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Explore Top Lodge Fineshade Wood
(Average user rating: 5 unrated 4.3/5)

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.


Forest web page 150x98pxThe Stick Man Activity Trail

Join Stick Man on his quest to the family tree. Pick up a Stick Man activity pack from either Top Lodge Cafe, or Fineshade Cycling to help you complete fun activities along the way.

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

Groups with public liability insurance can book our youth shelters, which are tucked away in the wood.

There is also a Caravan Club site at Fineshade that is open to members and non-members alike.

Horse Riding trail

We welcome visitors to our horsebox car park, which is the starting point for the riding 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

We had a great family walk along the Gruffalo trail last year and we can't wait to help Stick Man this spring. A great facility, cheap parking, a really worthwhile family day out. The paths are great for pushchairs, there is a shorter walk for toddlers and a great park at the end.

Sarah, 2/Apr/2016
5 Stars 5 Stars

A great spot for the whole family. Lovely cafe and facilities, a good playground and fabulous walks around the forest. The Stick Man walk keeps our toddler happy, the paths are smooth enough for our baby in a pushchair, and the dog always has a great time dashing about the woods

Anonymous, 16/Mar/2016
3 Stars 3 Stars

Visisted today and came back with 2 disapointed children. We visisted here because we were hoping to find a gruffalo sculpture which it clearly states on the website you have but were unable to find it after walking along way. We were told by a member of staff that worked in the cycling shop that it was there so they told us where to go but still no gruffalo. It would be useful if you could label where it is that is if it is still there.

Anonymous, 13/Feb/2016

We are sorry you couldn't find the Gruffalo. It is where it has always been, and so we are sorry you were misinformed.

Forestry Commission Response
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Last updated: 17th April 2016

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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.
  • Educational
  • 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 £1.50
    All day £4.00
    After 5pm £1.50
    Coaches £10
  • 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

0300 067 4340

Opening & Parking

Opening Times:
Visitor Centre
10am-5pm summer
winter weekend (Nov-Feb)
winter weekday (Nov-Feb)
Fineshade Cycling
9:00am – 5:30pm
All week except;
Closed -
Christmas Eve, Christmas day &
Boxing day
Top Lodge Café
10am – 4pm
Monday – Friday
9am – 5pm
Weekends except;
Closed -
Christmas day
1 hour £1.50
All day £4.00
After 5pm £1.50
Coaches £10
Discovery Pass
£28 for the year

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