The abundance of bluebell woods in the UK is a great reason to visit Britain in the spring. As the days lengthen and temperatures start to climb, woodland wanders to see nature’s floral bounty laid out like a purple/blue carpet are a visual treat and a real boost for wellbeing.
Dainty English bluebells (hyacinthoides non-scripta) are native Western European plants, typically found in broadleaf woodlands, with more than half of the world’s bluebells 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 bluebell woods walks in the UK (with a couple of bluebell woods in Wales too).
When is the best time to visit bluebell woods in England?
English bluebells flower from mid-April to mid-May.
The best time to visit British bluebell woods
With such a short bluebell season, bluebell woods are popular at weekends. To avoid the crowds, visit during the working week, in the morning when the air is crisp and fresh, and the scent of the bluebells lingers.
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.
There are so many places in England where you can see bluebells. Here are some of the best places to see bluebells in the UK.
Roseberry Topping, North Yorkshire
Submitted By Grey Globetrotters
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 top of Roseberry Topping.
The best place to park is the North York Moors National Park car park at Newton under Roseberry, then it’s a short 15-20 minute walk to Newton Woods. If you fancy hiking up Roseberry Topping, that will take you about 35-45 minutes.
For a longer walk, head for the Captain Cook Monument, across Newton Moor. Whichever way you decide to visit, the bluebells surrounding Roseberry Topping and Newton Wood are spectacular and especially beautiful if you catch them in the early evening light.
Rannerdale, Buttermere Valley, Lake District
Submitted by Conversant Traveller
The Rannerdale bluebells are the most famous flowers in the Lake District National Park. Each May, for a few sweet weeks, the 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.
This is a remote area in the heart of the national park so the best way to get there is to drive. Parking is available in the village of Buttermere or along the side of the road if you get there early enough. Buses do run between Keswick and Buttermere if you prefer to use public transport.
Recommended local place to stay: The Bridge Hotel in Buttermere
Other can’t miss local activities in Buttermere: Hiking around either Buttermere or Crummock Water offers superb panoramas and fairly flat terrain. Don’t forget to take a picnic!
Heartwood Forest, Hertfordshire
Submitted by Smudged Postcard
Heartwood Forest contains one of the most stunning bluebell woods in Hertfordshire. The bluebells can be found in one of the ancient parts of the forest – Langley Woods. Come on a sunny spring day and you’ll be rewarded with the light sparkling through the trees onto the magnificent carpet of bluebells. There is a dedicated path through the wood to protect the flowers.
Heartwood Forest is 4 kilometres from St Albans train station which in turn is just 20 minutes by rail from London. There is a bus service from St Albans to the nearby village of Sandridge. There is also a large free car park at Heartwood along with information boards explaining the history of the area.
The walk to the bluebell wood from the car park has a slight incline but it is well maintained and suitable for buggies and wheelchairs.
Recommended place to stay
Stay in St Albans at the White Hart Hotel which dates back to 1470. The city has a rich Roman past – combine a visit to the bluebell wood with a day exploring the Roman amphitheatre and museum.
Eccleshall Wood, Sheffield
Submitted by The Backpacking Family
Ecclesall Woods is one of the best spots in the UK to see woodland bluebells in spring. In April and May, the woodland floor comes to life with a bed of vibrant blue.
It’s easy to find bluebells in Ecclesall Woods – just take a short stroll in any part of the woods. We recommend exploring the paths just to the south of the Woodlands Discovery Center (Abbey Lane) for some of the best bluebells. Don’t forget to stop for a coffee or ice cream at the Woodlands Discovery Center. Ecclesall woods is located in the southwest suburbs of Sheffield.
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).
Recommended local place to stay
Check out the Fox House pub and hotel for a comfortable and convenient stay nearby. It’s a great spot for hiking in the Peak District near Sheffield.
Other can’t miss local activities nearby
Don’t miss the amazing Peak District with Chatsworth stately home, the historic Castleton village and the stunning Ladybower Reservoir.
Blickling Estate, Norfolk
By Norfolk Local Guide
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.
While it’s not easy to get to this National Trust property by public transport, it’s only a 30-minute drive from Norwich. It is located two miles outside the quaint village of Aylsham. You could even stay on the estate as there are a few National Trust Holiday Homes including the iconic Blickling Tower.
To see the bluebells at the Blickling Estate visit the Temple Walk and the northern part of the Great Wood. You have several different trails that will take you to the Great Wood from the Main Car Park. Once you get to the Great Wood, take the Multi-Use trail to see the most blooms. You should also allow time to tour the historic Hall and explore the formal gardens.
