Where to see Bluebells in Essex (and how to find them)

A carpet of bluebells in full bloom is a stunning site. Whether you just want to appreciate their beauty or you want a beautiful backdrop to photographs they worth a visit. Native bluebells can be found in ancient woodlands throughout Essex. This post shares the best places to see bluebells in Essex including details on where to park and how to find them.

This post will be updated with additional details on locations as the bluebells come into flower in April. My tip is to check for recent photographs on Instagram tagged with the location, when bluebells flower there are always photographs. 

Remember that native bluebells are protected and endangered partly due to the spread of the more aggressive Spanish bluebells which are widely seen in gardens. Find out more about bluebells and how to identify the native variety in this helpful Woodland Trust post. 

A carpet of bluebells in woodland in Essex
Carpets of Bluebells appear in woodland in Essex every April 

The Best Places To See Bluebells in Essex

Bluebell Woods Near Billericay

Norsey Woods

Outwood Common Road, Billericay, CM11 1HA
If you park at the main car park near the information centre you can follow the Easy Access Trail into the woods on a path which is suitable for pushchairs and wheelchairs and takes you through beautiful bluebells. Read more about visiting Norsey Woods here.

Hanningfield Reservoir

Hawkswood Road, Downham, Billericay CM11 1WT
Access to the reserve (including views of the lake and the Wind In The Willows Trail) is through the Discovery Centre where you can get advice on the best walks to see the bluebells. They ask for a voluntary donation, but otherwise parking and entry are free. There are toilets, a cafe and a shop in the Discovery Centre which is open 10am to 5pm.

Mill Meadows

Greens Farm Lane, Billericay CM11 2YX
There is car park for the Nature Reserve, but there is street parking in the town centre a short distance away and some of the bluebells are on that side of the reserve. There is a useful map with trails available on the Mill Meadows website

Bluebells Woods Near Brentwood

Thorndon Country Park

Thorndon Park North, The Avenue, Brentwood CM13 3RZ 

Find the best bluebell patch in Childerditch Woods which is a wooded area on the far side of Thorndon North from the Visitors Centre. There is a small amount of parking at Little Warley Common, which is probably the closest parking to Childerditch Woods, alternatively park at Thorndon North (near the entrance of the Gruffalo trail) where there is a cafe and toilets and head through the woods towards Childerditch Woods. Car parking costs from £2.20 for 1 hour to £5.50 for over 3 hours. 

Weald Country Park

Weald Road, Brentwood, Essex, England, CM14 5QS
Best parking for the Bluebells is Belvedere car park, but if you park at the main car park by the visitors centre and car park you will have easy access to the cafe and toilets and you can easily walk to the other car park by heading the opposite direction to the playground. From The Belvedere car park walk past Bluebell pond and up the hill which should be covered in blooms. If you want a longer walk you can walk down the other side of the hill and either join up with the Stickman Trail or take your own route turning left and eventually coming to the top of the lake, walk round the far side of the lake until you reach the path through the middle and then head back past the deer enclosure to the car park.
Car parking costs from £2.20 for 1 hour to £5.50 for over 3 hours. Weald Country Park is a very popular destination and the car parks can get full from 10.30am on weekends, if you call their answering machine they update it when car parks are full.

Bluebell Woods Near Chelmsford 

Danbury Country Park

Woodhill Road, Danbury, Chelmsford CM3 4AW
Park at Danbury Lakes car park and turn left (with the main road behind you) to walk through the woodland along the edge of the lake towards the ice house for a great area of bluebells. Parking from £2 for 1 hour to £4.50 for over 3 hours. Toilets available. Read our guide to visiting Danbury Country Park here.

Blakes Wood 

Little Baddow, Chelmsford CM3 4AU 

Blakes Wood is very close to Danbury Country Park and there are many walking routes available online which go from one site to the other. There is a free car park at Blakes Wood off Riffhams Chase.

a haze of bluebells in woodland
A carpet of bluebells

Bluebell Woods Near Clacton

Weeleyhall Wood

Church Lane, Weeley, Essex CO16 9AT

Weeleyhall Wood and footpath are currently closed to the public to protect vulnerable flora and fauna, it's not known when it will reopen. When in bloom the Bluebells at Weeleyhall Wood cover around 30 acres so it means you will find plenty of undisturbed patches to take photographs.

