The best places to spot glorious autumnal displays

Date Posted: 14/09/2017

Woburn in autumn

The autumn months are upon us; what better to do with your time than spot some of the best natural displays of autumnal colours, from fiery foliage to the best places to find conkers. 

Here are some choice locations for the best visual displays, including national parks, stately homes and city spots. 

Stately homes, parks and manors

Coombe Abbey in Coventry is a great choice for groups wanting to see colourful leaves. The manor style hotel offers a wonderful parkland backdrop of twisting paths, tall trees and a wealth of wildlife. In autumn, Coombe Abbey is particularly beautiful and at times you may find yourself ankle deep in crisp and crunchy orange, brown and maroon leaves. 

Bradgate Park, in Leicestershire, houses the ruins of the childhood home of Lady Jane Grey. It boasts many acres of parkland and is home to various species of deer that can be seen running freely throughout the park. Surrounded by trees of all shapes and sizes, the parkland give groups the freedom to explore and enjoy the fresh air and colourful autumn leaves. There’s also a visitor centre and a café.

Woburn Abbey and Gardens and Woburn Safari Park are worth visiting in autumn too, as the vivid colours and majestic animals allow for a splendid day out. The Woburn Abbey parkland is home to hundreds of free roaming deer, which at times can be seen swimming across the ponds and lakes, and frolicking through the leaves. Groups are welcome at both attractions and special tours and packages can be arranged when booked in advance.

New Forest

Pictured: The New Forest, Hampshire (photo credit: VisitEngland)

National Parks and forests

Within the New Forest National Park in Hampshire there is a wealth of woods and parks that boast fiery autumnal displays: in fact there’s around 50 square miles of it. The best way to see the area is by foot and there are plenty of footpaths, as well as guided walking tours available for those wanting a journey with more direction. 

The Forest of Dean, in Gloucestershire, meanwhile, stretches across roughly 110 square kilometres of land meaning when the leaves changes it creates a sea of warm colours. With the possibilities of spotting a wild boar among other rare wildlife, the geographical area should be a top contender for your group trip list. 

Sherwood Forest in Nottingham, like the Forest of Dean is another option that covers a huge area meaning plenty to crisp air, fresh walks and pretty flashes of orange, red and yellow leaves. And the South Downs National Park is another great choice for walking groups and wildlife lovers to explore this autumn.

Best cities in autumn around the world

Berlin in Germany has two light festivals in autumn as well as 440,000 trees around the city. Bruges in Belgium features medieval streets and gothic architecture making it a scenic location during the autumn months. The trees by the canal look particularly special during autumn. Edinburgh, Scotland's capital, besides boasting historical and architectural wonder, provides great autumnal views during the colder months.

Kyoto in Japan features beautiful maple trees which in autumn look their best. The pretty gardens which are often used as inspiration throughout Britain come into full colour during September, October and November, with orange and red trees overhanging ponds and dainty bridges creating perfect reflections in the water. 

Lodz in Poland is home to Lagiewniki Park which is said to be the biggest urban wood in Europe. This means plenty of trees changing colour for you to discover.

Conkers

Top locations for finding conkers

“A great conker is one that has been stored in a dry place for at least a year. This matures it and makes it rock hard and therefore formidable,” so said author Roald Dahl. But whether it’s a traditional game of conkers you’re after, or a walk that takes you underneath the most impressive of horse chestnut trees, there are lots of places to visit in the UK. Here are some places we think are worth a visit: 

Anglesey Abbey, Cambridgeshire

Blicking, Norfolk

Ickworth, Suffolk

Sheringham Park, Norfolk

Wimpole Estate, Cambridgeshire

Hughenden Manor, Buckinghamshire

Emmetts Garden, Kent

Mottistone Estate, Isle of Wight

Basildon Park, Berkshire

Mottisfont, Hampshire

Lead image: Woburn (photo credit: VisitEngland)

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