Five Accessible Outdoor Adventures in the South of England

by | Oct 30, 2023 | Outdoor

If you’re searching for outdoor pursuits, and you’re based in the South, then you’re in luck: there are dozens of high-quality activities to pursue in this part of the country. Whether you’re looking to hike through the countryside, or just a peaceful day outdoors, you’ll find it in this part of the world. But not everywhere caters well to those with limited mobility, and wheelchair users. As such, it pays to be selective.

Here, let’s pick out five of the best accessible places to visit. 

South Downs National Park

This amazing stretch of parkland contains more than three kilometres of rights of way. It’s here that William Blake got the inspiration for ‘Jerusalem’, and, as you might expect, it’s filled with green and pleasant land. Best of all, wheelchair users and those with pushchairs, are the ‘Miles without Stiles’ routes, which come with no stiles (obviously), resurfaced tracks and wheelchair-friendly gates. 

During your visit, you’ll want to make a point of stopping at the Seven Sisters. Access them via neighbouring Eastbourne, which can be reached via a train from London.

New Forest National Park

There are ancient woodlands, grasslands and heathlands to explore in this national park. Stop off at the village of Beaulieu, and its marvellous thirteenth-century abbey. Then there’s Buckler’s Hard, with its amazing shipbuilding museum. Best of all, naturally, is the New Forest Wildlife Park itself, hope to bison, toads, deer and owls. The park is open every day from 10am, and puts on regular special events, too. If you’d like a unique experience, then you might even play zookeeper for the day!

Isle of Wight

Arguably the most famous of the smaller British Isles, the Isle of Wight is known for its extraordinary geography. Visit the famous needles by boat: these three chalk stacks sit right next to a gun battery, so you’ll get a dose of military history alongside the geology. Then there’s Osborne House, on the north coast, where you can get a chance to look at Queen Victoria’s own private beach. If you’d prefer to spend a little time outdoors, on the other hand, there’s always Ventnor Botanic Garden.

The Surrey Hills

The Surrey countryside is a paradise for hikers – and even wheelchair users will find getting around straightforward, thanks to a wealth of accessible footpaths and extra services. 

Leith hill sits on the inaccessible end of the spectrum, but Box Hill is much more approachable, with ramps, designated parking, and a dedicated accessible route. If you’d like to spend some reflective time outside, then a visit to Winkworth Arboretum is worth a look, too!


The famous Jurassic Coast makes Dorset a powerful draw for fossil hunters. In particular, Durdle Door, the limestone arch, is a natural UNESCO World Heritage Site – with an adjoining beach that’s worth a visit at any time of year. If you’d prefer to see fossils up close without the stress of looking for them, then you might pay Charmouth Heritage Coast Centre a visit, and check out the exhibits.


It’s possible to enjoy all that the natural world has to offer in the South of England, if you do your research and pick out the destinations with the right level of access. Forward planning and preparation are key!

Read through our useful guide for more information

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