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This walk on the Essex-Suffolk border explores the picturesque Stour Valley and Dedham Vale, made famous by John Constable’s 18th century paintings.
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Constable was one of 18th century England’s most celebrated landscape artists, and having been born in Suffolk he’s most well known for his paintings of Dedham Vale and its surrounding areas. And it’s not hard to see why.
This beautiful lowland England landscape is full of picturesque villages, rolling farmland, lazy rivers, grassy meadows and ancient woodlands; all of which are perfect for exploring on foot. With much of East Anglia’s landscape drained and ploughed, the wildlife-rich hedgerows and wildflower meadows of this Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty provide a green oasis among busy arable faming countryside.
This relatively short and mostly flat circular walk follows a section of the Stour Valley path past the hamlet of Flatford and Flatford Mill, with its National Trust café. You’ll also pass through the lovely village of Dedham, where you can visit museums, art galleries, pubs, shops, and even hire rowing boats and canoes.
This route was voted 77th in a 2017 ITV poll to find Britain’s Favourite Walk.
TOG VERDICT: It’s easy to understand why Constable loved this lovely lowland landscape, and this walk takes in its most treasured highlights.