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Come and refresh your body, mind and spirit with a walk in the forest.

Whether it’s the Ancient and Ornamental woodlands, with their magnificent oaks and beeches; the scattered birch and pine across the Open forest with clear views of plantations, mires and valleys beyond; or the more uniform plantation woodlands, there will be a walk for you to enjoy.

 New Forest Dog Walking Code.

Further information about dog walking in the New Forest and the New Forest Dog Walking Code can be found by clicking here  (transfers you to an external website)

You can also view the Forestry Commission Ruff Guide pages by clicking here .

Walkers on a waymarked trail at Bolderwood. New ForestIf you are looking for a set route to walk we have provided a number of way-marked walks from our favourite spots. 

These walks are also suitable for those who are less able and for pushchairs and buggies as they are on gravel tracks.  Map reading is not required, just follow the wooden posts with the coloured markers on.

 Please click on the links below for full details of these walks.

 

Blackwater Arboretum Sensory Trail
  • Easy
The sensory trail at Blackwater in the New Forest encourages people to use their senses to discover the many different smells, textures and sounds of these trees.
Blackwater Tall Trees Trail
  • Easy
You can begin and end the Tall Trees Trail at either Blackwater or Brock Hill car park. The trail takes you on a leisurely stroll under majestic conifers planted in 1859 when it was the vogue to grow exotic trees.
Bolderwood Deer Watch Trail
  • Easy
A short stroll which leads you to a deer viewing platform at Bolderwood, New Forest, overlooking fields where wild herds of fallow deer are regularly seen.
Bolderwood Jubilee Trail
  • Moderate
Including the deer field at Bolderwood in the New Forest, this meandering route leads you past some majestic trees, the oldest of which date back to 1860.
Bolderwood Radnor Trail
  • Moderate
A longer route which explores a range of woodland types both ancient and modern at Bolderwood in the New Forest
Knightwood Oak Stroll
  • Easy
A short walk from Knightwood Oak car park, a gravel track (suitable for wheelchairs and pushchairs) leads to the largest and perhaps the most famous oak tree in the New Forest.
New Forest Reptile Centre Discovery Trail
  • Easy
A circular trail through the woods of the New Forest Reptile Centre in Lyndhurst.
Ober Water Walk (red route)
  • Easy
This walk takes people further along the Ober Water in the New Forest than the yellow route giving you more time to soak up the beautiful scenery and atmosphere of the Ober Valley.
Ober Water Walk (yellow route)
  • Easy
This walk along gravel tracks passes through a variety of habitats in the Ober valley - heathland with gorse and bog, grassland, natural and formerly enclosed woodland and the stream itself.
Sika Walking Trail - Wareham Forest
  • Easy
Starting from the Sika trail car park in Wareham Forest, Dorset, enjoy the Scenery of Wareham Forest on foot or by bike by following the tracked routes through the forest and across the heath.
Wilverley Wander
  • Moderate
The Wilverley Wander takes you through Wilverley Inclosure which was first enclosed (fenced) in 1775.

What do other visitors say?

5 Stars 5 Stars

Me and my three children walked the ober water walk today. Absolutely stunning. I love the forest in all types of weather but today was just perfect with the sun shinning. We've planned another walk tomorrow with a picnic, no need to spend 100s on a day out!

Lisa, 1/Apr/2016
4 Stars 4 Stars

My wife and I have been visiting the New Forest for over 30 years and we love to walk and enjoy nature. Since we retired, we visit frequently with our caravan, spending up to three months of the year there. Unfortunately my wife now suffers from painful arthritis of the knees and can only walk short distances. She has started using a mobility scooter on the cycle paths which allows us to continue to enjoy the forest.

However we have noticed that in a number of places on footpaths stiles have been replaced/repaired and, whilst provision is made for dogs, they are impassable to anyone with limited mobility. Some paths she had previously been able to walk are now inaccessible. When replacing stiles why cannot you use kissing gates that will contain livestock but do not require any climbing? Indeed many local authorities are now fitting kissing gates with a "Radar" padlock, so they can be opened for wheelchair access.

John Watton, 20/Apr/2015

Hi John, Lovely to hear you and your wife enjoy the forest and get to spend so much time here. We try very hard to make as many of our thresholds and gateways accessible to all, including horse riders, wheel chair users and mobility scooter users. The stiles you are referring to are only to be found at the access points on the side of A roads and are the responsibility (and are installed by) the Highways Authority - they are seen as necessary because of the severe danger of livestock getting onto the road. Kissing gates are not considered secure enough. The Forestry Commission no longer installs stiles, however you may encounter some very old ones on fencelines. We will remove these in the fullness of time. If you would like to make comments to the Highways Authority please contact Hampshire County Council. As an extra bit of related information, by law someone using a mobility scooter has to be treated in the same way as someone walking, therefore this type of vehicle is the only type of motorised vehicle allowed on the open forest without the need for permission. Richard Daponte, Forest Ranger

Forestry Commission Response

Could you have a map of the forest with the location of the waymarked walks set out. It is not possible to tell from their names where they might be unless you are perhaps forest born!

Susan Stockwell, 27/Dec/2013

Thank you for your message. There is a link to the car park for the starting point of the trail for most of the waymarked walks. The pdf link to the New Forest Car Park map should help identify where the car park can be found. An Ordinance Survey grid reference is supplied. In addition to this, there is an option to "Get Directions" via Google Maps, under the location map on the right hand side of the way marked walk information.

Forestry Commission Response

Please tell us about your visit

Please email us at enquiries.southern@forestry.gsi.gov.uk if you have an enquiry, a complaint or would like a personal reply to your comments.

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Last updated: 26th May 2016

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