Lincolnshire Wolds AONB

Salmonby - Lincolnshire Wolds AONB, Lincs, England
Salmonby, Lincolnshire Wolds AONB ©

Lincolnshire Wolds – Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) is located in the county of Lincolnshire in the east of England . The area has been designated a AONB since 1973, the area covers 558 square kilometres in the north east of Lincolnshire. The area is well known for its scenic countryside, woodland, rolling hills valleys, streams and charming villages.

The local population of approx 10,500 live primarily in historic small villages and hamlets located across the countryside. The AONB covers an area in the north east of Lincolnshire starting a few miles from Grimsby in the north to Louth in the east and Market Rasen in the west to a few miles from Skegness in the south. The area is of national importance for nature conservation and includes of Sites of Scientific Interest (SSSI), National Character Areas and Scheduled Monuments. The area is known for its peace, tranquillity and provides some of the finest natural scenery in the East Midlands.

The area includes a number of distinct areas, these include the North West Scarp, an area rich in wildlife and woodland. The Chalk Wolds that include rolling hills and secluded valleys, the Ridges and Valleys of the South West include chalk ridges, wide river valleys, woodlands, hedgerows and country estates. The South Eastern Claylands are the most wooded part of the Wolds and include cultivated fields. The areas special qualities include scenic beauty and rural charm, expansive sweeping views, peace and tranquillity.

The main industries in the AONB include arable farming and agriculture. The area is relatively less developed as a tourist area than some other AONBs, offering visitors the opportunity to see one of the most unspoilt AONBs in England. There are a number of scenic villages and small towns located in the AONB including Tetford, Tealby and Binbrook. Market towns located close by include Alford, Horncastle, Louth and Market Rasen.

The area is popular for horse riding, day trippers, walkers and cyclists with a range of routes to explore. Visitors can enjoy a number of scenic landscapes, the great outdoors and benefit from the peace and tranquillity.

Quick Facts

Lincolnshire Wolds Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty:

Year of Designation: 1973

Population: 10,500 (approx)

Size in square kilometres: 558

Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSIs): 14
Scheduled Monuments: 97
Highest Elevation: Wolds Top at 168 metres (551 feet)
Main Settlements close by: Louth, Skegness Lincoln, Grimsby and Scunthorpe.
Located in: Lincolnshire.


The Lincolnshire Wolds AONB is located the east of England county of Lincolnshire across the county of Kent, covering approx 8% of the land in the county. The AONB provides a place that is an ideal countryside retreat with its scenic natural beauty, expansive landscape and impressive views away from the traffic and noise of the towns and cities. The AONB area itself is relatively sparsely populated compared to some other AONBs and the surrounding areas in Lincolnshire. The area includes a number of traditional small villages and hamlets that are full of local history and cultural.

The Lincolnshire Wolds have a long history and are of national importance for its landscape, ecology and geology. There are no large cities or towns located within the Lincolnshire Wolds, there are a number of smaller towns, villages and settlements. Local market towns such as Alford, Louth and Market Rasen provide convenient places from which visitors can tour the AONB areas. The commercial development in the AONB area has been limited compared to some other AONBs and being one of the lesser known AONBs ensures the area is a place that retains its unspoilt rural countryside and landscapes.

The location in the east of England means the AONB is assessable from across the east of England, the Midlands and northern England. From Leeds the area is 2 hours by car, from Liverpool and Manchester it is 3 hours to 3 hours 45 minutes, from Birmingham it is approx 2 hours 30 minutes away. From these regions the AONB is assessable as a day trip, short break or longer break destination. From London and much of southern England the area is 3 hours 30 minutes to 5 hours 30 minutes by car.

Tourist Information Centres are located at various locations close by to the Lincolnshire Wolds. The TICs are based in Alford, Cleethorpes, Market Rasen, Louth and Horncastle located close by to the Lincolnshire Wolds. The visitor centres provides visitors with information, help, advice and tips on the AONB area and the surrounding areas in Lincolnshire. Each of the centres has knowledgeable staff that can provide useful local knowledge on local attractions, places of interest, things to see and do, along with local advice and tips. A visit to the tourist information centres provides a good first port of call for visitors helping to better plan and organise trips in and around the local area.

Local Accommodation includes a choice of both historic and contemporary hotels, B & B’s, Guest Houses, Self Catering houses, holiday homes, country houses and cottages. Local accommodation is available in the villages of North Willingham, Welton le Wold and Binbrook. There is accommodation available in the nearby towns of Market Rasen, Louth, Alford and Horncastle. Larger towns including Skegness, Grimsby and the cathedral city of Lincoln are all conveniently located close by to the AONB, providing good access to local facilities and accommodation from which to explore the AONB and the local areas.

