GPS Cycle and Walking Routes

Swithland Woods

2 miles (3 km)

These woods in the Charnwood Forest have a series of good footpaths to try. There's also bridleways suitable for mountain bikers.
The woods are located just to the south of Loughborough with car parks at the northern end of the woods off Swithland Road and at the southern end off Roecliffe Road. From here you can pick up the trails taking you through mature oak, birch, alder and lime woodland. There's also a series of pretty streams and lots of woodland wildlife to look out for. In the spring months the forest floor is covered in carpets of lovely bluebells.
The woods link with the adjacent Bradgate Country Park where you will find a deer park and a great viewpoint.
Just to the north east you will find the pretty Swithland Reservoir. The reservoir has a nice waterside walking trail with lots of birdlife to look out for on the water.
You could also pick up our Charnwood Forest circular walk and visit Beacon Hill Country Park. It's about a two mile walk from the woods to the park where you can climb Beacon Hill for fabulous views over the area.


LE12 8JL - Please note: Postcode may be approximate for some rural locations

Swithland Woods OS Map - Mobile GPS OS Map with Location tracking

Swithland Woods Open Street Map - Mobile GPS Map with Location tracking


Just to the north of the woods you'll find the conveniently located Griffin Inn. They do good food and have a covered outdoor area which can be used rain or shine. There's a stylish interior too with with exposed beams and stone walls. In 2019 they were voted pub of the year in the Leicestershire Tourism and Hospitality Awards. You can find the pub in the pretty little village of Swithland at postcode LE12 8TJ.

Further Information and Other Local Ideas

A couple of miles north east of the woods you could pay a visit to the Mountsorrel and Rothley Community Heritage Centre. Here you'll find a garden railway, an interesting train museum and some pleasant nature trails. There's also Granite’s Coffee Shop where you can enjoy a bite to eat. It's a lovely place to visit if you have time after your walk. On selected weekends throughout the year you can also see the Great Central Railway heritage trains running along the line. You can find the centre at 240 Swithland Lane with postcode LE7 7UE for your sat navs.
The circular Woodhouse Eaves Walk visits the woods from the nearby village. It also visits the reservoir, Bradgate Park and Cropston Reservoir.
Just to the north of the site there's the pretty village of Barrow upon Soar. There's some nice walks along the Grand Union Canal and a fine waterside pub to visit here.
Just to the south of Bradgate Park you'll find the secluded Groby Pool. The small lake is a good place for wildlife watching and also includes some adjacent bluebell woods. The woodland trust's MartinshawWood is located about half a mile south west from here too. It's another peaceful local place for bird watching and easy trails.
The National Forest Way passes through the area. The long distance trail takes you to several of the highlights of the National Forest area.
For more walking ideas in the area see the Leicestershire Walks page.


Clearing in Swithland Woods - - 863144

Clearing in Swithland Woods

Path entering Swithland Wood - - 1471448

Path entering Swithland Wood. Looking westwards as the bridleway enters the wood.

Stream in Swithland Wood - - 1471647

Stream in the woods. View west along the stream, which at this point is walled-in, possibly part of the extensive slate quarrying work which once took place here.

Flooded quarry in Swithland Wood - - 1471635

Flooded quarry in the woods. At 300 feet wide and 160 feet deep with a lot of sheer faces take care in this area. This old slate quarry is occasionally opened for sub-aqua diving.

The Griffin Inn, Swithland - - 516202

The Griffin Inn, Swithland. This country pub is a fine choice for some post walk refreshments.

Main Street, Swithland, Leicestershire - - 155006

View of the Main Street in the village of Swithland. Stone cottages typical of the villages round Mountsorrel Quarry


GPS Files

GPX File

Swithland Woods.gpx (On Desktop:Right Click>Save As. On Ipad/Iphone:Click and hold>Download Linked File)

Memory Map Route

Swithland Woods.mmo (On Desktop:Right Click>Save As. On Ipad/Iphone:Click and hold >Download Linked File)