Walk #6 Essentials
Time: 3 1/2 hours
Distance: 4 3/4 miles (6.75km)
Type: Easy. Ascending lane out of Fleet, easy descent to Fleet’s Coast Path, then mostly level.
Dogs: Good (on leads on fields with livestock and on roads)
Start/Finish: Holy Trinity Church in Fleet (Grid Ref: SY634805)
Map: OS Landranger Sheet 194
Refreshments: The Elm Tree Inn in Langton Herring (dog-friendly) and the Victoria Inn in Chickerell are great options for home-cooked food.
Printable, step by step instructions for the walk can be found here. The walk starts and finishes in the village of Fleet. From the B3157 in Chickerell take the “FLEET 1/4” turning. Park at Holy Trinity Church in the designated area. Don’t forget to put a donation in the box!
This striking, 8 mile shingle beach protects a shallow lagoon (known as The Fleet) from the ravages of the sea, creating a truly beautiful and peaceful place to walk and enjoy an abundance of wildlife. The waters of the Fleet are tidal, being filled and partially emptied twice each day by the sea, making the water brackish. While the Fleet is most famous as the home of a very large mute swan colony, which can be visited at the Abbotsbury Swannery, it is also a great place to come and see Dark Bellied Brent Geese, Common Greenshank, Little Egrets, Common Pochard, Red-breasted Merganser and Common Coot. The Fleet also supports substantial populations of fish, including bass and eels. No fishing is allowed and most boats are banned unless you have a licence. Swimming is not recommended!
Made famous by J. Meade Faulkner’s smuggling novel Moonfleet published in 1898, the village of Moonfleet lies close to the lagoon of the same name and is especially picturesque. In 1824, parts of the village and most of the Old Fleet Church were destroyed by a huge storm. What was left of the church remains standing today, tiny but pretty, with a few gravestones in the churchyard. There are a number of accommodation options in the area including the Georgian manor house that is Moonfleet Manor Hotel (also great for meals and activities), and our own Rose Mallow Cottage and Moonfleet Cottage.