Located within the Lincolnshire Wolds AONB visitors can explore a number of charming, small historic towns, villages and hamlets that retain their charm and character. History and tradition have been well preserved in many of the towns and villages providing a fascinating in to local culture. When exploring the local towns and villages visi0tors will find a number of local attractions and places of interest.

Local Towns & Villages include Alford a town located 14 miles from Louth in Lincolnshire. Alford is a market town with markets taking place on Tuesdays, the market includes fresh local produce and a range of gifts. There is a craft market that takes place on Tuesdays and Fridays throughout the summer selling hand crafted goods. Local facilities and amenities include a couple of supermarkets and independent shops offering a range of services. There are a choice of traditional pubs where visitors can enjoy a choice of hot and cold foods, snacks and drinks.

Alford's location and accommodation facilities make it a popular base from which visitors can explore the AONB. Local attractions include St Wilfrid's Church, am impressive Grade I listed building though to date back to the 13th or 14th centuries. The church includes some original features such as the Century Screen dating back to the 14th century and the pulpit that dates back to the Jacobean era. Alford Windmill is a historic five sailed windmill that dates back to the 19th century, it has been restored and currently is both a working mill and tourist attraction. Visitors can tour he mill and learn more about its history and see the surrounding gardens and enjoy tea and cakes in the tea room.

Alford Manor House is a Grade II* listed building, it is believed to the largest thatched manor house in England, the historic house dates back to 1611. The house is a rare example of a composite structure whilst both the ground and first floor rooms include design interventions from both the Georgian and Victorian eras. The house includes a number of exhibitions, displays and artefacts giving visitors an insight in to the history of the house. The tea rooms offer a choice of cakes, biscuits and drinks and the gardens that have undergone extensive restoration offer a fine place to enjoy a relaxing strolling in a scenic setting.

Market Rasen is a town located 15 miles to the west of Louth next to the AONB area. Located on the River Rase, Market Rasen is a market town with regular markets held on Tuesdays, Fridays and Saturdays, there is also a monthly Farmers' Market held in the town. The picturesque small town includes a Parish Church that dates back to Norman times and its best known attraction is Market Rasen Racecourse. The Market Rasen Racecourse is a National Hunt racecourse and stages a year round programme of racing, the best known fixture is the Summer Plate held in July each year. The location and accommodation facilities mean Market Rasen is conveniently located for visitors to the AONB.

Louth is a market town located on the edge of the Lincolnshire Wolds AONB, approx 25 miles from the city of Lincoln. Located on the River Lud, the town is sometimes referred to as 'the capital of the Lincolnshire Wolds'; the historic market town still has weekly markets and has long since been a major trading area since the building of the canal back in the 1770's. The town is home to some fine architecture with a number of impressive historic buildings from the 17th century onwards and charming Georgian streets. Local facilities and amenities include and art deco cinema, theatre and a good choice of local shops including a choice of inns and restaurants and independent stores.

Stockwith Watermill is located 12 miles south of Louth in the south of the AONB. Located in a scenic location in the heart of Tennyson Country, the watermill dates back to the 17th century, visitors can see the Tennyson exhibition and join in a number of events and workshops. The area includes idyllic scenery offering visitors a great place to enjoy a country walk, with marked trails to follow. The tea room serves a range of speciality teas and coffees, juices, light lunches and a range of locally sourced produce.

Cadwell Park Racing Circuit is located 6 miles from Louth, the circuit was first established back in 1934 an has proved to be a popular circuit over the years. The circuit is known for its undulating and twisty nature that takes it past both open park and woodland. The circuit is famous for the 'Mountain' section that riders usually take when airborne providing spectators with a spectacular sight. The circuit hosts a number of races and meets each year including the Vintage Sports Car Club Festival and a number of classic motorcycle events. The circuit offers trackdays for both cars and bikes along with driver and rider training. The circuit is a firm favourite among motor racing aficionados.

Red Hill Nature Reserve is located 8 miles south west of Louth, the nature reserve is 27.60 hectares in size and is famous for its stunning views across the countryside along with its butterflies, wild flowers and spring flowers. The nature reserve is well known for the exposure o the Red Chalk, a formation that occurs only in Lincolnshire, Norfolk and Yorkshire. Visitors can see some inspiring landscapes and great views.

