Name 100 acre wood/ West Walk
Location 100 Acres road PO17 6JD
Parking? yes £1.50 for up to 2 hours
Dogs allowed? yes except in fenced play area
This is another lovely imaginative playground, the forestry commission have put a lot of effort into making this a great play area for children of all ages. 100 acre woods is part of Bere Forest, the forest includes mile of footpaths, cycle ways and bridle paths. Our visit was purely to the two closest play areas.
The two play areas are separated by a footpath and a fence. Aimed at slightly older children one of the play areas is primarily a balance trail with logs to balance on, bridges to cross, a stepping stones, and a scrabble net. There are also several bucket swings and a really big swing.
The downside to this play area is it is open to the woods and dog walkers, my daughter got very scared by a dog running up to her when she was balancing. This is really the only negative, the balance trail and swings are great. There are also plenty of opportunities for den building here too.
The second play area is aimed at younger children and is predominantly fenced in. At the centre of the playground is a tree house with a steep ramp to access it. There are several swings, a big sandpit, tepees, a bouldering wall, play houses and bridges.
This is a great play area, the little houses, tepees and slightly hidden areas add to the adventure, the children can be out of sight but safe. The children loved exploring the area, running through the willow tunnel, hiding under the bridges and playing games in the houses.
Be warned, though this area appears well fenced in there are quite deliberate escape routes, a totem pole with a hole in it, a tower that allows you to climb over the fence into the woods beyond. I read (and have since lost)an interview with the play area designer that said he deliberately put these holes in to add to the adventure and to link the play area with the woods.
I love that all the play equipment is wooden, no plastic, metal or bright colours, the play areas don’t blend into the woods but they do fit in.
It would be easy to spend a full day here. There are picnic areas, toilets, a refreshment van and bookable bbqs, everything you need for a fun day.
Despite having visited 100 acre woods several times we have never got further than the play areas, we have so much fun here the children have never wanted to go deeper into the woods. One day we will!