Along the Kennet & Avon

By | Category: Travel news

Yesterday the Great West Way launched – in conjunction with the Canal & River Trust and the Kennet & Avon Trade Association – a new guide to the Kennet & Avon Canal, one of many maps that the organisation will publish encouraging us to visit attractions along the Great West Way.

Exploring the Kennet & Avon as part of the Great West Way

This one follows the waterways from Reading to Bristol highlighting attractions, places for parking, toilets, as well as stop-offs to feed the inner self at pubs, cafes, hotels and restaurants.

The canal meanders along south of the M4 corridor for most of its journey visiting mostly smaller towns like Hungerford, Pewsey, Devizes and Trowbridge and being just a few miles away from places like the White Horse carved into the hillside and Stonehenge. Adjacent paths make it easy for the cyclist and walker to follow the route of the narrow barges all the way without having to be concerned about facing traffic or a faster mode of travel.

And one of the joys of following a canal as any past traveller will tell you is the array of pubs that you pass (or don’t pass) as you travel the towpaths. Given time what person wouldn’t opt for the canal over the M4 or the A4?

The map is available on the website of the Great West Way by clicking here (along with other maps) or you can collect one at places along the canal, tourist offices and probably even the motorway service area information places.

For those of you unfamiliar with the Great West Way, this was first conceived five years ago this coming October after a pitch for cash from the then newly created Discover England Fund. The idea was to introduce to overseas visitors more of England the way was planned to be the first long distance project in England.

But appealing to only overseas visitors was not the only aim; the domestic market was important even more so given the pandemic. It is likely that for much of this year it will be visited by those of us in the UK rather than those living abroad.

Visit it now, as all those high pressure sales people say, for next year it could be overseas visitors that will jostle on the towpaths, the pubs and the villages and towns!

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