Walking is a popular activity in the AONB and the surrounding areas, there are a number of popular walks in the area for visitors to try. The Lincolnshire Wolds offers walkers a choice landscapes and terrain, with a number of footpaths and bridleways offering both shorter and longer walks for walkers of all abilities. The walks include The Viking Way, a 147 mile long distance footpath that begins in the Humber and ends in Rutland Water, whilst passing through the AONB. The Lindsey Loop is a 95 mile walk that links together the market towns that surround the AONB. The Lincs Wold Way is a 76 mile circular walk that begins and ends in Louth taking in the finest scenery in the Lincolnshire Wolds.

Cycling provides both a cost effective and environmentally friendly way to explore the Lincolnshire Wolds AONB. There are a number of quiet lanes and bridleways making the area great for cycling, there are a number of circular routes that are suitable for cyclists of all abilities. The National Cycle Route from Hull to Harwich goes through the AONB and there is the Lindsey Trail, a 69 mile route for cyclists, walkers, horse riders and carriage drivers. Cycling through the area offers visitors a great insight in to local history, the landscape and attractions.

Visitors to the Lincolnshire Wolds AONB in the east of England will find a quiet haven with plenty of open spaces, scenic countryside and landscapes. There are a number of historic small local towns, villages and hamlets to discover along with charming market towns located close by. The area is known for its essentially rural character and tranquillity making for a scenic getaway.

How to Get There

Lincolnshire Wolds AONB is accessible by both car and public transport.

By Car:

The town of Louth in Lincolnshire is located next to the AONB area and provides a convenient located from which to explore the area with a choice of accommodation and local amenities. Located approx 160 miles from central London. From London, take the A3211, then the A1203, then the A1261, A13 and then on the A406 North Circular. From the A406, take the exit for the M11 motorway, continue on the M11 until the exit for the A14. Take the A14 until the exit for the A1(M) Peterborough. From the A1(M) at junction 17 exit on the A1139, continue up to the roundabout and take the third exit for the A47. Then take Crowland Road and continue on to Peterborough Road, then at the roundabout take the third exit on to the A16, continue until the right turning for Mill Drove, continue on to Funley Drove, then turn left on to B1165. At the roundabout take the third exit on to the A16. Continue along the A16 until the exit for the B1520 that goes to Louth. The approx journey time is 3 hours 30 minutes to 4 hours 15 minutes depending on traffic and time of day.

By Train:

The train station at Lincoln has regular services from London Kings Cross via Newark North Gate, Peterborough or Retford stations. The approx journey time is 1 hour 45 minutes to 2 hours 30 minutes hours depending on time of day, service and connections. From Lincoln City Bus Station in the city there are bus services via Stagecoach Route 10 to Louth, the approx journey time is 1 hour 5 minutes.

By Bus/Coach:

There are regular buses available from London Victoria Coach station to Lincoln. The approx journey time is approx 5 hours 30 minutes depending on time of day, connections and traffic. From Lincoln bus services to Louth are available from Stagecoach route 10. Coach services to Lincoln are provided by services are provided by National Express.

Contact Details

Lincolnshire Wolds Countryside Service
Navigation Warehouse
Riverhead Road
LN11 0DA

Telephone: +44 (0)1507 609740

Website: Lincolnshire Wolds AONB


For Local Search and Directions see: Lincolnshire Wolds (AONB) Map

Tips & Other Considerations

The weather and climate can be unpredictable, there can be elements of all four seasons in one day. Ensure you check the weather forecast before you travel and have the correct clothing and footwear including comfortable walking shoes, fleece, raincoat and umbrella.

Follow travel advice and remain alert, vigilant and aware of your belongings at all times especially your wallet/purse and valuables and ensure they are hidden away from public view. If you have a bag try to use a shoulder bag with a good quality, strong strap, that is put across your shoulder not on your shoulder making it more difficult for anyone to take your bag.

If you are travelling by car to the Lincolnshire Wolds AONB ensure you are well prepared with maps and Sat Nav to aid your journey, particularly if you are not familiar with the local area and roads. Use the journey planner for door to door directions. Check traffic updates before you travel.

If you are looking for car parking in and around the AONB, ensure you fully understand the rules, regulations & charges for car parks and street parking. The rules & regulations can be complex & confusing if you are unclear, it is wise not to park there.

If you are travelling by public transport, check for service updates prior to beginning your journey for any delays, disruption or cancellations to services that may impact on your journey. Ensure you have the service timetables for the trains, trams, buses and coaches. Remember when the last services are and ensure you make it to the train/bus/coach stops well in time to avoid missing the service.

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