This page lists what generally agreeable things you may meet along the way. For the less pleasant, see the other page called hazards. (This page includes livestock as a pleasure but cattle are mentioned again under hazards.)
Stiles come in a great variety. Some are so simple you can take them in your stride. Others are a challenge. One excellent trend in recent years has been replacing stiles with gates. For any problems with stiles, gates and fences, see under hazards.
A country walk with no farm animals is lonely and sterile. They are a constant delight, especially for the 'townie'. We refer to horse, sheep and cattle fields as 'pastures' in these guides to distinguish them from arable land.
Many of the meadows in southeast England are used for horse breeding or grazing. Horses are no danger to you unless they accidentally bite or catch you when kicking with their back legs. There is nothing so exhilarating as a group of horses galloping towards you and then passing you at full speed. You will meet many horse riders along the way. Stand well aside as they pass just in case their horse is nervous, putting a young rider in danger.
Sheep are the most common types of livestock. In one or two pastures, the sheep have been brought up with children and come towards you. Apart from these delightful cases, livestock should never be touched
You will also see ducks, geese, poultry, goats, alpacas (sometimes wrongly identified as 'llamas'). For the more negative aspects of livestock, see under hazards.
We try to pick places to eat or drink which have some charm or merit. We check opening times but these can change overnight. We depend on you to let us know.
In present times it is a sad fact that a lot of country pubs are closing. Sometimes they close during the winter, after the new year, and may change hands.
If you are planning to have lunch at one of the pubs mentioned, it is vital to ring them first to make sure they are open and have a table.