What better way to enjoy the natural beauty of the Shropshire Hills than to go for a walk? It’s a great thing also for exercise (or relaxation), exploration (or revisiting a familiar place) and for company (or solitude). Whatever your preference, from a short amble to a good long stomp, the paths and open spaces of the Shropshire Hills will take you along river valleys, through pastures, meadows and ancient woodlands, around pretty villages, or over hilltops of rock and heather. You can follow the bounds of the old Mercian kingdom, the footsteps of ancient drovers and take in views from Iron Age hillforts.
A searchable directory of walking routes in Shropshire is available at www.shropshiresgreatoutdoors.co.uk/walking
- Top Suggestions for Walking in the Shropshire Hills
- Self-guided Walks
- Long Distance Routes
- Guided Walks
- Walking Groups
- Walkers are Welcome
- Geocaching – Walking with a difference
- Countryside Code
For easy walks around managed countryside sites try:
- Onny Meadows at the Shropshire Hills Discovery Centre;
- Carding Mill Valley near Church Stretton;
- Rectory Wood at Church Stretton.
There are easy access routes suitable for all abilities (including wheelchairs) at:
A list of Shropshire Hills:
The Shropshire Hills AONB probably has as many distinct individual hilltops as any area of England apart from the Lake District. We’ve compiled a list and brief description of these on our Some Shropshire Hills page. If hill summits and views are what you’re looking for, this will help you get off the beaten track to some less frequented corners, as well as covering our better known hills.
- Walking with Offa – 18 waymarked pub walks and 4 specially designed “Days Out” in the west of the AONB;
- The Shropshire Hills Discovery Centre at Craven Arms;
- Church Stretton;
- Bishop’s Castle;
- The Bog Visitor Centre and the Bridges near the Stiperstones;
- Around Acton Scott;
- Around Much Wenlock;
- Around Ludlow;
- Various points around the Shropshire Way;
- Car-free walks – self-guided linear walks using public transport (bus or train), linking from Ludlow, Craven Arms, Church Stretton, Bishop’s Castle and Clee Hill.
You can of course find your own way! The Shropshire Hills has extensive networks of rights of way and plenty of designated open access land. Rights of way in Shropshire can be seen on-line at Shropshire Local View – click on ‘Map Layers’, scroll down and tick the ‘Rights of Way’ box. The 1:25,000 Ordnance Survey Explorer maps show rights of way and open access land, and are easier to navigate from than smaller scale maps as they show field boundaries (1:25,000 and 1:50,000 OS maps can be viewed free on-line through Bing Maps). More information can be found on the Shropshire Council Outdoor Recreation pages.
Click here for details of permissive access linked to farm conservation grants.
Long Distance Routes
The Shropshire Way works its way for 136 miles in a series of loops around many of the best bits of the Shropshire Hills and the rest of Shropshire. Well suited to walking in sections as an alternative to one big walk, a series of circular walks linking to the route have also been developed. For more information see www.shropshiresgreatoutdoors.co.uk with downloadable guides, maps and podcasts. A Harvey map of the Shropshire Hills part of the Shropshire Way is available and covers much of the AONB.
Offa’s Dyke Path National Trail is a 177 mile linear route between Chepstow and Prestatyn along the borders of England and Wales. About 11 miles of the Trail lies within the Shropshire Hills AONB, with some of the best preserved sections of the Dyke. You can find out further information on the National Trail website. For background information visit the Offa’s Dyke Association website.
The Kerry Ridgeway runs for 15 miles as a bridleway along the ancient drovers’ track from Bishop’s Castle west to the Cider House in Powys, Wales. The route is highlighted on the Ordnance Survey Explorer maps (216 and 214).
See our Events page for a range of guided walks run by other organisations.
For information on walking groups click here.
Church Stretton, Bishop’s Castle, Clun, Cleobury Mortimer, Knighton, Wellington and Much Wenlock have been designated “Walkers are Welcome” towns. This highlights the excellent facilities on offer for walkers. All have a variety of waymarked walks and leaflets, which will guide you into the surrounding countryside. If you want company on your walk, why not join the annual Church Stretton Walking Festival held in June or Bishop’s Castle Walking Festival in May.
The five Shropshire Hills Walkers are Welcome towns – Bishop’s Castle, Church Stretton, Cleobury Mortimer, Much Wenlock and Wellington – have come together to produce a Walkers are Welcome booklet to promote Walkers are Welcome in the Shropshire Hills. The publication was funded by the Walking for Wellbeing LEADER project.
Popular with families and other enthusiasts, in geocaching you use a hand-held GPS (Global Positioning System) to find ‘caches’ which have been carefully placed. There are three specific geocaching trails in the Shropshire Hills and many other caches. GPS units are available to hire from the Shropshire Hills Discovery Centre at Craven Arms.
Please do rememberto respect our special landscape by following the Countryside Code.