The Phoenix TrailHot
The Phoenix Trail is a 7-mile (11 km) footpath and cycleway which runs between the market towns of Thame in South Oxfordshire and Princes Risborough in Buckinghamshire, passing through the villages of Towersey and Bledlow. As well as cyclists and walkers, the route is suitable for wheelchair and pushchair users, as it is flat and surfaced with seating every 500 metres.
The trail, mostly a fine gravel path, itself is fairly easy and flat and suitable for all levels. The countryside around it is beautiful and very peaceful. Along the path you see sculptures made by lead artist Angus Ross together with six furniture students from Rycotewood College in Thame.
We cycled fairly slowly and stopped after about 1h at the Three Horseshoe Pub in Towersey (about a mile before Thame), which has a nice garden and safe playground – perfect for families! Unfortunately, we were too late for lunch and had to do with crisps and nuts, so I can’t comment on the food, but they serve the usual pub grub i.e burgers, chips, sandwiches, jacket potatoes. http://threehorseshoestowersey.co.uk/
To get back to the car we had to cycle the same way we came unfortunately. The trail doesn’t go in a loop which would have made it more interesting, but nevertheless, we will definitely do this bike tour again.
The trail from start to finish is around 7 miles. We parked in Market Square, Princes Risborough and cycled to the start of the trail. We had to cycle a few minutes through town centre/residential area to get to the start, which is NOT traffic free. For anyone with children on their own bikes, I would suggest to park in Picts Lane as it is much closer to the start of the trail or you could even cut the ride a bit shorter by parking underneath the Railway bridge off the B4009, The Ford, Sandpit Lane which cuts the trail to just over 5 miles.
If you are in Princes Risborough then you should also go on the steam train which goes to Chinnor, but check times as they aren't particularly frequent