Wherever you pick up the circular Cerne Valley Walk we think you’ll be bowled over by the beauty and changing landscape of this walk. The trail is marked on the ground by a round white disc with a buzzard in the centre. Use this as your cue to glance skywards and you may be lucky to catch sight of a buzzard circling above you.
Plan it right and you can also take in a visit to the smallest pub in England; the Smith's Arms at Godmanstone, just one of the wonderful gems that this walk can uncover. You can also see Britain's largest hill figure, the Cerne Giant, and visit Hilfield Hill Local Nature Reserve.
In total the circular walk takes in 26 miles of route. Dorchester can be used as a location to pick up the trail. From here you can park in the Dorchester town centre car park. Running parallel to the river the walk meanders along the chalk stream, at Cerne Abbas you will come face to face with the Cerne Giant.
Mystery and much folklore surround the Cerne Giant. At 180ft tall this is Britain’s largest chalk figure, and is thought to date back to the Iron Age. Local Morris Dancers celebrate the figure on May Day celebrations and rumour has it, sleeping on the Giant will ensure a future marriage for unmarried ladies.
A glorious spot for watching wildlife is the Hillfield Hill Local Nature Reserve. The Duke of Burgundy butterfly is an elusive character that you may come across as you walk along the reserve. You can park here and also at Cerne Abbas.