Grizedale Forest Park
History, tourist information, and nearby accommodation
This popular woodlandpark occupies much of the land between the lakes of Coniston and Windermere.The land was at one t6ime part of the extensive estates owned by Furness Abbey to the south. The land passed to Grizedale Hall, and was finally purchased in 1936 by the Forestry Commission.
Grizedale Forest is a multi-purpose area, withtree farming going hand in hand with recreational use. There are miles of walking and cycling trails winding through the forest,with both easy and more difficult trails to suit the needs of all visitors.
The visitor centre, located mid way between Satterthwaite and Hawkshead, is built from a range of buildings that were once part of Grizedale Hall, The Hall itself no longer exists, and as this is written, construction is underway on a new visitor centre. At the visitor centre there is a shop, children's play area, craft workshop area, and education centre. There are also leaflets available outlining the variety of walks available throughout the forest.
The leaflets are useful, but not completely necessary; the walks are all well-marked with colour coded signs, and are quite easy to follow through the forest. Also at the visitor centre is the so-called 'Theatre in the Forest', where theatrical performances are held throughout the main tourist season.
Many visitors come to see the sculptures scattered throughout the woodlands along most of the major trails. These sculptures are one of the most enjoyable parts of visiting Grizedale Forest Park - it is like a gigantic woodland sculpture park. Among the many sculptures big and small are hands-on musical instruments made of wood, likenesses of creatures from snails to sheep, foxes to owls, a giant fern of polished metal, a tiny forest hut, and a giant woodsman with an axe.
The forest is large enough that, even if the parking area is crowded, you aren't jostling with other visitors on the wooded trails, and much of the forest exudes a sense of calm and peaceful enjoyment.
About Grizedale Forest Park
Address: Hawkshead, Lake District, Cumbria, England, LA22 0QJ
Attraction Type: Countryside - Walk
Location: The Grizedale Forest Visitor Centre is located on a minor road between Hawkshead and Satterthwaite. Ample paid parking.
Website: Grizedale Forest Park
Photo Credit: David Ross and Britain Express
Heritage Rated from 1- 5 (low-exceptional) on historic interest
Brantwood - 1.7 miles (Museum)
Coniston Water - 2 miles (Countryside)
Hill Top - 2.3 miles (Historic Building)
Hawkshead Grammar School - 2.6 miles (Historic Building)
Steam Yacht Gondola - 2.6 miles (Family Attraction)
Beatrix Potter Gallery - 2.6 miles (Museum)
Graythwaite Hall Garden - 2.9 miles (Garden)
Hawkshead Old Courthouse - 3 miles (Historic Building)
Nearest Accommodation to Grizedale Forest Park: