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Blackwater Trails

Blackwater Trails

A woodland walk for all seasons

Stimulate your senses on this short trail around the Forestry England’s Blackwater Arboretum, with its small but nationally important collection of trees from all over the world. Sensory information boards along the trail provide fascinating facts about the tallest, heaviest and toughest trees in the world. This walk takes you past majestic conifers planted in the 1850s, some of the oldest Douglas fir trees in Britain and includes views of two enormous redwoods.

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 is a waymarked walk. Just follow the waymarker posts to enjoy an easy to follow route for all.

  • 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: 1.4 miles (2.3 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: The path is a fairly smooth gravelled surface and is level with frequent resting places and no gates. The narrowest width along the route is 1.1m at the chicane barriers where the trail crosses the road. There is one bridge which is 1.5m wide with handrails and 1m wide anti-slip covering (grid reference: SU 267 047)
  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.

  1. Under Oak Archway

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 few metres before turning left along a path signed ‘Tall Trees Trail’.

  1. The Tall trees Trail

Follow this trail as it winds through a fascinating array of huge trees, including a couple of giant redwoods!  Go over a small wooden bridge and follow the white topped waymarker posts along the trail which keeps parallel to the road.

4. Back down the other side!

The trail continues on to reach Brock Hill Car Park. Before you reach the car park the trail bends right and crosses the road. After crossing head right, following the white topped way markers. The trail winds back to the car park.

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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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