The Games Way is a 187 mile long distance path created to celebrate the London 2012 Olympic Games. It starts in Weymouth and Portland at the National Sailing Academy and it finishes in London at the Olympic Stadium.
The official opening walk took place during the London 2012 games over 12 days with around 50 different people and 3 dogs (Milly, Dylan and the incredible canine superhero Poppy) joining in on different days. You can read a human account of the walk or you can read The Poppy Diaries here.
The Games Way is a beautiful path taking in the Jurassic coast, the New Forest, the Itchen Way through Winchester, the North Downs Way, the Wey Navigation, the Thames path and Richmond Park along the way. There are many beautiful and historic sights on the route including Durdle Door, a fossil forest, Corfe Castle, Winchester Cathedral, the watercress beds on the river Itchen, all the majesty of Westminster, the buzz of London’s south bank, and the Olympic Park.
The route is broken into 12 day long stages, usually starting and ending near a train station or good bus connection, making it easy to do over a series of weekends. You can download The Games Way walking guide free of charge.
The menu at the top of this page gives you an overview of the route day by day, and a list of accommodation, whether you prefer camping or staying in guesthouses. It also has the original “big idea” article from 2010, and the project archive of 100 photo-rich blog posts which will take you from the germ of an idea through all the experiments and challenges right up to the opening walk itself.
Many, many people have encouraged and helped me with organising and publicising the walk and I am deeply grateful to everyone who has tweeted and blogged and emailed and phoned and of course WALKED to help bring this project to life. I feel very lucky to have met (whether virtually or in person) such a wonderful group of people. My biggest thanks goes of course to my awesome partner in fun Felix – she has been rock solid in her support over the last couple of years and it was a real treat to share every step of the walk with her this summer.
I hope you have as much fun walking The Games Way as we all did on the opening walk, and as I have done in the 2 and a bit years of designing and planning the route.
Cheers, Mark Stanley