Great Walks And Nature Trails In Surrey For All The Family

Family walking in Surrey.
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If you are growing a little tired of your walks around the neighbourhood, great news- we can now visit local parks and areas of natural beauty for a much-needed change of scenery!

Hopefully, you have still been able to incorporate nature into your days in lockdown, and had some fun as a family- but there's nothing quite like the real thing when it comes to a walk in the countryside. Although facilities are gradually re-opening, many cafes are still closed for the time being, so why not bring a picnic along- check out these delicious sandwich ideas for inspiration.

Fun fact: Surrey is England's 'most wooded county' with one-fifth of the land here being covered in trees! No wonder we are spoilt for choice with places to go for a woodland stroll, check out our selection below for some great family walks.

Please be aware that social distancing is still in place and if somewhere looks a bit on the packed side, perhaps give it a miss, and be sure to keep following government advice for England regarding travel.

1. The Devils Punchbowl

According to legend, the Devil himself scooped up a huge handful of earth to throw at the God of Thunder, the one and only Thor- the massive dip in the earth that remains is The Devils Punchbowl! There are a few different walks for different abilities here, this is a great circular route which shows off many of the wonderful views, without too many of the steep inclines- on a clear day you can even spot the skyscrapers of London.

Where it is:  London Road, Hindhead, Surrey, GU26 6AB

Length of time to get there from London: Around 1.5 hours in the car, up to 2.5 hours via public transport

Length of walk: 4.5 miles

Is it buggy friendly? This route is fine for an off-road style buggy, but you might prefer to use a carrier/wrap if you have one!

Is it dog friendly? Yes, but please bring a lead as there are wild ponies and cattle roaming freely.

Bike and scooter friendly? Not the whole route, there is a straight tarmacked path that is perfect if you want to have a quick zoom up and down though!

Are there toilets/Do they have baby changing facilities and disabled access? Yes, but all closed for the foreseeable according to the website.

Terrain: This route is designed to be on the moderate to easy side, we would recommend sturdy footwear such as hiking boots or trainers, and don't forget snacks, water, and sunblock.

Parking: Parking is free for National Trust members, otherwise it costs £1.50 per hour for the first 2 hours; £4 for up to 4 hours; £6 for 5 hours and above.

Outdoor amenities:  Cafe and kiosk closed for the foreseeable, but there is an open picnic area right next to the car park, with wonderful views and plenty of space for distancing.

2. Polesden Lacey Little Big Walk

Polesden Lacey is one of the National Trust's most popular properties, you will need to book ahead to visit and tickets are released every Friday.  This beautiful Edwardian house and estate has loads to see and do, this circular walk showcases their wooded valley and the wonderful landscapes of the Surrey Hills.

Where it is: Polesden Lacey, Great Bookham, nr Dorking, Surrey, RH5 6BD

Length of time to get there from London: Approx 1-1.5 hours in the car, up to 3 hours via public transport.

Length of walk:   2.5 miles

Is it buggy friendly? Yes

Is it dog friendly? Yes

Bike and scooter friendly?Yes

Are there toilets/Do they have baby changing facilities and disabled access?   Yes, and they are now re-opened.

Terrain:  Check out the route beforehand for individual circumstances, but the terrain is described as 'easy' on the National Trust Website.

Parking: The car park is free to national trust members, don't forget to book before you visit.

Outdoor amenities:  The cafe is currently closed until further notice so be sure to take snacks or a picnic!

3. The Long Walk at Hatchlands Park

This is a nice easy walk around one of the largest country estates in the green belt, called the Long Walk as it follows the edge of the park, but still family-friendly at only 2.8 miles, and taking around an hour, to an hour and a half to complete. Follow the pink arrows on the waymarker posts and you will be taken on a circular route with wonderful views of the 400 acres of parkland.  Don't forget to book ahead for this one.

Where it is: Hatchlands, East Clandon, Guildford. Surrey, GU4 7RT

Length of time to get there from London: Approx 45 minutes outside of Greater London by car, between 1-2 hours on public transport.

Length of walk: 2.8 miles

Is it buggy friendly? Yes

Is it dog friendly? Yes, as long as they are kept under close control.

Bike and scooter friendly? Mostly, do check your route beforehand.

Are there toilets/Do they have baby changing facilities and disabled access? Yes, and all are now opened, and available along the parkland walk and in the courtyard.

Terrain: Might be a little long for more elderly or walking impaired visitors, but the route is wheelchair friendly.

Parking: Visitor parking opens at 10am and will close at 4pm.

Outdoor amenities:  The main house, shop and 2 cafes are currently closed, but there are lots of spots for a picnic.

4. Frensham Little Pond Family Trail

The smaller of two man-made ponds here in Frensham, the little pond boast extensive wildlife, flowers and plants, thriving here for over 400 years. This is a lovely circular walk that will take you around the Little Pond to take in all the views, finishing up at the cafe (a cute little kiosk in the wall, supplying tea, coffee and locally sourced lunches!) for a well-deserved slice of cake.

Where it is: Priory Lane car park, Frensham, GU10 3BT

Length of time to get there from London: Between 1-1.5 hours in the car, 1.5-2.5 hours via public transport.

Length of walk: 2-2.5 miles

Is it buggy friendly? Yes- if you have an off-road buggy we recommend taking it though!

