The historic market town of Church Stretton is considered the best place from which to explore the Shropshire Hills located on the border between England and Wales.
Designated the ‘Walkers are Welcome’ status in 2008, Church Stretton was the first town in West Midlands to receive the honor for its wide variety of walks for all abilities. This means that the walking paths are maintained at a high standard, are well-marked and have maps for easy reference. Click Here for a reference list of Church Stretton’s most popular walks.
The area also boasts of more than 20 miles of bridleways for cycling and horse-riding, the Long Mynd for gliding, hang gliding and paragliding and has the second highest golf course in England.
Nestled in a wooded valley, at the base of the Long Mynd to the west and the Caer Caradoc volcanic hills to the east, Church Stretton is also known internationally for its geology and has some of the oldest rock formations in the world.
Apart from its wide range of activities, the area is considered picturesque with the Shropshire Hills themselves, one of 46 locations in the UK, given the title of ‘Area of Outstanding Beauty’ (AONB).
Church Stretton’s traditional tea rooms and antique shops help shape its authentically Edwardian character. Visitors are encouraged to use the areas B&Bs to better experience the area and to use the walking trails while there to explore the area’s long history. Among the things not to miss are the surviving carved pagan fertility symbol, ‘Sheelagh na Eigh’, at the Norman church of St. Laurence and the Cardingmill Valley for bird-watching and geological activities.
Well-situated as an access point to surrounding areas, Church Stretton is 8 miles from the Acton Burnell Castle and only 3 miles from the Caer Caradoc Hill Fort. Other interesting locations to visit in easy reach include The Stiperstones National Nature Reserve and Wroxeter Vineyard, located next to the Roman city of Uriconium.