London Green Belt Way  

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The Route of the London Green Belt Way

The Green Belt Way is a 222.5 mile long distance path around London's green belt It meanders through beautiful countryside and passes many interesting sites. Described here are some of the landmarks and history of the places you pass on the walk. Follow the links to see an Interactive Map of the Whole Route, to read a Summary of The Places We Pass and to see a List of Paths which Link with the walk.

There is information about the terrain and difficulty of each stage. Do not expect to be walking along a flat route as there are many hilly parts of the course, especially through the Chilterns, Epping Forest and along the North Downs. If you visit the London Green Belt Way Page on the Long Distance Walkers Association Website, you can see that by using GPS they find a total ascent of 13,829 feet (4,221 meters).

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What You’ll Pass On Route

Map & Stage Distance

Photos of the Stage

Notes on Terrain



Hampton Court Palace to Staines

The start is inside the main entrance to Hampton Court Palace. The leg is mainly on the Thames Path. It crosses the Thames at two points, Hampton Court and Walton Bridges.  Diverts on road, through Lower Halliford, Old Shepperton and then again along the Thames, past, Shepperton, Chertsey and Penton Hook Locks to finish just before Staines Bridge.  Read More…

Map 1

13 miles

 Photos 1

Flat and easy underfoot along the River Thames Path.


Staines to Boveney

Mostly towpath and parkland - the route follows the Thames before crossing the road at Runnymede and climbing steps up a steep hill past the John F Kennedy Memorial at two miles. The acre of ground around the memorial is officially part of the United States of America. Soon the long trek through the Great Park leads to and around Windsor Castle before crossing the Thames to Eton and rejoining the towpath to Boveney.  Read More…

Map 2

10.45 miles

Photos 2

Mainly flat with one big climb just after 3 miles. Good underfoot along Thames Path and through parkland and Windsor Town


Boveney to Little Marlow

The route mostly follows the Thames Path for the first 9.6 miles. At times the path can be narrow, so beware of speeding pushbikes. Oakley Court and Bray Studios are soon visible across the river. Next is Bray village, then through Maidenhead, and Cookham to just after Bourne End where we leave the Thames Path by turning right over a level crossing to Spade Oak. Here just opposite Old Thatch the route goes cross country through a nature reserve and around a lake to finish in the picturesque village of Little Marlow.  Read More…

Map 3

11.05 miles

 Photos 3

Flat and good underfoot along Thames Path and through nature reserve towards end. The path through the nature reserve can be muddy if wet.


Little Marlow to Great Kingshill

The stage is tough, very hilly with many steep climbs and mostly off-road. The route goes up around the back of High Wycombe and through the Chilterns. It's a bit like a roller coaster, a long gradual climb at the start, many short sharp climbs and falls, but all in all six major climbs and each one a long and hard slog. However, you'll enjoy ever step of the way.  Read More…

Map 4

12.25 miles

 Photos 4

Very hilly from start to finish. Is uneven underfoot at some parts and can get slippery if wet.


Great Kingshill to Chipperfield

This is the longest, one of the hilliest, most interesting and scenic legs of the walk. Over thirteen miles, much which goes cross country, through the rolling hills of the Chilterns.

The route is mainly direct through Little Kingshill, the picturesque village of Little Missenden, along the banks of the River Misbourne through the grounds of the Shardeloes Estate to Old Amersham. It then passes through the Chiltern Forest, Latimer and Flaunden villages to finish by the war memorial on Chipperfield Green.  Read More…

Map 5

13.4 miles

 Photos 5

Undulating for first 6 miles to Amersham Church. The next 4 miles to just after Latimer Village are very hilly, then undulating to the finish.


Chipperfield to St.Albans

At 8.5 miles, this is one of the shorter stages, but is no less interesting than many of the others. The route passes through Kings Langley, birth and resting place of Edward de Langley, 1st Duke of York. Here we join the Grand Union Canal for a short distance before continuing east across fields and along narrow country lanes through Bedmond and Potters Crouch. The final mile takes us into St Albans through Verulamium Park and the grounds of the Abbey Cathedral to the finish just south of the River Ver.  Read More…

Map 6

8.5 miles

 Photos 6

Gently undulating from start to finish. Lots of fields which can get muddy if wet.


