South London into Surrey can feel like an area where it’s difficult to breathe. We’re so lucky having open space nearby. As it’s a gloriously sunny day we headed to the Banstead Woods Narnia Trail.
Banstead Woods Narnia Trail has been in the woods for a couple of months now. For now it’s a pleasant enough walk without any tricky bits. I’d even stick my neck out and say it’s buggy-friendly too. As long as you’re happy dealing with mud.
Banstead Woods has many different routes around it, but you can’t miss Lucy Pevensie and the lamp post if you enter the woods from the Holly Lane car park. Keep walking and you’ll get there.
You’ll also spot some cute wooden carved signs which point out things that could be spotted around the woods, and are apparently good for nature rubbing (we’ll do that next time).
There are only three carvings at the moment on the Banstead Woods Narnia Trail. Let me try and describe the route we took…
After getting to the Lucy Lamppost, walk down the track to the side of the woods, out in the fields. In August the main thing to do here is foraging. We headed through the gate at the end of this field, through the bluebell woods (the bluebells long-gone). We walked up to the area I call the ‘train track’. In my head, it probably has never ever been a train track, it’s just very straight, defined and disused train track-like.
We walked along there back to the big slope which leads back to the car park. Turning right there we headed to the top of the hill and made our way as far as the little pond.
Once there, we turned back towards the bluebell woods, or at least in a direction that felt like it was. Eventually we made it back to the train track, when lo and behold! There was the wardrobe complete with wooden clothes inside. You can walk through it and it’s fabulous!
H was being pretty grumpy around now as she moans if she walks too much. Having said that, we found plenty of sticks which double up as Harry Potter wands so she just expelliarmus’d us a few times.
After walking through the bluebell woods we hit a single track, a bit more foraging and a giant great big Aslan at the end! By then we were near the car park again on the big slope.
So that’s the long way to do it. The short(er) way would be to walk up the slope a fraction and turn at Aslan. Walk through the bluebell woods and follow the track which goes diagonally across them, then train track and down.
The Banstead Woods Narnia Trail is fun. I’m hoping we’ll get more of these wooden sculptures, after all, the woods need a Mr Tumnus.
The wood carvings are by Ella Tree Pirate. To visit Banstead Woods costs nothing, with free parking on Holly Lane in the big car park. Rumour has it that Anne Boleyn once owned Banstead Woods. Maybe one day she’ll make an appearance? (in wood, of course)