15+ Campsites Near the Wye Valley and Forest of Dean
Camping in the Wye Valley and Forest of Dean
Camping near the Wye Valley and Forest of Dean provides the perfect location for you to enjoy a relaxing break with a wide variety of activities and attractions available. Enjoy some of the most beautiful scenery the UK has to offer, immerse yourself in the stunning wildlife and take a moment to appreciate this beautiful Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
Wye Valley and Forest of Dean camping FAQs
Can you wild camp in the Wye Valley or Forest of Dean?
Last Modified: 11 May 2023
Are there any family-friendly campsites near the Forest of Dean or Wye Valley?
Blackmore Club Site is also family-friendly, with a parent and baby room available and a recreation hall to keep everyone entertained.
There are also many other member-exclusive campsites that are family-friendly. To find out which ones are right for you, filter through the results by selecting ‘Family Friendly’.
Last Modified: 11 May 2023
Can you go fishing in the Wye Valley and Forest of Dean?
Last Modified: 11 May 2023
Are there any dog-friendly campsites near the Wye Valley or Forest of Dean?
Things to do when camping in the Wye Valley and Forest of Dean
Camping in the Wye Valley and Forest of Dean is perfect for every outdoors lover. There’s so much to do, from sculpture trails to watersport activities, bird watching, castle exploring and much more.
The Area of Outstanding Beauty is surrounded by beautiful nearby cities and towns. Hereford, the county town of Herefordshire, lies on the River Wye and is well known for its historic cathedral, which dates back to the 11th century. The market town of Ross is the perfect place to stroll along picturesque streets and browse independent shops. Each year, Hay on Wye hosts its world-famous festival, which celebrates literature and the arts. The largest poetry festival in the UK can be found in the nearby town of Ledbury every July.
Immerse yourself in the outdoors
Woodland, farmland, hilly countryside and the River Wye are just a few of the landscape variations the Wye Valley and Forest of Dean offer. This means that nature reserves, wildlife conservation sites and stunning views are plentiful.
- Lancaut Nature Reserve has tracks and trails for lovely walks. The varying landscape has over 350 different plant species, as well as peregrine falcons, kestrels, hawks and many other birds. The river is often visited by herons, cormorants and seals.
- Symonds Yat Rock is a historic village and popular tourist destination, which straddles the river Wye. On the east side of the river, Symonds Yat is in Gloucestershire and on the west side, the village lies in Herefordshire. Symonds Yat Rock is just 30 minutes away from our Hereford Club Site and comes with great attractions for the whole family.
- Clearwell Caves, which sits underneath the Forest of Dean, is a system that was mined for over 4,500 years. You can now discover the secret world beneath the forest by visiting the show caves and taking a tour of the caverns.
- Elan Valley is a chain of man-made lakes with six dams, including Craig Goch, Garreg Ddu, Pen y Garreg, Caban Coch, Claerwen and Dol y Mynach. You can visit each of the reservoirs and dams, with Craig Goch regarded as the most impressive of the six.
If you enjoy long, scenic walks, Gloucestershire Way, Wysis Way, Wye Valley Walk, and Offa’s Dyke National Trail are perfect for you. You’ll find shorter walks around your campsites, and from most towns and villages you visit.
If you prefer cycling, the Peregrine Path is a level cycling route between Hadrock Road, Monmouth and Symonds Yat. You can also find many shorter cycling routes near our campsites and several bike hire shops in the area.
Campers who enjoy the water also won't miss out when camping in the Wye Valley and Forest of Dean. The River Wye offers great watersport opportunities, including:
- White water rafting
There are also boat trips available and a number of companies running watersport activities, so if you’re new to it, you’ll be in safe hands.
Enjoy a fun railway experience
- Perrygrove has just four stations, with a trip taking around 30 minutes if you don’t stop off to explore the woodland and area at each station.
- Dean Forest Railway is a four-and-a-quarter-mile-long heritage railway that runs between Lydney and Parkend in the Forest of Dean. It has five stations and enough to explore along the way for a full day out.
Explore castles and learn more about the area's history
The Wye Valley and Forest of Dean are flooded with rich history and culture. They also have an abundance of castles ready to be explored.
