Great nature reserves to visit in July

Dancersend by Mick Jones

With nearly 90 nature reserves to choose from in our three counties, which are the best to visit this month?
Hurley Chalk Pit

Hurley Chalk Pit, Berks

This tiny reserve is a great place to look for butterflies on warm days. Twenty two species have been recorded here. They're attracted to the wild flowers that grow in the chalky soil, from wild herbs like marjoram to beautiful orchids.

With a pub close to each end of the path that runs next to the reserve it's a great place to visit as part of a longer walk in the area!

Hurley Chalk Pit


Dancersend by Mick Jones

Dancersend, Bucks

Dancersend is a tranquil nature reserve with a rich variety of habitats to explore, from shady woodland to stunning chalk grassland filled with wild flowers. Did you know this special place has been a nature reserve since the 1940s. The reserve increased in size a few years ago when BBOWT started managing the adjoining Pavis Woods.

You can explore the reserve and the surrounding countryside on our circular Tring Wild Walk.


Chinnor Hill

Chinnor Hill, Oxon

With magnificent views over Aylesbury Vale, Chinnor Hill is a patchwork of flowery grassland, scrub and woodland, steeped in ancient history. 

In midsummer the chalk grassland is filled with fragrant wild herbs and pretty wild orchids, which attract a range of butterflies.

Chinnor Hill

Common tern

Common tern by Donald Sutherland

Hosehill Lake, Berks

This beautiful lake is surrounded by meadows, ponds and sheltered reedbeds. Look out for all sorts of birds from lapwings and common tern to nightingales and reed buntings.

BBOWT members receive a discount on food and drink in the Fox and Hounds pub so why not pop in for some refreshment after a stroll around the reserve.

Hosehill Lake


Kingfisher by Jon Hawkins - Surrey Hills Photography

Letcombe Valley, Oxon

Letcombe Valley is a community nature reserve. The lovely mix of cool, clear chalk stream, woodland and chalk grassland creates a tranquil haven for wildlife and local people.

Come along to the Wildlife Discovery Day here on Saturday 20 July. Experts and enthusiasts will be on hand to show you the wildlife that lives here and there will be lots of activities for all the family: build dens, play in our mud kitchen, make natural art and bring out the budding naturalist in all the family!

Letcombe Valley

Rushbeds Wood

Rushbeds Wood by Phil Townsend

Rushbeds Wood, Bucks

Discover a wealth of wild flowers and butterflies in the meadows and ancient woodland at Rushbeds Wood, including the rare black hairstreak. Be careful not to trample the wild flowers while photographing the butterflies though!

During July look out for the fast-flying purple hairstreak butterflies high up in the tree tops. Look out too for purple emperors, silver-washed fritillaries and white admirals flitting around the woodland glades.

Rushbeds Wood

Come and discover more about local wildlife

Meadow brown butterfly

Our top species to see in July

Find out more
Warburg walk

Explore more on a Wild Walk

Find out more


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