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A close up of a robin sat on a wall at Dunster Castle, Somerset in winter
Robin at Dunster Castle, Somerset | © National Trust Images/John Millar

Nature

Get closer to nature with our guides on ancient trees, spotting wildlife and identifying birdsong. Have a go at forest bathing, rock pooling or learn about wild flowers, plus much more. 

Trees and plants

Whether you’re intrigued by woodland giants or want to learn more about colourful wild flowers, explore the world of trees and plants.

Visitor enjoying a peaceful moment at Colby Woodland Garden, Pembrokeshire
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A beginner's guide to forest bathing 

Forest bathing is a way of relaxing and slowing down the mind by immersing yourself in nature. It can help reduce blood pressure, lower stress levels and improve concentration.

Giant redwood trees in the country park at Tredegar House, Newport, South Wales.
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How the giant sequoia came to England 

Once upon a time a giant American conifer was the ultimate status symbol. We trace the story of how it arrived on our shores.

Fungi growing on the woodland floor next to a fallen tree trunk
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Facts about fungi 

Fungi play a vital role in the natural world and decomposition process, helping break down organic woodland material. Learn all you need to know about these important organisms.

Coppiced beech trees at Low Scrubs
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What is coppicing? 

Coppicing is an ancient woodland management technique that was once used to ensure a regular supply of timber and firewood. Discover how it's used today at the places we care for to create a range of habitats for plants and wildlife.

Wildlife

There’s such a range of wildlife to discover wherever you are. Learn more about what you can spot this season and the places that wildlife calls home.

Fallow deer (Dama dama) grazing on the Crom Estate, County Fermanagh, Northern Ireland.
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Deer-spotting tips 

Find out about fallow, red and muntjac deer, how to tell them apart and other top tips for seeing and photographing them at the places we care for.

A swallow in flight against a blue sky
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Birds to spot through the seasons 

Find out how the changing seasons affect the birds you’ll see out and about, with spotting tips and photo galleries to guide you.

Red squirrel sitting on a mossy rock eating a nut
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Red squirrel spotting tips 

Find out how to spot red squirrels, the best times to see them and how to tell them apart from grey squirrels.

A water vole by a canal
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How to spot water voles 

Discover how to identify burrows, food, footprints and latrines, and how to tell the difference between water voles and brown rats, even when they're swimming.

Coast

Discover pockets of ocean life in a rock pool, learn how to identify common fossils at the coast or even record your favourite coastal sounds.

Puffins on the Farne Islands, Northumberland
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Our guide to puffins 

Every year, thousands of puffins come to the places in our care to breed. Find out more about what they eat, when they breed and the best time to see them up close.

Close view of fossils at the disused Loftus Alum Works, North Yorkshire
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Common fossils to find at the coast 

Do you know your ammonites from your devil’s toenails? Discover how to identify some of the fossils commonly found around the UK coast and where you might see them.

Visitors rockpooling at Wembury Beach, Wembury, Devon
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Discover the wonders of a rock pool 

As the tide goes out, the secrets of the sea are revealed in rock pools left behind. Exploring the wonders of a rock pool is no. 37 of the ‘50 things to do before you’re 11¾’.

Walkers on the South West coast path to Old Harry, Studland Bay, Dorset
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Sounds of our shores 

We worked with the British Library and the National Trust for Scotland to create the UK’s first ever coastal sound map. Find out about the project and top tips for making your own recording of the sounds of our shores.

Visitor watching wildlife at Fountains Abbey and Studley Royal Water Garden, North Yorkshire

Start your journey of discovery

Delve into history, get tips from our experts, learn a new skill and go behind the scenes of your favourite places.