- Wilton Castle: A 25-minute drive from our Hereford Club Site, the 12th-century Norman building is now a private estate. Although it can’t be entered without the owner's permission, visitors can view the castle's exterior from a public footpath that’s near the layby opposite the castle.
- Goodrich Castle: Managed by English Heritage, Goodrich Castle is less than 40 minutes away from our Blackmore Club Site. Enjoy the views from the battlements of the medieval castle, listen to the free audio guide to learn about the building's past and see Civil War artefacts in the exhibition. Once you’ve explored every stairway, cannon and stained glass window, head to the tearoom and browse the heritage-inspired gifts.
- Grosmont Castle: A 25-minute drive from our Hereford Club Site, this stunning castle is open daily, and you can wander around the remains of the Norman stronghold.
- Monmouth Castle: Just 40-minutes away from our Hereford Club Site the 11th-century castle was the birthplace of Henry V. Not much of the castle remains today, however, you can see the ruins of the keep and 13th-century hall.
More historical attractions near the Wye Valley and Forest of Dean
- The remains of Tintern Abbey, founded in 1131 by Cistercian monks, are a magnificent sight to behold. Walk through the remains, reading the information boards as you learn about the site's history. Peaceful, informative and breath-taking, you won’t regret a trip to Tintern Abbey.
- Littledean Jail is an 18th-century prison that now houses exhibits on crime, paranormal, witchcraft and much more. Although it’s unsuitable for children, the jail is a great day out for those interested in crime and history.
- Dean Heritage Centre is a great place to learn about the history and heritage of the Forest of Dean. There are over 20,000 artefacts, including objects from the coal mining industry, childhood history and transport. The five-acre site has walking trails and even a pond, making it a great place for wildlife spotting. Visit the replica coal mine to see how the coal miners would have worked every day. The centre’s facilities include a playground, gift shop, picnic area and toilets. It’s a great day out for the whole family, with exhibits and attractions to entertain all ages.
- The National Trust managed Panorama Tower has a 360-degree viewing platform at the top of its spiral staircase. Just a 15-minute drive from our Blackmore Club Site, you’ll be privy to views of Worcester Cathedral and the countryside of Gloucestershire and Worcestershire.
- Hereford Cathedral, a place of worship for over 1,300 years, is an impressive architectural delight. Cathedral tours, tours of the tower and the gardens are all available. You can also explore the Mappa Mundi and Chained Library exhibition to see the famous medieval map of Hereford.
Family attractions in the Wye Valley and Forest of Dean
There’s never a dull moment when exploring the Wye Valley and Forest of Dean. There are tons of family-friendly activities great for all ages. These include,
- Puzzlewood – In Gloucestershire woodland, you’ll find the sights that inspired J.R.R. Tolkien’s Middle Earth. Puzzlewood was also featured in Star Wars, Merlin and Doctor Who. There are rabbits, cattle, goats, ducks, and even ponies to meet in the woodland. As you wander the paths, see how many different trees you can find. There are oak, beech, yew, lime and ash trees, as well as plenty of other fauna and flora.
- Wye Valley Butterfly Zoo – Walk through the Wye Valley Butterfly Zoo and see how many different types you can spot. As well as the butterflies, you can explore the amazing Hedge Puzzle, which was planted in 1977. Enter the maze and see how quickly you can find your way out. There’s also mini-golf and laser tag if you’re looking to fill a little more time.
- Symonds Yat West Leisure Park – An open green space by the river with plenty to do. Hire a boat, enjoy a picnic, let the kids run around in the children’s play area or try your hand at mini-golf. With go-karts, a paddling pool and a skateboard park, there’s plenty to do for both young and older children.
- Forest of Dean Sculpture Trail – The Forest of Dean Sculpture Trust has collaborated with Forestry England to present one of the UK’s oldest sculpture trails. It’s perfect for the whole family as everyone can walk around spotting magnificent pieces of art. Not only is it a great way to get your steps in, but it's also a fascinating way to learn about the history of the park as the artists aim to portray that through their unique sculptures.
- Go Ape – Explore and enjoy England’s largest oak woodland. Go Ape is a great place to visit for thrill seekers. You’ll find Treetop Challenges for explorers over 1m tall and families looking for high ropes adventure. There are also Forest Segways to explore the Forest of Dean in a whole new way.