A Nature Lover’s Guide to the North West

Known for it’s industrial heritage the North West is no stranger to change. But what led to this legacy was it’s unique landscape. A landscape, that not only was a catalyst for development, but also a mecca for some of the UK’s most beautiful ecology and nature. As the long weekend approaches here’s our selection of some of the regions highlights, so go outside and enjoy!

One of the few remaining bastilles of the Red Squirrel, National Trust Formby is home to an array of wonderful wildlife and landscape. Formby consists of a glorious sandy beach with dramatic sand dunes surrounded by a sweeping pine forest. Walks can be long or short and you can take in the shelter of the forest or blow away the cobwebs along the beautiful flat stretch of sand. Keep your eyes peeled for red squirrels, natterjack toads, wild asparagus, shipwrecks and even prehistoric footprints!

“A landscape, that not only was a catalyst for development, but also a mecca for some of the UK’s most beautiful ecology and nature.”

Further along the coast you can enjoy an array of seabirds and wildlife at the Rossall Point Tower. This great landmark is specifically designed to look as though it is leaning into the wind and rises 42 feet above the sand dunes. A specially commissioned artwork ‘Drift’ features throughout the building and is made up of a series of individually designed pieces fashioned from natural materials and textures inspired by the natural patterns of the landscape, learn about the coastal environment, bird life and plant life or just enjoy the view. Monthly on Thursdays from March to September you can join Lancashire Wildlife Trust in a free event searching for seals, porpoises and dolphins passing by.

From Frodsham in the north to Whitchurch in the south, the Sandstone Trail spans a range of different habitats. Taking in the Mersey Estuary, The Frodsham Marshes through fields of Cheshire Farmland into native broad leaved woodland, the Sandstone Trail offers walks for all ages and abilities. Take in part of a walk, a circular route or do the whole trail the choice is endless.

Most famous for it’s links to the Witch Trails of 1612, Pendle Hill is a great walk if you are looking for a something a bit more challenging. Set in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty in picturesque Lancashire the circular walk takes in various woodland and moorland which is peppered with sculpture commissioned by the local authority and produced by local artists. Keep your eyes peeled for rare red grouse and peregrine falcons on the moorland and badgers, bats, tawny owls and woodpeckers in the woodland.

We couldn’t talk about walking in the North West without mentioning the beautiful Lake District. With miles upon miles of hill and water vistas the lake District offers some of the most rewarding walking routes in the region. Most paths are well walked and well signposted and you are never far from a good eating and drinking establishment to reward yourself with on the completion of your chosen route.

With an easy access path making both pushchair and wheelchair accessible Dovestone Reservoir on the edge of the Peak District is a walk for all abilities. Break up your jaunt with a picnic and spot wildlife from mountain hares to mallards. Go off piste and extend your walk onto the surrounding hills and take in the spectacular views.

The above is just a snapshot of the wonderful wildlife and landscape on our doorstep so go outside and enjoy this coming Bank Holiday.

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