Your questions answered

  1. How do I login or register?
  2. What is a guided walk?
  3. How do I book a guided walk?
  4. Can I contact the walk leader before I go on the walk?
  5. How can I find a guided walk to suit my fitness/ accessibility level?
  6. Do the walk leaders have insurance?
  7. What do I need to bring on a guided walk?
  8. What do I need to wear on a guided walk?
  9. Can I book more places on a guided walk than the number of places that are available?
  10. How do I cancel a booking?
  11. Can I take a dog on a guided walk?
  12. Can I take children on a guided walk?
  13. What is the Countryside Code?
  14. What are public rights of way?
  15. What signs show me the public rights of way in the countryside?
  16. Why is walking good for me? What are the benefits?

How do I login or register?

Go to the login or register pages.

What is a guided walk?

A guided walk is a walk led by a confident leader who is familiar with the area and the route. The number of people on a guided walk can vary from one to one hundred - it entirely depends on the limit set by the leader. The leader is responsible for the health and safety of the walkers, prepares the necessary risk assessments and uploads the details of the walk to the Explore Kent website. Walk leaders are usually volunteers who walk as part of a club or group and lead walks simply because they enjoy it.

How do I book a guided walk?

Once you have found a guided walk that you would like to book onto, go to the walk detail page where you will find a ‘Book this walk' link. Select the number of places you wish to book. You will be directed to a new page to confirm the walk details. You will then be asked to either login or register. The registration process takes just a few minutes – we need your details in case we have to cancel or change a walk, and for you to receive our Explore Kent magazine twice a year. We will not pass your information on to any third parties and will protect your data in line with all data protection legislation. When you have completed the registration you will be taken through to your account page, where you can manage your walks, book more walks, cancel a walk, or see how many miles you have walked.

Can I contact the walk leader before I go on the walk?

Yes, leader contact details are given on each walk detail page. You can contact the leader if you have any questions about the walk.

How can I find a guided walk to suit my fitness/ accessibility level?

Each walk detail page includes lots of information to show what type of walk it is and what fitness level you need to complete the walk. Information includes distance, duration and grading for each walk. The grading of a walk is determined by the gradient, obstacles (stiles, gates, steps etc) and surface type. An averagely fit person will walk approximately 3 miles (4.8km) per hour.

If you don't exercise or walk regularly, a two mile walk with a grading of ‘Walks for All' or ‘Easy' may be more suitable for your first walk. After just a few walks, your fitness and overall stamina will improve and soon you will be able to enjoy a more challenging walk.

If you have any health issues, you may wish to start with a short, flat walk graded ‘Walks for All'. Please check with your doctor before undertaking any physical activity. Please also let the walk leader know before the walk if you have any health issues they should be aware of. Some of the leaders are first aid trained and most have basic knowledge, but do check with the leader if you are concerned.

Do the walk leaders have insurance?

Some of them do. If you would like to know if the leader organising your walk has Public Liability insurance please contact them direct – the leader's details are on the walk detail page. Kent County Council accepts no responsibility for liability on any of the walks.

What do I need to bring on a guided walk?

Information on what you should bring on a guided walk is on the walk details page. Usual items include:

  • A drink such as a bottle of water.
  • A snack for a shorter walk or packed lunch for a longer walk.
  • Sun cream.
  • A small backpack.
  • Hat and gloves.
  • Some money in case of a refreshment stop.
  • A charged mobile phone.
  • Spare clothing or extra warm clothing for a longer walk.

What do I need to wear on a guided walk?

The length of walk, the season and the type of walk you are doing will determine what you need to wear. A longer walk over a rough terrain in the countryside will require a pair of walking boots that support the ankle. If the walk is along an even surface a pair of trainers or other comfortable flat sole shoes may be sufficient.

  • Loose fitting, comfortable and bright clothing appropriate for the season. (Waterproof/windproof clothing is recommended in winter.)
  • Strong, comfortable shoes with a good gripping sole or walking boots.

These items are only suggested and do not need to be expensive. There are many outdoor shops offering discounts as well as a huge range of online stores, so shop around to find the best deals.

Can I book more places on a guided walk than the number of places that are available?

Walk leaders give a clear indication of how many places are allocated for each guided walk. However some leaders will keep a few places free. If you wish to book more people onto the walk than places are available, you could contact the leader. They may be able to accommodate you. Please be aware that they may say no due to health and safety reasons.

How do I cancel a booking?

Login to your user account and you will see all the walks you have booked. Find the walk and click ‘Cancel'. If you wish to cancel just some of the places you have booked, you will need to cancel all your places and re-book your places on that walk again. You and the walk leader will receive an email to confirm the cancellation.

Can I take a dog on a guided walk?

Yes, but not all of them. The walks detail page will indicate if dogs are allowed on a guided walk. Not all walks are suitable for dogs. Please note - you take full responsibility for your dog while out walking. Please inform the leader if you have an Assistance Dog.

For more information, look at the walking your dog page.

Can I take children on a guided walk?

Yes, and different walks will be suitable for different age groups. The guided walks labelled ‘Walks for All' are suitable for young children in prams and pushchairs, other walks will be suitable for slightly older children. Parents know how far their children can walk before getting bored or tired so please check the details of each walk before deciding which walk is the best for you.

What is the Countryside Code?

The Countryside Code is a set of guidelines to help visitors make the most of their trip to the countryside. If you follow the Countryside Code wherever you go, you will enjoy walking and help protect the countryside now and for future generations. The key points are:

  • Be safe.
  • Plan ahead.
  • Follow any signs.
  • Leave gates and property as you find them.
  • Take your litter home.
  • Keep dogs under close control.
  • Consider other people.

Find out more about the Countryside Code.

What are public rights of way?

Public rights of way are public highways which anybody may use at any time and are recorded as legal rights of way.

What signs show me the public rights of way in the countryside?

Where footpaths, bridleways or byways join a road, a signpost will indicate the route to follow. Different coloured way-markers are also fixed to stiles, gateposts and way-mark posts to highlight the public right of way and help you find your way.

If your walk takes you along or across roads, please take care and follow the Highway Code.

public ways

Why is walking good for me? What are the benefits?

Find out on Explore Kent's healthy living page. Or visit the walking for health website. Or find hints and tips on the Change for Life website.

For more information about walking, ideas for great days out or if you want to lead your own guided walk, visit www.kent.gov.uk/explorekent.

Do you have another guided walk question? Feel free to contact us.

Contact us

Envelope explorekent @kent.gov.uk

Telephone 03000 41 71 71