Access for everyone at High Woods Country Park

Helping you make the most of your visit to High Woods Country Park.


  • Parking
  • Visitor Centre
  • The park
  • Walking Trails

Whether you are visiting the park for a walk, cycle ride, to fish, use a wheelchair or are pushing a pram or buggy the following information will help you make the most of your visit.

Parking: Level tarmac car park at Visitor Centre with space for up to 80 cars.  Four reserved disabled spaces.

Visitor Centre: Level entrance, double doors opening into a small visitor centre. Turning circles can be tight when busy.

Toilets: Located at the Visitor Centre. Two single sex toilets and one adapted unisex toilet. Baby changing facilities located in the unisex toilet.

The Park: Most of the woodland paths near to the Visitor Centre are level, even and have a bound surface. There's a bench every 70 yards on the sign-posted 'Easy Access Trail' (1/3 mile).  Access could be more difficult for people with reduced mobility in areas away from the Visitor Centre.  Woodland paths are made of compacted clay and stone.  Beyond the woods the paths are mostly natural, and some sections can be very wet and muddy in the winter.  All routes have regular resting points.  Terrain is undulating with some steep slopes. 

Walking Trails: There are three circular trails identified by coloured waymarkers. Download a Country Park map opposite.

The blue route: is the shortest (30 mins) and takes you along the woodland edge with glimpses of the Lake. It's a level route except for a steep dip and gradual slope near Fiveways.  All paths are surfaced.

The red route: (90 mins) takes you through bluebell woods and fields to the park's northern end. Some gradual slopes. Mixture of surfaced and natural paths.

The yellow route: (120 mins) takes you through wildflower fields with great views, and by the Lake.  Steep slopes on Woodcock Down and around the Lake. Mixture of surfaced and natural paths. You can join the blue route at Fiveways to extend your walk.

Pedestrian Access: 17 pedestrian entrances. Those that are accessible with wheelchairs and buggies include, the Visitor Centre, Thornton Drive, Hillridge, Broadlands and Brinkley Grove East.

BIG Garden: Wheelchair accessible including raised beds.  273 metres from the Visitor Centre along level surfaced paths.

Fishing: Ten fishing swims including two designated as disabled. The Lake is 510 metres from Chanterelle car park and 420 metres from the Visitor Centre car park.  Access to the Lake is via steep slopes which can be very muddy in the winter. Telephone 01206 853588 and we may be able to help you with access.

Picnic Tables: A number of wheelchair accessible picnic tables can be found in the picnic area around the Visitor Centre car park.

Cycling: Most of the paths and tracks in the Country Park can be cycled with the exception of the 'Easy Access Trail'. National Cycle Route 1  (Colchester - Harwich section) passes through the Country Park. Some very steep slopes.

Mobility Scooters: The designated cycle paths through the park are ideal for use by mobility scooters. They allow access from the west of the park at Hillridge on the Highwoods estate to Broadlands Way in the south and to either Thronton Drive or the woodlands with their surfaced paths in the east.  The cycle paths have some very steep slopes.  Woodland paths are mostly level with some steep slopes.

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