With almost half of the world’s bluebells found in the UK, Gloucestershire is one of the very best places to admire sweeping displays, with flowers blooming in woodland areas and beauty spots across the county.
Take a woodland walk to soak up the spring spectacle this April and May, with the help of SoGlos’s round-up of 11 of the best places to see bluebells in the county.
1. Bluebells at Westonbirt Arboretum
Home to tree species from all over the world, Westonbirt Arboretum near Tetbury is a prime spot for bluebell growth; and flower fans can follow the dog-friendly Silk Wood trail to see them in all their glory.
As well as the native British bluebells, visitors can discover over 2,500 different plant species from all over the world and venture 13 metres up into the canopy on the STIHL Tree Top Walkway.
2. Bluebells at Cam Peak near Dursley
With thousands of bluebells cloaking its summit, making the uninterrupted Cotswold views even more impressive, Cam Peak is totally transformed by the flowers in the springtime.
Those hoping to make the most of the spectacle can choose to take a more gradual route from the base of the hill, rather than walking directly up it, with the opportunity to see many more bluebells on their way along the path.
3. Bluebells at Lassington Wood near Gloucester
Renowned for its wild bluebell growth, ramblers can explore the ancient Lassington Wood by a network of criss-crossing footpaths, admiring carpets of blue and violet blooms under the canopy.
Somewhat of a hidden gem, Lassington Wood can be found just east of Highnam, by following signage from Oakridge.
4. Bluebells around Soudley Ponds in the Forest of Dean
Come spring, the forest floor around Soudley Ponds is covered with brilliant bluebells – with the Forest of Dean boasting some of the best displays in the region.
Nature lovers can walk from the popular family attraction, Dean Heritage Centre, through the bluebell-lined Soudley woodland to Wenchford picnic area to see the flowers in full bloom; with particularly striking displays at Bradley Hill, too.
5. Bluebells at Frith Wood Nature Reserve near Stroud
With the smell of wild garlic in the air, take one of a number of routes at Frith Wood Nature Reserve near Stroud and enjoy the sight of swathes of bluebells.
Perfect for a spring walk, the ancient beech woodland lies on a ridge that overlooks Painswick Valley and Slad Valley, forming part of the five-mile Laurie Lee Wildlife Way route.
6. Bluebells at Dover’s Hill in Chipping Campden
Bluebells grow in the woods at the foot of popular walking destination, Dover’s Hill, which marks the start, or finish, of the Cotswold Way in Chipping Campden.
While you’re there, take a walk up the hill to the viewpoint, which stands at 230 metres above sea level, for views of the picture-perfect Cotswold countryside.
7. Bluebells at Siccaridge Wood near Stroud
Located between the Cotswold villages of Sapperton and Oakridge, Siccaridge Wood is home to carpets of bluebells that sit under 26 acres of beautiful silver birch, beech and ash trees.
The wood is managed by the Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust and is home to many protected species, including the common dormouse and fallow and roe deer.
8. Bluebells at Highnam Woods in the Forest of Dean
As well as being a hive of activity for birdwatchers on the eastern fringe of the Forest of Dean, Highnam Woods boasts an impressive display of bluebells come springtime.
Wander through the ancient canopy for some fantastic photo opportunities, while listening out for the musical notes of the resident nightingales, who come to breed at the reserve in the spring.
9. Bluebells at Robinswood Hill Country Park
Take a picnic and head out on the two-hour woodland trail around Robinswood Hil to see its offering of bluebells, keeping an eye out for wildlife including green woodpeckers, speckled wood butterflies and whitethroats.
Head up the hill for spectacular views of the Severn Bridge, the Malvern Hills and the Black Mountains on a clear day, too.
10. Bluebells at Woodchester Park near Stroud
A dreamy destination for history and nature lovers, bluebell seekers can take the almost four-mile Boathouse walk around the secluded valley at Woodchester Park to see masses of them in bloom.
Keep an eye out for the estate’s 19th-century boathouse and unfinished gothic mansion too, with waymarked walks from the car park making the National Trust site easy to explore.
11. Bluebells at Kiftsgate Court Gardens near Chipping Campden
Although famed for its roses, Kiftsgate Court Gardens is also home to the spectacular Bluebell Wood located to the side of its drive.
The flowers have been blooming there for over 100 years and the stunning gardens are a creation of three generations of female gardeners, making this spring the time to visit.