Visitor Information

The North Wessex Downs is a nationally-protected landscape – protected by law for the nation to enjoy now and for future generations.

Relatively unknown, the landscape is jam-packed full of gorgeous views, wonderful wildlife and intriguing history. Remote, rolling downland and picture-postcard villages, ancient woodland and sparkling rivers and streams combine to create a truly special place for exploring. Top-class walking country, big skies and a warm welcome – it’s all here.

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The North Wessex Downs AONB provides the backdrop for much of the Great West Way – the south of England’s premier touring route which stretches between London and Bristol and roams through idyllic countryside, quaint villages and elegant towns.  For more information about the Great West Way – what to see and do, where to stay and how to travel visit GreatWestWay.co.uk

Please look after the North Wessex Downs; as the saying goes: take only photographs and leave only footprints. Please read the Countryside Code and follow it.

Download our visitor leaflet

It includes a really, useful map and highlights “20 Things Not To Miss”

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Getting here

Close to Reading, Swindon and Basingstoke and with eight railway stations within the area including Hungerford, Bedwyn and Pewsey and 12 others nearby, such as Goring and Theale, the North Wessex Downs is easy to reach by public transport.  The AONB is served by bus routes too such as the No 49 from Swindon to Devizes.  Many of our walking and cycling routes start and finish near stations or make use of local bus services so why not plan a day out without the car?

  • For train information call 08457 484950 or visit www.nationalrail.co.uk
  • For bus information call Traveline on 0871 200 2233 or visit http://traveline.info

Cycle Routes:  Sustrans Route 4 follows the Kennet & Avon Canal west out of Reading across the North Wessex Downs. Other routes include Route 45, 403 and 246.  For more information about cycle routes visit Sustrans.org

Ordnance Survey Maps

Explorer Maps: 157,158, 159, 130, 131, 144, 169, 170, 171
Landranger Maps: 173,174, 184, 185

Useful Websites for Accommodation:

Search things to do in the North Wessex Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty

image credits: Rose of Hungerford - Great West Way