A very well kept secret! A short distance from the city centre and easily accessible by bus, this park gives fantastic views and acres of space, as well as offering good walks on decent footpaths.
There are many access points to the park. You can park in the car park at the top of Pennsylvania Road in the Duryard picnic area (adjacent to Wrefords Lane) and admire fine views and take a short walk from there, but to access longer routes and the Nature Reserve parking here means walking on the road with no pavement. You can park on the roads around the top of Stoke Valley Road and Rosebarn Lane but you cannot park on the private roads around where you enter the reserve such as Argyll Road and Doriam Close. The P bus goes very close by.
This walk is steep in places and grassy underfoot so not buggy or wheelchair friendly. You don’t have to walk far to give children and dogs a good run around so little legs should enjoy it however far you go.
If you find Argyll Road, you will be able to find the end of Belvidere Road. Walk a little way a long here and enter the nature reserve via the gates on the right hand side of the lane. Here you can loop round the fields following the footpaths and leave where you entered, or you can go to the far end and leave via a gate on your left for a longer walk.
If you choose to do this, follow the footpath to where it borders the university perimeter, forming a t-junction. Take the right fork, keeping the university fencing to your left. The path here can be very muddy after rain so good footwear is handy. At the end of this track you reach some houses and you need to bear hard left to join a path opposite that takes you up into the university grounds. You will see that the path continues up some fairly steep steps to your left as in the pictures. It can feel as though you’re trespassing at a couple of points but follow the path keeping the university buildings to the side of you and you will skirt the tennis centre and sports facilities before taking the footpath back into the wooded area. You can follow your nose a bit to extend (go left) or shorten the walk (take the right hand path) and end up back on the lane (Belvidere Road) where you started before reentering the nature reserve if you wish.