Leighton Moss Bird Sanctuary
Operated by the RSPB (Royal Society for the Protection of Birds), Leighton Moss is the largest reed-bed in the North West of England. A truly amazing bird sanctuary, Leighton Moss makes for a very diverse wildlife habitat that provides a home for a wide variety of animals and invertebrates, not just birds.
While visiting the sanctuary, it is not unusual to see some truly special birds like bitterns, bearded tits and marsh harriers. Butterflies and even deer can often be seen around the sanctuary, too, just going about their daily lives in the safe environment that Leighton Moss provides for them.
Trails and hides of the Leighton Moss Bird Sanctuary
There is a good selection of trails and hides around the site, with most of them being wheelchair accessible. These trails and hides allow visitors to get right into the heart of the reed-bed for some spectacular walks and viewing opportunities. If you prefer, there is also a nature trail that runs alongside the two coastal lagoons of the sanctuary – here, you will be able to see plenty of water and wading birds.
If you are bringing your little ones, there are plenty of things for them to do too. Simply pick up one of the self-led family trail guides from the visitor centre. These trails change each month so there is always something new for the children to learn.
Events all year round
There is always something happening at Leighton Moss, even in the winter, so be sure to take a look at the events page of their website to see what’s on in the month you are planning to visit. From learning about habitats for all types of creatures and animals to mini-beast safaris, there is a lot for the young adventurer to learn as well as the bigger explorers too!
Whatever event that you attend, at whatever time of the year, families with children and even dogs are more than welcome. If bringing a dog, all that is asked is that the dog poo is picked up and that the dog is kept on a lead.
Apart from a lead for your furry friend, it is recommended that a good pair of Wellington boots be
brought along – just in case – for some of the nature trails.
Aside from the almost obligatory visitor and information centres together with the car park and toilet facilities, Leighton Moss also offers an excellent Fair Trade cafe. The café’s chefs make full use of locally sourced ingredients and the coffee is made from beans grown and imported by the RSPB itself.
Of course, if a traditional picnic is more your thing then that is OK too. The designated picnic area allows families to sit outside in the sun (hopefully) together and enjoy a peaceful meal right alongside nature.
Entry to the sanctuary itself is very reasonable and costs just £3 for a group of up-to four people, which is superb value for such an interesting and educational day out for all the family.