Bluebells England Ecclesall Woods Sheffield

17 Beautiful Bluebell Woods in England & Wales for Bluebells Season

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ARE BLUEBELLS THE PRETTIEST WILDFLOWERS IN ENGLAND?

The abundance of bluebell woods in the UK is a great reason to visit Britain in the late spring. As the days lengthen and temperatures start to climb, wandering through England’s ancient woodland to see nature’s floral bounty laid out like a purple/blue carpet is a visual treat and a real boost for well-being.

Native English bluebells (Hyacinthoides non-scripta) are delicate Western European plants, typically found in broadleaf woodlands, and more than half of the world’s bluebells are found in bluebell woods in the UK!

If you’re in the UK in the spring and want to find a bluebell wood near you, read on to discover gorgeous ancient bluebell woods where you can see massed bluebells in the UK (with a couple of bluebell woods in Wales too).

When is the best time of year to visit bluebell woods in England?

According to the Woodland Trust, British bluebells flower from mid to late April until mid to late May, so the best time to visit British bluebell woodland is late spring.

With such a short bluebell season, you should expect the most popular English bluebell woods to be busy – especially at weekends.

📌 Avoid the crowds and go for your bluebell woods walk on weekday mornings when the air is crisp and fresh, and the scent of the bluebells still lingers light in the morning air.

English bluebells are protected!

When you visit a bluebell wood in the UK, please stick to the paths to avoid trampling the delicate flowers and foliage, as they take many years to grow and will take years to recover if they are damaged. You can also get fined if you damage the bluebells.

15 Amazing Places to See Bluebells in England

There are so many beautiful bluebell woods in England that you are spoiled for choice for which to visit. Here are some of the best:

best bluebell woods in england and wales

Skip ahead to regions >> Northern England (North East, North West, and Yorkshire), East of England, West Midlands, South West, South East

Northern England

1. Roseberry Topping, North Yorkshire

Parking: North York Moors National Park car park at Newton under Roseberry

Bluebells at Roseberry Topping in North Yorkshire
Swathes of bluebells at Roseberry Topping. Photo © stuart

Deep inside the North York Moors National Park, Roseberry Topping is one of the best places to see bluebells in the UK. This 320-meter hill is a distinctive landmark, popular with walkers and hikers for its amazing views across the Moors to the sea.

In the spring, bluebells bloom carpet the base of Roseberry Topping in Newton Wood with gorgeous purple flowers. Walking paths lead through the wood and up to the summit of Roseberry Topping.

📌 It’s a short 15-20 minute walk to Newton Woods from the car park. If you fancy hiking up Roseberry Topping, that will take about 35-45 minutes.

For a longer walk, head for the Captain Cook Monument across Newton Moor. Whichever way you visit, the bluebells surrounding Roseberry Topping and Newton Wood are spectacular – particularly in the early evening light.

2. Rannerdale, Buttermere Valley, Lake District

Parking: Buttermere village car park

Rannerdale Bluebells - one of the best bluebell woods in England
A carpet of bluebells in the Lake District.

The Rannerdale bluebells are the most famous flowers in the Lake District National Park. For a few sweet weeks eah May bluebells carpet the hillside of this hidden valley on the eastern shores of Crummock Water. Surrounded by towering mountains with a tranquil little river running through the middle, the valley is a photogenic spot for bluebell hunters to enjoy.

📌 Hiking in the Buttermere area is superb, with incredible panoramas. Don’t forget to take a picnic!

Plan your trip to see the best Bluebells in the Lake District

How to get there: This is a remote area in the heart of the national park, so the best way to get there is to drive. Buses also run between Keswick and Buttermere if you prefer public transport. 

Where to stay: The Bridge Hotel in Buttermere

🏆 Rating: 8.9/10 | Class: n/a | 🏨View on Booking

The Bridge Hotel is a lovely, independent hotel in an outstanding Lake District location, between Buttermere and Crummock Water. The beautiful guest rooms are individually styled and there’s a great restaurant.

