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Long-Distance Walks with Mark Moxon

Capital Ring: Route

As with the London Loop, there's an excellent official guidebook, The Capital Ring by Colin Saunders. It contains all the maps you need (sections of 1:25,000 Ordnance Survey Explorer maps, specially highlighted to show the route), very detailed directions, and plenty of information to bring the walk alive. To walk a section of the Ring you just need the book and a compass (though I never needed to use mine); the route is well signed all the way, except for some sections of day 11. You might also come across signs that have been twisted to point in the wrong direction; this was a particular problem on day 1, but that's urban walking for you. Here's the route that the book describes, going clockwise from Woolwich in east London:

Day Walk Miles
1 Woolwich to Falconwood 6.2
2 Falconwood to Grove Park 3.4
3 Grove Park to Crystal Palace 8.2
4 Crystal Palace to Streatham 3.9
5 Streatham to Wimbledon Park 5.4
6 Wimbledon Park to Richmond 6.9
7 Richmond to Osterley Lock 3.8
8 Osterley Lock to Greenford 4.8
9 Greenford to South Kenton 5.3
10 South Kenton to Hendon Park 5.9
11 Hendon Park to Highgate 5.1
12 Highgate to Stoke Newington 4.4
13 Stoke Newington to Hackney Wick 3.6
14 Hackney Wick to Beckton Park 4.6
15 Beckton Park to Woolwich 3.3
Total distance 74.8

It's worth pointing out that this is only a suggested itinerary. Even if you're not a massive fan of long-distance walking, you could easily polish off two or three sections in one day; the last three sections, for example, combine to make a good day's walk of 11.5 miles. The terrain is gentle throughout, so most people should be able to manage the above.