St.Albans to Letty Green

The stage starts at the entrance to Westminster Lodge Leisure Centre and soon joins the footpath next to the River Ver on the east side of Holywell Hill. For the next 0.65 miles the route follows the Ver-Colne Valley Walk – a 15 mile path along the rivers Colne and Ver to Redbourn just northwest of St Albans to Watford. Our route then joins the Alban Way to and through Hatfield and Old Hatfield. We then pass the old mill at Mill Green, go through the nature reserve at Commons Woods just south of Welwyn Garden City, then join the Cole Green Way to finish at the old platform of Cole Green railway station at Letty Green. There is a lot to see and two disused railway lines now converted to footpaths / cycle tracks makes most of it very direct.  Read More…

Map 7

11.95 miles

 Photos 7

Mainly flat and good underfoot following old railway lines which have been converted to footpaths / cycle tracks. The route through the nature reserve (from 8.26 to 9.85 miles) is undulating and can be muddy if wet.


Letty Green to Dobbs Weir

The stage starts next to the old platform of Cole Green Station on the Cole Green Way, a disused railway line which has been converted to a cycle path and bridleway. The railway opened in 1858 and connected Welwyn to Hertford, but was closed in 1966 as a consequence of The Beeching Report.

The route follows the Cole Green Way to Hertford. It passes through the old part of this county town taking in the castle and grounds, then joins the River Lee Navigation through Ware to finish on the bank of the canal at Dobbs Weir.  Read More…

Map 8

10.65 miles

 Photos 8

Almost all flat and good underfoot with just one climb at 2.4 miles. Follows a disused railway line (now footpath / cycle track) to just before Hertford. Then joins the Lee Valley Path to the finish.


Dobbs Weir to High Beach

From Dobbs Weir we follow the River Lee Navigation through Broxbourne, Waltham Abbey and past Enfield Lock. On this part of the stage it’s almost impossible to go off-course, unless you make a decision to jump into the canal or take a path away from it. At Enfield Lock the course leaves the Lee Valley Walk and joins the route of the London Loop for over a mile, then turns left through Epping Forest to finish on the green at High Beach.  Read More…

Map 9

11 miles

 Photos 9

Flat and easy underfoot for the first 8 miles. Big climb up to Lippitts Hill at 9 miles then mainly flat to the finish. After 8 miles parts can be muddy if wet.


High Beach to Toot Hill

The first half of the stage goes cross country through Epping Forest and Bell Common to Epping. At Epping Station we join the Essex Way for most of the way, passing through tiny village of Coopersale Street, and Gernon Bushes Nature Reserve at Coopersale, to the finish in the village of Toot Hill. Our route for the last half mile diverts from the Essex Way to take a more practical, yet no less interesting route to Toot Hill.  Read More 

Map 10

9.9 miles

 Photos 10

The first mile is mainly flat, the next 3 to Bell Common are very hilly, but the paths are quite good. The last 5 miles are undulation and in places can be very muddy if wet.


Toot Hill to Blackmore

The stage starts in the middle of the village of Toot Hill just north of the Green Man Pub at the junction of Mill Lane and Toot Hill Road. The route is almost completely off-road. We follow the Essex Way to and through Greensted and onto Chipping Ongar. Here we divert off the Essex Way to take in some of the sights and history of this old town. On leaving Chipping Ongar we rejoin the Essex Way for a short distance, before leaving it for one last time. Our route then follows St Peters Way through High Ongar and for most of the way to the finish at Blackmore.  Read More…

Map 11

7.5 miles

 Photos 11

The whole route is undulating and can be muddy in places. There are many stiles and kissing gates along the course, especially in the first 1.25 miles.


