A short history of the Solent Way
The Solent Way is a 60-mile long-distance coastal walking route from the seaside town of Milford-on-Sea to Emsworth Harbour. It passes the hustle and bustle of seafronts, quiet yachting harbours, deserted marshland and saltings.
The Way has been divided into 8 sections, each providing a really good day out. Choose between deserted coastal marshes or promenades and candy-floss. Or choose cosy riverside pubs or seaside picnics and shingle beaches with exhilarating views. There are castles and forts to explore, ships, submarines and museums to visit - and always with the smell and sound of the sea beside you. Walk past some of the finest marshes and lagoons in the south. Look for rare species such as foxtail stonewart, lagoon shrimp and starlet sea anemone.
The route is well waymarked with a Tern on a green arrow. Ordnance Survey maps Explorer OL22, 119 and 120 at 1:25 000 scale show the route in detail. These maps show the route with a green diamond and the name Solent Way.
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In the village of Beaulieu you can visit the 13th century Beaulieu Abbey, Palace House and the church. Stop to browse in the shops or, just off the route, tour the National Motor Museum.
Heading out of the village, the path climbs up onto Beaulieu Heath, an area of moorland and the chance of spotting a nightjar, snipe or red shank.
Follow on down an old twisting lane, to Hythe and the huge drowned estuary of Southampton Water.