Top Ten Outdoor Events

Explore, experience and enjoy our fabulous landscape heritage this September...

© Chris Lacey - Explore the great outdoors at Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal with Heritage Open Days

From coastal pathways, to hilltop walks, landscaped gardens and beautiful castle ruins; heritage is all around us. We are excited to see so many local organisers celebrating the great outdoors. To give you a flavour of these, here’s ten of our favourites (in no particular order) …

As Jane Austen once wrote 'A very fine day for Box Hill, nothing was wanting but to be happy when they got there' / ©Jan Kraus

Be inspired by Box Hill's landscape

Box Hill, Surrey 

Absolutely one of England's most iconic and loved beauty spots, Box Hill is a favourite hilltop wander of ours! A gentle walk across this natural landscape offers a chance not only to see beautiful views across Surrey, but an education in the literary greats inspired by the environment.

Celebrate Repton's fabulous landscapes 

Catton Park, Norfolk

As 2018 marks the 200th anniversary of Humphry Repton’s death, Heritage Open Days is excited to share the landscapes he helped shape. This multicultural day at Catton Park offers arts activities, music, food stalls and a beautiful view over Norwich right in the centre of one of his finest landscapes.

Make like other visitors and hear the fascinating stories of Cockermouth Castle / ©Cockermouth and District Civic Trust

Marvel at castle ruins, gardens and tales

Cockermouth Castle, Cumbria

Returning for a seventh year, Cockermouth Castle has become something of a Heritage Open Days’ tradition. Of course the beautiful grounds, ruins and stories are absolutely not to be missed through joining a fabulous guided tour this September.

Discover one of our favourite National Trust sites

Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal Water Garden, North Yorkshire

No HODs list celebrating the great outdoors would be complete without a nod towards Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal Water Garden. Definitely a team favourite, this beautiful National Trust landscape is steeped in over 800 years of history, and the opening of this World Heritage Site invites you to explore.

Learn about English wildlife in a peaceful nature reserve

Lackford Lakes Nature Reserve, Suffolk

What finer way to explore English wildlife than through wandering around a nature reserve filled with reeds, meadows and woodland? Join guide Paul Holness for a walk around the 400 acre reserve spotting various forms of wildlife, from birds to butterflies.

Understand more about our coastal landscapes

Lee Heritage Waterfront, Hampshire

One of the events celebrating the heritage of the coastlines, waterfronts and seas surrounding England, this guided walk takes you through 130 years of history. Led by a local resident, this event is sure to offer a chance to experience our coastal heritage in a fascinating way.

Repton's work has come to shape the Isle of Wight

St John’s Estate, Isle of Wight 

Join us in celebrating Humphry Repton's influence in shaping British landscapes / © British Museum

The Isle of Wight offers a most exciting opportunity to not only get outdoors, but to experience Humphry Repton’s work in all its glory! Through a guided walk organised by the Isle of Wight Garden Trust, you can discover how the grounds were laid out by him in 1797, and why the landscape looks the way it does today.

Share stories at a local churchyard

Emmanuel Church Shelley, West Yorkshire

Churchyards hold fascinating insights into local heritage, and often share stories which we may otherwise miss. When this is joined with a the range of Victorian themed activities and even a children’s nature trail, Emmanuel Church offers a fabulous way to explore the outdoors this September.

Adventure awaits in the grounds of a fabulous country house

Woodbrooke, West Midlands

Woodbrooke house and grounds were founded in 1903 by George Cadbury of Quaker & Bournville Village Trust. This ‘Open Garden Day’ offers a chance to explore the woodland, a walled garden, streams, and even an outdoor bread oven of this estate. 

Educate yourself about who defends our great outdoors

Eco-Feminists and Theologians, Winchester

In a year of rising awareness of environmental issues, and HODs celebrating Extraordinary Women, an exhibition celebrating the pioneers of eco-feminist theology seems very apt. Bringing the outdoors indoors, this event offers a fabulous chance to see how feminism, environmentalism and natural heritage are all interwoven.

Find out more…