Langdon Visitor Centre
Know before you go
Parking informationFree on site car park
Grazing animalsSheep and cows.
Limited access please contact the centre for more information.
When to visit
Opening timesOpen daily 9am - 5pm
(November, December & January 9am - 4pm)
Closed Christmas Day & Boxing Day
Best time to visitAll year round
About the reserve
Langdon visitor centre is set in a stunning nature reserve of 461 acres which comprises of woodland, meadows, lakes and former plotland gardens. Langdon nature reserve is the largest inland reserve managed by Essex Wildlife Trust. The nature reserve occupies some of the highest land in the county, has some commanding views and offers miles of excellent walks, where an abundance of wildlife can be enjoyed. A beautiful wildlife garden is situated directly behind the visitor centre (sorry dogs are not permitted in the garden).
In the summer there is the opportunity to enjoy Turtle Doves, Nightingales and Woodcock, while in the winter thrushes and finches can be enjoyed. There are thirty butterfly species at Langdon including White Admiral, Green Hairstreak, Marbled White and Grizzled Skipper, making this a spectacular reserve for butterflies in Essex. Langdon also offers seven species of wild orchids in bloom in Many and June. Over 350 wild flowering plants have been recorded. Badgers, Foxes and Weasels all thrive in the meadows.
The nature reserve offers walks through many different areas and habitats and can offer the visitor a really interesting day out. The visitor centre has a display room, gift and bookshop, and refreshments. A full schools programme is available as well as activities for children during holidays and adults / families throughout the year.
The Haven Langdon also has the Haven plotlands museum. This 1930’s/1940’s museum gives a glimpse in to the life of Londoners who purchased land to turn in to a country getaway. The Haven is the last remaining bungalow out of hundreds which once stood on the reserve. Visit the Haven museum itself complete with authentic memorabilia, gardens, workshop, washroom and Anderson shelter.
Please note the Haven museum is NOT open the same hours as the visitor centre. For further information please visit The Haven Plotlands Museum page.
Langdon Lake and Meadows is a diverse grassland with a great invertebrate population which needs to be carefully managed through grazing and cutting. The site is in the Higher Level Scheme and we are committed to grazing the site during the summer to get the best outcome for wildlife. Unfortunately we have suffered from the livestock being ‘worried’ by ‘out of control’ dogs, this ‘worrying’ has been so serious that the animals have become severely scared and as a result, are extremely wary of people, which has made catching and handling them very difficult and they have remained on site longer than planned. We continue to restrict access whilst stock are on site because of the issues with dogs. There are many other paths nearby, all accessible to walkers with or without dogs, which provide great opportunities to get outside.