THEY SAY: The legendary stomping-ground of Robin Hood, this 450 acre country park is now part of the Sherwood Forest National Nature Reserve.
WE SAY: Free outdoors day out. Bring a picnic and explore.
A great day out with the family doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg.
On the hunt for some family fun, my children and I, along with mum, my sister and her two children, we headed to Sherwood Forest.
Kids love nothing more than pulling on their wellies and being outside, hunting for sticks and making dens.
And the royal forest, famous by its historical association with the legend of Robin Hood is the perfect place to do it. Admission to the country park is free with a £3 car parking charge.
Sherwood attracts almost one million tourists annually, many from other countries. Visitor numbers have increased significantly since the BBC’s Robin Hood television series.
At the entrance to the country park is Sherwood Forest Visitor Centre with an exhibition on Robyn Hodes Sherwode, two shops and the Forest Table Restaurant.
We choose to take the circular walk through the forest and the kids loved spotting the fairy houses and carvings along the way.
Half way around is the famous Major Oak tree, which, according to local folklore, was Robin Hood’s principal hideout.
The oak tree is between 800 and 1,000 years old and, since the Victorian era, its massive limbs have been partially supported by an elaborate system of scaffolding.
The Major Oak was crowned England’s Tree of the Year in 2014, in a public vote run by the Woodland Trust.
The kids enjoyed an ice cream and a rest and then we were back on the track again, playing a game of hide and seek along the way.
The walks are accessible for prams and wheelchairs and are colour coded so you don’t get lost!
There’s also a small park, and during the school holidays a small paid-for fun fair.
Each August the forest hosts an annual, week-long Robin Hood Festival.
This event recreates a medieval atmosphere and features the major characters from the Robin Hood legend.
The week’s entertainment includes jousters and strolling players, dressed in medieval attire, in addition to a medieval encampment complete with jesters, musicians, rat-catchers, alchemists and fire eaters.
- Reviewed June 2016
NEED TO KNOW…
LOCATION: Nottinghamshire, NG21 9HN
OPEN: Car parks open 10am to 5.30pm
PRICES: Admission is free. Car parking costs £3
CALL: 01623 823 202