Forestry Commission logo

Discovery Pass

Discover the
freedom of
the forest…
every day of the year…

Get free parking, discounts on events and much more with an annual Discovery Pass


The ultimate free guide to our forests

Forest Xplorer running on iPhone and Android devices

Explore Lynford Arboretum
(Average user rating: 5 unrated 5/5)

Lynford Arboretum, Thetford Forest Park






Lynford Arboretum is a popular place for quiet recreation. It is noted for its variety of bird life, spring flowers and autumn fungi.

Collection of trees

The Arboretum contains many interesting trees for example mature Norway Spruce usually only seen as a Christmas tree, Chinese Fir and Serbian Spruce which is extremely rare in the wild. It has been calculated that the ancient oak tree planted in the south of the Arboretum was planted in 1671 and therefore would have been a substantial specimen when Lynford Hall and estate was purchased in 1865 by Mr Stephen Lyne-Stephens. Since then the Arboretum has grown and has over 200 tree species, with future plans to increase the collection.

Footpaths are suitable for wheelchair users. 

Chequered History

Formerly part of Lynford Hall estate, the Arboretum still retains features which reflect its "parkland" origins. The present hall has a chequered history. It has served as a military hospital, Forestry Commission forester training school (1947 - 1957) and is currently a hotel and conference centre.

 Day to day management of Lynford Arboretum is carried out by volunteers from Friends of Thetford Forest.

Autumn at Lynford Arboretum

Set squarely in the Brecks amidst Thetford Forest, Britain’s largest lowland pine forest, Lynford Arboretum is the most easterly of the Commission’s arboreta. The area enjoys a continental type climate, and is amongst the driest places in the UK.

Noted for its peace, tranquillity and amazing colour show, the arboretum is a great place to enjoy an autumnal stroll. The seasonal trail will lead you through Sequoia Avenue, one of the special features of the area. This double rowed avenue of Sequoias was planted in the 1800s to honour the Duke of Wellington and at one time featured alternate red flowering chestnut trees.

The arboretum contains an eclectic collection of conifers, planted by forestry students in mid-Victorian parkland.  Over fifty of the trees are recorded as champions of their species, and thirty of these have small explanatory panels at their base.  Other information panels give a brief history of the place, some of the uses to which trees are put and the natural history of the area. Others tell briefly of Native American navigation methods using trees, encounters between Deer and Trees. The trail has seating areas at regular intervals along its path where you can take a rest and bask in the glory of the magnificent autumn colour.

What do other visitors say?

5 Stars 5 Stars

Lovely experience what a hidden gem even with our dogs love of rolling in fox or deer byproduct. Hall also very friendly and accommodating.

Ken murray, 21/Sep/2016

Are there toilets here or close by?

Donna, 7/Aug/2016

There is a temporary portaloo on site. Your nearest toilets can be found at St Helen's Picnic Site or Santon Downham

Forestry Commission Response
5 Stars 5 Stars

Just had a walk at the arboretum and thought the carpet of bluebells were beautiful, as it had rained the perfume from the flowers was fabulous. Really enjoyable experience.

Shirley Bennewith, 11/May/2016
More user comments

Please tell us about your visit

Please email us at if you have an enquiry or would like a reply to your comments.

Email addresses will not be shown

Last updated: 10th October 2016

Be a forest hero

Get the latest news, information & offers

Sign up for our emails

What's Here?

  • Arboreta
  • Dogs on lead
  • Picnic
  • Walking
  • Parking
  • Off of the A1065 on the Lynford Road near to the Arboretum
More about what's here


OS Grid ref: TL822942

Get directions


Nicky Russell

0300 067 4546

Opening & Parking

Opening Times:
Dawn to Dusk
Off of the A1065 on the Lynford Road near to the Arboretum

Useful sites

Forest Plans

Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification certifiedForest Stewardship Council certified

England's Woods and Forests are cared for by Forest Enterprise England, an agency of the Forestry Commission.