Avon Gorge & Downs Wildlife

The Avon Gorge, Clifton Down, Durdham Down and Leigh Woods are just a few miles from Bristol City Centre and yet they’re home to a wealth of wildlife. With stunning views, rare plants, ancient woodland, nesting peregrine falcons and awe-inspiring geology this is one of the most exciting places to see wildlife in Bristol.

Summer’s finally here with Avon Gorge and Downs Wildlife


The wildflower meadow is in full flower with stunning flowers and grasses thriving on the limestone soil of Clifton Down. Come for a stroll to see our common orchids, dropwort, oxeye daisies, quaking grasses, meadow foxtail, birds-foot trefoil, black knapweed, yellow rattle – to name a few!
“Both speakers passionate and extremely knowledgeable about the subject.” Guardians of the stream talk 2024
“Libby Houston had such great knowledge and experience of the area teamed with enthusiasm.” Scrambling among botanical jewels 2024
“Very experienced and informative leader.” Tweet talk birdsong workshop 2024
“…excellent and welcoming, really enjoyed it and have booked again.” Little kids on the Downs 2024
“Clare knew where to go, how long it would take and had made 5 fantastic stories.” Saints, sinners and false diamonds 2024
Very good educational information given by our knowledgable and friendly guide.” Deep dive into the Downs 2024
We have stunning summer events
– a summer Butterfly walk on Zoo Banks and in the wildflower meadow of Clifton Down
– a Ramble with the woodland Ranger at Leigh Woods.
Photo of participants listening to the Leigh Woods Ranger. In Leigh Woods. 2023.

Book now on our What’s On page for summer 2024 events.

Discover our fabulous wildlife and geology in this section.

Explore our discovery walks, wildlife talks, in-depth courses, exciting children’s and family events that we run throughout the year.

Find out about the fantastic learning opportunities available on both sides of the Avon Gorge.

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Avon Gorge & Downs Wildlife is a partnership of Bristol City Council, Natural England, the Society of Merchant Venturers, Downs Committee, University of Bristol, Bristol Zoological Society, National Trust and Forestry England.

Photographs: Juvenile peregrine facing forward (© Sam Coppard), Buttercups on the Downs (© Simon Muir), Spiked speedwell (© Libby Houston), Meadow on the Downs (© Denice Stout), Adult peregrine falcon (© Helen Hall). All other photos © Avon Gorge & Downs Wildlife Project and © Phil Jearey.