1. Walk The Roman Walls

No need to stray too far from the warm and welcoming coffee shops and cafes in Colchester City Centre. The Roman walls circle Colchester's compact shopping streets and following the circular route they form is a fantastic stroll through history and a great way to connect with Colchester's past. Pick up or download a guide for all the accompanying information.

2. The Wivenhoe Trail

A signpost indicating the start of the Wivenhoe Trail

Probably the most popular local walk, the Wivenhoe Trail folows the path of the River Colne linking the centre of Colchester with the picturesque town of Wivenhoe. Bar a short stretch at Colchester's historic port the walk is largely rural with plenty of scenic views and points of interest. You'll find regular trains and buses at the end of your route to take you back to where you started, and a choice of great pubs for a nice reward once you've finished your walk.

3. Explore West Mersea...

A boat by the seafront on Mersea at sunset

It's all too easy to head to Mersea and aimlessly explore the beaches and coastline (it's an island, how lost can you get?), but we recommend downloading this walking leaflet from West Mersea town council and take the time to explore some of those bits you may be less familiar with. 

4. Discover Constable Country

A designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, the Dedham Vale and Constable Country are full of public footpaths and picturesque walking routes. Head to the AONB website for pages and pages of downloadable trails, each as quintessentially English as the last. We particularly recommend the Dragon Country walk for some fascinating folklore and hidden gems to go with your winter stroll.

5. Circle the City with the Colchester Orbital

Two backpackers walking a country lane

If you're a local resident you may know Colchester's road network like the back of your hand, but unless you've got out there on foot to explore there's a completely different side to Colchester you'll have never seen! The Orbital explores the green spaces around the city centre. It's a relatiovely long one, so you may want to split it into sections.

6. Pick up one of our town centre history trails

If you enjoyed walking the Roman Walls, you can turn over the printed leaflet and enjoy the equally fascinating Siege of Colchester trail. We also offer a Hidden Colchester walk with a few of the less well known sides of the town centre in. If you've got children, why not grab a family trivia trail or treasure hunt? We can always recommend popping into the Visitor Information Centre to see what new maps we have in!

7. High Woods Country Park
A face carved into a tree
High Woods Country Park has some of the best walking routes in the city, and is suitable for walkers of all abilities.There are several pre-set routes of varying lengths and they're all circular, so there's no difficult logistics involved in getting you back to your starting point!

With grassland, woods, meadows, and lakeside views all on display, High Woods offers a breath of fresh air in the heart of Colchester

8. Get back to Nature at Fingringhoe or Abberton

We like nothing more than peppering our walks with a spot of birdwatching and nature spotting, and Colchester's two main Essex Wildlife Trust Nature Reserves offer a perfect opportunity to do just that. The winter air brings plenty of migrant birds with it, so you'll discover a huge range of feathered visitors by the water, and plenty of ready-made hides to take a rest, escape the wind, and enjoy some peace and quiet.  

9. Tackle the Essex Way

Directional Sign for the Essex Way
For the more adventurous walker, why not try the 81 mile-long Essex Way? Not all in one go, obviously but if you start out now with the aim of completing a section every month you could be done by Christmas, and have a fantastic achievement under your belt for 2023. 

10. Or, try a guided tour
Guided Tour Logfo
If a long hike in the country isn't your cup of tea, but you still want to get out of the house our guided tours run every Saturday at 11am. They cover a relatively short distance around Colchester's compact city centre, but what they lack in distance they more than make up for in historical facts and entertainment value.




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