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Girl playing in the autumn leaves

Autumn is a magical time of year, and one of the best times to go for a day out in the woods. Wrap up warm and have fun kicking leaves and jumping in puddles!

Top ten sites for autumn

1 Westonbirt

Westonbirt, The National Arboretum, situated in the heart of the Cotswolds, is internationally renowned for the fiery autumnal colour of its tree collection. The arboretum is home to the UK’s national collection of Japanese maples; a must-see display of vibrant oranges and reds.

2 Bedgebury

Home to the National Pinetum, the world’s best conifer collection, and a beautiful array of autumn colour. Some excellent fungi and an active bird-watching group.

3 The Wye Valley in the Forest of Dean

Watch the forest change colour from the fantastic viewpoint at Symonds Yat. Will you see any Perigrine Falcons, or perhaps the wild boar that roam the nearby woods? Symonds Yat is run in partnership with the RSPB. Forest Holidays’ new cabins also open this month.

4 Maulden Woods in Bedfordshire

Another beautiful woodland, with gentle slopes, wildflower meadow. Over twenty different species of tree makes for a lovely range of autumn colour. Home to a variety of wildlife that includes adders, dormice and badgers.

5 Salcey Forest

Explore the amazing Tree Top Way and watch the trees change colour from above. A great place to see autumn-flying butterflies and dragonflies, and home to many ancient oak trees hidden throughout the wood.

6 Kielder Castle and surrounding area

Kielder Castle Visitor Centre is a great place to start exploring this beautiful area. Watch red squirrels from our new hide, or get to grips with the fantastic array of trails designed for every level of cyclist. To make life easy, there’s a training loop, bike hire, bike wash and secure bike parking.

www.visitkielder.com

7 Bolderwood, New Forest

Head along the Ornamental Drive to experience the changing colours through ancient woodland. Watch the deer from the viewing platform or follow waymarked trails. Or why not take part in one of our autumn activities?

8 Oakley, New Forest

This area, near Burley, comes alive with fungi at this time of year. You’ll find dozens of species in the lawns and woodland nearby, but be sure to follow the fungi code!

9 Mendip sites

Three, small woods set high on the Mendip Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

10 Castle Neroche

Staple Hill, near Taunton, offers a spectacular viewpoint over Somerset. It’s accessible to wheelchair users, and a great place to start the fantastic 13-mile circular Herepath Trail through some of the best forested landscape in South West England.

For more details visit the Neroche website.

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For families

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Help Bill Badger and Matilda Mouse with our fun activity sheets…
Looking for leaves
Seed explorer

Events

Autumn events

Check out some of our exciting autumn events, such as ‘The Electric Forest’.
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What do other visitors say?

4 Stars 4 Stars

Very useful information. It would have been nice to link the woods you suggest with the map information that you have on the location search.

Teresa - London, 4/Nov/2010

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Contact

westonbirt@forestry.gsi.gov.uk