Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONBs) are areas of high scenic quality that have statutory protection in order to conserve and enhance the natural beauty of their landscapes. The 33 AONB landscapes that sit wholly within England range from rugged coastline to water meadows to gentle lowland and upland moors.
They are different from National Parks because of their more limited opportunities for extensive outdoor recreation.
Natural England has a statutory power to designate land as Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty under the Countryside and Rights of Way Act 2000.
In all, AONB designation covers approximately 15 per cent of the land area of England.