Monday, 20 December 2021
Forests all across Scotland have been seriously affected by recent storms. We are doing everything we can to make our forests safe for visitors, communities, forest businesses and our staff. However, many of our forests remain closed while others have significant diversions and access restrictions for the foreseeable future. Please keep safe and follow all closure notices and safety signage.
Take care on or around open water. Find out more on our Water Safety page.
Accessible Entrance Construction Work
Please be aware that work will start on our new and approved accessible ramp at the main entrance of The Lodge Forest Visitor Centre on Monday 10 January. This work will last approximately 3 - 4 weeks (weather dependant). The Lodge, Café and Go Ape will remain open during this time and access to The Lodge and Cafe will be via the side doors.
Thank you for your patience during these improvements.
With trails suitable for all, tree top adventures, a great café, toilets and plenty of information, this should be your first stop when it comes to exploring Queen Elizabeth Forest Park.
Enjoy panoramic views and scenic trails, from a gentle stroll to a waterfall past a monument commemorating the Women's Timber Corps, better known as the Lumberjills, to more strenuous routes through lofty woods and rocky crags.
A pleasant stroll through the trees past a monument to the Women's Timber Corps, leading to a dramatic waterfall that appears as if by magic. Plenty of places to sit or play along the way.
Wide, firm gravel surface throughout, with some loose stones. Long gentle slope for 400m with some short moderate sections. Short section of uneven wooden boardwalk.
Allow ½ hour
Look out for reflective artworks and feel the breeze beside the tumbling waterfall. Wind back up to The Lodge from here or continue through towering Norway spruce and over an arched wooden bridge to reach the Red Squirrel Hide.
A scenic walk through ancient oak woodland that is cloaked in velvety green lichens – a sure sign of the clean air up here.
Largely firm gravel surface, with a few uneven sections. Several short steep slopes and one short flight of steps.
Allow 1 hour
This is an atmospheric meander amongst ancient oak trees that were once coppiced every 15 years or so, stimulating new growth from the stumps. The new stems could be used for building, fuel and to make charcoal for iron smelting.
Follow in the footsteps of the Duke of Montrose, climbing above the Duke’s Pass for great views of The Lodge and the Loch Ard Forest.
Varied surface with some long, fairly steep sections. Narrow and uneven rocky path with some muddy parts.
Allow 1½ hours
This is a great place to watch wildlife – there’s the easy-to-reach Red Squirrel Hide as well as video feeds showing nocturnal animals at the Lodge and the history of Forestry and Land Scotland available in the Visitor Centre. Our long-standing Osprey Camera is not available for the winter season as the birds have migrated back to South Africa.
The Lodge is also home to the award winning Go Ape. If you want a bird’s eye view of the forest or to leap through the canopy like a red squirrel, then this is the place to be.
If you want to test your navigation skills and see some bits of the forest most visitors don't then why not pick up a free orienteering map from reception. We have three courses to choose from that vary in length and navigational difficulty - great for families with young children, or anyone seeking something more challenging than a sign-posted route.
The Lodge Forest Visitor Centre is open seven days a week, 10am to 4pm (10am to 3pm January).
The Lodge Café is open 5 days a week and currently closed every Tuesday & Wednesday.
The charges to park at The Lodge are:
Payment options: Coin and card
We recommend you bring both coins and cards with you in case our machine is having an off-day. Please park with care and consideration. In particular please park in designated parking areas only and do not block entrances or gates. Nearby car parks with free parking can be found in our local forest list without the £ symbol.
Annual parking pass available:
Blue badge holders park free. Please display your Blue Badge clearly.
Water and sheltered tie-up points are available outside the visitor centre. No dogs (except assistance dogs) are allowed in the café area.
Head uphill or along the river from the centre of historic Aberfoyle
A picturesque loch ideal for family strolls and cycle rides