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Stour Valley

A three-mile stretch of riverside footpath, meadows, hedgerows and woodland.

The Stour Valley was the first of our local nature reserves to be awarded a Green Flag.

There’s an arboretum in the valley, filled with interesting trees and, as well as the beautiful scenery, you can see lots of wildlife along the riverside footpath, including kingfishers and, sometimes, even otters.

You may also spot one of the grazing animals that we use to help us manage the habitats in an environmentally friendly way.

Kingfisher Barn Visitor Centre

Opened in 2016, Kingfisher Barn Visitor Centre is the gateway to the Stour Valley Nature Reserve. It’s run in a partnership between us and the The Parks Foundation.

There’s a classroom inside the centre, along with an interpretation area, which helps you to discover the Stour Valley Nature Reserve and all its wonderful flora and fauna.

The Wildlife Garden

The Wildlife Garden is just outside the centre, and includes a wildlife pond, bug hotels, willow sculpture and new wildflower area.


Sign up for the Kingfisher Barn newsletter. You’ll only be sent updates about news and events at the visitor centre.

Opening times

The visitor centre is open daily from 10am to 4pm, and until 5pm during the summer. It’s closed on Mondays in winter and on Christmas Day. You can check the website for the latest opening information.


This beautiful 3-mile stretch of river, with woodland and meadows, is the setting for nature walks, river and pond dipping, and a wild art club to name just a few of the events and activities happening throughout the year.

Details of forthcoming events can be found on the Kingfisher Barn Visitor Centre website, Facebook page or on Instagram. You can also call 01202 128 484.

Getting there

Stour Valley Nature Reserve is on the north-west edge of the Bournemouth area. You can see the location on our map.

Kingfisher Barn Visitor Centre (BH9 3NZ) is next to the car park at Granby Road.

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