National Trust: 01704 878591
A whole swathe of beautiful woodlands are scattered across the coastal part of Sefton borough near Formby, intermingled with dunes. They are one of the few remaining places in Britain where you can see the native red squirrel. The unique mosaic of habitats is also vital to several other rare and endangered species, including the natterjack toad, which lives in the dune 'slacks', or damp hollows.
The National Trust owns several pieces of land in this forest park, featuring the famous Freshfield Reserve where the red squirrels are tame, areas of dune and beach, a stunning 17th century gatehouse and long gallery, and 5,000 year old elk footprints on the beach.
Other highlights include the two National Nature Reserves at Ainsdale and Cabin Hill. The former is a peaceful wood of Corsican pine carpeted with pine needles and sand, whilst the latter is a living dune system criss-crossed with winding paths.
Click here to discover a route around the site.