AT this time of year, there is a palette of incredible colour waiting to be discovered across Hampshire landscapes.

Towering canopies of golden foliage appear in beech woods, and sparkling chalk streams wind their way through expanses of russet heathland and misty marshes.

With hundreds of walks available to download from the National Trust’s website, there are plenty of opportunities to get outdoors and connect with nature.

From gentle strolls through parkland and pretty villages, to more bracing walks across ancient New Forest commons and open downland with panoramic views, there are trails to suit all tastes.

Here are some of our most colourful Hampshire walks to inspire you this autumn...


There are four downloadable walks to choose from here. You can get a good idea of the beauty of the landscape simply by strolling to the back of the house and gazing out over the parkland to the woodlands beyond.

The four mile Dutton Estate Walk starts off over open downland with majestic views of the South Downs. Later, you’ll find yourself strolling along wide rides through ancient beech woods of buttery foliage. There’s plenty of wildlife to spot too, from roe deer and badgers, to foxes and the rare barbastelle bat.

If you’re after glorious autumn colour it’s also worth popping into the gardens at Hinton Ampner. The dahlias in particular are magnificent.


This former Tudor ‘power house’ features an equally splendid woodland. You can explore it on the easy 1.3 mile Woodland Walk. This takes you along the parkland’s medieval boundary and The Vyne’s huge lake, fringed in the orange, crimson and purple leaves of liquidambar and swamp cypress, creating beautiful reflections across the water. The trail also takes in the wetlands – home to a huge variety of migrating bird species and mammals including the water vole. Wildlife activity can be enjoyed from the comforts of a cosy bird hide.

Once back in the gardens, don’t forget to take in The Vyne’s long dahlia border in the historic walled garden. It features over 300 plants in every colour of the rainbow, from creams and yellows to hot pinks and magenta reds.


There are a number of walks to enjoy around this pretty part of the countryside near Romsey, but a good one for autumn is the six mile Estate Walk. You’ll be taken through a number of different landscapes, from woodlands and historic farmland to the banks of the famous river Test chalk stream.

Aside from the impressive yellows and reds of sweet chestnut and beech foliage, the woods are also home to plenty of fungi in autumn, including the pretty lilac-purple amethyst deceiver.

The areas you walk through are all actively managed for wildlife, including the tenanted farmland, so keep an eye out for small mammals, and birds of prey like kestrels.


The 4.3 mile Huff Duff trail takes you across beautiful areas of wilderness and woodland as you walk over the ancient commons of Rockford and Ibsley. Landscapes of heathland, mire, grassland and trees encompass spectacular views and displays of golden foliage from silver birch, beech and oak. Home to the rare Dartford warbler and herds of ponies, you’ll also come across the Huff Duff itself – the remains of a World War Two Direction Finding station that kept track of Allied aircraft.

The New Forest is internationally renowned for its fungi. Look out for incredible shapes and colours that appear at this time of year, from ruby-red fly agaric, to honey-coloured bracket fungus.

(BLOB) For the latest news and updates on autumn colour hotspots and downloadable walking trails across Hampshire, visit