* Prices may differ from that shownMore Offers
We like watching the Coast programme in our house. It is a well presented, informative and interesting programme. The skilled camerawork is one of the most notable things about the show - we especially love the wide-angled shots of the British coastline from the air. These make you want to go and explore the places the team visit for yourself. The BBC book 'Coast The Walks' builds on the wanderlust the programme stirs, encouraging you to explore more of our coastline for yourself.
The book details 54 walks dotted around our coast from Tresco to Stromness; Achill Island to Great Yarmouth. The walks are all shown on the map of Great Britain at the front of the book so you can choose your area of interest. The walks are divided up into Easy (1.5 miles to 6 miles), Medium (2 miles to 8.5 miles) and Hard (4 miles to 12 miles). The difficulty rating not only refers to distance it also takes account of the terrain which the walks cross. There are also useful symbols at the side of the walk description to indicate whether this is a town or country walk. The walks are rated for their accessibility (on foot/buggy users/ wheelchair users) and an approximate length of time to complete the walk is given.
In order to show you how useful and informative this book is, I will give you the potted example of Rotherhithe: A Thames tour. The symbols tell you that this walk is a town walk, 3 miles long, access on foot, for buggy's and wheelchairs, it will take approx. 2 hours and is designated easy. The book talks to you like a tour guide and starts you off at Greenland Dock telling you the docks go back to the 17th century and denoting their links to the whale trade. Following the route around you find yourself at Nelson House, and next to it the dry dock used for building clippers and warships until it was closed in 1968. On to the Pumphouse educational museum and Globe wharf one of the finest warehouses left in the docks. Walk past St Mary's Church where three of the four owners of the Mayflower are buried and you find yourself at the Mayflower pub. The walk then leads down Elephant Lane through the King's Stair Gardens and onto the Thames Path to see the ruins of a 14th century manor house and the Angel pub where J.M.W Turner painted The Fighting Temeraire.
At each stage of the walk the book provides a glossy picture of a point of interest and some historical detail about the place. A detailed Ordnance survey of the area is given with the walk shown upon it. There are contact details for the Tourist Information Centre should you want to linger longer - or find out further details about the places of interest mentioned. There is even a note as to how to get to the walk in the first place and where to park etc. This book is a really thorough and reliable guide.
The other walks are detailed in a similar vein. We have only done two 'easy' walks so far but they were very enjoyable. A walk is so much more interesting when you have points to look out for on the way. Hopefully we will eventually get to some of the more obscure places noted in the book as they look really intriguing. It certainly whets your appetite for travel.
The paperback version of this book is available on Amazon for £10.87 (24/07/13)
A wonderful book. Would thoroughly recommend.
A number of book representatives regularly visit my workplace, such as The Book People and as a result, I frequently find myself browsing through the samples and placing several orders. My husband and I are keen photographers and prefer the UK as opposed to travelling abroad although the current wet and miserable weather has placed a number of our plans on hold. We are always looking for new places to visit and a book that caught my eager eye a couple of years ago provides fifty tried and tested walks and was inspired by the BBC's BAFTA award winning television series named Coast The Walks and this review discusses my thoughts.
This is a book with a difference, as the sturdy cardboard cover measuring 19 cm x 25 cm x 1.7 cm is actually a ring binder disguised to appear like a thick book. There is a page size thick transparent plastic wallet contained at the front of the book, so that your chosen page can be slipped inside and be adequately protected from the rain. The book begins on the contents page, which is broken down into three sections, namely easy walks, medium walks and hard walks; all of which are allocated a unique colour, which is used throughout the book to enable easy identification. Contained on the facing page is a map of the UK with various numbers scattered throughout, which display the walks available and these are referenced on the grid together with the place number and distance in miles.
We are provided with a brief introduction that discusses a few of the walks contained within the book together with advice on how to use the book, how to get started and respecting the countryside. On each of the walks provided throughout there is a small grid contained on the upper left hand side that depicts the location on the UK map where we are provided with symbols to depict the length of time the walk will take, the number of miles and accessibility symbols, which are identified in the key grid contained at the front of the book.
Each walk is broken down into significant detail where we are advised on where to begin and we are provided with any points of interest along the way. There are supporting coloured images for each of the interest points together with information relating to their history and I find this section extremely useful, as it assists us in planning our visits to particular areas. At the end of each section is an Ordnance Survey map, which clearly identifies the areas discussed throughout the walk together with useful travel advice such as parking or the nearest bus or train stations. It would have been extremely handy if the book had included details of the nearest toilets and places to eat.
An extremely useful feature is that the walks are discussed in great detail where we are advised where we should change direction, so there is no chance of getting lost. I have a terrible sense of direction and if I set out on one of these walks on my own with no directions I'd probably still be there aimlessly wandering around! In addition to the specific walks the book provides us with a little information on the area, both recent and historic together with details of any interesting attractions. Consequently, as well as it being an extremely helpful book for those people that enjoy walking, it is also educational and is a valuable resource when planning a holiday or daytrip. An important point is that a number of the walks are suitable for wheelchair users, buggies and pushchairs and these are clearly identified by symbols. Where relevant we are alerted to situations such as the risk of adders whilst walking in North Pembrokeshire or the beautiful grey seals that can be spotted swimming in two large colonies on Skomer and Ramsey Island.
Our use of the book is mainly as a travel resource as opposed to walking, particularly as my husband has limited mobility and frequently walks with the aid of a stick. However, during our travels we have been able to locate a number of the places of interest that are contained within the book. The book has been of great benefit to us, particularly as we are keen photographers and we have been able to capture some of the picturesque images for ourselves. The majority of the walks discussed throughout the book take you on a journey to offer stunning panoramic reviews of the area as well as spectacular coastline where relevant. It offers a rich source of information for travellers and is a treasured possession in our extensive book collection and for the reasons discussed above it receives my recommendation.
If my memory serves my correctly I paid around £5 for this book and at the time of writing it can be purchased from Amazon at £8 for a new copy inclusive of postage and packing and from 1p for a used copy plus postage and packing.
ISBN - 978-1-849-90029-4
Published in 2008 for BBC Books, an imprint of Ebury Publishing