Latest News: Read more

National Trail AcornRidgeway National Trail

Buckinghamshire, Hertfordshire, Oxfordshire, Swindon, W Berkshire, Wiltshire

140 km / 87 miles
One of the links in a prehistoric route, often called the Greater Ridgeway, extending from the South Devon Coast to The Wash, comprising the Wessex Ridgeway (Lyme Regis to Overton), Ridgeway National Trail (Overton to Ivinghoe), Icknield Way (Ivinghoe to Thetford) and Peddars Way (Knettishall to Hunstanton).

The Ridgeway is a trail of two contrasting halves, separated by the River Thames. The western part of this National Trail largely follows the route of a prehistoric ridge track along the crest of the North Wessex Downs and passes many historic sites, including Barbury, Liddington, Uffington and Segsbury Castles (hill forts), Wayland's Smithy (long barrow) and Uffington White Horse. Much of the Trail here is along a broad track which used to be rutted, but it has been resurfaced and protected against motorised traffic by regulations. The Avebury World Heritage Site (a joint site with Stonehenge) is close to the start of the route at the Sanctuary.

The eastern part of the National Trail crosses the River Thames at Streatley and then follows the river for five miles before heading east into the Chiltern Hills, mainly along the north-western escarpment. The walking on this eastern section is more varied, along tracks and paths, across open downland, and through farm and woodland, passing Nuffield, Watlington, Chinnor, Princes Risborough (see Swan's Way), Wendover and Tring.

The waymarked Icknield Way-Ridgeway Link (7.5 miles and coincident with the Icknield Way Path on OS mapping) is a linking route from the finish of Ridgeway National Trail at Ivinghoe Beacon (where there are no visitor facilites) to the Chilterns Gateway Visitor Centre near Dunstable. The Link uses the route of the existing Icknield Way Path that has been upgraded to make it stile-free and steps have been added on a steep section.

AUGUST 2023: There has been a report that part of the Ridgeway route over the M4 outside Swindon, between the B4192 and the Roman Road near Foxhill, is hazardous due to fast traffic and no pavement or verge.

The LDWA National Trails Register offers certificates for completers of several British National Trails.


Waymark: National Trail Acorn
Path Type: National Trails (England & Wales)
Waymark: National Trail Acorn
Attributes: National Trail (England and Wales)
Average Gradients
World Heritage Site
Start: SU119681 - Overton Hill, Wiltshire View on StreetMap
Finish: SP960169 - Ivinghoe Beacon, Buckinghamshire View on StreetMap
Open Date: 1973
User Group: Friends of the Ridgeway Friends of the Ridgeway
Web Sites: British Walks - Ridgeway [blog] Chilterns National Landscape - Ridgeway National Trail Chiltern Society - Ridgeway National Trail Friends of the Ridgeway - Walking the Ridgeway Historic UK - The Ridgeway National Trails - Ridgeway In sunlight and in shadow: walking the Ridgeway long-distance trail The Ridgeway National Trail : Did you know? Angus Watson - Walking the Ridgeway [blog] Annierak - Ridgeway National Trail [blog] Brian's Walks - Ridgeway National Trail [blog] Griffmonster - Ridgeway : Ivinghoe Beacon to Great Kimble [blog] Halfway Hike - The Ridgeway [blog] Jackie McAll - The Ridgeway National Trail : my experience [blog] Jason McDonald's Walking Pages - Ridgeway National Trail [blog] Pete's Trip Reports - Ridgeway [blog] Rambling Man - Planning your Ridgeway Walk Southern Walks - Ridgeway Stephen and Lucy Dawson - Ridgeway [blog] The Hoary Ape - The Ridgeway [blog] Trailman - Ridgeway [blog] Trailplanner - The Ridgeway [blog] A walker's journal - The Ridgeway [blog] Walking the Ridgeway - in 100 seconds [YouTube video] Chris Stuart's Walks - Ridgeway [blog] Ridgeway National Trail [YouTube video]

Publications, Badges and Certificates:

