Surrounded by such beautiful countryside and commanding some of the best views in the country, Malvern walks are some of the best in England and have always been a draw for walkers. Although most Malvern walks have the inevitable slopes, a wide variety of fitness levels can be catered for and paths vary from steep scrambles to wide, gravelled strolls. In addition to walking the crisscross of paths on the hills themselves, there are beautiful walks across commons and around the town itself.
Walks from Great Malvern
Malvern Hills District Council are currently co-ordinating a collaborative project called "Route to the Hills". This will enhance the walk from Great Malvern Station up onto the hills. Already much of this route, including the major car parks in the vicinity, is marked by QR codes which can be read with smart phones. A map of the route to the centre of Great Malvern from Great Malvern station can be seen here and the route from Great Malvern to the hills here. On the map web pages, you will also find a menu with a selection of places around Great Malvern, including major car parks, from which you can get directions to the hills.
Walks on the Hills
There are a myriad of walks on the Malvern Hills. For first time visitors who do not want too strenuous a hike, the well marked paths along the spine of the hills are always a good choice. The paths usually have the option of circling the peak of each hill, rather than climbing to the summit every time. It is easy to park in one of the large Malvern Hills Conservator's car parks distributed around the hills area. Parking costs £3 for the whole day in one of these car parks and the money raised goes towards maintaining the hills.
For more guidance, there are a number of excellent Malvern Hills Trail Guides describing 6 popular walks on the Malvern Hills. These are well worth buying in the Tourist Information Centre on Church Street. However, with clear weather, it is relatively easy to find your way if you stick to the primary paths and you can usually see the hill you are heading for anyway.
Walks on Malvern Commons
Well marked tracks also cover the various commons in Malvern. These are often a less steep walking option and an abundance of wild flowers and butterflies can be seen in the summer, especially on Peachfield Common between Great Malvern and Malvern Wells. Each common also has its own car park.
Walks in surrounding areas
Walking and information maps for longer routes in Worcestershire, Gloucestershire and Hereforshire can be found at the Malvern Hills GeoCentre at the Wyche Cutting.
Cafes near to good walks
A number of Cafes are in very handy positions to offer rest and sustenance during your walk and can be planned into the day.
St Ann's Well Cafe is one of the best known cafes on the hills. Located on the eastern slopes on the most popular route from Great Malvern to the hills it can get quite busy in the summer. The building dates back to 1813 and houses a Sicilian marble spout and basin gushing Malvern water. Providing vegetarian and Vegan home made meals in addition to cakes, tea and coffee. Opening times of the cafe vary during the year:
Summer school holidays every day: 10am - 4pm
Summer off peak: Tuesday to Friday: 11:30am - 3:30pm, Saturday and Sunday:10am - 4pm (closed Monday)
Winter (October to Easter): Friday: 11am - 3:30pm, Saturday and Sunday: 10am - 4pm (closed Monday - Thursday)
Sugarloaf Cafe is in the middle of West Malvern where the village meets the hills. The path around the hills dips down to Westminster Bank Spring and a little further down on the right is the cafe. Owned and run by Regents Theological College as a small shop for their students, the cafe welcome's local residents and walkers and serves fantastic home made soup, cakes and hot drinks. Opening hours are the same all year:
Monday to Friday: 9am - 5pm, Saturday: 10am - 5pm, Sunday: 10am - 3pm
The Brewers Arms is a lovely pub at the southern end of West Malvern, just off the West Malvern Road. It won "Worcester CAMRA Pub of the Year 2010" and also "Best Pub View" awards. Dogs and children are very welcome and there is outside seating / beer garden. Opening times all year are as follows.
Monday to Thursday: Midday - 3pm (food available until 2:30) and 6pm - Midnight (food available until 9pm)
Friday to Saturday: Midday - Midnight (food available until 9pm)
Sunday: for breakfast 9am - 10:30am and then Midday - Midnight (breakfast 9am - 10:30 and other food midday - 7:30pm)
The Malvern Hills GeoCentre, featuring Cafe H2O, is a new visitor information centre with a lovely cafe and stunning views. Situated at the Wyche Cutting on the left about 100 metres down the road on the West side of the hills. It is the official visitor centre for the Geopark Way and has lots of information about the area's geology, archeology, water, history, plants, animals and walks on ipads in the Centre and a series of wall maps to show you different aspects of the area. The cafe serves home made light lunches, drinks and cake. Opening times are the same all year:
Monday, Tuesday, Thursday & Friday (closed on Wednesdays): 9:30am - 4:30pm
Saturday, Sunday and bank holidays: 9am - 6pm
The Wyche Inn at the Wyche Cutting just round the corner on the East side of the Hills has magnificent views, Real Ales and is dog friendly. They also serve proper home made meals if you fancy more than a sandwich. Opening times are the same all year:
Monday to Friday: 12pm - 11pm, Saturday: 11am - 11pm, Sunday: 11am - 10:30pm
The Chase Inn in Upper Colwall is on the western side of the hills and extremely dog friendly. It is located on part of the Chase Road branching off the zigzags of the Wyche Cutting to Colwall road. A small pub, the Chase Inn is very popular and can get crowded so reserve a table if you can. Tables outside with a lovely view can be used on nice days.
The Kettle Sings is located on the west of the hills off Jubilee Drive between the Wyche Cutting and Wynds Point (British Camp). A licensed restaurant and tea room with its own car park, the views are spectacular. Opening hours are as follows:
January to Easter: 10am - 4:30pm
22nd April to 1st July: 10am - 5pm
2nd July to 2nd September: 10am - 6pm
3rd September to 31st October: 10am - 5pm
1st November to 6th April: 10am - 4:30pm
The Malvern Hills Hotel dates back to when extra horses were needed to help pull carts and carriages over the hills at this historic crossing point. This is one of the smarter options for food and drink while walking on the hills. Restaurant food can be eaten outside, in the bar or in the dinning room.
The Cottage in the Wood is the most exclusive hotel and restaurant on the hills. With outstanding views and impeccable service, this is a bit more than a quick rest on a long walk. Located on the East of the Hills above Malvern Wells, it is on the same road which eventually reaches the Holy Well Spring.