Bodenham Lake

Bodenham Lake is an important overwintering and breeding area for birds and other aquatic wildlife, so approximately half of the site is managed as a wildlife refuge with restricted public access. More than 170 bird species have been seen here.


Bodenham Lake Nature Reserve

OS Map Reference

SO 529512
A static map of Bodenham Lake

Know before you go

45 hectares

Parking information

Free car park on site.

Grazing animals

Seasonal grazing by sheep.

Walking trails

You can picnic and stroll through beautiful orchards as well as river and lakeside meadows. There are surfaced and unsurfaced paths with clear signage. To prevent disturbance to sensitive wildlife there is no access to the western end of the reserve but the area can be seen from the public hides.


There are two easy access paths around part of the lake, both originating from the car park.


Under effective control


Bird hides
Picnic area

When to visit

Opening times

Dawn to dusk daily

Best time to visit

All year

About the reserve

One of the largest stretches of open water in Herefordshire, covering around 50 acres, Bodenham Lake today is an important overwintering and breeding area for wildfowl and other aquatic wildlife. The lake is designated as a Site of Local Importance and, where the reserve borders the River Lugg, it is designated as a Site of Special Scientific Interest and Special Area of Conservation. More than 170 species of birds have been recorded here while otters are regularly spotted. The lake is also a key breeding site for toads and thousands follow historic migratory routes to the lake each spring. With so much water about, it is also a good site for dragonflies and damsels in the summer, while the meadows and weedy areas are full of butterflies.

Please note: fishing, swimming or water sports  are not permitted in the lake outside of authorised activity.

Contact us

Environmental designation

Local Nature Reserve (LNR)


From Hereford, follow the A49 north and turn right to Bodenham village, signposted to The Railway Inn. Once past the pub, the reserve is on the right-hand side a few minutes along this road. If you come to the war memorial, you have gone too far!

Wildflower meadow of yellow and white flowers with tall hedgerow in background and hills beyond

Davies Meadow Nature Reserve (Paul Lloyd)

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When you join us as a member of Herefordshire Wildlife Trust you will receive our Herefordshire Nature Reserves Guide with full details of all our nature reserves including maps and species of interest.

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