Blackmore to Thorndon Park

The stage starts just across Blackmore Green in the entrance to Church Street and just before the Bull Inn. It follows St Peter’s Way for over a mile to Fryerning then through the village and across open fields to Mountnessing. Next is Begrums with its water tower, then Hutton with its nature reserve and old church. From here we go cross-country to Ingrave, past the huge pile of Thorndon House and through the park to the finish at the Thorndon Park North Visitor’s Centre.  Read More …

Map 12

11 miles

 Photos 12

The whole route is mainly flat or gently undulating. It crosses many fields where generally the paths are good and well defined. However, if wet or not maintained properly can slow you down.


Thorndon Park to Thames Chase

The stage starts at the south of the car park next to the gate to Thorndon Park North Countryside Centre. As well as the park, the route takes in many other properties owned by the Thames Chase Community Forest, including Harts Wood, Donkey Plantation, Warley Gap, Codham Hall Woods and Franks Wood. We pass through Little Warley, Great Warley and skirt the outside of Upminster on our way to the finish at the Thames Chase Forest Centre at Broadfields Farm.  Read More…

Map 13

7.15 miles

 Photos 13

The route is part flat & part undulating. The first 1.25 miles are through woods & parts can get muddy, as can fields between 2.4 & 4.76 miles. High metal stiles at level crossing at 6.28 miles.  


Thames Chase to Davy Down

The stage starts at the Thames Chase Forest Centre, the headquarters of the Thames Chase Community Forest. It was built on the site of Broadfields Farm. The route passes through the old village of Cranham, then Cranham Marsh Nature Reserve, Corbets Tey, Belhus Country Park, Belhus Chase and the town of Aveley. For the last two miles we follow the Mardyke Way to the finish at Davy Down.  Read More…

Map 14

8.0 miles

 Photos 14

The whole route is basically flat. The only things to slow you down are stiles and some places becoming wet and muddy.


Queen Elizabeth Bridge to Lullingston Park

The route goes south from the Queen Elizabeth II Bridge Viewpoint at Stone. A few years ago this was a beautiful place to start from, but thanks to vandals it has now been sealed off by the local council. Maybe there will be some hope again in the future.

The route passes through the outskirts of Dartford to join the Darent Valley Path south, through the villages of Darenth, Farningham and Eynsford. Then past the Roman Villa remains and the castle at Lullingstone, to finish on the bank of the River Darent behind the Visitor’s Centre at Lullingstone Park.  Read More…

Map 15

9.9 miles

 Photos 15

Mainly flat with a few undulations. The only real climb is from 7 miles through Farningham and up Sparepenny Lane. In the most follows narrow paths close to the river and country lanes.


Lullingstone Park to Tatsfield

This stage continues south along the Darent Valley Path for almost five miles passing through the villages of Shoreham and Otford. There is one diversion of the Path just before Otford. At Otford the route also joins the North Downs Way, but diverts off the Way to take in Chevening Church and Park. Shortly afterwards following the Pilgrims Way along narrow country lanes, then back onto the North Downs Way, before diverting off-road again to Tatsfield.  Read More…

Map 16

12.7 miles

 Photos 16

The first 3 miles are gently undulation along river paths & through fields. A huge climb at 7 miles followed by a rapid descent. Flat along the Pilgrims Way from 8 to 10.5 miles, then hilly to the finish. 


Tatsfield to Merstham

The route is mainly off-road and undulating, along the Pilgrims and North Downs Ways. Expect a few good climbs and one of the most impressive descents of the whole walk. There are reptiles and dark secrets near the start. Along the route you’ll encounter stately homes; Roman Villas; ancient Celtic Temples; one of the UK’s largest vineyards; an ancient Pilgrim fort; the highest point on the North Downs Ridge; some great views to the north over London and south across Surrey and the Weald; the odd helicopter parked in front gardens; relics from world wars; our industrial past and great storms; plus the oldest existing remains of a rail track in the world.  Read More…

Map 17

11.2 miles

 Photos 17

Flat for first 1.2 miles, then mostly hilly for the rest as we follow the North Downs Way to near Merstham. In general the path is good, but some places can get muddy. Expect steps at 3.5 and 6.5 miles plus a huge descent at 9.6 miles


