The Best Waterways in the Chilterns

The Chiltern Hills, located in Southeast England, boast several beautiful waterways. While it’s subjective to determine the “best” waterways, here are some of the most notable ones in the Chiltern Hills region:

  1. River Thames: As one of the most iconic waterways in England, the River Thames passes through the Chiltern Hills, offering scenic views and numerous recreational opportunities including fishing, boating and the Thames path.
  2. Grand Union Canal: This historic canal stretches from London to Birmingham and passes through the Chiltern Hills. It provides tranquil settings for boating (including opportunities for narrowboat hire), walking, and cycling, with picturesque locks and charming towpaths.
  3. River Misbourne: The River Misbourne flows through the Chiltern Hills, offering a serene and bucolic environment. It is known for its clear waters, wildlife (such as trout and great crested newts), and picturesque surroundings.
  4. River Chess: Renowned for its crystal-clear waters, the River Chess is a chalk stream that meanders through the Chiltern Hills. It provides opportunities for fishing, canoeing, and exploring the beautiful riverbanks.
  5. Wendover Arm Canal: This restored section of the Grand Union Canal runs from Bulbourne to Wendover. It’s a haven for wildlife and offers peaceful walks along its towpaths.
  6. Tring Reservoirs: Comprising a series of interconnected reservoirs, such as Wilstone, Marsworth, Startops, and Tringford, these water bodies provide essential habitats for birds and other wildlife. They are popular for birdwatching and nature exploration.
  7. College Lake Nature Reserve: Originally a chalk quarry, College Lake has been transformed into a nature reserve. It features a lake, wetlands, woodlands, and meadows, offering opportunities for birdwatching, walking, and wildlife spotting.
  8. River Lea: Although not entirely within the Chiltern Hills, the River Lea runs along the eastern edge of the region. It provides beautiful landscapes, towpaths for walking or cycling, and various water-based activities.

These waterways in the Chiltern Hills showcase the region’s natural beauty, biodiversity, and recreational opportunities, making them popular destinations for locals and visitors alike.