Where We Are

Travelling to and around the National Forest

The National Forest is a 200 square mile forest right in the heart of the country. Whether you’re looking for a day trip, a long weekend or an experience to share with the whole family, the Forest is easy to get to – so you’ll soon be exploring ancient forests, newly planted woodlands and amazing places to visit in no time.

Where we are

Here is a map of the United Kingdom indicating on it, the location of The National Forest, just north west of Birmingham.

The National Forest is right in heart of the country, embracing 200 square miles of the Midlands. It spans across parts of Derbyshire, Leicestershire and Staffordshire and aims to link the two ancient Forests of Charnwood and Needwood. With a history of coalmining and heavy industry, the landscape is now that of rolling farmland, ancient forests and new planted woodlands. Its main towns and villages include Burton upon Trent (famous for its brewing), Coalville and Swadlincote (formerly associated with the coal mining industry) and the historic town of Ashby de la Zouch.

How to get here and get around

The M1 Motorway passes through the Forest, while the nearby Birmingham and East Midlands Airports mean that the rest of the world is never far away. Make the most of excellent rail links and come by train for a refreshing day trip or a relaxing longer stay. 

Public Transport

By Road

For visitors travelling by car or coach, the National Forest is easily accessible from the M1, M42/A42, A50, A511 and the A38.  Route planning information can be found at The AARACGoogle Maps and Streetmap.

By Rail

The National Forest enjoys excellent rail links. Use stations like Tamworth, Burton upon Trent, Leicester and Loughborough as gateways to the Forest. For enquiries contact National Rail Enquiries on 03457 484950.

By Bus

Well served by local bus services. Jump on the 29 and 29A – The National Forest Hopper that operates to and from Coalville – get off at any of the popular attractions between Burton upon Trent and Leicester.

By Air

For flights to and from the region, contact Birmingham International Airport on 0871 222 0072, or East Midlands Airport near Nottingham on 08712 710711.  Flights are available from all over the world.

By the way

Once you are here, perhaps the best way to experience the National Forest is to take on the challenge of our 75-mile long-distance walking trail, the National Forest Way. The trail leads through both young and ancient woodland, market towns and the industrial heritage of this changing landscape.

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Free-wheeling adventures

The National Forest’s gentle terrain is ideal for easy adventures on two wheels. National Forest e-bike Holidays can arrange self-guided itineraries, so you travel at your own speed. You travel in style, using quality electric bikes, staying in handpicked accommodation, with your luggage transported between each hotel during your stay. National Forest e-bike Holidays are designed for the gentle adventurer, who enjoys being active, but wants plenty of energy left for exploring on their holiday.

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Helpful information

Tourist Information Centres

Towns & Villages

What is the National Forest