Forest of Bowland

Pendle Hill, Burnley

The Forest of Bowland Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) covers 312 square  miles of rural Lancashire and North Yorkshire. Notably, it includes the famous landmark Pendle Hill.

The Forest of Bowland AONB offers plenty of opportunity for quiet enjoyment. Common activities include walking, cycling, fishing and horse riding. In addition, it offers some of the most remote and rugged walking in the North West.

Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty

The area is famed for its landscape and its wildlife. In fact, it was the first protected area in England to be awarded the European Charter for Sustainable Tourism in Protected Areas. Additionally, it won a worldwide award in the “Best Destination” category in the Virgin Holidays Responsible Tourism Awards.

There’s a great deal to do in the Forest of Bowland, particularly if you like outdoor activities. Bird watching is popular, as is walking and cycling. Barley is a good starting point for “The Walking with Witches Trail” as well as three “Reservoir Walks” and the “Pendle Sculpture Trail”. “Bowland by Bike” is a guide containing rides in stunning scenery including a tour around the majestic Pendle Hill, or for those who prefer off-road, Gisburn Forest offers some fantastic mountain biking opportunities for all abilities.

The Forest of Bowland is dotted throughout with picturesque villages. Indeed, these include Dunsop Bridge, Whitewell and Barley. Also, there’s Newchurch, with its witch associations, and Roughlee with its fishery. These villages have often been awarded accolades in Lancashire’s Best Kept Villages awards. In addition, they host the many events that make up the year-round Festival Bowland.

The Lancashire districts that make up the Forest of Bowland AONB are…Lancaster, Pendle, Preston, Ribble Valley, Wyre