Home » Tourism - Where to go » Epping Forest

Epping Forest

The largest green wooded space in Essex in the news again.
Google Epping forest and murder and you find a long history of dead bodies, usually murdered turning up in Epping Forest, it was in the 1960s a popular visiting spot for various gangsters to dump the bodies of rival hoodlums. It was so again just last week according to the BBC.
This maybe where it makes the headlines but it's a lot more than this, actually it's one of the oldest wooded areas in the country, Dick Turpin – the famous highwayman robber was said to have hid out here in the early 17th Century, the woods was given common woodland status in the 12th Century by Queen Elisabeth 1st, and of course dates back many hundreds of years before this.
It's one of the largest wooded areas in the south of England, of course smaller than the New Forest in Sussex, but none the less a weighty 12 miles long and 5 miles wide. But within you have a density of lakes, rivers streams wild life and variety of tree species that makes it a fascinating place to be. But of course its real value to us is as a space to get away from it all. The pathways are of course busy in the summer with Mountain bikers, Trekkers and horse-riders but in the main you will have this space, wherever you venture, to yourself.
It has a number of points of entry which helps quell the numbers all bundling up in any one point and of course the pubs, cafes and ice cream outlets have sprung up at these points to ensure that you go in and out suitably refreshed. The main visitor centre is certainly the place to begin as they can provide you with all the maps you need to ensure you don't embark on any path that will take you away for more than the time you wish to invest (the shortest walk is an hour but they can go up to 5 hours). At the visitor centre there is also a refurbished "hunters house", the house was used by Queen Elisabeth 1st when she went on one of her many hunting exhibitions into the woods. Its all done up and represented very tastefully and educationally; as is the visitor centre that has an up-stairs display room where the history and what you are likely to encounter is all presented in a beguiling way that sets you up to want to get venturing. Epping forest is 35 mins drive from Grays.

Postcode: IG10 4AE

Source: Source: