Courses and experiences

The Forest of Bowland is a stimulating environment in which to embrace new experiences and learn new skills.

A growing number of providers offer training and tuition in a wide spectrum of outdoor activities and traditional skills, with some providing short residential courses.

As you’d expect in such an idyllic natural playground, traditional outdoor activities such as hiking, navigation, kayaking, mountain biking and rock climbing are very much to the fore. But how about trying your hand at foraging, distilling gin or artisan cheese-making?

More energetic souls may want to hone their downhill skills on the MTB trails at Gisburn Forest Hub or – for a complete change of pace – learn the gentle art of fly fishing, dry stone walling, hedge-laying or basket weaving.

And the Forest of Bowland really is a year-round destination for learning. In winter, look out for Dark Skies experiences and workshops which help participants find their way around the night sky.

Spring brings the opportunity to feed new-born lambs, summer is peak season for all manner of adventurous activities while autumn is the best time of year to find food for free on a foraging course in the Forest.

Alternative Adventure and Outdoor Activities Service

We deliver professionally run outdoor education and outdoor pursuits activities for the widest possible range of groups. Venues used are around the Lancashire, Merseyside and Greater Manchester area. This includes corporate events, management groups, Over 50's clubs, hen parties, stag ...
under cover paved eating area

Be A Garden Maker

A beautiful small garden centre located in a rural location. Lovely tearoom serving homemade traditional food, dogs welcome. Easy access for limited mobility. Gift shop and reclamation shop in our onsite barns also gives interesting things for our home and ...
the golf course with trees, blue sky and distant hills

Bentham Golf Course

Bentham Golf Course is a picturesque, family-run 18 hole golf course situated at the foot of the Yorkshire Three Peaks. Previously described as ‘a Diamond of the Dales’, Bentham offers a challenge to golfers of all abilities and visitors are ...
luxury Mercedes-Benz Tourer.

Bowland and Bay

As the Forest of Bowland’s reputation for artisan food spreads across the country, Katie Wilson at Bowland and Bay is showcasing some of Lancashire’s best artisan food and drink After 30 years in various tourism and buying roles, the pandemic ...
a girl and a goat

Bowland Wild Boar Park

Nestling beside the River Hodder in a remote valley beneath the rugged ridgeline of the Bleasdale Fells, Bowland Wild Boar Park maintains a tradition dating back to the middle ages – along with a host of fun activities for the ...

Browsholme Hall

The Parker family has been associated with the Forest of Bowland for more than five centuries and their family seat of historic Browsholme Hall is the oldest family home in continuous occupation in Lancashire. Browsholme Hall is a magnificent Grade ...

Dale House Barn Luxury B&B

Michelin-trained chef Dominique Ashford has tuned into the slower rhythms of nature after swapping the top end restaurants of London for wild food and foraging in the Forest of Bowland For a really wild adventure in one of the most ...

Goosnargh Gin

Richard and Rachel Trenchard were quietly building a widely admired brand of artisan gin, distilled and rooted in the landscapes of Bowland – and then the Hairy Bikers dropped in for a quick G&T… After developing an interest in handcrafted ...

NaturesGems Tours

Experienced naturalist and active conservationist Gemma Wren leads small groups on bespoke nature tours of Morecambe Bay and its diverse range of habitats. Owned and operated by practising environment consultant Gemma Wren, NaturesGems Tours offers immersive wildlife experiences in some ...

Ribble Valley E-Bikes

Based in Dunsop Bridge in the heart of the Forest of Bowland, Ribble Valley e-bikes has a fleet of electric bikes available for visitors to hire and explore Bowland straight from the shop. Ribble Valley E-bike Hire is based in ...

RSPB Leighton Moss

Conveniently located just a 200m walk from Silverdale station, Leighton Moss is one of the RSPB’s most accessible reserves and home to a host of spectacular wildlife, from marsh harriers and ospreys to red deer and otters. Conveniently located just ...
Smelt Mill surrounded by hills and stream

Smelt Mill Outdoor Centre

Smelt Mill provides accommodation for groups in the heart of the Forest of Bowland Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. It is ideally located for outdoor activities such as walking, mountain biking and bird watching. Rooms – 5 x 2 beds, ...
happy man with lots of cheese

The Courtyard Dairy

The finest cheese - delivered to your door. It's no wonder The Daily Telegraph lists The Courtyard Dairy as one of the Top 10 Cheese Shops in the World. The Courtyard Dairy is a truly special cheese maturer and shop. ...

The Gathering Fields

After returning to her childhood home, natural therapist Helen Leece established a centre for wellbeing and renewal high among the hills on the western fringe of the Forest of Bowland. The Gathering Fields is a rural Retreat centre teaching Yoga, ...

The Rewilding

For big skies, wide open spaces and the perfect environment for rewilding yourself, head over to the windswept salt marshes of the Lancashire coast, where the Forest of Bowland meets the sea! After travelling the world with a high-powered job ...

Wild Fox Distillery

Deep in the heart of the Forest Bowland’s famed ‘Lancashire cheese triangle’, a traditional dairy farming family are ploughing their own furrow by producing a distinctive artisan gin with deep roots in the local landscape Founded in 2019 as part ...

Wood End Farm and Alpaca Experience

Our family have farmed here for over 100 years. It is a traditional hill farm, with beef and sheep, set in the beauty and tranquility of this unspoilt area in rural Lancashire. We believe in preserving the best of traditional ...