Merstham to Boxhill

The stage starts outside the Feathers Hotel and next to the A23 at Merstham. The route follows the North Downs Way past Merstham Cricket Club and across Reigate Hill Golf Club, then through the Royal Alexandra & Albert School at Gatton Park, and up on to Reigate Hill. At Buckland Heights we divert from the NDW to stay on top of the Downs escarpment passing a few very impressive properties and some great views. At Pebble Coombe we join an ancient trackway along Tye Lane to Headley Village. Then divert south through Headley Heath to rejoin the NDW and finish at the Boxhill Information Centre.  Read More …

Map 18

10.05 miles

 Photos 18

A mixture of flat, hills & undulating. The route climbs gradually for over 2 miles to Reigate Hill. It then undulates gently near the top of the escarpment with a few short sharp climbs and descents. Again path is good but can get muddy in places.


Boxhill to West Hanger

Box Hill is National Trust property and a beautiful place to start a walk from. There are so many options with footpaths going off in all directions. The North Downs Way chooses to take the steep decent down to the stepping stones over the River Mole. Cyclists and runners choose the road down the Zig-Zag. Our route will follow Fort Road which goes gently off the hill, past Burford Bridge and then climb through the village of West Humble and up onto the Downs behind Denbies Vineyard. Here we join the North Downs Way and follow it to the finish, above the lovely village of Shere, at the West Hanger picnic area. It’s a beautiful route, but be warned, it’s hilly.  Read More…

Map 19

9.65 miles

 Photos 19

Hilly with a long steep descent from Boxhill and long steep climb to join the North Downs Way above Denbies in first 2.34 miles. From here it is almost all off road following the North Downs Way as it climbs and fall near to the top of the escarpment


West Hanger to Ripley

From West Hanger we continue along the North Downs Way for just over half a mile then turn right to go north and gradually downhill off the Downs. The views of West London and Heathrow Airport to the right and Woking in front are impressive. We cross over the busy A25 and pass through the picturesque village of East Clandon, then on through the Ryde Estate and along lanes past Ockham to finish on The Green in the historic village of Ripley.  Read More…

Map 20

6.15 miles

 Photos 20

Flat for 0.57 miles then gradually downhill to a busy road crossing at 2.13 miles. Flat to the finish with just one gentle hill at 3.27 miles. Some places around 3.5 miles can get muddy. 


Ripley to Walton Bridge

The stage starts on the path just past the cottages facing onto Ripley Green. This is across the High Street from the T-junction with Rose Lane and a few yards to the right. Our route follows a path across the Green then turns left to join the River Wey Navigation at Walsham Lock. We follow the Wey, mainly surrounded by green open space and pasture, through West Byfleet, New Haw, Addlestone and Weybridge to Thames Lock. Our route then joins the Desborough Cut to finish on the River Thames at Walton Bridge.  Read More…

Map 21

8.45 miles

 Photos 21

Flat and easy underfoot following good footpaths along the River Wey Navigation and the Desborough Cut of the River Thames.


Walton Bridge to Hampton Court Maze

The route crosses the River Thames, going firstly north for half a mile to the Fordbridge Roundabout, then east through Lower Sunbury, past the Hampton Waterworks and through Hampton Village. We then follow a scenic route through Bushy Park and finish in the middle of the maze in the grounds of Hampton Court Palace. It’s a bit of a strange way to finish the walk, but you’ll enjoy the scenery and the places you pass on route.  Read More…

Map 22

8.6 miles

 Photos 22

Flat and easy underfoot. On pavements for the first 4.5 miles then through Bushy Park before finishing in Hampton Court Maze.

Whole Route

Hampton Court Palace to Hampton Court Maze

This is a new footpath around the Green Belt of London. It is 222.9 miles long and starts and finishes at Hampton Court Palace. It has been developed over the last 16 year.  Read More …

Map of the Whole Route

222.5 miles



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