Let’s be honest, one of the main reasons we came to the University of Southampton is because of its location within the United Kingdom. Being so near the coastline, it makes Southampton a beautiful city. In fact, it is so pretty in certain areas that some may even argue against its city status because of this; so what better way is there to celebrate our new homes than exploring it by walking…on foot?
Yes that’s right, I said the ‘w’ word. Not only is it a great form of exercise (much appreciated after too many Jesticles), it can be done with friends and its free! Free did you say? I hope I now have your attention.
There are many different places to walk in Southampton and further down the coastline – whether its a short walk to clear your academically filled head or a scenic hike, Southampton has it all. There are many areas of Southampton that cater to your specific needs, two of which have been summarised below:
The Romantic/’We Need To Talk’ walk:
Let’s face it we’ve all been there, and what better place to be with your lover (or ex, perhaps) than by the Southampton Docks? With breathtaking views and a chance to watch some of the most amazing cruise liners set sail, Mayflower Park is perfect for an evening stroll. The benefit of this location is that it is right next to ‘Leisureworld’, with car-parking and park benches available. That means you can bring a picnic to eat whilst admiring the view (how romantic…). It is also near West-Quay shopping centre – not an excuse to hop on the Uni-Link might I add, but brilliant for knowing your whereabouts.
This walk falls into the short stroll category, so for those of you looking for more of a workout/hike keep reading further …
The Spontaneous Day Out:
If you’re willing to travel twenty minutes out of Southampton then you’ll come across The New Forest, one of the UK’s fifteen National Parks – there is so much to discover across its 25 acres (is that enough walking?). This is somewhere I really recommend visiting if you have a lecture-free day. Not only is there magnificent wildlife trails to discover, there are also tearooms, pubs, parks and lots of events going on throughout the year. Whilst walking around the park, you’ll come across many animals such as the wild badgers and otters (not loose though!) and if you’re a horse fanatic – or even if you’re not – then you are bound to come across many of the famous New Forest bred ponies grazing around various parts of the park.
There are many more places to walk in Southampton, such as on Southampton Common which is situated behind Avenue Campus and stretches from Burgess Road almost as far down as Bedford Place. There are also five parks in central Southampton, situated just up from the Bargate. To go a bit further afield, there are even some beaches in Dorset. A half an hour train journey would get you to Bournemouth Beach, award winning with spectacular views.
So now you know the benefits, all that’s left to do is to chuck on your best pair of walking shoes and get out in the open air. Besides, Uni-Link buses never arrive on time anyway…