Wendover Woods is near Wendover in Buckinghamshire. You can see it pretty much anywhere in Aylesbury and it’s somewhere we visit all the time. Of course I had to do a Wendover Woods review!!
The Play TRail
The new play trail opened a while ago now. There are two loops to the trail and it is not just a couple of glorified benches for you to scramble along. IT IS EPIC! Whilst parts of it are not exactly smallest child friendly, there are bits she could get around and the older kids loved it. The mud kitchen is a real highlight.
There is a short loop and a long loop – basically the short loop just cuts off the top of the long loop. If you do go that way though you’ll miss the Tree Lab. The route partially follows the Firecrest trail but the footpath has been vastly improved. It’s no longer a quagmire and pushchairs can easily get around. Little note, particularly when it’s damp the kids will get messy on the play trail so dress accordingly.
There is a new toddlerplay area right next to the cafe which has recently opened and there are still some swings and other play equipment behing the ticket machine block. There’s not as much of a playground as there was before the transformation, but the play trail more than makes up for that.
There are two main grass areas where the kids can run around and there are some amazing trees for climbing. There are various BBQs but currently all the pre-bookable ones are closed. If you want a BBQ and it’s a nice day you’re better off getting there early. Hopefully they will re-open the bookable ones soon. Right next to the BBQ area there is a section of predominantly pine trees which means the ground is pretty clear. This is a clear favourite for the kids to run around in and they’re easy to keep an eye on from the grass.
There are regular children’s trails, usually Julia Donaldson based. Can you find the giant wooden Gruffalo? The Zog Activity Trail is currently running at Wendover Woods – For my review of the trail click here.
What else is there to do at Wendover Woods?
Most people, when visiting Wendover Woods only go down the same 4 or 5 paths but there is so much more to it than that. I’d highly recommend that you either download a walks map or pick one up on site if you’re always doing the same routes.
The area is very popular with cyclists of course and there are bridleways as well. There is a fitness trail which seems to be very popular with people trying, and failing, to prove how fit they are. At this time of year it is full of conkers too. There is even a hidden hill fort next to one of the trails.
There is also a Go-Ape and now a Junior Go-Ape for younger children. My boys have both done Go-Ape and they absolutely loved it! Biggest child was a bit nervous at first about being up so high but within a minute or so of being up there I wasn’t sure we’d get him down again!
Wendover Woods is currently undergoing a massive transformation project, which is now nearly complete. If you haven’t been up here recently the car park has been vastly improved and parking is pay on exit.
The cafe has recently been transferred to new ownership since the visitor centre was completed. I’ve not been in yet but I’ll update this post when I have.
The visitor centre houses the new toilet block which is a world away from the old ones. Firstly, there are loads of toilets and secondly there are proper sinks. The only disadvantage is that they’ve put the automatic flushes about bottom height behind the seat. It’s very disconcerting that the loo flushes whilst you’re still sat on it!!!
The woods are part of the Chiltern Hills and can be seen across the Aylesbury Vale. As a result of this, there are plenty of steep slopes. Currently there is only one truly accessible path. The other consequence is that the views are stunning. You can use a pushchair on the rest but it can get muddy and bumpy – It’s a woodland so that’s to be expected.
Free. Closing times vary with daylight hours so check before you go.
Parking / how to Get There
Address – Upper Icknield Way, Aston Clinton, Aylesbury. Sat Nav Postcode: HP22 5NQ
Parking – A new ANPR system is in place so you pay as you’re leaving – much better than the previous PAYG system. The cost is up to 2 hours £2.20, 4.30 up to 4 hours and £8 all day.
Part of the new visitor centre and they’re much better now
There is a cafe on site and of course picnics are very welcome. There’s a nice open space where you can have yours. They also have a BBQ area. At the time of writing they haven’t opened up the pre-bookable BBQs again so it’s first come, first served. They do get very busy whenever the weather is even remotely nice so get there early.
Our Review of Wendover Woods – 5 / 5
I know a lot of people are unhappy about the amount of development that’s happened but I love going to the woods, and this is the nearest one to us. I think the play trail is brilliant as well.
I’m Vicky and I am a mum of three living in Aylesbury. I set up Free Time with the Kids to review free and cheap family days out in Buckinghamshire, Bedfordshire, Hertfordshire and Oxfordshire, mainly because I kept forgetting all the fabulous places that were recommended to me!! I love getting out and about with the kids (and hubby of course) and we have adventures all over the place. My reviews tell you all the things you need to know about the family days out and activites we’ve done such as how much it costs, if there’s parking, toilets and if there’s a cafe or if picnics are allowed. I really hope you find the reviews helpful. If there’s anywhere that you’d recommend please get in touch email@example.com or get in touch via Facebook
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