When it comes to the festive period, a lot of us tend to overindulge.

Whether it’s mince pies, an extra helping of turkey, or too much mulled wine, there are plenty of opportunities to put on the pounds.

As a result, it’s no wonder that family walks make up a key part of the holidays for many of us to help burn off a few extra calories while spending time with your loved ones, something we have come to appreciate much more this year.

While the Christmas Day walk generally stays close to where the presents are, Boxing Day offers the opportunity to stretch those legs and go a bit further afield. If you’re looking for a bit of walking inspiration, we’ve rounded up some of the best walks in and around the local area.

Each walk is a loop, so you don’t have to worry about reaching your destination to find you’re only halfway! They’re also in order of distance, so you can choose the one which best suits you and yours.

Andover Advertiser:

Danebury Fort – 0.8 miles

Heading outside of Andover, Danebury Fort offers a mix of history and spectacular views that are perfect for a relaxing walk.

Driving down the A343 from Andover, take a left onto Kentsboro and follow it until you reach the car park on the right.

After parking up, head up the hill and through the gate, where information signs can tell you and your family all about the history of this hill fort, thought to have been built some 3000 years ago, and in use until 100BC.

Hampshire County Council also has a story, Danger at Danebury Hill Fort, to entertain any little ones making the journey with you.

For full directions and the story, click here

Andover Advertiser:

Anton Lakes – 0.86 miles

If you’re looking for a classic walk suitable for those of a wide variety of ages, look no further than Anton Lakes in the centre of town.

Easily accessible from the surrounding estates, or with a car park off the Charlton Roundabout if you live a bit further out, this gentle walk will take you for a short lap of the area.

Flat and easy to navigate the whole way around, the most you’ll likely have to look out for is a cyclist or jogger intent on getting their Christmas day exercise in!

If you find yourself wanting a slightly bigger challenge, you can follow the Anton Lakes path north towards Saxon Way, with the option of leaving the path at a crossing by Andeferas Road.

Andover Advertiser:

Rooksbury Mill – 1 mile

Another classic Andover walk, Rooksbury Mill allows walkers to take a variety of different routes depending on preference.

Parking can be found off Barlows Lane, with options allow walkers to travel around either lake or both.

The lakes, formed by gravel extraction, have a wide range of wildlife to admire on your Boxing Day walk, with fish, Kingfishers and amphibians among the many residents.

If you visit, bear in mind that two bridges, between the southern, Barlows lake and the Orchard are currently closed following an inspection. Signs at the site will provide a diversion if you head this way.

Andover Advertiser:

Stonehenge – 2.2 miles

If Danebury Fort has whetted your appetite for the prehistoric, then heading to Stonehenge offers a chance to put the pagan back into the festive period.

While seeing the stones closely, and visiting the museum, requires a ticket from English Heritage, those content with seeing Stonehenge from slightly further away can use the public footpath that runs close by the site.

Parking in Larkhill, head south on Willoughby Road, and continue south as the road becomes a track.

As you go down the hill, you will enter the UNESCO World Heritage Site, with the Stonehenge cursus and barrows visible as you walk.

The stones themselves will soon come into view. As you near the paid entry to the stones, a gate on the left will allow you to walk around the perimeter of the ticketed area along the public footpath. Once you’re done marvelling at the majesty of Stonehenge, you can then return back the way you came.

Longparish Firgo – 4 miles

For those wanting a longer walk, the loop at Longparish offers a couple of distances depending on how the Christmas Day festivities have gone.

Parking near the Cricketers Inn or the village shop will provide the longer version of the walk, while parking at The Cleeves will give you a more brief loop.

The footpath will take you alongside the river, and then across the old railway embankment towards Firgo Farm. You can then turn around and head back towards the river, completing the loop.

For full directions, click here