3. Eccleshall Wood, Sheffield, South Yorkshire

Parking: Limited parking is available at the Discovery Centre

Bluebells England Eccleshall Woods Sheffield min

The Backpacking Family recommends Ecclesall Woods in the southwest suburbs of Sheffield as one of the best spots in the UK to see woodland bluebells in spring, when the woodland floor comes to life with a bed of vibrant blue.

It’s easy to find the bluebells – take a short stroll in any part of the woods; however, the paths to the south of the Woodlands Discovery Center (Abbey Lane) have the best bluebells.

📌 Stop for a coffee or a delicious ice cream at the Woodlands Discovery Center and don’t miss the amazing Peak District with Chatsworth stately home, the historic Castleton village and the stunning Ladybower Reservoir.

Plan your trip to see the Bluebells in Ecclesall Woods

How to get there: You can get to Ecclesall woods from Sheffield city centre by car, bike or bus. Bus routes run along the 625 (Ecclesall Road) and the A621 (Abbeydale road).

Where to stay: Fox House Hotel

🏆 Rating: 8.5/10 | Class: ⭐️⭐️⭐️ | 🏨View on Booking

The cosy Fox House Hotel is a delightful rustic country pub/restaurant in an outstanding location in the Peak District, 20 minutes from Sheffield city centre! Don’t let the 3 star rating put you off, the Fox House is a gem!

East of England

4. Heartwood Forest, Hertfordshire

Parking: Heartwood Forest car park

Bluebells in Heartwood Forest min

Heartwood Forest contains one of the most stunning bluebell woods in Hertfordshire. The bluebells are in one of the ancient parts of the forest – Langley Woods.

Visit on a sunny spring day and you’ll be rewarded with the light sparkling through the trees onto the magnificent carpet of bluebells. A dedicated path through the wood protects the flowers. 

📌 Extend your trip and take time to explore the rich Roman past of St Albans, including the Roman amphitheatre and museum!

Plan your trip to see the Bluebells in Heartwood Forest

How to get there: Heartwood Forest is 3 miles from St Albans train station, which in turn is just 20 minutes by rail from London. There is also a bus service from St Albans to the nearby village of Sandridge.

Where to stay: Sopwell House Hotel

🏆 Rating: 8.0/10 | Class: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ | 🏨View on Booking

Sopwell House Hotel dates back to 1470!

5. Blickling Estate, Norfolk

Parking: Pay and display cark park at Blickling (£5 for the whole day)

Blickling where to find bluebells in the UK
Beautiful English Bluebells at Blickling in Norfolk

Beautiful Blickling Estate may be known as the birthplace of Anne Boleyn, the second wife of Henry VIII, but it’s also one of the best spots to see bluebells in Norfolk.

To see the bluebells, take the Temple Walk and the northern part of the Great Wood. Several trails from the main car park will take you to the Great Wood.  From the Great Wood, take the Multi-Use trail to see the most blooms. 

📌 While you’re visiting, allow time to tour the historic Blickling Hall and explore the formal gardens.

Plan your trip to see the Blickling Estate Bluebells

How to get there: Blickling Estate is only a 30-minute drive from Norwich, two miles outside the quaint village of Aylsham. 

Where to stay: Holly Lodge Boutique B&B

🏆 Rating: 9.5/10 | Class: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ | 🏨View on Booking

Holly Lodge Boutique B&B has all the olde-worldy English country cottage charm you could wish for, coupled with stylish guest rooms and wonderful breakfasts!

West Midlands

6. Shrawley Wood, Worcestershire

Parking: New Inn Pub, Shrawley

Bluebells in the UK min

The spectacular displays of bluebells in Shrawley Wood, in rural Worcestershire, are recommended by Just Go Exploring. In April and May, this bluebell forest is carpeted in blue and purple, the air thick with the heady scent of violets and wild garlic. It’s an incredibly special place.

📌 Park for £3 at the New Inn pub – they will knock this off the cost of a drink and a bite to eat after your walk!

Some of the paths inside the ancient wood can be combined with longer routes through the beautiful Worcestershire countryside, including the Severn Way and the Malvern Hills..

