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Sarsen Way

Wiltshire

80 km / 50 miles
A walk through the evidence of ancient history across rural Wiltshire linking Barbury Castle with Salisbury Cathedral. It passes the Alton Barnes White Horse and The Sanctuary, then crosses the medieval defensive earthwork, Wansdyke, and passes Adam's Grave, Casterley Camp and Old Sarum, the site of an ancient settlement. En-route it meanders along the Avon Valley, passing through Amesbury, and it visits the edges of Salisbury Plain.

This Sarsen Way route is mainly across open, rolling downland under wide skies. There is visible evidence of ancient earthworks - such as tumuli and burial mounds - as well as past agriculture in strip lynchets near Woodborough and Upavon. Part of the route is along the Ridgeway. The route ends in Salisbury at the Cathedral.

It is part of a family of routes under the Great Chalk Way umbrella, that are established walking and riding routes linking the Dorset and Norfolk Coasts across central southern England, following the ancient trading route along the chalk ridge, together forming a coast-to-coast route of around 400 miles. The Great Chalk Way comprises the Wessex Ridgeway, Cranborne Droves Way, Sarsen Way, Ridgeway, Icknield Way and Peddars Way. More information on the Great Chalk Way is on its website below and on the Friends of the Ridgeway website.

The route is not waymarked but it follows the Pewsey Avon Trail as far as Manningford Abbots, then the White Horse Trail as far as Knap Hill, both of which are waymarked and shown on OS mapping.

The Sarsen Way effectively replaces the former Great Stones Way to better align it with these existing waymarked LDPs, with the former guidebook for the latter route now out of print. The Sarsen Way is almost the same as the Great Stones Way except for about 12.7 km of the Sarsen Way between Woodborough and Casterley Camp. A new Cicerone guidebook for the Sarsen Way is being prepared (2023).

Some of the northern part of the Sarsen Way route lies within the North Wessex Downs AONB. Most of the AONB is farmland. Over half of this area is cropped and some is grazed, the rest is mostly woodland and set aside land.

The Sarsen Way website (link below) provides walking directions written for walkers by Tim Lewis. The route directions are provided in both directions. The route is described in eight sections: Coate Water Country Park to Barbury Castle, 7 miles (11.2 km), Barbury Castle to Overton Hill /A4, 6.5 miles (10.4 km), Overton Hill/A4 to Upavon, 11.75 miles (18.9 km), Upavon to Enford, 4.8 miles (7.7 km), Enford to Figheldean, 4.3 miles (6.9 km), Figheldean to Amesbury, 4.5 miles (7.2 km), Amesbury to Old Sarum, 7 miles (11.2 km), Old Sarum to Salisbury, 3 miles (4.8 km). On this site the north-south version is shown.


Details:

Path Type: Other Paths
Attributes: Other Paths
Average Gradients
Horse Ride (Multi User)
Agricultural land
AONB
Downland/Wolds
Urban
Start: SU176827 - Coate Water Country Park, Wiltshire View on StreetMap
Finish: SU142295 - Salisbury Cathedral, Wiltshire View on StreetMap
Open Date: 2022
User Group: Friends of the Ridgeway Friends of the Ridgeway
Web Sites: Great Chalk Way - Sarsen Way

Publications, Badges and Certificates:

Route Description - PDF Sarsen Way - South to North - route description  (Tim Lewis  - 2023 ) Download File
Route Description - PDF Sarsen Way - North to South - route description  (Tim Lewis  - 2023 ) Download File

Maps:

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Paths Marked on OS mapping
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Contains Ordnance Survey data © Crown copyright and database right 2016.
© OpenStreetMap contributors under Open Database Licence.
Rights of way data from selected Local Authorities.
Large scale digital mapping is provided by John Thorn.
At high zoom levels the route is indicative only.
Purchase Ordnance Survey Maps:
OS Landranger 173, 184
OS Landranger Active 173, 184
OS Explorer 130, 157, 169
OS Explorer Active 130, 157, 169

Accommodation within 5 km of this Path:

 
 
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Downloads:

Reminder: Material downloaded from this website is for personal use only. Commercial use, reproduction, modification of all content is strictly prohibited without prior approval by the LDWA. Please Contact Us if you have any requests.

GPX Route File
Sarsen Way GPX Exchange Format Route File
Last Updated 04/12/2023 20:29:50
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(Members Only)
MemoryMap Route File
Sarsen Way Memory Map Route File
Last Updated 04/12/2023 20:29:50
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(Members Only)
Tracklogs Route File
Sarsen Way Tracklogs Route File
Last Updated 04/12/2023 20:29:51
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Route Profile:

79.9 km (49.6 miles)
1,024 m (3,360 ft) ascent
270 m (886 ft)  maximum height

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