Epping Forest – The best walks and walking routes in Epping Forest
This is a simple to follow guide to over 30 of the best walks and walking routes in Epping Forest, including easy short walks, family walks and good long walks.
Click on the link for the latest Epping Forest Map 2012 with up to date news, visitor centre details and information on Epping Forest walking routes. There is also a very good Epping Forest walking map available at the Epping Forest shop at the Queen Elizabeth Hunting Lodge in Chingford so that you can plan your own special walking routes in and around the ancient royal hunting grounds of Epping Forest.
Easy Short Walks
Easy walks that are suitable for all of the family, mostly up to 5 miles which should take a leisurely 2 to 3 hours to complete. Epping Forest can be quite muddy so it is advisable to wear a good pair of walking boots or waterproof walking shoes. Facilities can be quite limited in Epping Forest with High Beach being the most central location for refreshments and toilet facilities. For more information about Epping Forest visit their official website here.
Gunpowder Park Walk A simple 2 mile circular walk in Gunpowder Park offers leisurely walking routes in an area of conservation near Waltham Abbey.
South Woodford Walk An easy 3 mile linear walk from South Woodford to Chingford following the Epping Forest Centenary Walk.
Willow Trail Walk A simple 3 mile classic family circular walk following The Willow Trail, one of the official Epping Forest walking routes, around Connaught Water.
Epping Forest Family Walk A 3 mile family stroll randomly around the ancient woodlands of Epping Forest from High Beach.
Holly Trail Walk A simple 3 mile classic family circular walk following The Holly Trail, one of the official Epping Forest walking routes, starting in Chingford.
Chestnut Trail Walk A simple 4 mile classic family circular walk following The Chestnut Trail, one of the official Epping Forest walking routes, starting in Wanstead.
Wanstead Park Walk A gentle 4 mile circular walk in Wanstead Park, lakes and woodland on well maintained walking routes, tracks and paths.
Family Favourite Walk An awesome 5 mile circular walk from Chingford taking in all of the best sights of this part of Epping Forest. Following the main walking routes this walk starts at Chingford Plain and takes you to High Beach, Loughton Camp, Kate’s Cellar, Strawberry Hill Ponds, Connaught Water and the Queen Elizabeth Hunting Lodge.
Moderate Longer Walks
These walks are typically between 5 to 10 miles long and can be quite challenging. These types of walks can take between 3 to 5 hours to complete at a good walking pace. Epping Forest has a myriad of pathways so always make sure you have a paper or digital map with you and take refreshments and plenty of liquids with you to keep hydrated. There are plenty of Epping Forest Fallow Deer, Muntjacs and other wildlife to be found on these walking routes so it is always worth keeping as quite as you can to avoid scaring them off before you get to see them!
Queen Elizabeth Hunting Lodge Walk An easy 6 mile circular walk from Queen Elizabeth’s Hunting Lodge to High Beach and back via the Epping Forest Green Ride walking routes.
Chingford Walk An easy 6 mile circular walk from Chingford to the famous Epping Forest Bikers Cafe.
Pole Hill Walk An easy 6 mile circular walk from Chingford to Pole Hill Obelisk and back via the Epping Forest Centenary Walk.
Gilwell Park Walk A good 6 mile circular walk around Gilwell Park, home of the Scout Association, with a Secret Bluebell Wood Video as an extra bonus!
High Beach Church Walk A simple 7 mile circular walk from Chingford to High Beach Church and back via the Centenary Walk, one of Epping Forest’s most well known walking routes.
Oak Trail Walk A gentle 7 mile circular walk along The Oak Trail, one of the official Epping Forest walking routes, including buffer lands, deer sanctuary and Ambresbury Banks.
High Beach Walk A good 7 mile circular High Beach walk from Connaught Water in Chingford including a visit to the Queen Elizabeth Hunting Lodge.
Upshire Walk A good 7 mile circular walk from High Beach, in the heart of Epping Forest, following The Forest Way walking routes through to Upshire and Copped Hall Gardens.
Waltham Abbey Walk A leisurely 7 mile circular walk from Waltham Abbey through the Epping Forest Lee Valley Park walking routes and the Royal Gunpowder Mills.
Chipping Ongar Walk A good 7 mile circular walk in Chipping Ongar starting at the unique Log Church in Greensted following the Essex Way walking routes and back via the Three Forest Way to Ongar Castle Motte and Baileys.
Jacks Hill Walk A good 7 mile circular walk from Jacks Hill in Theydon Bois including a visit to the Epping Forest Deer Sanctuary.
Kates Cellar Walk A decent 7 mile circular walk starting and finishing in Chingford, exploring Epping Forest’s Kate’s Cellar at Loughton Camp.
Ambresbury Banks Walk A solid 8 mile circular walk from High Beach to Ambresbury Banks Fort and then following the main Epping Forest walking routes to Loughton Camp near Loughton.
Essex Way to Epping Walk A solid 8 mile linear walk along The Essex Way walking routes from Chipping Ongar to the ancient woodlands of Epping Forest.
Deer Sanctuary Walk A solid 9 mile circular walk starting in Debden following popular walking routes to Abridge, Theydon Bois and then back via the Epping Forest Deer Sanctuary at Birch Hall.
Epping Green Walk An easy 9 mile linear walk starting in Epping Green following The Forest Way walking routes to the Centenary Way and ending at Chingford Plains.
Hainault Forest Country Park Walk An easy 9 mile linear walk from Hainault Forest Country Park folloowing the Three Forests Way and London Loop walking routes to Chingford.
Waltham Abbey to Epping Walk An epic 9 mile linear walk from Waltham Cross to Epping Town via Waltham Abbey and Epping Forest following the historic Green Lanes walking routes.
Good Long Walks
These walks are typically over 10 miles where you can really immerse yourself in Epping Forest and try some of the lesser known walking routes and hidden treasures, taking in as many as you can on a day long walk. Always be fully prepared for good long walks and long distance walking routes taking plenty of fluids, refreshments and plenty of plasters just in case!
Copped Hall Walk A great 10 mile circular walk from Loughton to Copped Hall House, using some of the most popular walking routes in Epping Forest.
Loughton Walk A solid 10 mile circular walk from Loughton to Jack’s Hill and Copped Hall House following well known Epping Forest walking routes.
Abridge Walk An easy 11 mile circular walk from Hainault Forest Country Park to Abridge and back folowing popular Essex walking routes.
Queen Boudicca Walk An epic 12 mile circular walk, and one of my Epping Forest favourite walking routes, from Epping Town to Ambresbury Banks and the Queen Boudicca Obelisk with plenty of sightings of the Epping Forest Fallow Deer at Copped Hall.
Theydon Bois Walk A solid 13 mile circular walk from Theydon Bois following The Essex Way walking routes to the Roman Road and Gernon Bushes Nature Reserve.
Epping Forest District Walk An easy 14 miles circular walk from Epping Station to Birching Coppice, North Weald Bassett, Hastingwood and back via Thornwood. This is another of my favourite Epping Forest walking routes.
The Forest Way Walk The Forest Way is a 25 mile long distance linear walk along the walking routes, footpaths and green lanes of Epping Forest and Hatfield Forest.