BLOG: GM's Top 10 Parks

16 November 2020

As part of Week 3 of Greater Manchester Tree Month we are celebrating the region’s parks and green spaces and have curated a list of our top ten parks across the region, one in each borough, to inspire you to explore.

There are hundreds of parks in Greater Manchester, offering green havens of recreation and relaxation. These spaces come in all shapes and sizes, each with their own character and facilities, but all equally important to local communities.

Check out our top ten below…


Smithills Estate, Bolton

The Smithills Estate, owned by the Woodland Trust, is a fabulous place to visit with a whole range of habitats including woodland, moorland and grassland. Walk through Barrow Bridge Woodland and take one of the two flights of stairs leading up to the partial ancient woodland at High Shores Clough. There are various routes around the site including ones through the wood and along Dean Brook – keep your eyes peeled for all kinds of woodland wildlife.

Barrow Bridge Road, Bolton, BL1 7NH


Waterdale Park (part of City Forest Park), Bury

Waterdale is one of the Forestry Commission’s Community Woodlands. Restored at the turn of the century, it now hosts a fantastic mix of trails and developing native woodland. It’s a great place to explore with a flat, wide forest track and easy stroll along the river.

Buckley Lane, Whitefield, M45 7JZ


Heaton Park, Manchester

Manchester’s largest park stretches over 600 acres and has plenty to see and do including the Treetop Trek and boating lake. There’s a fantastic circular walk through the park where you can discover treasures such as The Dell, Hazlitt Wood and the Temple.

Heaton Park, Middleton Road, Manchester, M25 2SW


Tandle Hill Country Park, Oldham

Oldham’s oldest park covers 48 hectares of parkland and boasts a mixture of wonderful woodlands packed with wildlife. From the car park, there’s a whole network of winding paths running up to the viewpoint – and from here you can see excellent views across north Manchester and Bury.

Tandle Hill Country Park, Tandle Hill Road, Royton, OL2 5UX


Hollingworth Lake Country Park, Rochdale

Spanning 118 acres and with Blackstone Edge as a dramatic backdrop, Hollingworth Lake is one of the most popular days out in the area. Head for Whittaker Woods – a hidden gem just a short walk uphill from the visitor centre. On the way back down, head to the Pavilion on the south side of the lake.

Hollingworth Lake Visitor Centre, Rakewood Road, Littleborough, OL15 0AQ


Worsley Woods, Salford

Close to the M60, these surprisingly tranquil woodlands stretch across 30 hectares and are well connected to the historical Bridgewater Canal. Explore the site on numerous paths from Beesley Green and follow the wildflower trail through Kempnough Brook.

Beesley Green, Greenleach Lane, Worsley, M28 2QW


Bramhall Park, Stockport

The beautiful grounds surrounding the 14th Century Bramhall Hall are an ideal location for a family day out. There are a number of accessible trails starting from the hall that take you through the magnificent woodlands.

Bramhall Park, Bramhall Park Road, Stockport, SK7 3NX


Stamford Park, Tameside

Stamford Park opened in 1873 and boasts an aviary, boating lake and fantastic woodland area, The Dingle, which sits on the side of a valley along the east of the park. The ornate Victorian rockwork and water features have recently been restored and an accessible path runs through the woodland.

Stamford Park, Stamford Street, Stalybridge, SK15 1QZ


Sale Water Park, Trafford

Sale Water Park was created in the 1970s when the M60 motorway was being built and contains a lake, woodland and meadows. Head to the woodlands immediately north of the visitor centre car park. From there you can follow the path alongside the River Mersey to Broad Ees Dole – the perfect place to spot the park’s brilliant birds from the hide.

Sale Water Park, Rifle Road, M33 2LX


Haigh Woodland Park, Wigan

A great family day out, Haigh Woodland Park has extensive woodlands as well as mini golf, orienteering, a high ropes course and adventure playground. You can reach the woodlands by heading down the main drive from the car park close to the hall. When you’re there, explore the huge range of plants, fungi, birds, amphibians and mammals including the roe deer.

Haigh Woodland Park, School Lane, Wigan, WN2 1PE


Download our ‘Top Ten Park’s document below for a handy reminder of where to go.

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