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Populated outdoor walks/hikes not too far from London

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Bonn, Germany
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Populated outdoor walks/hikes not too far from London

Hampstead Heath, Dover Cliffs, etc. I have tried quite a few in the past year.

I also know there are plenty of websites with interesting walk routes, but

1) I am looking for something within day trip reach from London.

2) I also don't feel really safe in the outdoors when I go alone

(*sigh* no friends with specific interest of walking outdoors for fitness).

I was ok walking from Folkstone to Dover alone - there were many families and kids around, so something like that which is populated and semi-touristy would be fine.

Any idea where else I could do some walk-intensive day trips around London, and also meet friendly people along the path?

Main purpose of walking: fitness, keeping in shape, as I have some physical problems which limit my activity options to just walking...

London, United...
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1. Re: Populated outdoor walks/hikes not too far from London

Epping Forest is nice and there are generally lots of families and dog walkers along the way. You can get there from the Central Line.

Essex
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2. Re: Populated outdoor walks/hikes not too far from London

Have given lots of suggestions for you in the past.

Try the Lea Valley Park.

http://www.visitleevalley.org.uk/

http://www.leevalleypark.org.uk/

middle england
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3. Re: Populated outdoor walks/hikes not too far from London

The Thames path would seem to fit your requirements

http://www.walklondon.org.uk/route.asp?R=6

Islington
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4. Re: Populated outdoor walks/hikes not too far from London

Hanna already knows about Epping Forest, as many options have been explored in her threads from last year. This is just one.

tripadvisor.co.uk/…41678181

I think we may end up going round in circles and repeating what has been said before, but I am not sure if you considered taking the train to Manningtree and doing one of the Constable Country walks.

http://www.constablecountry.co.uk/

…thedms.co.uk/Publication/…20Country.pdf

London, United...
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5. Re: Populated outdoor walks/hikes not too far from London

I'd second Epping forest, lots of walkers and off road cyclists, some nice pubs to be found aswell. If she's already explored that, then how about the grand union canal in Hertfordshire around croxley and rickmansworth, easily reached on the metropolitan line.

Edited: 28 August 2013, 12:38
London, England...
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6. Re: Populated outdoor walks/hikes not too far from London

Another Epping Forrest vote, love that place.

Bonn, Germany
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7. Re: Populated outdoor walks/hikes not too far from London

Hi all, thanks again - indeed I have tried many of the suggestions already given to me previously, but the "theme" and my "conditions" change a bit each time. I remember last year I was asking more about something to relax while studying, while at the same time exploring a bit. Well, and there always seems to be something new.

I have moved towards a "fitness+discovery/exploration" need. I walked so much that I also met people who hike a bit higher (hillwalking) and introduced me to rock climbing (perfectly suitable for my physical state).

While I would enjoy doing that every single day (scrambling, climbing, etc.) it requires organizing with people who know it well, schedule with meet ups, on very specific days, so it's very difficult to do something like that on my own, as a spontaneous decision on a random morning where I wake up and am in the mood of scrambling/hiking.

In an ideal world, I live in Snowdonia or Lake District and can hike to a new mountain every day - on my own, without having to wait for a tourist or meet up / ramblers group to organize a walk - and there are plenty of tourists who can help me if I get lost :-)

Well... I know my personal story is not interesting, but just wanted to share some context as to why I seemingly ask very similar questions frequently and what exactly i am looking for.

And yes, I have lots of spare time today - summer holidays!

London, England...
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8. Re: Populated outdoor walks/hikes not too far from London

Have you tried the rock-climbing at the Castle in Finsbury Park?

Manchester, United...
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9. Re: Populated outdoor walks/hikes not too far from London

Have you considered joining a walking group? This would provide the companionship element although removing spontaneity. Most seem to organise regular walks (often at least weekly) - either using shared cars, public transport or a hired coach to the start. The Ramblers Association is a national walkers organisation & has a "search for a group" function on its site:

ramblers.org.uk/go-walking/find-a-group.aspx

The site also includes suggested walking routes.

A general search for London + "walking group" produces several results - could be one there that suits your needs, perhaps?

East Sussex, United...
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10. Re: Populated outdoor walks/hikes not too far from London

Am sure I suggested Seaford to Eastbourne over The Seven Sisters. Have you tried that ? For something flatter try Winchelsea to Rye. Or the circular walk from Balcombe station, just 50 mins from London is very rural and always seems popular on a Sunday with ramblers from both London and Brighton. You walk to Staplefield and its two pubs.

How about a trip report if you've got some time. Those of us who give advice rarely get feedback for our suggestions. You say you have already walked - so how about it ?

Mike