Plan your trip to see the Shrawley Wood Bluebells

How to get there: Shrawley about 9 miles north of Worcester, and is on the 294/295 bus route between Worcester and Kidderminster (Monday to Saturday only).

Where to stay: The Elms Hotel & Spa

🏆 Rating: 8.9/10 | Class: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ | 🏨View on Booking

The Elms Hotel & Spa is an oasis of luxury just 4.7 miles from Shrawley. With a state-of-the-art spa, award-winning cuisine and fantastic gardens, this lovingly restored Queen Anne mansion with 18 beautiful guest rooms is a hidden gem, poised and ready to spoil you. Breakfast is particularly splendid!

7. Old Oswestry Hillfort, Shropshire

Parking: Gatacre Car Park

bluebells at Oswestry old Hill fort

Old Oswestry is one of the best-preserved Iron Age hillforts in Britain – built and occupied from 800 BC to AD 43. The fabled birthpalce of King Arthur’s Queen Guinevere, this huge 40 acre English Heritage site is fantastic to explore at any time of year, but stunning in springtime when the bluebells are in bloom.

Plan your trip to see the Old Oswestry Hillfort Bluebells

How to get there: Oswestry is two miles from Gobowen train station. Alternatively, take Arriva bus 2, 2A, or 53 to Gobowen Road or the Arriva Oswestry town service 404 to Old Fort Way, with a short walk on to the Old Oswestry Hillfort.

Where to stay: Sweeney Hall Hotel

🏆 Rating: 8.4/10 | Class: ⭐️⭐️⭐️ | 🏨View on Booking

Sweeney Hall Hotel has been a fixture in my life for half a century – with many happy family events held here! It’s an absolute gem of a hotel that feels more like a cosy family home, where nothing is too much trouble. Highly recommended.

South West

8. Bristol Bath Railway Path

Parking: Near one of the local pubs – the Jolly Sailor or the Bird-In-Hand

The Sustrans Bristol Bath Railway Path enjoys views of the River Avon, Kelston Roundhill, and wild spring bluebells in full bloom from mid-to-end of April. 

Between Saltford village and the River Avon bridge (Bath side), there are benches along the path where you can pause to appreciate the woodlands and spring flowers.

Plan your trip to the Bristol Bath Railway Path Bluebells

How to get there: Saltford is on a regular bus route from Bristol and Bath, according to RaeHadley.

Where to stay: The Yard in Bath

🏆 Rating: 9.1/10 | Class: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ | 🏨View on Booking

The Yard in Bath is Bath’s stunning and central boutique hotel, with just 14 beautiful rooms set around a secluded courtyard.

9. Trelissick Gardens, Cornwall

Parking: On site for £5 per day

bluebells trelissick gardens pin image
Beautiful bluebells in Trelissick Gardens, Cornwall

The National Trust owned Trelissick Gardens, near Feock, in Cornwall is a glorious place to see bluebells. The maze of paths around the garden and into the woodland park lead down to the Roundwood Quay with stunning views over the River Fal

There’s more than enough space on the grounds here to wander for several hours and miss other people too! You’ll find the bluebells throughout the grounds although they are best in the woodland path area. May is the best time to see bluebells at Trelissick.

How to get there: The closest train stations are Truro (5 miles away) and Perranwell (4 miles away), while the 493 bus runs from Truro’s Lemon Quay. You can also take a ferry to Trelissick from Truro, St Mawes, and Falmouth. 

While you’re in the area you should visit the twin castles of Pendennis and St Mawes, on either side of the River Fal, they’re simply marvellous examples of some of the best castles in Cornwall.

If you’re looking forr information about bluebell woods in Dorset, check out the Dorset Travel Guide for all the best locations!

South East

10. Penn Wood, Buckinghamshire

Parking: Main Road in Penn Street, or the car park next to Holy Trinity church

beautiful bluebell woods in England

Located in the heart of the stunning Chilterns Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, the 435 acres of ancient woodlands are filled with oak and beech trees, with numerous walking trails, majestic red kites swirling overhead and ponds a-buzz with colourful butterflies and dragonflies.

