The Forestry Commission look after the Forest of Dean for everyone to enjoy. Whether you’re a mountain biker or a lover of nature, a great day out awaits...
This ancient forest has changed many times over the centuries. In medieval times it was a royal hunting forest, before becoming a source of timber for the navy's Tudor warships. By Victorian times it was a major site of industry, with coal mining and tramways punctuating the landscape.
Today the forest is home to a wide variety of wildlife, and a great place to explore. See if you can find the hidden remains of industry as you enjoy this wild and beautiful forest.
The forest has four main visitor sites, as highlighted below, but many more places to visit.
Walk through the Iron Age fort to find stunning views over the River Wye and beyond. Can you spot the birds of prey?
We’ve got trails for everyone, so bring your bike or hire one from the shop. Explore the forest then refuel in the cafe.
The best place to start your forest adventure! Discover the Sculpture Trail, play area, cafe, shop and climbing tower.
Enjoy a walk and a picnic by the lake, swing onto the Go Ape high-ropes course or explore the forest on an all-terrain segway!
The four main visitor sites above are open to the public from 8am (except Christmas Day) and close as follows:
Nov- Feb 5.00pm
May - Aug 9pm
Individual opening times for the cafes and other facilities will vary, please check the individual websites for further details.
Charges are as follows:
Cars and minibuses:
March - October £3.50
November - February £3.00
Coaches: £10 all year
The day ticket is transferrable between all of the four sites on the same day and also includes visiting Wenchford.
Please bring the correct change with you, unfortunately credit card facilities are not available at the ticket machines due to poor mobile phone coverage.
Please note that parking charges apply to Blue Badge holders.
If you are intending to visit the Forest with a school or group, please refer to Learning in the Forest of Dean for essential information.
Please note that overnight stopping in the Forest is only permitted on authorised campsites. (Forestry Commission Byelaws 1982 section 5 (x)) Camping in the Forest is located on the outskirts of Coleford and has direct access into the surrounding woodland.
What do other visitors say?
1 StarDiane, 20/May/2016
I sent an email last Friday to your westenengland email address requesting details of what proceedures your Rangers should take to inform the public when shooting deer, as I was walking my dogs in the woods above Lea Bailey when a deer was shot less than 50 metres from me. There were no signs on any of the footpaths or vehicle tracks and at the time one of my dogs was off his lead. To date, I have not had a reply.
Forestry Commission Response
Deer control is carried out as discretely as possible and always with public safety as the main priority. It would be costly and inefficient to erect signs on every access and it would be easy to neglect a little used access point which could create debate about insufficient notice. Replied by email.
Hi there does anyone know of any horse riding places that would let me and my girlfriend pay to go on a trek in the forest
Forestry Commission Response
replied by email
5 StarsDormant useful giraffe, 4/Apr/2016
Beechenhurst is a lovely place and the staff are very nice