Cissbury Ring butterfly walk

Walking trail

One of the very best butterfly sites in Sussex, including numerous Adonis and chalkhill blues, dark-green fritillaries and marbled whites, lower numbers of dingy and grizzled skippers and small blue and the occasional brown hairstreak.

Explore the most historic hill on the South Downs

The walk is also very rich in flora, including bee orchids, field fleawort and round-headed rampion and has impressive areas of chalk lichen lawns.

A dark green fritillary butterfly warms its wings on a thistle


Map route for Cissbury Ring butterfly walk


Storrington Rise car park in Findon Valley, grid ref: TQ129076


Take the path out of the Storrington Rise car park, heading across a neglected field towards the corner of a copse. Go through the kissing gate, and follow the path along the copse edge, under old sycamore trees. Cross the stile and follow the path across a grass field, through a kissing gate onto Cissbury Ring, by the National Trust omega sign and a bench.

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Turn left onto the outer ramparts. The fence on your left gradually drops away. Go down the steps to the small car park in the northern corner (before the car park is an old sunken dew pond).

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Turn right in the minor car park, before the gate into the field, and follow the vehicle track that leads through scrub and open flowery glades, with a steep slope on your left. It becomes more open, with a big grassy area appearing on your left. Go straight over the minor cross roads, staying on the upper of the two paths. Go through a bridlegate (not National Trust, but Open Access land) into a large area of open grassland with developing scrub. Explore this area for a while, then retrace your steps back to the bridlegate.

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After the bridlegate, turn left at the crossroads. Go through another bridlegate, and aim for the main (eastern) entrance to the hill fort. (Before the entrance, you can do a detour to explore the steep south-facing slope at the head of Rifle Range Valley.)

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After the kissing gate leading into the hill fort, turn right to follow the path along the outer ramparts initially, before bearing left at the top of the steps to follow the inner rampart ditch. This leads past an area of flint mines.

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Follow the inner rampart ditch, past where you entered, round to the south-west entrance. Near the old beech plantation, turn right out of the hill fort entrance, go through the kissing gate and meander around the flint mines, before heading towards the bridlegate by the wood corner.

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From the wood edge bridlegate, follow the straight diagonal path back towards the old sycamore trees, and return to the Storrington Rise car park.


Storrington Rise car park in Findon Valley, grid ref: TQ129076

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Cissbury Ring butterfly walk


Circular route over chalk downland and Iron Age hill fort embankments. Some short, gentle slopes, usually with steps, avoiding the steep slopes. Some short sections can be slippery when wet but generally dry, firm ground.

Dogs are welcome under close control.

Cissbury Ring butterfly walk

Contact us

Cissbury Ring butterfly walk

How to get here

Findon, West Sussex
By train

Worthing, 3 miles (5km) from Cissbury Ring, then take bus number 1 (see 'by bus'). 30 minute walk to the Ring from nearest bus stop.

By road

Worthing is the nearest town, 3 miles (5km) away. Take A24 north, following signs for 'Cissbury Ring parking' turning, signed off A24.

By foot

2 miles (3km) from South Downs Way, which has paths leading to the Ring.

By bicycle

National Cycle Network route 2 to Shoreham-by-Sea, then cycle up 8 miles (12.8km) towards Findon. South Downs Way route 89 is 1.5 miles (2.5km) north and route 222 (Shoreham-by-Sea to Guildford) is an off-road route.

Cissbury Ring butterfly walk

Facilities and access

  • Dogs are welcome under close control