Time to get in shape at the Chorleywood House Estate
PUBLISHED: 16:55 15 February 2010 | UPDATED: 15:38 20 February 2013
The Countryside Management Service shares a set of three short walks which can help you get in better shape
WITH 68 hectares combining formal parkland, open meadows and mature woodland, leading down to the banks of the River Chess, the Chorleywood House Estate offers an idyllic setting for a walk.
Take time to explore this attractive and varied landscape, part of the Chilterns Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Choose from three contrasting circular walks and discover this magnificent estate for yourself.
Blue route - 1km (0.6miles)
Take a step back in time with a gentle stroll around the formal parkland surrounding Chorleywood House.
The current Victorian house replaced a much older Georgian mansion and is now private apartments so walkers are asked to please respect the tenants' right to privacy.
This walk gives you the chance to discover the extensive formal gardens, lawns and fine specimen trees such as holm oak and laburnum and admire the restored Sunken Garden and Wisteria Circle.
Yellow route - 1.2km (0.7 miles)
Head for the quiet seclusion of the woods, dominated by oak, cherry, beech and ash trees. In spring time the floor is bright with bluebells, wood anemone and wild daffodils and also supports the nationally rare coralroot bittercress. Along the walk the canopy opens up to reveal panoramic views across the Chess Valley.
The route also passes the Dell Nature Reserve, and area of chalk grassland managed by Herts and Middlesex Wildlife Trust. Look out for cowslips, violets and the bright blue speedwell.
Red route - 1.5km (0.9 miles)
In late spring the blossoms of the Chestnut Avenue fall to form an inspiring carpet walkway. Steeper paths lead further down to the picturesque banks of the River Chess, a popular summer picnicking area.
This chalk stream is an important habitat supporting many kinds of plants and animals including brown trout, watervoles and kingfishers.
More adventurous walkers could join the Chess Valley Walk, a 19-mile route that heads towards Chesham to the north and Rickmansworth to the south.
Start and finish Chorleywood House Car Park
Distance Three walks ranging from 1km to 1.5km
Time Average 20-30 minutes each
Rating Gentle, although the Valley Walk includes some steeper paths
Public Transport By road: Drive via the A404, approximately mile west from J18 of the M25. Free parking.
By tube: Chorleywood Station (1 mile walk) By bus: Services from Watford, Rickmansworth, Chesham and Amersham. Call Hertfordshire Traveline 0870 6082608
Parking Chorleywood House Car Park
OS Map Explorer 172