Rambling in Surrey’s wild heathland

If you’re in Surrey and fancy an untaxing walk, then a ramble around Chobham Common, the largest National Nature Reserve in south east England, may hit the spot.

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On a grey, fairly nippy Sunday afternoon, I wanted to stretch my legs a bit but wasn’t up for a three-hour trek, so an hour’s walk around the wild lowland heaths of Chobham fitted the bill perfectly.

The wild, wide expanses of Chobham Common are home to 29 of the 60 species of butterflies in the UK, as well as more than 100 of the country’s 200 species of birds.

Popular with dog walkers too, a ramble around the common offers sweeping vistas over the purple-tinged heathland.

One of the best places to park is at the Staple Hill car park – Chobham Common is divided into two parts by the M3, but there is an underpass under the major road which can take you to the north part of the common. In the north part lies a monument to Queen Victoria, who reviewed 8,000 troops on the Chobham heathland in 1853 before they headed to the Crimea.

There are a number of possible routes around Chobham common, so a book of walks around Surrey should have one or two recommended paths which you can follow.

All photos taken by me.

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