This weekend’s wandering was completely inspired by Timeout London (my London bible!!!) In this week’s issue there was an article about the Capital Ring Walk – sign posted route of 78miles that takes you around natural reserves, open space and little known sights around London!!! As we didn’t have any plans this weekend I thought we’d give it a go (thought this was also a great way to do some exercise).
Luckily the weather was absolutely glorious this Saturday. In facts if you believe the hype, it was warmer than Corfu at 17 degree C! Well it certainly felt like that but being true Britons we never believe the weather report so donned our lighter weight jackets. Ha! Did not really need them at all and ended up having to carry them around!!! Actually it wasn’t a total fail as it did get cold when the sun went down in the evening.
So I was totally ambitious and informed the BF that we would be doing the East London section of the walk…Hackney Wick to Woolwich Arsenal…11 miles!!! Unsurprisingly it was a resounding…No!!! Lol!!! I’m now so glad he said that because our walk of 4miles was pretty intense already especially as we decided to walk over to Stratford for a spot of shopping too which added at least another mile!!! Well it wouldn’t had been too bad if we managed a bite during the walk…this was pure lack of planning on my part as I thought I’d wing it!!!
We set of around 12:30 and got the bus to Stoke Newington to start our journey…the 1st part of the walk took us around some very quiet neighbourhood which I have to say I was dubious about…then we sported the illuminating green signs which we followed throughout the day…
I won’t go over the whole route as I don’t want to spoil it for you.. But only to say that on a beautiful day like Sat this walk was just perfect!!! We felt like we were in the countryside and so much open space!!! We were also extremely jealous of all the cyclists as it would have been a great route to cycle as well. But that wouldn’t be a walk then….lol
This was particularly true for the1st half of the walk, it was refreshing and exciting but I have to say the 2nd part was a bit monotonous… Basically after you’ve followed the River Lea a few miles the scenery don’t change so much until you got to Stratford. We also had the added annoyance of the cyclists…yes them again. Now don’t get me wrong I obviously do not have a problem with people cycling but seriously the canal side route are NOT THAT WIDE!!! This meant that we’d spent half the time looking behind us or darting around to avoid a collision!!!
Also it didn’t help that by the times we got to this part of the walk we were starving!!! Yet we couldn’t find anywhere decent to eat… Which we didn’t really understand because from what we knew there should be lots of places to eat around Hackney Wick??? We didn’t find many places and the one place we wanted to try – Crate Brewery was absolutely packed!!! There were queues for the bar and for the toilet so we gave up.
We ended up having a non inspiring Caribbean lunch at the Stratford Westfield’s food court…the least said about that the better!!! However during the long and winding way from the river to the shopping centre we were able to walk around the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park which I have always wanted to visit. Definitely a great place to bring the kids and enjoy the weather.
Despite a few miscalculation and sore feet after we will definitely be attempting other section of the Capital Ring Walk. Maybe next time we’d bring a picnic!!!
If you fancy giving the walk ago check out TFL where you can download a leaflet for each section. These are great as they also provide you with some trivial or historical info. Happy walking and exploring!!!