Search More

Forest of Bowland

Clitheroe Category Outdoor Activities, Nature & Wildlife
Forest of Bowland image

The Forest of Bowland offers some of the most beautiful and remote walking in the country, from the grandeur and isolation of the moorland hills to the undulating lowlands with their distinctive pattern of settlements, woodland cloughs and river valleys. These landscape contrasts, along with the serenity and tranquility of the area make this a walker’s paradise.

As well as the fell tops and moors, there are extensive opportunities for shorter and less challenging routes in the valleys, most especially riverside walks which abound in the area.

It is strongly advised that you refer to the page on walking safely on the Forest of Bowland's website before undertaking a walk. This page highlights safety information and the Countryside Code and also provides further information about sustainable tourism and how you can make your contribution towards keeping the Forest of Bowland special!

Getting there

The beauty of Bowland is that it can be remote and isolated, but this means that it is not always well served by public transport. In some parts it is more suited to visitors wishing to explore at a more leisurely pace by bike or on foot or horseback

Regular services are provided to the following areas:

• The 10 and 10A Bowland transit bus service links Clitheroe with the Hodder Valley villages of Newton, Slaidburn, Dunsop Bridge, Whitewell and Settle.

• Service 7 - Pendle Witch Hopper runs a circuit around Pendle Hill, with links from Clitheroe to Chatburn, Barley, Barrowford and Nelson.

• To the west of the AONB lies the market town of Garstang, easily reached by the half hourly bus 40 between Preston and Lancaster. There is also the Garstang Super 8 minibus to the fascinating, former industrial village of Calder Vale.

• In the Lune Valley, the excellent Lune Villager (80/81) service provides superb local connections, seven days a week, running into the late evening, from Lancaster to Caton and Hornby, with some services going through to Wray and Wennington and a more limited service to Bentham and Ingleton in North Yorkshire.

By Air

• The nearest major airport is Manchester Airport. Other airports nearby include Blackpool Airport and Liverpool John Lennon Airport.

By Train

• Clitheroe Interchange is the most central rail station for Bowland. Others include Giggleswick, Clapham, Bentham, Wennington, Settle, Blackburn, Burnley, Preston and Lancaster. Go to the official National Rail Enquiries for your journey details.

By Coach or Bus

• National coach information can be found at National Express. Alternatively try the Lancashire Travelwise web site.


Local area map

Get directions

You may also like

  • Bowland Wild Boar Park


    Enjoy a ramble in our beautiful wooded countryside, view wild boar, longhorn cows and other animals in our scenic Ribble Valley Park.

    More information
    • For the Kids
    • Nature & Wildlife
  • Sawley Abbey


    The remains of a Cistercian abbey founded in 1148, set against a backdrop of dramatic hills. After its dissolution in 1536, the monks were briefly returned to...

    More information
    • Historic Sites
  • Settle to Carlisle Railway


    The Settle to Carlisle Railway is one of the most scenic and impressive railways in the UK, with viaducts, tunnels and the wild scenery of the North Pennines,...

    More information
    • Outdoor Activities
    • For Adults
    • Historic Sites
  • Castleberg Crag


    The tall limestone rock of Castleberg has been recognised as a beauty spot for centuries, ever since travellers started touring Britain’s natural wonders.

    More information
    • Outdoor Activities
    • Nature & Wildlife