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Explore Top Lodge Fineshade Wood
(Average user rating: 5 unrated 4.1/5)

Enjoy a family adventure at Top Lodge, Fineshade Wood. Be challenged by our exciting play areas and cycling, or explore the wildlife and history on foot, before unwinding in the cafe or browsing in the shops.

Gruffalo’s Child Trails Join The Gruffalo’s Child on her forest adventure 

Families are invited into the deep dark wood this autumn and winter to find The Gruffalo’s Child, who has followed The Gruffalo out of his comfortable cave for a forest trail adventure.

Douglas the Forestry Commission DogRuff guide to Fineshade Wood

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

Trails for Everyone

Whether you're looking for an easy-going trail for all abilities, to explore the local history, or for a bit of peace and quiet to observe the wildlife, we've got a trail for you.

Family Cycling

Enjoy the family cycling route, or challenge yourself with the blue skills loops. Cycle hire, including buggies and trailer bikes, is available on site.

Events and activities

From time to time there are activities and events taking place for people of all ages to enjoy.  

Somewhere to stay

Fineshade Wood has a Caravan Club site right next to the visitor centre. Groups with public liability insurance can book our youth shelters, which are tucked away in the wood.

Horse trail

We welcome visitors to our horsebox car park, which is the starting point for the horse trail in Fineshade. The route also links with local bridleways, so that you can explore the wider countryside.

Wildlife watching

Although red kites often soar above, other wildlife can be seen from the wildlife hide, or whilst you're walking.

Food and drink

The Top Lodge cafe sells a range of locally-sourced food and drink. 

What do other visitors say?

5 Stars 5 Stars

I was so excited

Zaina Ahmed, 24/Oct/2014
5 Stars 5 Stars

We had a super day out in Fineshade wood. The wide and hard surfaced tracks make it perfect for a leisurely bike ride through a forest. Alternatively you go off road if you wish.

Finding the Gruffalo was a brilliant bonus.

The facilities at the Top Lodge were perfect. You can hire a bike from the shop and have something to eat or drink.

I made a video of our day out. It's a pity that the link cannot be posted

Thank you very much.

Everybody from Stamford Meetup

Stamford Meetup, 8/Oct/2014

Was a little disappointed today to arrive at the woods for the Gruffalo hunt only to find inadequate parking facilities,had to turn round and go elsewhere.we were not the only ones either.

Anonymous, 5/Aug/2014

The Gruffalo trails and activities have proved to be very popular and we are very sorry that you were unable to park on the day. The Gruffalo trails will be here until the end of September and the giant wooden Gruffalo sculpture will also be at Fineshade for the next few years, if you would like to come again.

Forestry Commission Response
More user comments

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What's Here?

  • Cycling
  • Cycling Hire
  • Cycle wash
  • Walking
  • Toliets
  • Baby Changing
  • Baby changing is available in both the ladies and gents.
  • Buses
  • A bus and coach parking area is to the left of the main visitor centre, standard car parking charges apply.
  • Cafe
  • Freshly prepared with a variety of local produce.
  • Caravan Site
  • Caravan Club Site
  • Dogs
  • Most picnic tables around the visitor centre have dog water bowls and karabiners to attach dogs to. Only registered assistance dogs are allowed within the cafe. Other dogs can go into the Little Barn seating area, when it is available.
  • Dogs on lead
  • We request that dogs are kept on a lead around the car park, play areas and visitor centre grounds.
  • Easy Access
  • We have an easy access trail and wildlife hide, as well as toilet and picnic provision and a sensory garden.
  • Horse riding
  • There is special parking for horseboxes, standard car parking charges apply.
  • Parking (easy access)
  • There are 5 easy access parking bays 60m from the main visitor centre entrance. Blue badges and parking tickets must be displayed.
  • Parking (chargeable)
  • 1 hour £1.00
    All day £3.00
    After 5pm £1.00
  • Picnic
  • There is a seating area in the courtyard of the visitor centre and a picnic area next to each of the play areas. Other picnic tables and benches can be found on the walks.
  • Play area
  • There are two play areas at Fineshade, one for young children next to the visitor centre and an exciting tree house play area in the woodland for older children.
  • Visitor centre
  • Open 10am till 5pm, throughout the year, except weekdays from November till February, where it closes at 4pm.
  • Wildlife
  • We have an all access wildlife hide on site. Red kites can be seen most days throughout the year.
More about what's here


OS Grid ref: SP980983
Postcode: NN17 3BB

Get directions


Northants Office

01623 822447

Opening & Parking

Opening Times:
Fineshade Cycling
9am – 5:30pm*
Friday 19 Dec – Sunday 21 Dec
Saturday 27 Dec – 4 Jan
*Except; 9am – 4pm
Thursday 1 Jan
Monday 22 Dec – Wednesday 24 Dec, Christmas Day & Boxing Day.
Top Lodge Café
10am – 4pm*
Monday – Friday
9am – 5pm
10am – 2pm
Christmas Eve
Christmas Day
9am – 5pm
Boxing Day
New Year’s Day
1 hour £1.00
All day £3.00
After 5pm £1.00
Discovery Pass
£28 for the year

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Useful sites

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