Top tips for enjoying hot days out at Wicken Fen

Wicken Lode, Wicken Fen

Warm weather, longer evenings, and the beauty of wildlife in bloom and on the wing makes summer a glorious time for visiting Wicken Fen. To make sure that hot days out go smoothly, we've come up with our top tips for keeping cool and enjoying the great outdoors.

Summer days out essentials:

• Sun hat

• Sun glasses

• Sun cream

• Insect repellent

• Water bottle

Don’t worry if you find you have forgotten to bring something as we have these items in our shop.  Our friendly Visitor Centre team will be happy to help you find what you need.

Feeling thirsty?

It's vital to stay hydrated in hot weather, especially when walking out on the reserve.  Make sure you bring a water bottle with you; we have a refill point outside the Docky Hut Café and we're happy to refill your bottle in the Visitor Centre - just ask a member of our friendly team.  We've a range of cold drinks in the café if you want to enjoy something chilled.

If you're bringing a four-legged friend, we have drinking bowls outside the Visitor Centre and café.

The coolest spots

  • Boardwalk trail - our shortest walk at 1.2 km/0.75 miles and a great place to see wildflowers, dragonflies, butterflies and common lizards.  Buggy and wheelchair friendly, it's accessible for all.  There are two hides to stop off at to take a break and find some shade, while wildlife watching.
  • Woodland Walk - a short walk from the Visitor Centre, the Woodland Walk is the same distance as the Boardwalk Trail above.  The plantation gives lots of shade and there are several benches to rest on to cool off.  Families can branch off the main route to the '50 Things to do before you're 11¾' area, where there's lots of fun nature activities to enjoy in a shady area.
  • Tower Hide - it's around a mile to the Tower Hide along the bank of the Wicken Lode, where you can climb up to the top of the hide for great views over the Sedge Fen, and Baker's Fen opposite, in the cool and shade of the hide.
  • West Mere Hide - walk along the opposite side of the Wicken Lode for approximately a mile to the West Mere Hide, for elevated views over the mere.  Relax, watching waders and wildfowl, and get some respite from the sun.
The Wicken Fen tower hide
Wicken Fen tower hide
The Wicken Fen tower hide

Best times to visit

It's cooler and quieter to visit either early morning or mid-afternoon.  The Visitor Centre is open from 10am, but if you arrive earlier, the toilets in the car park are open from 6am, and you can take a stroll around the side of the Visitor Centre to the Sedge Fen to begin your visit. 

Cool off in the café

Relax in the Docky Hut Café with an ice cream and a cold drink, or sit outside in a shady spot on one of our deck chairs with coffee and a delicious cake or a cream tea.  There's a range of lite bites and sweet treats to tempt you and lots of ice creams and lollies too.

Enjoying a sunny day at Wicken Fen
Enjoying a sunny day at Wicken Fen
Enjoying a sunny day at Wicken Fen