IMPORTANT NOTICE: From 14 to 18 August, the main car park will be undergoing the last part of its essential maintenance to put down a surface dressing as part of the planning permission conditions. This involves putting a stone chip over the top of the tarmac to help it blend in to its surroundings. During this time please park elsewhere to access Heartwood Forest.
Access to Heartwood Forest
Our accessibility statement outlines the available facilities and access information for Heartwood Forest.
Before you arrive
Heartwood Forest is close to St. Albans, on either side of the B651 between Sandridge and Wheathampstead Village. At 858 acres, there are multiple entrances to the site all linking to either bridleways, public or permissive footpaths. If you are visiting Heartwood Forest for the first time, we recommend you use the main car park entrance so that you can view our information boards and site map. Alternatively, if you are in Sandridge you can follow one of the recommended self-guided walks from local businesses.
Arrival and car park
The free car park at Heartwood Forest provides parking for 55 cars, with five designated for blue badge holders. These spaces are clearly marked with a blue badge logo. There are no time restrictions on length of parking for visitors to the site, allowing you plenty of time to explore a new area of the forest! Just be sure to check the car park closing times on our Facilities page or in the full access statement below.
The car park surface is compacted stone with some potholes. An additional overflow car park is used on an ad hoc basis for events and exceptionally busy days - this is flat but the surface is grassed and therefore in adverse weather conditions could potentially become muddy or waterlogged.
Eight bike stands are available for use during your visit. They are located in front of the visitor welcome and information point.
The nearest public toilets are in the village of Sandridge. There are toilets in Sandridge Village Hall, including an accessible toilet (RADAR key required).
There are no baby changing facilities available at Sandridge Village Hall.
There is ramp access to the village hall (to the left hand side of the main entrance). The width of the ramp is in excess of 4ft.
Footpaths and difficulty
There is a developing network of paths in Heartwood Forest including a public footpath and two bridleways. The majority of the paths are unsurfaced and can become muddy or slippery during wet weather, so please be careful and bring appropriate footwear if necessary. There are some moderate gradients leading up from Sandridge village where facilities can be found.