Shrawley Wood, Worcestershire
Submitted by Just Go Exploring
Shrawley Wood, in rural Worcestershire, is home to one of the most spectacular displays of bluebells in the UK.
About 9 miles north of Worcester, the quaint village of Shrawley is located close to the banks of the River Severn. Shrawley Wood lies between the centre of the village and the Severn.
There are several walking paths inside the ancient wood, some of which can be combined with longer routes through the beautiful Worcestershire countryside.
In April and May, this forest with bluebells is carpeted in blue and purple, and the air is thick with violets and wild garlic. It’s an incredibly special place.
Parking is available at the New Inn pub. They charge £3 but are happy to knock this off the cost of a drink and a bite to eat after your walk.
You can reach Shrawley using public transport by taking the 294/295 bus that runs between Worcester and Kidderminster. Note this service only operates Monday-Saturday (no service on Sunday).
Recommended local place to stay in Shrawley: the Lenchford Inn, an attractive country hotel on the banks of the River Severn.
Other can’t miss local activities: walk a section of the Severn Way, visit the historic city of Worcester, and hike in the Malvern Hills.
Bristol Bath Railway Path
Submitted by RaeHadley
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.
Level access to the flat tarmac path is accessed from Avon Lane. Between Saltford village and the River Avon bridge (Bath side), there are a number of benches from which to appreciate the woodlands.
Parking is easy beside the local pubs. The Jolly Sailor sits beside the River Avon and is popular for its lockside views of boats. The Bird-In-Hand offers wider menu options and a beer garden overlooking its car park, the Railway Path, and the local Pétanque piste.
Saltford is on a regular bus route from both Bristol and Bath, both of which offer varied cultural and gastronomic options.
Don’t miss a visit to ‘Bridgerton’s’ Bath Pump Rooms for High Tea, or a stay at The Yard, Bath’s stunning and central boutique hotel.
Trelissick Gardens, Cornwall
Submitted by Cornwalls Best
The National Trust’s Trelissick Gardens, near Feock, Cornwall is a glorious place to see bluebells. There’s a maze of paths around the garden and into the woodland park down to the Roundwood Quay with absolutely 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 to Trelissick gardens
- The closest train stations are Truro, which is 5 miles away, and Perranwell which is 4 miles away.
- The 493 bus runs from Truro’s Lemon Quay.
- Trelissick is quite unique in that you can also take a ferry here from Truro, St Mawes, and Falmouth.
Truro is the nearest large town to Trelissick, but there’s no better place to stay than actually at Trelissick itself. The old water tower has been refurbished for a glorious holiday stay, with amazing views and rooms situated over four floors!
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.
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:
Wenallt Woods, Cardiff, Wales
Submitted by Wales with Kids
One of the best places to see Bluebells in the UK is Wenallt Woods near Cardiff in South Wales. Also known locally as Coed y Wenallt, these woods come alive in Spring with carpets of beautiful bluebells.
Situated on the side of the mountain between Cardiff and Caerphilly, overlooking the Welsh capital, many areas of the 44 hectares of woods have carpets of bluebells between early April and early May.
Wenallt Woods is located around 20-25 minutes’ drive from Cardiff City Centre and is best visited by car. You could get a bus to Wenallt Road from the city but there is about a 20-minutes walk to the woods from there. Note, that if you drive, it is best to arrive in the early morning or late afternoon as the car park is quite small.
Aber Falls, Gwynedd, Wales
Submitted by UK Everyday
Aber Falls is the best place to visit if you want to see not only amazing bluebells but also one of the best waterfalls in Wales. During your hike to the waterfall, you can admire those beautiful flowers in the magnificent scenery.
The best way to get to Aber Falls is to drive. You will find Aber Falls Car Park 30 minutes walk from the waterfall and bluebells. There are a few amazing towns to visit in the area such as Llandudno or Conwy, where you can see the impressive medieval castle. Another activity that cannot be missed in this area is hiking Snowdon.
Recommended local place to stay is The Rocks at Plas Curig Hostel, which is 30 minutes drive from Aber Falls. It is set in an amazing location that will allow you to explore beautiful Wales.
If you’ve never visited bluebell woods in the UK, perhaps this is the year to find a bluebell wood near you and go for a beautiful stroll during bluebell season.
If you love travelling in the spring you might enjoy these articles too.
- Best Vacation Ideas for Easter in the US
- Best Places to Visit For Easter in the UK
- Beautiful Places to See Cherry Blossoms Flowering
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