Bluebell Woods Near Colchester

Hillhouse Wood

Hall Road, West Bergholt, Colchester CO6 3NY

Nearest parking is near Old St Marys Church, but it is recommended that people park in the village where you can follow a public footpath between two fields towards the church (the footpath starts on Lexden Road more or less opposite New Church Road.  The bluebells are easy to see when you enter the woods.

Bluebells Near Epping

Apes Grove

New Farm Drive, Abridge, RM4 1BT

From New Farm Drive (where there is street parking) head for the public footpath marked Brook Street on Google Maps. Walk down the alleyway and straight across the field at the end to the woodland ahead of you. This is a fairly small area of bluebells which is beautiful in full bloom (I found towards the end they get pretty trampled because there are no clear paths through it. You can see the route to the bluebells on this map 

Epping Forest

For Bluebells in the Epping Forest area check out this comprehensive post on Epping Forest Forum which has great information about how to find lots of areas of bluebells and includes maps. 

Wanstead Park

I have an in-depth post on how to find the bluebells in Chalet Wood at Wanstead Park and while it isn’t in Essex I still recommend it to people in West Essex because the clear paths through the bluebells protect them from damage better than other locations.

close up of a bluebell with some open flowers and some closed
Delicate bluebells appear in April through to May

Bluebell Woods Near Grays

Belhus Country Park 

Belhus Woods Country Park, South Ockendon, Aveley RM15 4XJ
There are plenty of bluebells in easy walk from the Visitors Centre (and the car park). Head past the Visitors Centre towards the play area and explore the wooded areas (via the footpaths) on either side of the main path where there should be plenty of bluebells to spot. Car parking costs from £2.20 for 1 hour to £5.50 for over 3 hours. Read more about visiting Belhus Woods Country Park here

Bluebell Woods Near Romford

Bedfords Park

Broxhill Road, Havering-atte-Bower, Essex RM4 1QH
The bluebells are found in the wooded areas of the park so if travelling with children I recommend parking in one of the first parking areas as you turn off Broxhill Road and walk away from the road to the woodland. If you continue driving towards the Visitors Centre the car parks tend to get busier and the playground becomes visible and a likely distraction for children from pretty flowers.
Parking is free and there is normally a cafe and toilets in the Discovery Centre, however as this is currently closed for renovation the toilets may not be accessible (it was due to reopen October 2021, but there have been no recent updates).  

Bluebell Woods Near Saffron Walden

Shadwell Wood

Off Walden Road, Saffron Waldon, Essex CB10 2NB
Park by the track to Little Hales Wood on the opposite side of the road. You reach the wood by walking down the track which can get uneven and muddy.

Where to find bluebells in Essex
Bluebells in the sunshine in Essex

Bluebell Woods Near Southend

Pound Wood

St Michael's Rd, Thundersley, Benfleet, Essex SS7 2UW
One of the largest remaining areas of ancient woodland in the area. There is no dedicated car park, but there is some limited street parking nearby.

Gusted Hall Woods

Hockley, Essex SS5 4JL
Gusted Hall Woods (and neighbouring Cherry Orchard Jubilee Country Park) in Hockley have beautiful bluebell woods. There is limited parking for Gusted Hall Woods on Gusted Hall Lane SS9 5QT. Bluebells can be found in Gusted Hall Woods to the North of the car park and The Scrubs to the South. Alternative parking options are Edwards Hall Park, Bosworth Road or at the Eastern Entrance to Cherry Orchard Jubilee Park off Cherry Orchard Way.

Hockley Woods

Main Road, Hockley SS5 4RN 
The car park is free at weekends, weekdays it costs from 30p for 1 hour to £3 for all day. There is a large playground near the car park. Read more about Hockley Woods here.

Bluebell Woods Near Witham

Shut Heath Wood

Off Tiptree Road, Great Totham, Essex CM8 3ED
There isn’t a car park for the woods, but it is advised to park along the track. The eastern edge is meant to be the best area to see the bluebells. 

I hope you have a great time exploring the woods and finding spring flowers.

Where to see bluebells in Essex

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