Bored of Hiking. I Want Drama, Baby! Drama!

I’m bored of hiking. This is shocking. And not quite true.

I usually go hiking somewhere around London, in places that are reachable within a 1-2hs train journey. More 1 hour than 2, actually. That limits the area to Surrey, Kent, Essex, Hertforshire and maybe Sussex.
And I must say, after 100 hikes or so in these areas, they all start to look the same or at least similar. Fields, woods, and fields again. They have similar features and they are flat like a French pancake. (Maybe with a few exeptions like the Chilterns.)

I started to follow a few hiking groups on Facebook where people post pictures of their hikes within UK or around the world. And God! I’m so jealous. Even of the rolling hills of Lake District, not speaking of the Scottish Highlands or ‘exotic’ destinations like Utah and Arizona in the States. I want drama, baby! Drama! See something different. Something unusual. Preferably reachable within a day.

Don’t get me wrong, I’d LOVE to go travelling for a weekend or longer, but then time and money are precious 😦 . And unfortunately, mountains (high or small), caves, gorges and waterfalls are not really around the corner from lovely London.

So now my question to my fellow hikers who live/hike in the surounding counties of London: do you know any unusual/spectacular places where I could go hiking? Do you have a favourite place? Anywhere that is far off the backyard-feeling of the flat South West? Anything that is … different? I’d be happy for every advice!

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15 Responses to Bored of Hiking. I Want Drama, Baby! Drama!

  1. Pingback: The White Cliffs of Dover – About Castles and Fairies | Hiking Madness – Hiking in UK and elsewhere

  2. Steffi says:

    Hi everyone,
    thanks a lot for the amazing feedback. I summarised all ideas in another blog post if you need some inspiration for your next walk:


  3. Pingback: Bored of Hiking II – The Solutions | Hiking Madness – Hiking in UK and elsewhere

  4. Move to the lakes-that’s what I did! Failing that… Thames path, the old trails around Marlborough see some stone circles on the way? H x


  5. PH says:

    Know exactly what you mean but

    Try The Greensand Way – Ham Street (nr. Ashford, Kent) to Hindhead (SW Surrey). Easy to get to and “off the beaten” track. Some fantastic view once you get onto the Surrey Hills……..and you’ll get no higher in SE England than Leith Hill (almost 300m a.s.l.!). Lots of woods, if you like that sort of countryside………..

    Try walking “around” Sussex on the Sussex Border Path and then make up the rest of it on the Coast on the South Downs Way and coastal footpaths…….

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Taith Ellie says:

    You nearly scared me half to death with that title!

    I’ve never lived around London so can’t recommend anywhere around there, but if you can stay overnight somewhere then South Wales is easy to get to by train (change at Cardiff, take the valleys line) and even better if you can make it to the Brecon Beacons. Also, is the Peak District too far away for you? I went there for a wedding weekend and we did some lovely strolls. We stayed in Darley Dale, and even the train journey there was just wonderful, lots of old stations with great designs and overgrown with greenery and flowers!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Becoming a tourist in a place you believe you know well is sooo interesting. You take public transport to parts you haven’t previously been and walk or just walk from whereever you are (with no plan) – and if you tell yourself you are a tourist you actually see more and differently. I once lived in Darwin and was scheduled to travel on a prawn trawler to Cairns across the top of Australia but they couldn’t leave on time. So I moved onto the boat and then went out foraying around Darwin each day and saw and experienced new things even though I Iived in that city. Last time I came to London I walked across what seemed like half the city after visiting a friend – I kept thinking I will get the next bus or train but instead I wound through parks and parts I would never normally see – and all at foot level. Marvellous. Such simple adventures might rekindle your interest in returning to ‘familiar’ places.


  8. Steffi says:

    I’d love that. Sardinia sounds exciting. and i love the non-french-pancake-part. Thanks. 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Well I’m not saying that this will help but whenever you feel like coming in Sardinia I’d be happy to show you some truly spectacular places. No French pancake at all 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  10. JohnBoy says:

    I think this can happen almost anywhere once you’ve spent a lot of time hiking in an area. I spent more 16 years living in and around Snowdonia, during which I must have walked and scrambled every route, forwards, backwards and in all weathers. I then moved to Calderdale in Yorkshire and after 10 years here I’m repeating walks in the South Pennines and Peak District. Sometimes varying what you do is as good as changing where you go. Repeat a walk in completely different weather, do it backwards, do it overnight, sleep out, take up a bit of rock climbing and combine the two. But don’t forget that the weekend is two days long, and it’s worth travelling further for two days away. You wouldn’t need to travel too far North to have the pick of the National Parks and decades of adventures.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. David says:

    I am also a London weekend walker, and get my best walks on ridges – South Downs and North Downs Ways, Ridgeway and Chilterns Way.


  12. Steffi says:

    Thanks. I’ll definitely post about it and let you know :).

    Liked by 1 person

  13. earthoak says:

    Yes that’s a good idea, A to B of the coastal path would offer more variety than the circulars I think. I’ve covered the South and SE coast from Brighton to Folkestone, on different days – Dover to Deal is decent, scenic but not challenging. Hastings is a tougher with the climbs, but possibly more rewarding with the views. Those two would be my main recommendations on that route – the Saxon Shore Way is the national trail that covers that stretch of coast, so pretty easy to follow. You’re right though – even with the cliffs, as beautiful as they are, the landscape in the SE is not as dramatic as in other parts of the country, thanks to all the chalk and clay down here – soft stuff that erodes and flattens easily. Sometimes I mix things up with woodland walks, or routes that have historical significance. Good luck with your exploration of new routes! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Steffi says:

    That’s true. The coast is the more exciting track in SW. And the Jurassic coast is indeed beautiful.
    I’ve walked bits and pieces of the South Downs but only as part of other (circular) walks. Maybe that’d be an idea, the follow the South Downs from A to B, or even over a longer distance over 2, 3 days.
    Have you walked the South Downs? Any stretch that is particularly recommendable?
    Hastings is also on my to-do list.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. earthoak says:

    What a shocking title! Ah but I get where you’re coming from. I was going to suggest Dorset Jurassic coast, having just blogged on it – but I see you’ve already been.
    How about Hastings on the South Downs? has a route that goes uphill and downhill and in and out of glens: i nicknamed it costa rica, bit dramatic but in some places under the sun it did have a tropical feel. Less than 2 hours away from London!

    Liked by 1 person

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