North Wessex Downs Guidebooks and Maps
Below, RambleFest displays details of North Wessex Downs guidebooks and maps, and provides the facility for buying them online.
The North Wessex Downs AONB includes the bright, bare uplands of the Marlborough, Berkshire and North Hampshire Downs and sweeps on its western edge to a crest above the White Horse Vale. In the east, the chalk ridge meets the Thames and the Chilterns AONB along the wooded reaches of Goring Gap. It loops south round the Kennet Valley, with superb views north from the steep scarp edge, to fall gently away to the Test Valley. Richly farmed valley landscapes include the Vale of Pewsey’s meadows and the handsome beech avenues and oak-fringed glades of Savernake Forest.
Settled since 3000 BC, the downs are dotted with barrows and other prehistoric features. The Wansdyke earthwork, Roman roads and ancient tracks such as the Ridgeway add to a striking sense of antiquity. In places, distinctive white horses have been cut into the chalk, the most famous being the White Horse of Uffington. The neolithic stone circle at Avebury and surrounding monuments are included in a World Heritage Site.
North Wessex Downs Guidebooks
We display the rambling books we have found, and welcome suggestions for inclusion.
“The Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty have been described as the jewels of the English landscape and the North Wessex Downs, the third largest AONB, is no exception. Its predominant feature is its underlying chalk geology and it covers one of the most continuous tracts of chalk downland in England. As well as its treasures in the form of chalk and ancient woodland, the North Wessex Downs also has a fascinating human history, stretching back some 5,000 years. The archaeology of the area is both rich and varied, with a number of impressive monuments, including the Neolithic stone circle at Avebury – which forms part of a World Heritage Site, the truly beautiful Uffington White Horse and the magical Wayland’s Smithy, plus a myriad of Bronze Age barrows and Iron Age hill forts. Despite being located in southern England – a densely populated region – the North Wessex Downs is surprisingly unspoilt and sparsely populated, giving it a true sense of the idyllic England of old. Hidden amongst the folded contours of this chalk countryside are picture-postcard villages with thatched cottages, historic churches and magnificent stately houses, while out on the open downs breathtaking views stretch over rounded chalk hills, with wide open skies above.”
– The North Wessex Downs, by Steve Davison.
“Guidebook to 30 circular day walks in the North Wessex Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB). The routes, which range from 4 to 13 miles long take in parts of four counties – Berkshire, Hampshire, Wiltshire and Oxfordshire. The walks allow you to explore parts of the Ridgeway National Trail, the Kennet and Avon Canal and stunning historic sites, such as Avebury, the 3000-year-old Uffington White Horse, impressive Neolithic long barrows and Iron Age hill forts. The North Wessex Downs are accessible hills that rise above the towns and rural plains of southern England and roll gently west from Reading and Basingstoke to Swindon and down past Marlborough to Andover. Alongside detailed route descriptions and OS maps, are plenty of details on points of interest, as well as practical information on the area from public transport links, to ideal refreshment stops on each walk. The result is an ideal companion to exploring both the popular and untouched corners of the North Wessex Downs.”
– Walking in the North Wessex Downs: 30 walks take in parts of four counties
North Wessex Downs Maps
The Ordnance Survey `Explorer’ maps are available in standard quality (shown) as well as the all-weather type.
Click on an image below for more information on the North Wessex Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty guidebooks and maps, and the option of buying online: