West Walk

Visitor information

A historic woodland with many trails to explore

With walking trails, cycling, outdoor play and picnic spots, West Walk is the ideal family day out. At 350 hectares, it is the largest remaining fragment of the ancient Forest of Bere. 

Set amongst the tall pine trees, our play area is great for keeping your children entertained. Including a balance beam and all-ability swing, swinging hoops, rotating climbing chimney and for the little ones, a giant sand pit and wooden playhouses.

Play together and create your own temporary woodland hideout – find your way to the den making area and see what adventure awaits!

There are two waymarked walking trails and many natural paths to help you discover West Walk on foot or by bike.

Barbecues are not allowed in our forest.

Please follow our forest code  to help you enjoy the forest responsibly.

If you are visiting with your dog, follow our dog code, keep them under close control to help protect local wildlife such as ground nesting birds, and bag and bin your dog’s waste.

At a glance

Dogs welcome
17/05/2022 14:04
Assistance animals welcome
17/05/2022 14:04

Food and drink

Converted horsebox serving drinks and refreshments at West Walk

Mimi Makes

Mimi Makes is serving up high-quality barista coffee, made with locally roasted beans, tea, cold drinks and delicious homemade cakes, bakes (made daily by Mimi from her home kitchen) and healthy snacks. You’ll find the beautifully converted horsebox, with a gleaming dual fuel coffee espresso machine waiting to create for you a wonderful specialty coffee. Please see our visitor information for opening hours.

Things to do

The Forest Bathing Institute brings 2-hour Forest Bathing+ nature based wellness sessions to West Walk.

Forest Bathing+ is a comprehensive therapeutic form of forest bathing developed in co-operation with numerous universities across the UK, professors, doctors, and scientists.

The Science behind Forest Bathing+

During 2019, in partnership with the University of Derby, ground breaking scientific research evidenced that with just 2-hours of Forest Bathing+, 88% of participants reported an average 29% reduction in anxiety. In Japan and South Korea, forest bathing or ‘Shinrin-yoku is a well-known preventative healthcare intervention to help manage stress, anxiety, depression and physiological conditions such as high blood pressure.

Underpinned by mindfulness

Forest Bathing+ is underpinned by a mindfulness practice, during each session participants will be guided to engage with each of the five senses in a structured manner, to enhance the experience and to bring about a mindful state. The ultimate aim of each session is to calm the mind, relax the body and to become more present and aware, whilst enjoying the stunning nature at West Walk.

Sessions are accessible, walking is slow paced with regular breaks.

Enjoy a scenic horse ride through our network of forest trails at West Walk, Hundred Acres and Woodend. We allow horse riding on permissive trails that are provided for members of TROT to enjoy.

Further details can be found by calling TROT  01622 735599 visiting the TROT website below.

With two moderate trails to choose from, venture deep into the forest on foot at West Walk.

The Forest of Bere trail is perfect for first time visitors to the forest, or if you are up for a bit more of a challenge, follow the Millennium Trail!

Spending time amongst the trees and really noticing nature is scientifically proven to boost our mental and physical health. Follow the trail to take a mindful walk through the forest that invites you to really relax. 

What to expect 

Themed panels along the trail will invite you to pause, notice and connect with the forest environment around you. 

A forest wellbeing journal is also available to help you get even more benefit from the experience, offering additional mindful things to do while you’re out in the forest and at home, collect it from the trail starting point, the catering van or download the journal from this page before you visit.

About the route 

The trail starts and ends at the West Walk Car park, about 50 metres from our catering van. It is approximately 1 mile long and is on robust wide gravel tracks, some with a medium gradient.

You will walk through the mixed broadleaved forests of Hundred Acre Woods, which is mainly under the dappled shade of the trees.

Discover our unusual twisted tree, explore some open spaces beneath the canopy and finish with a well-earned treat from our catering van at the picnic tables at the end.

This trail is supported by Sport England using National Lottery funding.

Nearby forests

Mossy woodland path

Popular with locals and visitors alike, Woodend is one of the few remaining fragments that make up the ancient Forest of Bere.

The shaded paths provide an excellent spot for walking and exploring or you can relax within the trees and listen to the sounds of nature. From ponds and streams with great crested newts and butterflies, there are a variety of habitats to enjoy.

Recoup at the nearby West Walk for a light refreshment and a host of facilities.

Spring in the forest

Enjoy the beautiful surroundings of Upperford Copse, part of one of the remaining fragments which make up the ancient Forest of Bere. 

Mixed woodland on a sunny day

A mosaic of woodland with historic interest walks, come and explore Creech Wood

Located west of Waterlooville within the stunning South Downs landscape, Creech Wood is home to  conifers as well as a small number of ancient broad-leaved trees. The mixture of trees provides a variety of habitats for wildlife, including patches of heather favoured by butterflies and bees, so bring your binoculars!

Children running on muddy forest path in wellies

Whiteley Pastures is home to a variety of rare wildlife including a rich insect population. The woodlands are a designated Site of Special Scientific Interest that we work to manage and protect. 

There are a range of gravel paths for you to follow that take you throughout the woodland and its natural features including areas of ancient woodland and ponds. 

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