Discover bluebells in the Chilterns Countryside

There’s nothing more enchanting than stumbling across a vibrant carpet of woodland bluebells. There are many places in the Chiltern Hills where bluebells flourish and they are at their best between mid-April and mid-May. Discover some beautiful Chiltern bluebells for yourself on one of our online / downloadable walks.

Bluebells are well-known for forming carpets of bright blue flowers beneath our oak and beech woodlands in the late spring. At this time of year, they can also be found along hedgerows and in woodland clearings. Their spectacular floral displays are exclusive to northern Europe, with Britain containing more than half of the world’s population of bluebells.

Bluebells at Bradenham
Bluebells at Bradenham

Bluebells, which are inedible members of the asparagus family of plants, are perennial bulbous herbs with flowering stems to about 50cm tall. They spend most of the year as bulbs underground and emerge to flower from mid-April onwards, although they are usually at their peak in the first two weeks of May, depending on the spring weather. Up to twenty sweetly-scented flowers are borne on a flower stalk which droops to one side. The flowers are bell-shaped and although they are usually blue, they can be white or rarely pink.

Bluebell flower head
Bluebell flower head

Help us to protect our bluebells

The common bluebell (hyacinthoides non-scripta) is a protected species in the UK and the main threats to their survival is people picking the flowers and illegally digging up the bulbs. Hybridisation is another threat, which occurs when common bluebells cross with their closely related cousins from Spain (hyacinthoides hispanica), which have been introduced to the UK as ornamental garden plants. When visiting bluebells on National Trust land, we kindly ask you not to touch the plants and to keep to the defined footpaths to avoid accidental damage.

Bluebells at Greenfield Copse
Bluebells at Greenfield Copse

To discover bluebells for yourself, try one of the following downloadable walks in mid to late May.

Bluebell Walks

Bluebells in a woodland clearing

Watlington Hill - Greenfields and Saxon Roads

A 7-mile walk from Watlington Hill that explores chalk grassland and beech woodlands on the historic landscape of the Chilterns on the border between Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire.

Low Scrubs in mid-April

Low Scrubs: A Walk in Time

This short way-marked walk takes you around Low Scrubs. The dense, dark woodland and the relics of its ancient use give the area a unique and mysterious atmosphere.

Bradenham bluebells

Bradenham beech woods and bunkers trail

This is a medium length walk in the woodlands and meadows of the Bradenham Manor Estate in Buckinghamshire village of Bradenham and neighbouring meadows.