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Quiet walks

Escaping noise pollution in the Hertfordshire countryside
Escaping noise pollution in the Hertfordshire countryside
A member of our Hertfordshire Walker Facebook group asked for recommendations for 'quiet walks' in the county. There are some places where the sound of road, rail, air, and farm traffic noise is less likely, but not many. If you are searching for a walk with less noise pollution you might want to check the tips below.

Traffic noise pollution is a problem in many parts of Hertfordshire with busy roads such as the M1, M25, A1(M), A10, A414, A6, A41, A602 and A505 framing most of the prettiest areas of the county.

There are many walks with quiet spots where you can hear birdsong; these are the routes that are furthest away from any of the roads listed above.

And there are walks that are not too far from these roads where you will drop out of earshot of the traffic and enjoy quiet sections. So don't write-off walks that start close to major roads.

The best way to find these routes is to click on our interactive 'locations' map below then zoom in to find one of the green walking icons that mark the starting point of a walk.

As you zoom in further the names of the villages will appear, as will the routes of the busiest roads. Keep zooming in until you find a walk that is not too close to a major road.

Once you find the green walker icon click on it to reveal the walk and a link taking you through to the free directions, maps, photos, What3Word references and GPX navigation.

Interactive map of every start point

Here are a few suggestions, although all these will still involve less-busy A and B roads and, of course you are likely to hear occasional noise of air traffic from Luton, Stanstead, and Heathrow airports. The areas mentioned in this list are shown in blue shaded areas on the interactive map below. Click on the 'MapHub' label to view the map in full size and zoom in for more detail.
  • the countryside N of the M25, E of the A1(M), W of the A10, and S of the A414, including Wildhill, Little Berkhamstead, S and W of Bayford, N of Northaw, E of Newgate Street, S of Brickendon, and Broxbourne Woods W of Wormley West End.
  • the countryside E of the A10 and W of the M11 including Anstey, Nuthampstead, Furneux Pelham, Brent Pelham, Stocking Pelham Little Hormead, E from Braughing, Much Hadham, Barkway, Barley, and the countryside S and SE of Standon including Wareside, Barwick Ford, Hadham Cross and Perry Green.
  • the countryside in the triangle E of the A1(M), N of the A414, and W of the A602 including the villages of Bramfield, Tewin, Burnham Green, and south of Datchworth.
  • the countryside N of the A602, E of the A1(M), W of the A10 and S of the A505, including N and E of Bennington, E of Walkern, NE of Dane End, S of Ardeley, SE of Weston, SE of Clothall, SW of Wallington, Rushden, Sandon, Kelshall, and S of Therfield.
  • the countryside W of the A1(M), S of the A505, E of the M1, N of the A414, including N of Wheathampstead, in particular The Ayots S of Kimpton, N of Whitwell, S of Preston, King's Walden, St Pauls Walden, Whitwell, Kimpton, Peter's Green, Ley Green, N of Codicote, and Old Knebworth.
  • the countryside E of the A6 and N of the A505, including SE of Hexton, S from Pegsdon, and SW from Pirton.
  • the countryside N and E of the A41 and W of the M1, including E of Aldbury, Little Gaddesden, N of Great Gaddesden, N and E of Frithsden.

Quieter areas of the Hertfordshire countryside

As mentioned earlier it's hard to escape all noise pollution when walking in the Hertfordshire countryside. Another factor is the direction of the wind. You can be walking close to a major road and not hear any traffic noise if the wind is blowing in a certain direction but be deafened as soon as the wind changes.

And noise pollution is usually worse in the autumn and winter when the leaves have been blown off the trees.

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If you try any of the walks on this site, please let us know what you thought of them. You can either comment here, or on our members-only Facebook Group where walkers are sharing photographs of their walks and walking tips. Comments on our Facebook Group go live immediately, as they do on our Facebook Page. Comments here on our website are moderated, so there will be a slight delay before what you write goes live.

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