Some of the best of Britain’s forests and woodlands

Sadly, many of our ancient woods and forests have disappeared, but there are still a few stunning places where you can still get lost in the trees. Trees are the lifeblood of the planet and forests are the lungs. They also provide vital habitats for a myriad of animals and insects. Here are some of the best that England has to offer.

Grizedale, Cumbria

Located bang in the middle of the stunning Lake District, Grizedale Forest sits between the lakes of Windermere and Coniston. This is a spectacular place to take walking routes, go mountain biking or follow the arty sculpture along the 8-mile walking trail. You’ll also enjoy some of the most picturesque lakeside views. The forest is home to the last indigenous red deer herd in England and is a refuge for many species such as red kites, roe deer and barn owls.

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Rydal and Grasmere, Cumbria

Cumbria is also home to the forests at Rydal and Grasmere. The autumnal colours of the leaves reflecting in the tranquil waters of the Rydal Water is a sight to behold, good enough for Dorothy Wordsworth to write about in her journal of 1802 as if it were a ‘perfect mirror’. Enjoy the sights by following the 6-mile tour of the landscape. If this has inspired you to think about planting more trees on your property, seek the advice of a Tree Surgeon Bournemouth. What is a tree surgeon? It’s someone who has trained specifically in the maintenance and care of trees.

Forest of Dean, Gloucestershire

The beautiful scenery of the Forest of Dean is best explored on foot or by bike along one of the various trails through this ancient, mystical woodland. The wide variety of beeches, oaks, sweet chestnuts and larches can easily make you forget that this was once an area of industry, with thousands of trees being felled for shipbuilding in the 16th and mining in the early 20th centuries. Memories and relics of this bygone era are dotted around the landscape, such as former collieries. Try to spot the elusive wild boar on your adventure.

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Kielder Forest, Northumberland

The calm waters of Kielder Water are part of the biggest artificial, man-made lake in the UK. It is located near the western border of the Northumberland National Park and surrounding the water is the biggest working forest in England, at a whopping 250 square miles. As you can imagine, the Kielder Forest is home to a huge amount of wildlife, particularly the osprey. Access is available for all, with a 27-mile long multi-access trail around the lake.

Rivington Wood, Lancashire

During the early 20th century, Lord Leverhulme designed and made a beautiful terraced garden of pagodas, arches, bridges, a gorgeous ballroom and Japanese lakes. The amazing site was abandoned in 1925 and ever since, the garden has been slowly returning back to nature. Mysterious and mystical, like a lost city, the ruins and unique finds lend the forest a real sense of excitement and adventure. Follow the 3-mile walk to discover old crumbling terraces and discarded archways.

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