10.85 mi

Elevation gain

213 ft

Technical difficulty


Elevation loss

213 ft

Max elevation

122 ft


50 4.8

Min elevation

-20 ft

Trail type





October 20, 2020


October 2020
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122 ft
-20 ft
10.85 mi

Viewed 224 times, downloaded 5 times

near Harkstead, England (United Kingdom)

Caution: The beach leg might be blocked during storm surge or unusually high tides.

From the car park, head SW towards the estuary. At the flood wall, keep left and continue SW, water right.
Follow the footpath left, eventually east, river right. Beach walking is possible but not during high tides or storm surges.
Follow the coastal path mainly east. After a patch of woodland, you are forced onto the beach. Head SE.
Cross a stream using a sleeper bridge. The water looked polluted. Follow the beach with low cliffs, left.
After the cliffs, the right of way continues along the beach but I could not find a way across reed beds without getting very wet and muddy. An alternative route goes north on a farm track, then right and right again through a hedge gap. Head SE parallel with the river, hedge right. The legality of this detour is unknown given that the official path seems to be blocked. Eventually there are steps up from the beach. I checked these and still could not find a viable route across the reed beds.
From the top of the steps, head east, hedge right.
At a hedge, turn left, NW, hedge right and head inland.
Turn left, west, onto a farm track which soon bends right, NW, then north.
Turn left, NW, onto tarmac towards Holbrook. Turn left off the tarmac and head west across open fields.
Cross a tarmac lane and head NW across more open fields. Turn right, east, and head past the Baker's Arms.
Turn first left, north, towards Chelmondeston, children's play area right.
At a right bend in the tarmac, turn off, north, hedge left on a footpath.
Kink left and right and continue north, hedge right. Continue north across open fields towards barns.
Turn left, west, along the tarmac farm access road, hedges both sides.
Turn right, north, onto tarmac for 120 metres. Turn left, NW, across open fields.
At the NW corner of the field cross a farm track and continue NW across another field.
Turn left, roughly west, onto tarmac for 80 metres.
Turn right and head west across the open field. Aim for the stile into woodland, houses left.
Head west through the woods and continue west on tarmac after the wood.
Cross the B1080 and head west, stream left, poplars ahead.
The path skirts a large waterworks east of Alton Water, NW, west and finally SW.
At Alton Water head south across the overflow channel and the dam.
Turn right, west, near the pay and display car park.
Continue west after the access road bends left, camping site left.
Turn left, south, at the end of the camping site. The path soon bends right, roughly west towards power lines.
Ignore a footpath left and follow the power lines west.
Turn left, south, onto tarmac, then first right, west, houses left.
Turn left to join the Cattsfield residential access road. Turn right, west, along the main road for 350 metres.
Opposite the war memorial, turn left, SE, towards Manor Farm. At the first house, turn left, NE, hedge right.
Continue east along Lower Street towards the church. At the church, follow the lane left.
Then pond left, follow the footpath north and soon right, east. Continue east and later NE close to the school perimeter boundary.
The footpath eventually merges with a private road from the school grounds. Follow this NE, fence both sides.
At the estuary inlet, turn right, SE.
Turn left, NE, returning to the car park along the same track as the outward walk.

View more external

Car park

Alton Wharf

  • Photo of Alton Wharf
  • Photo of Alton Wharf
Alton Wharf, TM 17707 35058
Car park

TM 16166 35432, ALton Water


Bakers Arms, Harkstead

  • Photo of Bakers Arms, Harkstead
Bakers Arms, Harkstead


  • linda.mulrooney Mar 8, 2021

    I have followed this trail  verified  View more

    We thoroughly enjoyed the walk. Lots of wildlife and most of it off road. One footpath had been ploughed up by the farmer so we walked around the edge of the field which was no problem. Would definitely do the walk again.

  • Photo of Shadoon

    Shadoon Sep 21, 2021

    Wife and I completed this walk today. Excellent walk and gorgeous sunny day. Thanks for uploading this hike 👌

  • MNeil Nov 6, 2021

    I have followed this trail  verified  View more

    Nice start to the walk along a pebble beach/shoreline, I’m not sure if the tide would cut this out as water and beaches jellyfish could be seen.
    A lot of fields not much scenery thereafter.
    1 pub during the route opens at 12 no other shops or other anywhere, unless you take a cheeky left off route 400 yards as you pop up in Holbrook 2/3 walk.
    Only a few roads to walk on with minimal traffic
    Locals are pleasant ✔️

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