Natural England - Kingley Vale NNR

Kingley Vale NNR

The reserve contains one of the finest yew forests in western Europe, including a grove of ancient trees which are among the oldest living things in Britain.

750 year old yew / Peter Wakely

County: West Sussex

Main habitats: Yew woodland and lowland chalk grassland

Why visit: Kingley Vale is known for its twisted and ancient yews and includes a grove of veteran trees which are among the oldest living things in Britain. It also has superb chalk grassland and is one of the most important archaeological sites in southern England, with 14 scheduled ancient monuments.

Star species: look out for green woodpeckers hunting for ants on the grassland, as well as red kites and buzzards. There are also butterflies galore, including the beautiful chalkhill blue, holly blue and brimstone.

Access: the terrain at Kingley Vale, including the Nature Trail, is steep and difficult in places and not suitable for wheelchairs.

Other nearby attractions: the beautiful West Dean Gardens, the South Downs National Park and the superb Fishbourne Roman Palace, in Chichester, are all close by.


  • Please keep to paths and rights of way within the reserve and follow the Country Code.

  • Please keep dogs on leads to protect grazing animals and sensitive wildlife.

  • Please take all litter home with you

  • Please leave gates as you find them

  • Camping and fires are not allowed

  • Mountain bikes and horses can cause severe damage to the turf and riders must keep to bridleways.

For information about the reserve contact 0300 060 6000 or email