In springtime, the woods are transformed as swathes of delicate bluebells peep through the undergrowth while the trees bud and burst into life. It’s a magical time to visit.

Plan your trip to see the Penn Wood bluebells

How to get there: The nearest train station to Penn Wood is at Beaconsfield (3 miles). Find detailed location information and directions here.

Where to stay: Crazy Bear Beaconsfield

🏆 Rating: 8.0/10 | Class: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ | 🏨View on Booking

Crazy Bear Beaconsfield, the oldest known building in Beaconsfield, is a flamboyant, luxury hotel, with incredible guest rooms – and it’s only 30 minutes by train from central London!

Five Fabulous Bluebell Woods in Kent

Known as the ‘Garden of England‘, Kent has many beautiful places to see bluebells, including:

  1. Sissinghurst Castle
  2. Mariners Hill
  3. Scotney Castle
  4. King’s Wood near Challock
  5. The glorious bluebell forest at Godmersham, near Canterbury. Read more>>

Where to Find Bluebell Woods in Wales

While beautiful Wales is not part of England, it is part of the United Kingdom, and there are plenty of glorious spots to find English bluebells across Wales. Here are just a few real beauties to tempt you to visit Wales:

16. Wenallt Woods, Cardiff, Wales

Parking: Wenallt Car Park

wenallt woods caerphilly bluebells waleswithkids

Wenallt Woods near Cardiff in South Wales has carpets of beautiful bluebells in the spring, according to Wales with Kids.

Situated on a mountainside overlooking Cardiff, many of the 44 hectares of woods – known locally as Coed y Wenallt – are carpeted with bluebells in springtime.

How to get there: Wenallt Woods is a 20-25 minute drive from Cardiff City Centre. Aim to arrive in the early morning or late afternoon as the car park is quite small. You could also get a bus from Cardiff to Wenallt Road, with a further 20-minute walk to the woods.

17. Aber Falls, Gwynedd, Wales

Parking: Aber Falls car park

English Bluebells Aber Falls bluebells Collab min
Glorious English bluebells at Aber Falls, Wales

At Aber Falls, in rural North Wales, you can enjoy amazing bluebells while hiking to one of the best waterfalls in Wales.

While you are in the area, it’s well worth visiting Llandudno and Conwy, where you will be blown away by one of the most impressive medieval castles in Wales. Alternatively, hiking in the Snowdon area is outstanding!

Plan your trip to Aber Falls Bluebell Wood

How to get there: Aber Falls is a 90-minute drive from the city of Liverpool, with the Aber Falls car park a 30-minute walk from the waterfall and bluebells.

Where to stay: Tal-y-Cafn Hotel

🏆 Rating: 9.1/10 | Class: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ | 🏨View on Booking

The Tal-y-Cafn Hotel is a 30-minute drive from Aber Falls. It is in a fantastic location that will allow you to explore beautiful Wales.

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FAQs: Bluebell Woods in England

Are bluebells known by other names?

Yes, in the earliest written records, British botanists called bluebells ‘crowtoes’ or cra’tae. They are also sometimes known as English harebells, wild hyacinth, cuckoo’s boots, granfer griggles (such a fantastic name!), witches’ thimbles, lady’s nightcap, and fairy flowers!

What’s the connection between bluebells and fairies?

Bluebells have inspired many myths. Some people believed bluebells were used in witches’ potions. Others that wandering into a ring of bluebells will cast fairy enchantment on you. Scariest of all – if you hear a bluebell ring, it means that a malicious fairy will visit you, and you will die soon!

Wrap up – British Bluebells

Dainty bluebells gently nodding in a light spring breeze are the perfect reason to get outdoors and visit bluebell woods in England. Is this the year to find bluebell woods near you and go for a beautiful stroll during the fleeting bluebell season?

If you’re planning to be in the UK in the spring you may also enjoy the Best Places to Visit For Easter in the UK and Beautiful Places to See Cherry Blossoms.

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