Shatterford & Denny Wood

Heather at Shatterford

A circular walk that perfectly illustrates the diverse range of heath, woods and wetland habitats that make up the New Forest.

Note that Shatterford car park is closed in spring and early summer to protect nearby ground-nesting birds.


From the Shatterford car park take the path which extends across the heathland. You’ll notice 4,000-year-old Bronze Age tumuli (burial mounds) off to your left. In late summer, when the heather is in bloom, the whole landscape has lovely purple hue.

Continue on the path as it enters the Ancient and Ornamental woodland of Denny Wood. In spring and summer the path is flanked by ferns before it enters the woodland. Continue through the beech and oak trees until the forest track meets the cycle network path.

Turn left and walk down the hill. Just before you come to Denny Cottage on the left, take the path that leads into the trees. You may spot some deer in the grazing land behind the cottage.

The forest track alongside the earthwork and fence eventually brings you to some open grassland. Follow the path and cross the four footbridges over the streams and water channels.

When the track eventually splits at Woodfidley Passage, take the path to the left. The path becomes very sandy for a while before following the route of the adjoining railway line back to Shatterford car park. The Drift Inn is located on the other side of the roadbridge if you want to finish this walk with a drink or meal.

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Walk Information

Starting Points

  • Shatterford car park

Public Transport

Food and Drink

  • The Drift Inn

Some gravel paths which are generally passable. Some sandy paths. Much of this route is forest tracks which can be muddy after wet weather so is recommended only as a summer walk.

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