Get active outdoors this Spring

Get active outdoors this Spring

The snowdrops are out, the first sign that the days getting longer and spring is on its way. With more daytime hours to get out and about, we’ve listed some clubs, events and walking groups happening this spring time, to help you blow the winter cobwebs away.

There are tough physical challenges like trail runs and half marathons, short 5 mile walks for health, walks to make friends and have a relaxed chat outdoors, or opportunities to improve your mental health and wellbeing in nature a supportive atmosphere.

Physical challenges

Trail Running Events

The spring programme includes introductions to navigation, a marathon and half marathon, a range of 10km trails, including a brewery trail run, and the Chiltern Hills Challenge.  Read more.

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Gentle Health Walks - under 5 miles

Walking for health

Locations around Bedfordshire include Dunstable Downs, Barton le Clay, Sharpenhoe Clappers and Houghton Regis. Walks range from 10 minutes to 90 minutes and are designed to introduce people to the benefits of regular moderate exercise.

In other locations, visit Walking for Health – to find your local health walk.

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Chiltern Society walks programme

The Chiltern Society offers two to three five mile long walks every week, designed to improve physical and mental health. Read more

Accompanied walks at the Chilterns Open Air Museum

An award winning social prescribing project to tackle social isolation in the elderly community and support health and wellbeing. Individuals, couples and dogs are invited to the museum, free of charge, for an accompanied walk with a knowledgeable and friendly volunteer. Participants have the opportunity to enjoy an hour’s walk around the museum (or can be driven around in a golf buggy) and learn about the 37 heritage buildings, gardens, park and woodland, or simply just chat. Before heading back home, walkers are offered refreshments, a chance for further conversation and are invited back for a return visit.

10km Walks and Talks

Dadima’s Countryside Walks and Talks 2022 Programme 

Dr Geeta Ludhra, a member of the Chilterns Conservation Board, has started a wonderful intergenerational walking community offering 10km walks in the Chilterns. She aims to make the countryside feel like a safe place for people of all cultural and ethnic backgrounds – so that everyone can access to health and wellbeing benefits that time in nature can bring. This year’s programme includes walks noticing details of nature, a walk for South Asian Heritage Month, geology & birdwatching walks and more. Discover the 2022 programme

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Wildlife Walks

GG Wildlife Experiences – photography and wildlife watching on the river

Steve, ‘The Bird Whisperer’ Gzodz offers wonderful wildlife walks and experiences. Special experiences include his as Owl and Wildlife Photography Workshops, and Wildlife on the Water experiences by river taxi.

“Tallulah” is a shallow bottomed boat which allows participants to get close to banks and the wildlife itself – a great way to observe without disturbing, and also means we can move as nimbly or slowly as we wish. Check the website for dates of Owl Photography workshops, and the Wildlife on the water Boat tours next available dates are May 22nd and July 16th.

Visit GG Wildlife Experiences website for more information and to book.

 

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Pub Trails - self guided

Brakspear Pub Trails for country walks that start and finish at a pub, simply download the app, or pick up a copy of a map from the pub of choice (for a 50p donation to Marie Curie Cancer Care). Don’t forget to book a table in the pub of choice if you want to finish with a meal as well as a beer! Read more

Heritage and Themed Walks

Amersham Museum’s guided history walks

Starting in April, these walks offer fascinating insights into the history of Amersham Old Town. The walks will be 2.30pm from Amersham Museum on Saturdays and Sundays. Including walks led by guides in Tudor Costume, walks learning about early history and post-war Amersham. £5 for adults, children free, 1.5 to 2 hours long. Read more

The Heritage Trail in High Wycombe

A self guided trail that follows life in the town during World War One. Download the trail on your mobile, including videos, photos and commentary from soldier John for each location. Read more

Ewelme Watercress beds

Ewelme Watercress Beds (image Chiltern Society)

Ewelme Watercress Beds Tours

Monthly including 3 April and 1 May. Read more

Capture the Chiltern Hills

Photography workshop walks with Matt Writtle. Monthly including 3 April and 1 May, Chesham. Read more

Walk George Orwell’s Golden Country

Various dates. 10 miles. Walk through Orwell’s childhood landscape near Henley on Thames and gain insights into places that may have influenced his work. Read more

Visit Danesfield House – themed events

Including The Danesfield House Gardens and Hillfort Tour, 25 May, 11am and 2pm. Read more

More Self Guided Walks

Roald Dahl Walking Trails

These self guided, family-friendly trails are a chance to explore the locations that inspired his stories, such as the petrol pump from Danny, the Champion of the World, to the library in Matilda and the house that inspired the orphanage in The BFG. In the countryside, explore the woods that inspired Fantastic Mr Fox. Pick up a map from The Roald Dahl Museum in Great Missenden, or download here.

Burnham Beeches sensory trail

A 1km buggy-friendly walk visiting 6 sculpture, each exploring a different sense. Park at Lord Mayor’s Drive SL23PS. The walk starts at the café through the gates signposted Burnham Beeches nature reserve. Pick up a trail leaflet from the information point.

Improve your Mental Health and Wellbeing in Nature

Rest and Reflect sessions at Lindengate

Have you or your teens been struggling with wellbeing and isolation during the pandemic? Lindengate, near Wendover, is a place to relax and unwind and enjoy exploring the 5 acre garden.

Planted for 13 – 15 year olds is a 6 week programme focussing on aspects of wellbeing from self-care to resilience. Alternatively there’s the Green Volunteens, a chance for under 18s to take part in nature based activities and bushcraft, supported by experienced volunteers. Wellbeing Pathways for adults with low to moderate mental health needs is also a chance to improve wellbeing through nature based activities. And there’s a Women’s Wellbeing Group supporting women from black and ethnic minority backgrounds. Read more

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Dudes and Dogs CIC

This walking group was established as a safe place for men to get together, walk and talk about mental health if they feel like talking (with no pressure) – with or without their dog! Hour long walks take place on Sunday mornings. Check the website for walk details. Read more about the thinking behind Dudes and Dogs here.

Related news

Historic England and Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty sign joint statement to conserve and celebrate iconic historic environment

England’s AONBs and Historic England have signed a joint statement outlining their ambition and intent to work together to conserve and enhance the historic and cultural environment of England’s 34 AONBs.

Buckinghamshire Council publishes hard-hitting report on pollution of the County’s rivers and chalk streams

Calling for urgent action to protect Buckinghamshire’s rivers and chalk streams, the report’s key conclusions include that the water industry is the single biggest contributor towards poor water quality in the region.

Celebrating the Chilterns in literature – a new collection of ten tales

The Chilterns will soon have its own collection of stories celebrating the diverse cultural and natural heritage of the AONB.

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Bookable experiences

We have carefully chosen our most immersive and memorable Chilterns Countryside Experiences to share with you here. Choose from Active Countryside, Chilterns Food & Drink, Countryside Learning and Chilterns Sightseeing. All are bookable online.
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Upcoming events

Find out what's on in the Chilterns - walking or biking, food & drinks, serious trekking or a picnic on the flat - the possibilities are endless.