May is National Walking month and, as we are a family who love to get out and about in the Gloucestershire and Worcestershire countryside, I thought it would be a great time to share some of our favourite places to walk. Most people who see my son will not realise that he has a physical disability. The characteristics of autism are many and varied but the physical aspects are often not immediately apparent to casual observers. My son has significantly delayed motor skills. Of course, they are labelled as delays – but it is unlikely that his coordination and motor skills will ever match those of his peers – it is likely that he will have an additional diagnosis of dyspraxia at some point in the future. Therefore, when choosing our outings, it is important for us that we choose accessible walks.
Biggest cannot manage steep inclines or uneven paths and becomes quite distressed if the terrain becomes too difficult for him. It occurred to me that many of these walks would be excellent options for anyone with reduced mobility and, in fact, most are easily accessible to wheelchair users. Ability Superstore also have some great aids to help you get out and about. Check out our favourite accessible walks below.
Our Favourite Accessible Walks
#1 National Trust, Croome
Croome Park is our absolute favourite place to walk. There is something for everyone. An air force museum, cafes, nature trails, the manor house, acres of gardens designed by Capability Brown to name a few. And, as well as having extensive walks with accessible paths, there are golf buggies available to take people to the more distant parts of the grounds. I think that Croome Park is Biggest’s absolute favourite place to walk. We can often be found making our way to the Rotunda and back. This is a fairly quick and easy walk with good paths. Biggest loves the fact that the building is round and echoes!
#2 Worcester Woods County Park
Worcester Woods County Park is relatively unknown as an attaction, and that surprises me greatly. The woods are spectacular, not least of all at this time of the year (May) when the bluebells are in full bloom. There are parts that are muddy and less accessible but there are also lots of fairly easy paths. Add to that a cafe that does fabulous food, and one of the best play parks in Worcester, and you have a great recipe for success. The Orchard Cafe has great wheelchair access and aims to operate an ethically and environmentally sound business offering locally sourced products that are organic, free range, Fair Trade and environmentally friendly.
#3 Malvern Hills, Wyche Cutting car park
This is probably the least accessible of our chosen walks. Although the paths are extremely even and well-maintained, there are some slightly steep inclines. This will mean that, while not impossible for wheelchair users, they may find getting up the slopes a bit more difficult. The Wyche Cutting car park takes you most of the way up the hills. This means that with a very short and relatively slight slope, you can get very high up. The views are absolutely spectacular –
This is the walk that Biggest finds to be the most challenging – but it is so worth it. He does love to look out across the three counties and describe what he can see, once we have reached the top!
And there you have it – our favourite accessible walks. Where is your favourite place to get out and about in the countryside?
This is a collaborative post.