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Uncover Test Valley: your guide to nature walks, cycling routes, attractions and more!

This idyllic part of Hampshire offers you everything in the way fresh air activity. You can be close to nature through walking, cycling, exploring gardens and woodland, enjoy fly-fishing, outdoor attractions and even sleeping in some unique locations!

 

Walking


The Test Way is a wonderful 44-mile-long distance walk which runs the length of the River Test, passing through picturesque countryside and villages along the way.  You can tackle one of the eight stages if you don’t fancy the whole length. Or there’s the Clarendon Way, a 24-mile walk divided into four stages between Winchester and Salisbury Cathedrals.


The Monarch’s Way, is another long-distance footpath that follows the escape route taken by King Charles II.


There is a disused railway line called the Sprat and Winkle that used to run between Andover and Redbridge, Southampton. As well as many opportunities for short circular walks that are dog friendly routes, family rambles and walks in nature reserves and woodland.  The National Trust also looks after some beautiful areas just perfect for walking and observing wildlife – like Chilbolton Cow Common and Stockbridge Marsh.

 

Cycling


There are many routes on offer for cyclists of all levels of ability and interest – from leisurely rides along a disused railway line to more energetic and hilly mountain biking.  

  

Fishing and other outdoor activities


You can indulge a passion for fly-fishing or learn the skills from scratch.  The River Test and River Dever have some of the finest fly fishing in the world.  Enjoy time on the river with Fishing Breaks which provides a programme of activities for all ages and abilitiesOther fishing organisations that can arrange fishing include the Bossington Estate, Leckford Estate, Winwhistle Coarse Fishing, and more. Guests at The Grosvenor, Stockbridge can book fly fishing, pheasant or partridge shooting, clay shooting and deer stalking. The Greyhound on the Test, Stockbridge can arrange fly fishing, game, deer stalking and clay pigeon shooting.  They even offer hampers to enjoy picnics by the river.

 

Gardens

 

You can enjoy visiting wonderful gardens like the world-renowned 180-acre Sir Harold Hillier Gardens, which besides being a great attraction in itself, has outdoor workshops and concerts, the privately owned  Houghton Lodge Gardens,  the wonderful Longstock Park Water Gardens,  Mottisfont’s riverside gardens and estate town parks and open spaces in Andover and Romsey and the medieval gardens at King John’s House, Romsey .

 

Outdoor attractions


Enjoy the birds of prey at the Hawk Conservancy Trust or animals at Finkley Down Farm and Cholderton Rare Breeds Farm. There’s also Paultons Park with more than 70 rides and attractions as well as gardens and lakes. Try an unusual festival such as Trout ‘n About, a celebration of local produce in Stockbridge,  or Andover’s Cycling Festival.

 

Accommodation


Enjoy a stay in one of Chilworth Woodland Retreat’s shepherd’s huts or log cabin, learn about farm life on a Gambledown Farm stay (luxury safari-style tents or a converted barn), or at Michelmersh Manor Farm. And try The Meadow Glamping, which has unusual glamping units - an original showman’s wagon, a boutique bohemian hideaway and a 23ft narrow boat.  Or you might like to try luxury treehouse living at Fullerton Farm, by the Black Chalk winery.

 

Explore Visit Test Valley for more inspiration.

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