Cheddar Gorge in the Mendip Hills

Submitted by Timwoods on 18 May 2010
OS Explorer Map: 141 - Cheddar Gorge & Mendip Hills West
(14 votes)
A circular, half-day countryside walk in England starting at Cheddar, Somerset, about 5.5km (roughly 3.4 miles) long and unsuitable for families with children, prams/pushchairs, wheelchairs.
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Cheddar Gorge probably the most famous area in the Mendip Hills, with its caves and cheese factories attracting lots of visitors. It's also a good place to get a taste of the great walking in the Mendips. Buses between Wells and Weston-super-Mare stop at Cheddar, and you'll be glad you took one when you see the queues for the car parks in the village.

Start: Cheddar, OS Grid: ST460535
Elevation Profile (x: waypoint number, y: metres)
Gain (+/- 10%): 331m (1087ft)
Total (+/- 10%): 625m (2051ft)
Loss (+/- 10%): 293m (964ft)
Max. Elevation: 260m (853ft)

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OS Grid: ST460535
It would be easy to make loads of cheesy gags about the village, but I won't. Head for the Tourist Information centre and go beyond this to the Toy Museum. The Gorge Walk trail starts just beyond here.
About 0.9 km (roughly 0.6 miles) from 1 OS Grid: ST463544
Follow the track through the woods, which climbs steeply up the side of the gorge - signed as 'Gorge Walk'. You then come out on the top of Cheddar Gorge.
About 2 km (roughly 1.2 miles) from 2 OS Grid: ST483548
Follow the clifftop along to Black Rock. This is the best spot for views down into the gorge. You may also see some of the feral goats that live here.
About 0.8 km (roughly 0.5 miles) from 3 OS Grid: ST478542
Cross the road and take the path opposite. This leads you through some woods towards Cheddar Cliffs.
About 1.1 km (roughly 0.7 miles) from 4 OS Grid: ST468538
These are much-photographed,steep-sided rocks that dominate the western end of the gorge.
About 0.5 km (roughly 0.3 miles) from 5 OS Grid: ST464536
The steep steps of Jacob's Ladder take you down from the gorge and back into Cheddar Village. Time to go and try some of that delicious cheese ...
5 comments ...join the discussion!
Emlyn Williams  commented on 14 May 2012
Hello Tim, Could I respectfully point out that Mendip in paragraph 2 is spelt without the "n" - a bit picky I know! Looking forward to doing the walk and thank you for your helpful notes. Kind regards, Emlyn
Kate (  commented on 21 May 2012
Fantastic walk
I have walked this route and variations many times. The circular half day walk from Velvet Bottom to Cheddar and back again is also fantastic if you've got the time and energy. There are certainly some steep climbs involved though and you need a head for heights on the edge of the gorge! Kate
Iain McCallum  commented on 01 June 2013
Great run
Ran around this route today and loved it.not sure on your description of 'some gradients' though as it's straight up to the top of the cliff! And then there's the climb back to the top after crossing the road. you might need to revise your decrpition. Still would happily come back and do it again. Great advise from the woman in the NT shop as well.
Timwoods  commented on 19 June 2013
Hi Iain, not sure where it says 'some gradients'. It's certainly a steep climb, but that's a big part of the charm for me!
john moggeridge  commented on 24 October 2013
Cheddar Gorge Walk
Did this walk last year after a very wet spell and the walk along the top from Jacobs Ladder was lethal just asking for broken ankles etc. Should suggest it is for walkers only when wet with decent shoes and sticks. Gradients when wet also lethal wet leaves over wet limestone asking for trouble. Yes wonderful views great scenery but not to be taken lightly when wet.
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