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Blackwater: Heartwood Trail

Blackwater: Heartwood Trail

An easy waymarked walk through the Arboretum to experience the woodland and take in the variety of tree species

Blackwater has some of the oldest and most striking firs in all of the New Forest. These impressive trees were planted in the 1850s to create what is now known as Rhinefield Ornamental Drive.

This Forestry England trail can be followed using the sensory information boards on the route. Just follow the boards round the trail to enjoy an easy to follow route for all. There are regular seats with backs to rest on along this route.

  • Start/finish: Blackwater car park, Grid ref. SU 268 047
  • Ordnance Survey map: Explorer OL 22 New Forest
  • Getting there: No public transport links, parking at Blackwater car park.
  • Distance: 0.7 miles (1.1 km)
  • Duration: Under 1 hour
  • Local facilities: Blackwater car park has space for 50 cars with two spaces reserved for disabled visitors. It has toilets and disabled access toilets, picnic tables, bike racks and an information point.
  • Accessibility: This short circular trail has a fairly smooth gravelled surface with one very gentle slope from the car park to the start of the trail. The remainder of the trail is level with frequent resting places and is accessed via a gate which has a low, soft catch. The narrowest width along the route is 1.1m at the entrance gate to the Arboretum; this is also the only gate along the route.
  1. Arrival

Blackwater Arboretum car park has accessible parking and accessible toilet facilities in addition to an information point and picnic tables. Please take all your rubbish home and follow the New Forest Code whilst out and about.

2. The Two Oak Arches

To start your stroll along the Heartwood Trail go under the first oak archway, cross over the Rhinefield Ornamental Drive and continue up the gravel track for a short distance to a second oak archway where the trail begins. You can go either left or right to walk in a large circle enjoying the variety of beautiful trees growing here.

3. Heading back

To head back simply retrace your steps back through the two oak archways back to the car park. Longer walks are available from this location such as the Tall Trees Trail and the Scrag Hill Nursery walk.

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New Forest code

Please be aware of the New Forest Code when walking in the National Park.

New Forest Code


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National Park Volunteer and Access Officer


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