abbey walks

Stage 30 - Rochester to Detling




14.7 km / 9.2 miles

Explorer map

  148 Maidstone & the Medway Towns



3.5 - 4 hours average time based on Naismith’s rule

Total ascent   247m
Total descent   165m

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The route follows parts of the original Pilgrim Way, some of which is sadly now under tarmac, or the North Downs Way. It climbs the Kent Downs from Rochester giving views on a clear day. The path is easy to follow and there is an alternative option to follow the original Pilgrim Way.






Walk Description :


stage 30 photo1 - From Rochester take the path over the Medway Bridge where the path then turns right to continue under the M2 on Wouldham Road (Alternate route available).


Then left along Nashenden Farm Lane on the North Downs Way. Pass between the houses and cross over the railway line and where the path splits keep right. Head up to the left of Wouldham Common on the NDW, to Hill Road and Common Road. Before the road crosses the A229 turn right this will come out on Chatham Road. Turn left past the footbridge and after the wooden fencing turn left down the steps. If you reach the road on the left turn back to reach the path past Kit’s Coty House Burial Chamber and the junction of Rochester Road


2 - Cross over the road to follow the original Pilgrim’s Way passing under the A229 and over the railway line. There are two options now either continue left to follow the NDW to Detling or continue on the original Pilgrims Way which runs parallel with the NDW but becomes a minor country lane.


stage 30 photo

2a. PW - Just before the village of Detling the NDW joins the Pilgrims Way at the junction of Marple Lane.


2b. NDW - Arrive at the Pilgrims Way road at the junction of Marple Lane.


Continue along Pilgrims Way to the main road A249 use the footbridge (Jades Crossing) to cross over. Turn left to pass the public house The Cock Horse and reach the village of Detling




Rochester to Detling - Alternate Route Distance

16km / 10 miles

This route continues along the original Pilgrim Way although this is now predominantly along roads with a small section off road. The road narrows at the end and can be very busy - take care if following this section.


1 - From Wouldham Road take the second left Burham Road and the original Pilgrim route. This becomes Rochester road passing through Burham. It can be a busy road so take care if using this route. The road splits and becomes narrow for one way traffic. At the end cross over the road to resume the Pilgrim Way off road.


2 - After the brief section off road the Pilgrim Way returns to the road to Detling. Again take care with the traffic.




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Walking can be a dangerous sport.  Walkers should always be suitably equipped, including carrying and knowing how to use a map and compass.