Heads up! We’re working hard to be accurate – but these are unusual times, so please always check before heading out.
Can you smell that fresh arboreal scent in the air? That’s the UK’s forests imploring you to head out on a woodland wander after months of being cooped up inside.
Okay, so the trees may not actually be able to sense our new national appreciation for the great outdoors, but the UK’s forests are certainly spaces full of magical secrets and fantastical stories. While they might not be as famous as Germany’s Black Forest or Finland’s Wild Taiga, they’re still crammed with beguiling foliage and ancient trees, and imbued with otherworldly fairytale magic from the myths and legends that surround them.
And soon we’ll finally be able to explore these coniferous jungles, even if we aren’t lucky enough to live nearby. Under the latest lockdown exit strategy, overnight stays in self-catered accommodation will be possible from April 12, while hostels, hotels and B&Bs will be able to open again from May 17. That means we can travel out of our local area and head out for a walk in the woods very soon.
So here’s our pick of the best forests in the UK for a post-lockdown wander – spanning ancient hunting woods that have barely changed in 1,000 years, forests with wild-roaming ponies, woodlands full of adrenaline-pumping outdoor activities and sylvan glades that have inspired some of the world’s greatest works of literature. See you amid the trees.
Please note: Travel from England to Wales and Scotland is currently not allowed. Facilities and businesses in the towns and villages we mention will be closed at the moment. Government advice is to avoid public transport, so don’t travel by train or bus. Please be mindful of the people who live locally. And if you decide to travel, check whether car parks are open before you set off and adhere to social distancing guidelines on your walks.
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