Some 30 miles to the south of London lies the beautiful Ashdown Forest. Immortalised by A. A. Milne as the home of Winnie the Pooh, this lush green patch amid East Sussex County entices with breathtaking views and romantic walking paths. Its altitude of over 730 feet lets nature lovers gaze upon rolling green hills all the way to the North and South Downs on each side of the horizon.

Ashdown ForestMelanie Davies Creative / Foter / CC BY-NC-ND

Tranquil bliss

Ashdown Forest’s charm lies in the natural calm which hangs over the coniferous landscape. Walking down one of many trodden paths, one is easily transported to a mellow state of timelessness, and a fairy-tale sensation will come over even the most hardened city folk. Despite Milne fame, visions of piglets and kangaroos are unlikely. Instead, fantasy and Tolkienesque romanticism charm and enthrall. Take your lover by the hand and explore the vistas and treks on foot!

Friend's Clump
Ashdown ForestDom W / Foter / CC BY-NC-ND

Action and adventure

A romantic escapade in Ashdown Forest does not preclude some physical activity. In fact, the area is popular with cyclists and joggers, and it offers excellent opportunities for couple fitness action. Follow the tracks or make your own – after all, what beats making your mark and leaving a trail behind, as a sporty power duo?

Pooh Bridge
Ashdown ForestFred Dawson / Foter / CC BY-NC-ND

Comfort and class

Unless you have a survivalist streak, you will want a roof over your head on your romantic escapade. The Ashdown Park Sussex Hotel is your best bet here. Conveniently located on the forest’s outer edge at Colemans Hatch Road, it offers pleasant and cozy lodging which fits with the place’s retro atmosphere. If you feel like popping out for a pint, a small selection of authentic local taverns is there to welcome you.

Gate to ashdown forest - adjustments
Ashdown ForestRobert Broadie / Foter / CC BY-SA

Rustic life

Ashdown Forest is not the only place which tickles your imagination and brings up images of Ye Merrie Olde Englande. Take a tour around the nearby villages of Gills Lap and Hartfield to solidify the impression of rustic country life and evoke some retro-romance. While you are at it, check out Cotchford Farm, formerly owned by A. A. Milne himself. Even if Winnie the Pooh is not your cup of tea, you will surely appreciate the author’s former house for its rural charm and pleasant atmosphere. According to other trivia, Brian Jones of Rolling Stones fame also resided there for a time.

Ashdown ForestAndyWilson / Foter / CC BY-NC-ND

Wheels and train tracks

Now that you know of Ashdown Forest’s charm and simple pleasures, all you need to do is get there. Motorists will find ample parking space all around the forest. If you feel like sitting back and enjoying a picturesque ride instead, buses and trains will serve you equally well. The Forest awaits you!