Guidebook Ridgeway  (Rucksack Readers  - 2015 )
Guidebook Ridgeway : a dog walker's guide  (Countryside Books  - 2017 )
Guidebook Ridgeway : Avebury to Ivinghoe Beacon  (Trailblazer  - 2021 )
Guidebook Ridgeway : National Trail Guide  (Aurum Press (an imprint of Quarto)  - 2016 )
General Interest Book National Trails : 19 long-distance routes through England, Scotland and Wales  (Cicerone Press  - 2015 )
Guidebook Walking the Ridgeway National Trail : Avebury to Ivinghoe Beacon  (Cicerone Press  - 2022 )
Guidebook Discovering the Ridgeway  ([NO CURRENT SUPPLIER]  - 2002 )
Guidebook Exploring the Ridgeway  (Countryside Books  - 2000 )
Guidebook Oldest road : the Ridgeway  (Whittet Books  - 1987 )
Guidebook Pub walks along the Ridgeway  (Countryside Books  - 2004 )
Guidebook The Greater Ridgeway : a walk along the ancient route from Lyme Regis to Hunstanton  (Cicerone Press  - 2003 )
Guidebook Walkers' Britain  (AA Publishing  - 2011 )
Badge Badge for National Trails  (Trails Shop )
Certificate Certificate for National Trails  (Long Distance Walkers Association )
Certificate Certificate for National Trails  (Trails Shop )
Other Ridgeway video guide  (TV walks )
General Interest Book Alone on the Ridgeway : one woman's solo journey from Avebury to Ivinghoe Beacon  (Tribal Publishing  - 2017 )
E-Book Big walks of Great Britain  (Summersdale Publishers  - 2006 )
E-Book Big walks of the south  (Summersdale Publishers  - 2010 )
General Interest Book Tales of the Ridgeway  (Clive Bowd  - 2017 )
Other National Trail mug  (Trails Shop )
Badge Ridgeway enamel badge  (Trails Shop )
General Interest Book Tales from the Big Trails  (Vertebrate Publishing  - 2021 )

Click to showhide 19 more Publications, Badges and Certificates


You can use the interactive controls to zoom in and out and to move around the map, or click on a path or a marker for more info.(interactive map help)

Show Connected Path Outlines
E Routes
National Trails (England & Wales)
Paths Marked on OS mapping
Other Paths
Anytime Challenges

Show Accommodation
Hostel Accommodation

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 (path is named on OS maps):
OS Landranger 164, 165, 173, 174, 175
OS Landranger Active 164, 165, 173, 174, 175
OS Explorer 157, 169, 170, 171, 181
OS Explorer Active 157, 169, 170, 171, 181
Other Paper Maps:
Harvey National Trail map
Ridgeway (Harvey Maps - 2015)
ZigZag 20 Stripmap
Ridgeway 1: Overton Hill to Segsbury Castle (Yellow Publications - 2023)
ZigZag 20 Stripmap
Ridgeway 2: Segsbury Castle to Watlington Hill (Yellow Publications - 2023)
ZigZag 20 Stripmap
Ridgeway 3: Watlington Hill to Ivinghoe Beacon (Yellow Publications - 2023)

Walking Support Providers:

Support Providers
Self-Guided Walking Holidays (Contours Holidays)
Support Providers
Support Providers
Baggage Handling (Move My Bags)
Support Providers
Support Providers
Self-Guided Walking Holidays (Absolute Escapes Ltd)
Support Providers
Baggage Handling and Self Guided Walks (Celtic Trails Walking Holidays)
Support Providers
Guided Walking Holidays (Footpath Holidays)
Support Providers
Support Providers
Baggage Handling and Self-Guided Walks (Walk & Cycle Britain Limited)
Support Providers
Baggage Handling & Passenger Transfer (Ridgeway Luggage Transfers)
Support Providers

Click to show 8 more Walking Support Providers

Accommodation within 5 km of this Path:


Connected Paths:


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
Login to Download
(Members Only)
MemoryMap Route File
Ridgeway National Trail Memory Map Route File
Last Updated 12/12/2020 16:58:21
Login to Download
(Members Only)
Tracklogs Route File
Ridgeway NT Tracklogs Route file
Last Updated 12/12/2020 16:58:22
Login to Download
(Members Only)

Route Profile:

138.5 km (86.1 miles)
2,269 m (7,444 ft) ascent
275 m (902 ft)  maximum height

This website uses cookies

To comply with EU Directives we are informing you that our website uses cookies for services such as memberships and Google Analytics.

Your data is completely safe and we do not record any personally identifiable information.

Please click the button to acknowledge and approve our use of cookies during your visit.

Learn more about the Cookie Law