71 – Parkland Walk: Muswell Hill to Finsbury Park and back 8.5 miles – 6th July

In short: an old familiar – this time walking from Muswell Hill all the way to Finsbury Park and back. Straightforward easy walk; clean functional public toilets and lovely cafe in the park. 2hrs 50 mins walking + 20 mins pitstop.

No map this week – due to a technical hiccup on my phone!

Starting from home in Muswell Hill I walk along Tetherdown, Fortis Green Road (where I pick up my walking companion) and right onto Muswell Hill Road. We turn right into Highgate Woods at the entrance just after crossing Woodside Avenue.

After entering the woods we bear left on a path that runs parallel to Muswell Hill Road and along the backs of houses initially. We continue along this path, ignoring paths off right until we spy the exit to our left which leads to the pedestrian crossing with the entrance to Queens Wood on the far side.

On entering Queens Wood we pass the cafe on our left and take a right fork to head downhill. At a signpost at the foot of the hill we bear right uphill – following the Capital Ring signposts at this point. The path brings us out to a road, Queens Wood Road, which we cross and take the path on the far side. We continue straight initially – downhill on some rough steps set into the slope – and then right up a steep slope to a road at the top.

We turn right onto Priory Gardens and walk straight on until there is a Capital Ring sign on a lamppost and we cross to turn left up some steps between houses. This path brings us out beside Highgate Library and we cross Shepherd’s Hill here. We turn right and then almost immediately left at the traffic lights to walk downhill on Archway Road and then turn left beside the Boogaloo pub onto Holmesdale Road.

The entrance to the Parkland Walk is just here on the left and we enter to enjoy the lovely mile and three-quarters or so of local nature reserve.

A fabulous stroll in the sunshine – over bridges and under tunnels – and before long we are at the end of the path where we turn left to cross the railway line and enter Finsbury Park.

Hoardings are being erected for a festival this coming weekend but the way is clear to the cafe on our left. After availing ourselves of the public toilet facilities we enjoy a lovely ice cream and coffee at an outside table before retracing our steps to the Parkland Walk for the return journey.

We return via Queens Woods and Highgate Woods the way we came, exiting Highgate Woods onto Muswell Hill Road and, in my case, continuing on at the roundabout to the Broadway and the shops.

I return home by turning left at the second roundabout and then taking a left onto Meadow Drive just after the shops have finished. On the right here – just beside the tennis club – there is an entrance to the lovely Methodist Church gardens; a delightful secret garden tucked away but open to the public on weekdays.

I walk through, admiring the beautifully kept lawns and bright cheerful flowerbeds – a joy as always – as indeed is the whole of this lovely walk.


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