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Christchurch Quay-the ruins- the Priory

LOCALITY: Christchurch, Dorset
DISTANCE: 2.5 miles (4.02 km)
FACILITIES: Circular route, There & back, Parking, Suitable for wheelchairs, T
oilets, Pub, Cafe

GRADIENT: Mostly flat
OS MAP: New Forest

Walk description:

Take the A35 to Christchurch and head towards the Quay. Park in any of the public car parks, which are all pay and display.

From the Mayors Mead car park off Wicks Road, go to the far end of the car park. Walk towards the river. On your left you will see a playground with a paddling pool. This is on a open green area called the Quomp. Walk along the tarmac path, along side the river. There are several benches along the walk. On the river you will see lots of swans and ducks.

On your left you will see a bandstand. Walk past this and you will come to a tearoom. Follow the path towards Saxon Watermill. This is on your right, and which is usually open to visitor. Walk past this and in front of you is a small garden, which has a circular tarmac path going around it. If you wish you can walk around this.

From the entrance of the small garden turn right and walk across a large cobble stone bridge. Take care here, as this is open to traffic. Once over the bridge, turn left and walk along Convent Walk. This is a tarmac path along side the river. There are several more benches along this part of the walk.

You will then come to a divided path that goes across the river. You can go across either path. The one on the left is narrower. From here walk straight on to Bridge Street. You will be walking along with a river on both sides of you. Also on your left you will see the Priory ruins.

At Bridge Street turn left and walk along until you come to a tearoom. Take the first path on your Left, in front of the tearooms. Walk through black metal gates along a compact path. On your right you will see the ruins of Chisrtchurch Castle. On your left you will see a bowling Green. Walk straight on toward a gateway in a wall.

Just before the gateway are some basic public toilets. Walk past the toilet into the walled garden through the gateway. Follow the path around to the left and in front of you is a Mausolcum for Mrs Perkins. On the wall is a plaque, which makes interesting reading. Follow the path around to the left and you will walk through the willow walk.

Go up a small steep slope and then turn right by the Priory Church. Walk towards the entrance of the church. At the entrance of the church keep walking straight on across a crossroad in the path. At next crossroad in the path, turn left and walk along till you come to Quay Road. Turn left and enter the Priory long stay car park in front of you. Walk through the car park, and at the other side of the car park you will come back to Saxon Watermill. From here retrace your steps to where you started.

Additional notes:

There are cafes/tea rooms/pubs on the way and some more if you turn into the High Street. Lots to see and do in a very short time.You can also take a boat ride out to Hengistbury Head from the Quay which takes about 20 minutes one way.Or you can hire boats and go around the harbour. If you divert straight ahead after the mill you can see Hengistbury Head straight ahead of you with the beach huts. You are also right beside some interesting housing as these houses all have marinas in their back 'gardens'.Visit the Priory--the longest church in England for a donation. Christchurch is well worth a visit!

24/04/2009 | Walk posted by Cass Scholz

Walks With Buggies User Reviews

A peaceful walk

15/05/2009 | Reviewed by cathy nettley

A lovely peaceful walk around some of the history of Christchurch. The terrain is easy and suitable for
wheelchairs and buggies. The paddling pool was not in use at the park when I visited as not warm enough.
However in the summer, this would be a lovely end to the walk if you have toddlers with you, when warm enough.