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Sheep grazing on Dunstable Downs, with grassy fields below
Sheep on Dunstable Downs | © National Trust
Essex, Bedfordshire & Hertfordshire

Dunstable Downs Five Knolls wildlife and heritage walk

Walk up on the downs on this all-weather out-and-back pathway that's ideal for families. Enjoy the views from this site, which has been an important vantage point to people for over 1,000 years. And keep an eye out for the rich variety of birds, insects and plants that make their home here on the chalk downs.


This is a great walk to do on wheels, suitable for buggies, motorised scooters and wheelchairs. Numbered and lettered waymarkers mark the route.

Total steps: 12

Total steps: 12

Start point

Chilterns Gateway Centre visitor car park, LU6 2GY. Grid ref: TL008195.

Step 1

Find the first waymarker in the courtyard facing the car park.

Step 2

Take the path to the windcatcher and follow the surfaced path to your right. Follow the footpath as it winds downhill over the grass area towards Pascombe and Five Knolls.

Step 3

Continue along the footpath.

Step 4

Look out for the London Gliding Club below.

A grassy, chalk track, the Icknield Way, curves to the right between hawthorn hedges, with fields in the distance, at Dunstable Downs, Bedfordshire
Section of the Icknield Way | © Peter Collins

Step 5

As you walk past the lower car park, look out for waymarker B a bird.

Step 6

Continue along the path.

Step 7

Follow the footpath.

Step 8

Follow the path as it descends slightly.

Step 9

You'll see how the footpath runs along the top of the downs.

Step 10

Keep walking along the footpath towards Pascombe Hill.

Step 11

Keep to the footpath as it descends through a gateway. An information panel highlights the Saxon execution site at the 5 knolls burial site.

Step 12

Turn round and walk back along the footpath you've followed, all the way to the Chilterns Gateway Centre.

End point

Chilterns Gateway Centre visitor car park, LU6 2GY. Grid ref: TL008195.

Trail map

Route map for Dunstable Downs Five Knolls wildlife and heritage  walk
Route map for Dunstable Downs Five Knolls wildlife and heritage walk | © Crown copyright and database rights 2013 Ordnance Survey

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Get in touch

Whipsnade Road, Dunstable, Bedfordshire, LU6 2GY

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Cotswold Outdoor

We’ve partnered with Cotswold Outdoor to help everyone make the most of their time outdoors in the places we care for.

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