Burwall's Wood Walk - Rownham Hill, Bristol

I include this minor walk as it provides a pleasant walk linking Ashton Court, Clifton Down and the Suspension Bridge with the City Docks or the Avon Tow Path (now the River Avon Trail).

The walk was new to me - opened by the National Trust in 2002 (I think) and I don't believe its widely known.

It is a walk by the way and not suitable for cycling.

How to Get to the Walk

Starting from Clanage Road (A369): Go north on the A369 from Bristol towards Portishead. Just after passing the Police Dog and Mounted Police buildings at the bottom of Rownham Hill walk right onto a blocked roadway. The Burwall's wood walk is immediately to the left of the roadway. Before the bridge over the railway line.

Starting from Greville Smythe Park: Walk along the riverside in Greville Smythe Park towards the Clifton Suspension Bridge. When you leave the park and go up a minor incline, turn left and cross the railway bridge.

Almost immediately after the crossing the bridge and before joining the A369 talk the path on the right.

Starting from Clifton Suspension Bridge: Walk to the west side of the suspension bridge (Leigh Woods side, opposite Clifton). Follow the main road past Burwall's House and take the first road on the left down a steepish slope (Burwall's Road).

About 200m down the road look for a National Trust sign board on the left and enter the wood here. A National Trust board here give a map and wildlife information.

Map and Car Parking

The nearest car parking to the walk is on the road parking in Burwall's Road itself (see map below).

Burwall's Wood - Road Map

Walking Conditions

The upper half of the walk actually in Burwall's Wood is the steepest, the pathway though often steep is well drained and in good condition. The wood is fairly open with only one old quarry fenced off.

The lower half is an easier walk not as steep as the upper pathway and only in partial woodland. Steeper slopes here have steps and it has better foot paths too.


If you are lucky you may see a Peregrine Falcon or Green Woodpecker. Although a clearer viewpoint on Clifton Down (external link) may be a better spot for the Peregrine Falcons.

I have also seen a small group of wild deer about a ¼ of a mile from this spot in Ashton Court's Rownham Plantation. Not sure of the species but not Red Deer or Fallow Deer from the park.

Views from the Walk

The lower part of the walk is only partial woodland, with views across the river to Clifton, Hotwells and the Cumberland Basin. Also some interesting plantings in the lower section below the wood that I am curious to see in summer.

Path at the lower part of the Walk
Clifton and Hotwells across the River Avon
A glimpse of Clifton Bridge from inside Burwall's Wood

The view below is from the top of the walk just below Burwall's House grounds next to a National Trust Map. Total distance from the railway bridge at the base of the walk to the Clifton Suspension Bridge is about 800m (½ mile) with the ground rising about 75m (230')

View from the top close to the National Trust Map, just off of Burwall's Road

Photo's taken in April 2004.

April 2005 Update: Thanks to Caroline for telling me about the resident Roe Deer that inhabit this area. From photo's I have checked I am fairly sure that it was this type of deer. They are certainly shy and you will be lucky to get a glimpse of them.