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Explore Salcey Forest Centre
(Average user rating: 4 unrated 3.7/5)

Salcey Forest is an oasis of nature and history only 7 miles from the centre of Northampton. Wildlife and history are in abundance at Salcey. So come and discover why elephants roamed the forest and where to find a roman road. 

The GruffaloOh help! Oh no! It's a gruffalo!

We've teamed up with The Gruffalo to help celebrate his 15th anniversary. Sign up at to be the first to hear about our celebrations.

GruffaloRuff guide to Salcey Forest

Find out about me, my owner and my favourite place for a walk in Salcey Forest, as well as great dog friendly places to eat and sleep near by. 

Planning your visit

Check out car parking, opening times and more before you set off.

Trails for everyone

Whether you just want to visit our famous Tree Top Way, or plan to stretch your legs further, we have the trail for you.

Events and activities

Find out about the events and activities happening in Salcey Forest.

Adventurous play

The kids will have hours of fun playing in the adventure play area.

Horse riding

Our horse trail starts at the Horsebox car park and winds it way through the wood, whilst providing plenty of links to local and national bridleway routes.


Perfect for family cycling this route which starts in the car park behind the cafe, is relatively flat, wide and smooth.

Food & drink

Tasty home made meals and cakes, to be enjoyed in warm friendly surroundings.

 Tree Ninja

Want to be nimble like a Ninja, climbing and swinging your way through the trees?  - Now you can, by attempting Salcey's 'Tree Ninja' high-ropes course!

Linda Johns' Sculptures

Salcey is currently home to 7 fascinating sculptures installed by local artist Linda Johns. For images of the pieces, or for a map, please click here

What do other visitors say?

4 Stars 4 Stars

As a regular visitor to Salcey, I often wonder why the gates are closed at 7 o'clock in the evening. I am sure there are people who would like to enjoy the forest a little later, particularly during the summer.

RH, 31/Jul/2014

Hi there. The barrier for the main car park is closed at 19:00h as we are unable to provide adequate cover for the facilities and services, and it helps us prevent anti-social behaviour around the main visitor services area during the Summer months. The 2nd car park (off the Bullhead road) remains open, however, allowing access to the forest for any visitors wishing to enjoy the woods later in the evening.

Forestry Commission Response
2 Stars 2 Stars

Looking forward to spending the day at Salcey forest with my Granddaughter. It is a lovely place with plenty of trees to help keep us cool and very helpful cafe staff. But we were so disappointed that there wasn't any play equipment for very young children, nothing fancy but a swing or a slide would be good. Pitsford country park caters so well for all age groups,with plenty for them to do, I was expecting something similar. There was a lot of dogs muck everywhere as well.

anonymous, 24/Jul/2014

Thank you for your comments. We are sorry that the lack of play equipment for younger children detracted from your visit, but unfortunately we do not have the financial resources available to provide installations that cater for all age ranges. We are hoping that income generated from car parking charges may eventually allow us to expand the play areas, but in the meantime we rely on the public’s understanding that they are visiting an historic site of ancient semi-natural woodland, and not a recently developed activity-focussed country park (to which you are comparing us to!). We are shortly introducing a poster campaign over the summer to highlight what we expect from responsible dog-owners, which will hopefully help reduce the dog mess.

Forestry Commission Response
5 Stars 5 Stars

can you tell me if salcey forest has been noted as clear of Alabama Rot?

C.M., 9/Jul/2014

Hi there. We have had no more reported cases at Salcey since the original incident in February (2014), however we cannot regard the site as 'clear' as we do not know what causes the illness. Many dog walkers are still using the site regularly, with no problems at all, however we would still recommend that dog walkers keep a close eye on their pets, wash them down after a visit, and take them to a vets for prompt medical attention if they show any signs of being unwell. Information on the disease can be found in the 'Dog Health' section on this website.

Forestry Commission Response
More user comments

Please tell us about your visit

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What's Here?

  • Baby Changing
  • Hi-Rope
  • Walking
  • Viewpoint
  • Toliets
  • Arts
  • Sculptures by Linda Johns. See seperate information page
  • Cafe
  • Opening hrs: Summer 9am - 4pm Winter 9am - 5pm (some late fridays)
  • Cycling
  • Cyclists are welcome, but we politely request they stay on the Family Cycling Trail.
  • Horse riding
  • Horse boxes may park at the seperate car park off the Bullhead Road. Spaces can not be guaranteed, however.
  • Information
  • Information panels are located at the toilet block.
  • Parking (easy access)
  • Blue badge holders can park in front of the cafe. Charges apply to all vehicles
  • Parking (chargeable)
  • 1 per hour or 3 for a full day
  • Picnic
  • Various picnic benches can be found around the main car park, and at the Elephant Pond Bridge
  • Play area
  • Located next to the Salcey Forest Cafe
More about what's here


OS Grid ref: SP795514
Postcode: NN7 2HX

Get directions


Northants Office

01623 822447

Opening & Parking

Opening Times:
Winter GMT (Nov - Mar): 8am - 5pm
Summer BST (Apr - Oct): 8am - 7pm
1 per hour or 3 for a full day
Discovery Pass
28 per year

Related documents

Useful sites

Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification certifiedenjoy England quality assured visitor attractionForest Stewardship Council certified