Explore Dulwich Woods and Sydenham Woods on this easy stroll in south east London. The ancient woods include several footpaths and over 200 species of trees and flowering plants. These include wild garlic, bluebell, dog violet, wood anemone, bugle, Chilean pine, oak and hornbeam. Also look out for remnants of Victorian gardens including an old Victorian folly.
The walk starts from Sydenham Hill railway station, just to the west of the woods. Cross College Road and then you can pick up the footpath leading into the southern section of Dulwich Woods. The paths then lead north east, taking you past the golf club into Sydenham Hill Wood.
The area is also a nature reserve so look out for a variety of wildlife as you make your way along the trails. Birds include nuthatch, treecreeper, tawny owl, kestrel and sparrowhawk. Also keep your eyes peeled for butterflies such as purple hairstreak, white-letter hairstreak and speckled wood.
In the northern section of the woods is a small pond. You may see frogs, newts, dragonflies and damselflies here.
The Green Chain Walk long distance trail passes through the woods. To extend your walk you could follow the trail north west to Dulwich Park. It's a pretty park with nice surfaced footpaths, a cafe, a boating lake and recumbent bicycle hire.
If you were to follow the Green Chain Walk south it would take you into Crystal Palace Park. Here you can enjoy tree lined paths, a maze, lakes and views towards London from the high points. You can also pick up the Capital Ring trail and further explore the area on foot.
Brockwell Park is only about 1.5 miles to the north west. There's some nice cycling and walking trails surrounding the 19th century Brockwell Hall here.