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Wander Through The Wetlands

Just a short walk from Tottenham Hale Station the entrance to Walthamstow Wetlands is a welcoming sight, taking you away from the main road and into a vast space where time slows down.

Visitors from near and far arrive to visit the South side of the Wetlands for bird watching, getting out of doors and experiencing nature. Fewer people venture over to the North side which is also well worth visiting for the views across London.

There are so many opportunities to wander around these vast spaces in so many different directions but a very long walk is also possible all the way down to Stratford and beyond, avoiding built up areas and traffic - and even the canal, once the main highway for transporting goods.

It is a real feeling of escape to be walking for miles with the countryside spread out all around.

On a sunny day it is possible to find the direction by simply noting where the sun can be seen in the sky and getting the feel for which way to go. Across the other side of the Wetlands are Walthamstow Marshes and cutting across brings you to Leyton Marshes.

The landscape along the way changes constantly with vast stretches of water of the wetlands and then paths through woodlands and grasslands.

As the final area of marshland is reached - Hackney Marshes - the vast open space is quite dramatic. It is worth stopping for a moment at the Red Bridge which joins the two marshes and see how much open space has been preserved here in East London.

In the distance, on the other side of the marsh, the buildings and people in the distance look so small and so far away. This part of the walk seems to take the longest. After a while it's tempting to stop and look back to see if you are half way there - and you realise that you still have a long way to go.

But at last the marshes give way to the Queen Elizabeth Park where there is so much more nature to discover.

Begin at Tottenham Hale Station and end at Stratford


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