Walking in Wealden

Wealden is a great area for walking and exploring.  The Wealden Walks listed below have used over 150 miles of the existing public rights of way network, some of which was previously underused.  They cover a wide area of Wealden and they all provide an historic and attractive way of enjoying and understanding the local natural landscape.

There are 20 Wealden Walks in total varying from 4 to 12 miles in length, with at least one passing through every parish and they have been organised so as to incorporate links with the public transport network, both bus and rail.

The Cuckoo Trail (pdf) runs through Wealden and is a former railway line, ideal for walkers and cyclists.  For a variety of different cycle rides, try some of the routes suggested in the Cycle Routes off the Cuckoo Trail (pdf)

The High Weald Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty has been described as one of England's finest landscapes and has been protected by government legislation since 1983.  It covers a wide area of Wealden as well as some of the bordering counties of Kent & Surrey.

For further information on where to walk in Wealden, including guided and healthy walks, please visit Wealden Do Sussex Walks.

Wealden North

Ashdown Forest

Ashdown Forest is an internationally important conservation area.  Despite its name, only 40% is woodland with the remaining being heathland which is a threatened and declining habitat.  Visitors are free to walk where they like over 80 miles footpaths. Car parking is free.

Cuckoo Trail

The Cuckoo Trail is an 11 mile long leisure route following the old railway line from Heathfield to Polegate, passing through Horam, Hellingly and Hailsham.  The route can be used by walkers, cyclists and horesriders.

Sheffield Forest

Sheffield Forest is a quiet woodland site situated between Horsted Keynes and Nutley.  It is a haven for wildlife and attracts many native and visiting birds throughout the year, including buzzards, hobbies, crossbills and nightjars.

Wealden - Central

Abbots Wood

Abbots Wood is an ancient area of woodland located near Hailsham.  A walk through these lovely and historic woods takes you along shady paths and through thickets rich in wildlife.

Arlington Reservoir

Arlington Reservoir is set in 120 acres of spectacular and beautiful landscape near Berwick in East Sussex.  It has been designated as a Local Nature Reserve and classified as a Site of Special Scientific Interest.

It is a prized location for bird watchers and visitors who flock to follow the picuresque Osprey Trail.

Friston Forest

Friston Forest is located behind the Seven Sisters Country Park off the A259.  If offers an infinite number of way marked routes for visitors to explore the beech woods.

Wealden - South

Cuckmere Haven

Cuckmere Haven lies on the coast at the point where the South Downs meet the sea.  Its dramatic chalk landscape with a characteristic cliffy coastline is constantly changing.  Cuckmere's quiet beach is located within the Seven Sisters Country Park.

Lullington Heath

Lullington Heath Nature Reserve is one of the largest areas of rare chalk heath remaining in Britain.

The footpath through the reserve takes you into some of the loveliest and most unusual countryside in the area, rich in wildlife and fragrant with wild flowers.

Seven Sisters & Birling Gap

This magnificent country park is located in the Sussex Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and includes chalk cliffs, a meandering river valley and open chalk grassland.

Birling Gap is part of the iconic Seven Sisters coastline and is an ideal beach for exploring with its rock pools and areas of pebbles and sand.  The area is also good for amateur fossil hunters.

Twenty of the best walks in Wealden

Walk 1: Starting at Exceat - "Et non plures" (pdf)
5 miles, 3 hours, grade 2.

Walk 2: Starting at Friston - "Our earliest ancestors" (pdf)
11.5 miles, 8 hours, grade 4.

Walk 3: Starting at Alfriston - "Abbots and artists" (pdf)
8.5 miles, 5 hours, grade 3.

Walk 4: Starting at Berwick - "Water water everywhere" (pdf)
8 miles, 5 hours, grade 3.

Walk 5: Starting at Hellingly - "A fishy tale about cheese" (pdf)
7 miles, 5 hours, grade 3.

Walk 6: Starting at Laughton - "Pelhams, parks and poachers" (pdf)
9 miles, 6 hours, grade 3.

Walk 7: Starting at Polegate - "A tale of two towns" (pdf)
6 miles, 4 hours, grade 3.

Walk 8: Starting at Westham - "All at sea" (pdf)
7 hours, grade 4, (Figure of 8 route, so can be shortened).

Walk 9: Starting on A259 near Barnhorn - "Inns, innings and the ghost port" (pdf)
7 miles, 4 hours, grade 3.

Walk 10: Starting at Ninfield - "A thousand years of progress" (pdf)
4 miles, 3 hours, grade 2.

Walk 11: Starting at Little Horsted - "Two churches with no villages" (pdf)
6 miles, 4 hours, grade 3.

Walk 12: Starting at Uckfield - "A walk of mysteries" (pdf)
8 miles, 5 hours, grade 3.

Walk 13: Starting at Buxted - "The canon and his cannons" (pdf)
7 miles, 5 hours, grade 3.

Walk 14: Starting at Hartfield - "The buckhurst terrier" (pdf)
8 miles, 5 miles, grade 3, (Figure of 8 route, so can be shortened).

Walk 15: Starting at Chelwood Gate - "Verily the most villainously ugly spot I ever saw in England" (pdf)
9 miles, 5 hours, grade 4.

Walk 16: Starting at Mayfield - "A vision of hell" (pdf)
5 hours, grade 3.

Walk 17: Starting at Wadhurst - "A grave state of affairs" (pdf)
7 miles, 4 hours, grade 3, (Figure of 8 route, so can be shortened).

Walk 18: Starting at Old Heathfield - "The two memorials" (pdf)
7.5 miles, 5 hours, grade 3.

Walk 19: Starting on A26 south of Crowborough - "Up hill and down ghyll" (pdf)
8.5 miles, 5 hours, grade 3, (Figure of 8 route, so can be shortened).

Walk 20: Starting at Eridge Green - "The lords and the yeoman" (pdf)
7.5 miles, 5 hours, grade 3.

Wealden District Council