Walking in Symonds Yat, Forest of Dean

Symonds Yat

Symonds Yat

Something Britain prides itself on is its luscious and diverse countryside. If you are a lover of wandering amongst the natural beauty of Britain, Symonds Yat offers many walks with spectacular views.

Symonds Yat is a popular tourist destination just a few miles from the Welsh border and straddles the River Wye in the Forest of Dean (one of the few remaining ancient forests in Britain). Built across two counties, Symonds Yat East is situated in Gloucestershire and Symonds Yat West is in Hertfordshire.

Regardless of its popularity, there is an abundance of walks away from the crowds if you know where to look. Walk 3302 is an easy/moderate 4 mile walk that winds through the quieter High Meadow woods before taking you to Yat Rock viewpoint, the highlight of the day. Keep a compass about you as some of the footpaths along this walk are poorly marked and have several options.

At grid reference SO564156, a car park is located. A small track to the south runs along the B4432 for a few hundred metres before crossing the car park exit, taking you deep into the forest. Turn right along a forestry vehicle track when you approach the road and a telephone box. This track will take you across a stream where you will turn left at the fork and proceed along the main track (Wysis Way) heading due west towards Monmouth. Keep an eye out for an unmarked path bearing left, about ten minutes after joining the Wysis Way. Continue along this path, maintaining a westerly bearing until you reach the forestry road signposting The Biblins Campsite (ignore all the other paths up until this point or you will stray off the walk). Follow this broad path until you reach the River Wye where you will head right towards the Symonds Yat East village, keeping to the bank of the river.

When you reach the Saracen’s Head pub, you may wish to take a well-earned rest and meal before leaving the pub to the right, heading towards a small hotel. When you reach the fence, take the left path uphill and once out of the gorge, cross the small bridge to the car park where on the left will be a fantastic view point of the Welsh border and river Wye. Exit to the south and across the bridge where you will pass a gift shop and re-enter the car park you began from.

Walk 3302 is just one of many walks in this beautiful area, ranging from easy/moderate to very hard. For detailed information on other walks in the Symonds Yat area, see here.

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