We visit the wildlife haven near Bristol Airport with stunning views, goats and ancient woodland

The stunning woodland spreads across 130 acres of land

Located in the heart of rural North Somerset in Cleeve, just south of Bristol, the Goblin Combe is a limestone gorge spread across 130 acres of natural woodland.

The area is composed of a steep-sided valley with extensive areas of limestone scree, which supports semi-natural ancient woodland and areas of unimproved calcareous grassland and limestone heath, which have limited distribution in Great Britain.

During the Triassic period (250 million to 280 million years ago) the area was a dry desert. Sporadic but torrential rain storms would cause flash flooding on a huge scale with water pouring over the edge of the escarpment to create waterfalls that wore their way back through the rocks. The process repeated over millions of years, creating the steep-sided valley.

Since 1999, a large section of the combe has been designated as a biological Site of Special Scientific Interest in recognition of its unique composition and diverse range of animal and plant species that can be found here, some of which are now quite rare.

Around 22 acres of land are managed as a nature reserve by the Avon Wildlife Trust.

Goblin Combe is located near Bristol International Airport which means visitors will be able to spot planes flying close by during their visit.

Goblin Combe is open all year round. However, the Avon Wildlife Trust website recommends March to July and September to November as the best times to visit.

There's a free car park by Cleeve Hill Road, and goats roam free all year round at some of Goblin Combe's fields.

By climbing the steep steps, visitors can reach the Cleeve Toot above the valley, an Iron Age hillfort, as well as enjoy stunning views of the Mendip.

Scroll through to see 30 images from our visit to Goblin Combe.

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