Discovery Pass

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Explore Whinlatter
(Average user rating: 5 unrated 4.4/5)

Latest News (25/02/2015 15:04)

Malcolm Wilson Rally - 7 March 2015

Whinlatter Forest will be closed to the public until 11.00am due to the Malcolm Wilson Rally.

For more information on the rally go to

For further informaton please contact Visitor Service on 017687 78469

Whinlatter, England's only true Mountain Forest, is home to stunning views, fantastic walks, exhilarating mountain biking, rare wildlife and adventure play.

close up of a mountain bike on the Quercus mountain bike trail at WhinlatterMountain Bike Trail Closures

Temporary closures are in place while we carry out tree felling, drainage improvements and maintenance work. Visit our mountain biking page for details.

family enjoying the view from the blue walking trail at Whinlatter forestWin a Discovery Pass

Complete our online survey for the chance to win a Discovery Pass, giving you free parking for a whole year!Your money helps us to look after our forest. We couldn't do it without you.

SuperwormComing Soon...Superworm

Join Superworm on his forest adventure! Take part in our self-led Superworm activity trail here at Whinlatter from 13 March 2015.
Sign up here for more info

Love Forests logoVolunteering at Whinlatter

Get involved and make a difference in your local forest through our new Volunteering Project "Love Whinlatter Forest". Sign up to be a Guided Walks Volunteer or Visitor Experience Volunteer.

Mountain bike trails

Details of current trail closures can be found here along with detailed inforamtion on each route.

Whinlatter is home to the longest purpose-built mountain bike trails in the Lake District. The Altura Trail puts altitude into Mountain Biking by offering stunning views and a great single track trail which rises to 500m (1600ft) above Keswick and the northern lakes. 

Walking trails

Whinlatter is a great place for walking with unrivalled views across Bassenthwaite Lake, Derwentwater and Keswick and many miles of gravel roads, surfaced paths and tracks to explore.


Whinlatter WildPlay trail is a unique play trail for children, with 9 different play zones to explore through the trees. You can practice your engineering skills and draw water from the stream with an Archimedes screw or use the gravel mover to shift gravel around the pit.

Events at Whinlatter

Whinlatter has a programme of events throughout the year from family events run by the ranger team to large scale sporting events including adventure races, trail runs and car rallies. And of course, visiting the forest through the year gives you a host of different sights and sounds, from the changing colours of the trees, to the different wildlife you can see.

Food and drink

Siskins Café offers a fabulous range of freshly prepared home cooked food. There's a huge variety of sandwiches and toasted paninis, jacket potatoes and soups.

Rheged at Whinlatter

The new Rheged Whinlatter shop is now open selling toys, art and craft, artisan food, outdoor accessories and great gift ideas. Open every day from 10am. Find out more or call 017687 78612.

Wonderful wildlife

Whinlatter is home to a host of wonderful wildlife, from red squrriels who live amongst our mature conifer trees to the Bassenthwaite Ospreys who nest near the forest from April to August. Watch these amazing birds of prey from the live nest camera or visit the Lake District Osprey Project.


We would like everyone to enjoy Whinlatter and pride ourselves on being a site that has excellent facilities and access. For help planning your visit please go to our access page.


The Friends of Whinlatter is a group of volunteers who work with the Whinlatter ranger team to help look after the forest. They get involved in different activities from mountain bike trail maintenance and squirrel surveying to tree planting and dry stone walling.

Ramorum disease of Larch trees in Cumbria

Larch trees in Cumbria, including the Lake District, are being affected by the destructive Ramorum disease.
For further information, including what you can do to help, visit our Ramorum in Cumbria page

Go Ape. UK’s No.1 Forest Adventure Enjoy two to three hours of adventure high above the forest floor, taking on Zip Wires, Tarzan Swings and a variety of Crossings.
Take a look and book at our Go Ape page.

What do other visitors say?

3 Stars 3 Stars

It Would be great if you could put the info about winter opening hours for the cafe, and the fact that it is now closed, on the website. Information about the road closures would also be useful. I visited this morning with my son, baby and dog and approached from the Braithwaite side. I'd checked the website before leaving. I parked where the road was closed (i didn't know it would be) and decided to walk up to the cafe, where I could feed both children, then head back. A sign at that point saying the cafe is closed would also be useful! I walked the couple of miles up to the visitor centre with a two yr old on my back and 7 week old on my from only to find it all closed - I was knackered and just a bit disappointed!



(This would have been my first visit with my Discovery pass, received recently - some info could also have been sent with that maybe?)

Sarah Lenehan, 19/Jan/2015

Hi Sarah, Sorry to hear of your difficulties. We do have information posted on the website to cover most of the points you raise. This is in the yellow latest news box at the top of the homepage under the heading 'Closures Due to Felling Work'. We try to communicate site information to as many visitors as possible with signage on site, social media channels etc, but appreciate that it isn't always possible to reach everyone. We will take your suggestion regarding e-mailing Discovery Pass holders on board for future closures. The access road and all businesses on site will be fully open from 24th January so we hope to welcome you back soon.

Forestry Commission Response
5 Stars 5 Stars

Fabulous day! Views incredible on more strenuous walk. Even saw a roe deer! Don't be put off if car park is busy. You can easily get away from it all. Would highly recommend.

P and G, 29/Oct/2014
5 Stars 5 Stars

Fab day out. So much to do for all ages. Play areas are great fun and kept my 5 year old entertained for hours. My 15, 14 and 11 year old loved Go Ape, we had a lovely walk and picnic on squirrel trail. We are on our way back to try the mountain bike trail next week :)

Sarah , 16/Aug/2014
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What's Here?

  • Mountain biking
  • Educational
  • Picnic
  • Visitor centre
  • Toliets
  • Cafe
  • Siskins Cafe
  • Cycling
  • 2 Mountain Bike trails, 7.5km and 19km long
  • Cycling Hire
  • Cycle hire available onsite from Cyclewise
  • Orienteering
  • Orienteering maps available from the Visitor Centre
  • Parking (chargeable)
  • 1 hour 1.70
    2 hours 3.40
    4 hours 5.60
    All day 7.30
    Coach/Minibus 10.00
  • Play area
  • Unique WildPlay trail opened in Spring 2011.
  • Shop
  • Rheged@Whinlatter Forest Shop
  • Walking
  • Wide range of waymarked walking trails and children's trails
  • Viewpoint
  • Spectacular views of the Lake District Mountains, Keswick and Bassenthwaite lake.
  • Wildlife
  • Osprey nest live video camera from April to August
More about what's here


OS Grid ref: NY209245
Postcode: CA12 5TW

Get directions


Recreation Ranger
01768 778469

Opening & Parking

Opening Times:
Visitor Information & Exhibition Centre
Cafe & Shop have varying hours, please ring for details.
1 hour 1.70
2 hours 3.40
4 hours 5.60
All day 7.30
Coach/Minibus 10.00
Discovery Pass
20 Dodd
40 Whinlatter
50 Whinlatter & Grizedale

Related documents

Useful sites

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