mapping of England and Wales at 1:50,000 in a format designed to offer a convenient comparison with the present day coverage from the OS, and most locations in three different editions. Old historical maps have been combined so that... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • Chichester and the South Downs 1897-1900
  • Map No. 197, Chichester and the South Downs 1897-1900, in the Cassini Historical Series of old Ordnance Survey mapping of England and Wales at 1:50,000 in a format designed to offer a convenient comparison with the present day coverage from the OS, and most locations in three different editions. Old historical maps have been combined so that... Read more
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • South Downs Way Harvey National Trail XT40
  • The South Downs Way, a 160km / 100 mile National Trail from Eastbourne to Winchester, presented at 1:40,000 on a light, waterproof and tear-resistant map from Harvey Map Services. The route is shown on nine panels, with additional small street plans of Eastbourne and Winchester. Map legend and the accompanying notes are also in French and... Read more
  • Also available from:
  • De Zwerver, Netherlands
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De Zwerver
Netherlands
  • Wandelkaart - Fietskaart South Downs Way | Harvey Maps
  • The South Downs Way, a 160km / 100 mile National Trail from Eastbourne to Winchester, presented at 1:40,000 on a light, waterproof and tear-resistant map from Harvey Map Services. The route is shown on nine panels, with additional small street plans of Eastbourne and Winchester. Map legend and the accompanying notes are also in French and... Read more
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Bol.com
Netherlands
2017
  • Thames Path Adventure Atlas
  • The A-Z Adventure series features the accuracy and quality of Ordnance Survey`s Explorer mapping in a convenient book, therefore eliminating the need to fold and re-fold a large sheet map to the desired area. OS Explorer is Ordnance Survey`s most detailed mapping at a scale of 1:25 000 showing public rights of way, open access land, national... Read more
  • Also available from:
  • Bol.com, Belgium
» Click to open
Bol.com
Belgium
2017
  • Thames Path Adventure Atlas
  • The A-Z Adventure series features the accuracy and quality of Ordnance Survey`s Explorer mapping in a convenient book, therefore eliminating the need to fold and re-fold a large sheet map to the desired area. OS Explorer is Ordnance Survey`s most detailed mapping at a scale of 1:25 000 showing public rights of way, open access land, national... Read more
» Click to close
The Book Depository
United Kingdom
  • Also available from:
  • Stanfords, United Kingdom
  • Bol.com, Netherlands
  • Bol.com, Belgium
» Click to open
Stanfords
United Kingdom
  • England Coast Path - Camber to Folkestone Adventure Map
  • The A-Z Adventure Series of maps combines the best of OS and A-Z, creating the perfect companion for walkers, off-road cyclists, horse riders and anyone wishing to explore the great outdoors.This official Camber to Folkestone Adventure Map section of the England Coast Path, a new National Trail around England`s coast. More than just a path, it... Read more
Bol.com
Netherlands
  • England Coast Path Camber to Folkestone Adventure Map
  • The A-Z Adventure Series of maps combines the best of OS and A-Z, creating the perfect companion for walkers, off-road cyclists, horse riders and anyone wishing to explore the great outdoors.This official Camber to Folkestone Adventure Map section of the England Coast Path, a new National Trail around England`s coast. More than just a path, it... Read more
Bol.com
Belgium
  • England Coast Path Camber to Folkestone Adventure Map
  • The A-Z Adventure Series of maps combines the best of OS and A-Z, creating the perfect companion for walkers, off-road cyclists, horse riders and anyone wishing to explore the great outdoors.This official Camber to Folkestone Adventure Map section of the England Coast Path, a new National Trail around England`s coast. More than just a path, it... Read more
» Click to close
Bol.com
Netherlands
  • England Coast Path Folkestone to Ramsgate Adventure Map
  • The A-Z Adventure Series of maps combines the best of OS and A-Z, creating the perfect companion for walkers, off-road cyclists, horse riders and anyone wishing to explore the great outdoors.This official Folkestone to Ramsgate Adventure Map section of the England Coast Path, a new National Trail around England`s coast. More than just a path,... Read more
  • Also available from:
  • Bol.com, Belgium
» Click to open
Bol.com
Belgium
  • England Coast Path Folkestone to Ramsgate Adventure Map
  • The A-Z Adventure Series of maps combines the best of OS and A-Z, creating the perfect companion for walkers, off-road cyclists, horse riders and anyone wishing to explore the great outdoors.This official Folkestone to Ramsgate Adventure Map section of the England Coast Path, a new National Trail around England`s coast. More than just a path,... Read more
» Click to close
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