Tennyson Down And Headon Warren
Type of walk
Hilly, Beach, Forest
Free Parking, Off Lead Areas, Toilets
About this walk
This is a walk with some stunning views where your dog can be off lead for the majority of it if you wish.
It's 7 miles in total but will probably feel longer due to the amount of climbing that's done from sea level to the top of the Downs a couple of times (at least it does to my legs!)
We approach Freshwater Bay from the east and park in a free car park off the Military Road a few hundred yards before you reach the bay.
Follow the coastal path and walk down to the beach at Freshwater Bay. Head west as you leave the bay and just past the Albion Hotel car park there is a lane on your left. There are public toilets on the corner here too. Walk up the lane a short way and go through a gate that leads you to Tennyson Down.
Stay on the lower side of the field as head across and you'll pick up footpath F46 which takes you through woods. Stay straight on as this path becomes the T24 and opens out at another small free car park at Highdown Lane. Out of the car park and still on the T24 until you come out of the woods and to another gate where you now follow the T25 for a couple of hundred meters the right through a gate on the T26.
After another couple of hundred meters you will come to the B3322 Alum Bay New Road. Turn left and it's only another 200 meters before you come to a stile that leads you onto the T16 footpath up to Headon Warren.
As you get to the top you turn left (west) and you can see alum Bay and The Needles in front of you. This is the T21 footpath and connects to the T17. Follow this all the way to the Needles Pleasure Park.
If you're feeling really brave you walk down to Alum Bay but it's a lot of steps (and you have to come back up them!). There is a chair lift (pay) but dogs are banned from using it.
There are toilets at the pleasure park and food outlets if required.
Walk through the large car park and head up (very much UP) to West High Down.
Once you get to the top of West High Down you turn east away from the Needles and head along the Tennyson Trail and you'll come back to the T24/T25 signpost. This time stay on the T25 and walk up (yep, it's up again) past the Tennyson Monument and back to Freshwater Bay and then your starting point.
Hard work but worth it, especially on a fine clear day.
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