The UK’s heathland offers a unique open landscape with a remarkable range of wildlife, including beautiful heathers, butterlies, reptiles and birds. Here’s a selection of the best locations to visit:
1 Cannock Chase
in Staffordshire contains the largest surviving lowland heathland in central England. It is home to four of the six British reptiles and is great for hearing nightjars.
2 Westleton Heath National Nature Reserve
is part of the best remaining tract of heath in Suffolk and is a blaze of purple in summer.
3 Thursley National Nature Reserve
is one of the largest heaths in Surrey and is thought to be the richest dragonfly site in Britain – with 26 species having bred.
4 Studland and Godlingston Heath
in Dorset is managed by the National Trust. It is the place to try and track down all six species of British reptile.
5 Aylesbeare Common
in Devon is a tract of heathland with all three heather species, a population of Dartford warblers and the highest butterfly species list of any RSPB reserve.