Walking St Helena’s beautiful footpaths
Anyone with a love of walking who has lived on or visited St Helena is familiar with our Post Box walks, but less well known are the numerous footpaths on the island. St Helena Tourism is compiling a brochure to help rectify this, and shine a spotlight on these forgotten footpaths.
Most of the walks featured in the new brochure afford easier terrain than the Post Box walks and can therefore be done unaccompanied by a guide. They are generally not as strenuous, making them ideal for families with older children and more accessible to walkers with less experience. Despite being less difficult to complete, the walks offer beautiful views of different parts of the island and are a great way to discover and appreciate St Helena’s varied landscapes on foot.
The footpath walks include:
SISTER’S WALK & MUNDEN’S POINT, JAMESTOWN
Sister’s walk is a short stroll, starting from the Jamestown Scout Hall, situated in Napoleon Street. The walk is along a tarmac track, which then leads onto a dirt track passing behind the Consulate Hotel. The route then brings you onto the terrace of Sister’s Walk itself, where you can enjoy spectacular views of the Castle Gardens and the Seafront.
Time: approximately 10 -15 minutes.
Munden’s Point has the same starting point, just following the path above Sister’s Walk and continuing on Munden’s Road.
Time: approximately 45 minutes.
The walk starts by following a flax lined path that gently slopes downhill. Further on the path divides with one carrying straight on and the second veering off to the right. Continue walking straight on and you will come to a four bar gate. Climb over the gate and continue through the pastureland and you will come to a second four bar gate. Go through the gate and you will then enter a woodland path that leads through a magnificent forest. You will then come to the entrance of Fairyland Mills.
Time: approximately 35 minutes down and 40 minutes back.
SAMSON’S AND SADDLE BATTERIES, RUPERT’S HILL
Begin at the top of Rupert’s Hill before the road descends down to Rupert’s Valley. You will find the start of the walk on your left. Continue walking along the ridge of the hill following a visible dirt track leading all the way to each battery site. Sampson’s battery overlooks Jamestown Valley and requires you to turn off to the left of the track before heading to Saddle Battery.
Time: approximately 40 minutes
To get to Peak Hill go up Constitution Road, turn off at Barnes Road path, and from here continue walking onto the grassy track leading up to a small bridge over a flowing stream. Cross the bridge and continue on the windy grassy path in an upward direction. When you arrive at the top of Peak Hill, there is a junction; the grassy path to the left takes you onto private land, and the grassy path on the right takes you to Francis Plain.
Time: approximately 40 minutes up and 30 minutes back.
THOMPSONS WOOD, BLUE HILL
This is a moderate circular walk along country roads and through pastureland. If starting from Jamestown, continue to the main road through Half Tree Hollow, passing White Gate on your right and head towards Thompsons Wood Hill. Park in front of the garage at the top of the hill. The walk starts at the top of Thompsons Wood Hill, continuing down a country road and onto pastureland and then along a small footpath on a grassy hill.
The walk continues through the gate at the top of the hill and then turns right towards High Hill until you reach a clearing in front of a house. Turn right again onto a country road and continue walking along the road towards a phone booth at a red gate. The walk continues up a steep road towards the junction at the top, turn right here along the ridge towards the garage where you started out.
Time: approximately 1 ½ hours.
THE BOUNDARY WALK, LONGWOOD
This walk is fairly challenging as parts of the route are narrow with loose stones. There are also some fence stiles to climb over. Start the walk from Longwood supermarket, continue down to Colt Sheds at Mulberry Gut. A track will then take you over a small hill and you will end up in a valley affording views of Turks Cap. Continue on the track to Cox Battery, coming out near the Weather Station.
Time: approximately 3 hours
LADIES OF THE VALLEY
This guided walk across marshland can be difficult when it has been raining. The route begins from Longwood Gate towards Hutt’s Gate and turning left off the main road towards the valley below and Willow Bank. Continue walking down a steep road towards Fishers Valley, climbing over a sty and across a field to get onto Cooks Bridge and finally up the track to the Millennium Forest nursery.
Time: approximately 3 hours