Visitor information

From adventure and exercise to peaceful strolls and stunning scenery, share moments of relaxation and exertion alike at Cardinham Woods

Cardinham Woods is a Cornish hidden gem, nestling in a beautiful valley with a bubbling stream. The mixed woodland rolls across the valley sides of Cardinham water (part of the River Fowey) with opportunities to explore on foot, by bicycle, or on horseback.

Discover stunning viewpoints, local wildlife, and a slice of Cornish history with the remnants of a former lead mine and an ancient clapper bridge.

At a glance

It's lambing season for our farming neighbours. Please keep dogs close by and in sight at all times to make sure they don't stray out of the forest onto farmland.
20/02/2024 10:51
Tramper user and walker on a forest road

Explore Cardinham Woods with an off-road mobility vehicle

Visitors with limited mobility (short or long-term, for any reason) can hire our Tramper through the Countryside Mobility Scheme. You do not have to be registered disabled to hire a Tramper. The Tramper is an off-road mobility scooter, which is easy to use and able to tackle a range of surfaces and gradients come rain or shine.

Food and drink

Mountain bike riders site at a picnic bench in front of a stone cottage

Woods Cafe

Refuel at beautiful Woods Cafe, serving a range of freshly prepared light bites and drinks every day.

The Gruffalo is turning 25! To celebrate, everyone is invited to take part in a brand-new forest adventure.

What to expect

The interactive family trail features all sorts of party-themed activities and games, along with fun facts to teach you about life in the forest for the Gruffalo and other creatures.

Follow the trail around Cardinham Woods to help find the missing party items to give the Gruffalo a birthday to remember. Search for balloons, pine cones, apples and the Gruffalo himself, and complete fun activities and rubbings as you go along.

Get the party started with a Gruffalo Party Trail pack

Pick up your pack for just £4 from the Ranger's Hut, packed with fun things to do on your party adventure.

Inside you’ll find:

kraft bag to colour in party headband to wear party trail activity leaflet stickers pencil and crayon keepsake sew-on Gruffalo Party patch

Share your party fun using the #GruffaloTrail hashtag.

The Gruffalo © 1999 & TM Julia Donaldson & Axel Scheffler. Licensed by Magic Light Pictures Ltd.

Cardinham Woods offers five waymarked walking trails with something for every ability and interest. Choose an easygoing stroll along the valley bottom, suitable for pushchairs and wheelchairs, or strike out up the slopes for a challenging hike. 

For visitors with reduced mobility (short or long-term, for any reason), we have a Tramper off-road scooter for hire that can access the Lady Vale Walk, Callywith Wood Walk, and Lidcutt Loop. Pre-booking is recommended.

Dogs love Cardinham

Dogs are welcome to explore Cardinham Woods. There are plenty of sights, sounds, and sniffs to tire them out. Drinking water and a self-service dog wash are available next to the toilet block.

Please be aware that Cardinham Woods is surrounded by farmland with vulnerable livestock. While enjoying our walking trails, please keep dogs close by and in sight at all times to make sure they aren't able to stray out of the forest. Read our tips for bringing your dog to the forest.

Badger Forest School run a range of informal sessions at Cardinham Woods, designed to generate curiosity, build independence and develop a love for nature.

Come along to Cardinham Woods for:

Badger Cubs, designed for parents and children up to five. Little Explorers, for families to attend together. Woodland Skills, a drop-off session for home-educated children. Badger babes for parents and babies under two. Dangerous Dads, a monthly session for dads and male carers and their children. Badger Holiday Club, during the school holidays.

More information and booking

Visit the Badger Forest School website via the button below for detailed information about these sessions and instructions on how to book. 

Cardinham Woods offers a memorable singletrack experience for anyone with basic off-road cycling skills.

The blue grade Bodmin Beast mountain bike trail winds around the wooded slopes of the Cardinham Valley. Test your technical skills with one or both of the optional red sections.

A female cyclist sitting on her bike and smiling over her shoulder with a map board in the background

Trail maps at Cardinham Woods

Plan your visit to Cardinham Woods with our free map downloads.

Nearby forests

Rough tor

Roughtor (sometimes known as Rough Tor) boasts a wealth of natural beauty. Its peaks provide a manageable and enjoyable 3-4 mile walk complete with stunning views.

The keen eye will spot not only stunning views, but also Iron Age remains, Bronze Age hut circles and even a Neolithic tor enclosure. Perfect for explorers who like to stumble across remnants of history.

Davidstow Woods

Located by Davidstow airfield, north of Bodmin Moor, Davidstow Woods is a coniferous forest perfectly placed for a walk to the special habitats at Crowdy reservoir or Showery Tor.

Generic woodland

Located approximately two miles north of Truro, Idless Woods is a stunning woodland with a diverse range of wildlife. 

Shaded walking trail in Stoke Woods, Exeter

Once part of the area’s industrial past, this diverse woodland now supports a wide variety of plant and animal life including some of the UK’s rarest butterfly species. Come and see what you can spot! 


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