The watery vein that runs through North Wiltshire is not the Thames, which soon disappears into Oxfordshire, but the Kennet & Avon Canal. Throughout the area there is a pleasing mix of downland (the Marlborough Downs and the downs above the M4 east of Swindon) and woods and forest (West Woods and Savernake Forest). The ridges offer opportunities to secure unforgettable views of the countryside around. As might be expected, the Romans were here and feature in four of the walks. The Civil War was here too, and features in the walks centred on Malmesbury , Aldbourne where there was a tussle in 1643, and Devizes where north of the town at Roundway Hill the Royalists won their last victory later in 1643. With its variety there can be fewer better areas for walking. And the pubs aren't bad either. The ten circular walks, ranging from 3.5 to 9 miles, suit the needs of families, groups of friends or individuals looking for a gentle stroll or a longer walk, and reflect the many varied facets of the area - its people, its history, and its working landscape and will help first time visitors to experience some of the great scenery the area has to offer. The ten walks are: Malmesbury and Little Somerford; Bremhill and Maud Heath; Devizes and Roundway Hill; Clyffe Pypard and Bincknoll Castle; the Lydiards and Purton; Pewsey and the Kennet & Avon Canal; Wansdyke and West Woods; Aldbourne and Snap; Savernake Forest, Great Bedwyn and Wilton; and Wexcombe, Chute Causeway and Hippenscombe. Halsgrove's new-format guidebook, containing maps, photographs and useful information will ensure a great walking experience. Packed with colour, the book is an ideal reminder of a visit to the area.