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A guide to family-friendly walks in the Forest of Dean

Posted on 15th May 2015

Country Walks

The Forest of Dean and Wye Valley are Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty and it is this natural beauty that attracts visitors and has inspired some of the most famous poets, writers and painters that this country has ever produced.

Visitors also often book Forest of Dean-based cottages to take advantage of the great walks that are on offer in the region. Sometimes walking on some of the trails in the Forest of Dean and Wye Valley can be difficult or not feasible for elderly visitors and young families, but below we have created a list of some of the easiest walks in the region that are perfect for families or older visitors to the area.

Brockweir walk

Country Walks

Image credit: Stewart Black (flickr.com)

If you want to visit two countries in just one walk, then the Brockweir walk, which is partly in Wales and partly in Gloucestershire in England, is the perfect option for you.

The walk starts from the Old Station platform in the village of Brockweir and the walk takes visitors on a figure of eight trail that is centred on the village. The trail is level and is suitable for young families or elderly people.

The beautiful 2-mile walk follows old railway tracks, the riverbank in Brockweir and minor roads in Wales and Gloucestershire. Once walkers get back to the Old Station there are exhibitions on display at the station’s signal box and six life-sized sculptures that have been created from tree trunks that visitors can see.

Trellech Beacon

The Trellech Beacon walk starts at the Beacon View Forestry Commission car park and is 3 miles long. The circular route takes in fabulous views of Trellech, the Wye Valley, the Malverns and the Cotswolds. It also passes Cleddon Falls and takes you past Cleddon Hall, which is the birthplace of British philosopher, writer, mathematician and historian Bertrand Russell.

Lydney Docks

The Lydney Docks path is perfect for visitors looking to go on a short stroll. The walk is flat and is easy to walk, which is why people on Forest of Dean cottage breaks who have small children and groups with elderly visitors are commonly seen walking this popular trail.

By crossing the Grade II-listed Swing Bridge in Lydney and by turning right at the next red post with the red arrow you will follow a path that takes in sights of the Severn Bridges and see Boulders and Compass that were created by famed local sculptor David Yeates.

The walk is just three-quarters of a mile long and is ideal for those looking for a short walk.


Cleddon Walk

Image credit: Richard Bevan Photography (flickr.com)

If walkers are looking to go on a woodland walk that takes in some stunning views, then look no further than the Whitestone walk.

The woodland walk is generally level, but there is a slight uphill walk at the beginning of the trail as you leave your starting point at the lower car park close-by to Catbrook. This gentle incline is worth it as the Whitestone walk offers jaw-dropping views down into the Wye Valley.

The path takes walkers past Cleddon Falls waterfall, which is believed to have been the inspiration behind the famous poem “Lines written a few miles above Tintern Abbey” by William Wordsworth. It is also a good place to stop for a picnic or a bite to eat.

The 2-mile trail then takes walkers back into Whitestone.

To see the directions for each of the aforementioned walks, take a look at the Wye Dean Tourism 12 Easy Walks guide book.

Main image credit: Stewart Black (flickr.com)