Is it dog friendly? Yes, but please keep on leads from March to September, when birds are nesting.

Bike and scooter friendly? Not really, a bit too sandy for the wheels!

Are there toilets/Do they have baby changing facilities and disabled access? Yes, toilets are at the Tern Cafe, but please check ahead if they will be open on the day you visit.

Terrain: Trainers, wellies or walking boots are recommended as the ground is very sandy around here, the route is accessible but there may be a few uneven surfaces.

Parking: Priory Lane Car Park is best for the little pond, please note that parking on the road is prohibited.

Outdoor amenities: The Tern Cafe is now open, according to social distancing measures, but their opening times are subject to change so do check before you visit! There are plenty of benches and picnic benches dotted around too.

5. Box Hill Natural Play Trail

This entire trail is made to play on! Be careful in case it's slippy but otherwise, let the kids roam and clamber to their heart's delight. As well as tunnels and arches to weave around make sure to look out for all the butterflies and other interesting creepy crawlies that can be spotted amongst the woodland at Box Hill. Check out this guide to see what else is on the trail.

Where it is: Visitor Centre, The Old Fort, Box Hill Road, Tadworth, Surrey KT20 7LB

Length of time to get there from London: Between 45 minutes to 1 hour by car, 1.5-2 hours via public transport.

Length of walk:  2 miles

Is it buggy friendly?  Yes

Is it dog friendly? Yes, but please keep them on the lead when livestock are grazing

Bike and scooter friendly? Yes, but the trail can get very muddy!

Are there toilets/Do they have baby changing facilities and disabled access?  Yes, but unfortunately still closed for the time being.

Terrain: Level all the way so suitable for all, but it can get muddy so wellies recommended if the weather has been bad!

Parking: 2 available car parks, free for National Trust members, pay and display otherwise.

Outdoor amenities:  Cafe closed but there are plenty of picnic benches.

6. Virginia Water Lake and the Valley Gardens

Part of the Windsor Great Park Estate, Virginia Water is a lovely smooth circular walk with beautiful scenery. The paths are wide so perfect to take the buggy, there is lots for little eyes to take in- such as the mystical totem pole, the cascading waterful and even some Roman ruins. This walk is perfect to take the kids and grandparents alike, take a picnic and make an afternoon of it!

Where it is: Part of Winsor Great Park, the sat nav postcode for the Virginia Water car park is- GU25 4QF

Length of time to get there from London: Between 45 minutes to 1 hour by car and public transport.

Length of walk: 4.5 miles

Is it buggy friendly? Yes

Is it dog friendly? Yes

Bike and scooter friendly?  The first 3 miles of the walk is tarmac, but gravel for the last stretch so if you don't mind helping out- we say yes!

Are there toilets/Do they have baby changing facilities and disabled access? Yes, but unfortunately still closed for the time being.

Terrain: A few little ups and downs but mostly smooth.

Parking: Virginia Water and Virginia Water South are now open, The Savill Garden car park also open, and around a 20 minute walk away.

Outdoor amenities:  The play park and cafe will be closed in the Great Park for the time being, but reduced rate takeaway kiosks will be open, including the ice cream van! (Check ahead to avoid disappointment).

7. Newlands Corner

Check out this family-friendly circular walk around the picturesque Newlands Corner, and take in the spectacular views of the Surrey Hills. At just 2 miles this is the perfect walk to take in some nature without tiring out little legs too much, keep an eye out for some of the amazing wildflowers and butterflies that make their home on this ancient chalkland.

Where it is: A25 Shere Rd, Newland's Corner, Albury, Guildford GU4 8SF

Length of time to get there from London: Approx 1-1.5 hours in the car, between 2-2.5 hours via public transport.

Length of walk: 2 miles

Is it buggy friendly? Yes

Is it dog friendly? Yes

Bike and scooter friendly?  Bikes yes, possibly not quite smooth enough for scooters!

Are there toilets/Do they have baby changing facilities and disabled access? Yes, but unfortunately still closed.

Terrain: Level but mostly woodland, so might be muddy and look out for the odd branch in the path!

Parking: There are two available free car parks; for this route, start at the car park on Shere Road.

Outdoor amenities:  Cafe is closed but lots of lovely spots for a picnic.

Disclaimer

Disclaimer

At Kidadl we pride ourselves on offering families original ideas to make the most of time spent together at home or out and about, wherever you are in the world. We strive to recommend the very best things, that are suggested by our community and are things we would do ourselves - our aim is to be the trusted friend to parents. 

We try our very best, but cannot guarantee perfection. We will always aim to give you accurate information at the date of publication - however, information does change, so it's important you do your own research, double-check and make the decision that is right for your family.  

Kidadl provides inspiration for everything from family days out to online classes, arts, crafts and science experiments. We recognise that not all activities and ideas are appropriate and suitable for all children and families or in all circumstances. Our recommended activities are based on age but these are a guide. We recommend that these ideas are used as inspiration, that ideas are undertaken with appropriate adult supervision, and that each adult uses their own discretion and knowledge of their children to consider the safety and suitability.

Kidadl cannot accept liability for the execution of these ideas, and parental supervision is advised at all times, as safety is paramount. Anyone using the information provided by Kidadl does so at their own risk and we can not accept liability if things go wrong. 

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