Length 6 km (3.7 miles), terrain: flat
Hey, okay, Odiham isn't exactly the center of the known universe, and hardly anyone will need this route, but what the heck. I like the place. Odiham is a little village outside the big city of Hook, in Hampshire, southwest of London.
|Doorway in Odiham|
There's an RAF base nearby, home to the British fleet of Chinook heavy-lift helicopters. And King John's Castle, a weathered medieval ruins, fills a bend in the River Whitewater.
All in all, it's a cool place, and I think you'll like it as much as I did.
This route will start in the village square, then head eastwards down the main street, will then circle westwards along the Basingstoke Canal to King John's Castle, and finally head back again via some fields and neighborhoods.
|The George pub and inn on the High Street|
So now, turn right and head eastwards. Stay on the left side of the street, so that when it forks, you can take the left-hand street, London Road.
Some of the houses get more modern here, as you leave the village. You'll pass the Waterwitch pub, with its dock for narrow-boats that travel along the Basingstoke Canal.
|Get onto the canal tow-path here!|
The canal will curve southwards, then westwards again, going under a road bridge.
|Along the canal|
|The bascule bridge|
There isn't too much of the 800-year-old walls left and it has the look of a weathered termite mound, but is worth circling and viewing close-up.
|King John's Castle|
When Tunnel Lane runs into Warnborough Street, turn right and run the block to the Anchor Inn pub, where you turn left to follow the little public footpath between the modern houses, heading southeast.
|The footpath near the school|
Just run past a few houses and you'll come to the big sports grounds on the left. Turn left just before the grounds and follow that footpath all the way back to the churchyard in Odiham.
|The village stocks|
All Saints Church in the background goes back at least 900 years, surrounded by big yew trees in the graveyard.
|All Saints, with big yew tree|
The pub is just to your left, past a few interesting antique shops.
Now you've earned your dinner in the George or the place next door (actually called Next Door). Enjoy!