Potteric Carr Nature Reserve

Potteric Carr Nature Reserve

Potteric Carr Nature Reserve
4.5
Nature & Wildlife AreasHiking Trails
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Monday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Tuesday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Wednesday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Thursday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Friday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Saturday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Sunday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
About
Nature paths suitable for wheelchairs and pushchairs will wind you around a stunning, safe wetland habitat littered with pockets of woodland and wildflower meadows, and a cracking cafe is a great place for you recharge with friends. Hides allow you and your family to get up close and personal with birds such as woodpeckers and kingfishers and during your wander you may also encounter mammals such as roe deer and hedgehogs. The meadows during summer are full of butterflies on the wing in comparison to a snow laden winter where you may be lucky enough to spot our overwintering bitterns - this globally threatened species a real highlight to see for any wildlife watcher.Please note that we close over the Christmas period, check our website for details. We will be open every other day of the year (weather permitting) please see are website for further details. Unfortunately dogs, horses, bike, scooters etc are unfortunately not permitted on site.
Meets animal welfare guidelines
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Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as wait time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

Popular mentions

4.5
313 reviews
Excellent
214
Very good
65
Average
18
Poor
11
Terrible
5

scasey54
Nottingham, UK11 contributions
Sep 2020 • Couples
Passing through Doncaster and decided to visit this nature reserve. Cost £4.50 each to get in, which was a bit of a shock as the nature reserve near us at Attenborough is free. Don't waste your money. Saw a few ducks from the hide but they were a long way away, couldn't tell what they were. The rest of the time, we might as well have been walking through a field planted with tall plants. Not impressed at all, nothing like what we expected. Total waste of £9.00 so disappointed we didnt use the cafe, just went home.
Written September 14, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Geoff D
Knottingley, UK79 contributions
Mar 2022
As a member of the YWT for many years, I was very disappointed with my visit to Potteric Carr today, my first visit since Covid. The site has completely changed from the time of my last visit, and not for the better, I'm afraid. The car park is on rough, bumpy gravel and the 'centre' is just a shadow of what it was. During our morning's walk, we saw about 3 birds in total. We see far more in our garden! There was nothing to see from any of the 6 hides we entered and the one with the feeding station, near the old cafe, had no food put out at all, just an empty frame where, I assume, the feeders should be hanging. We will not be making the long journey to this reserve again and I will be cancelling my membership as they obviously don't spend my subscriptions on bird food!
Written March 10, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Annabellacottonsocks
Redhill, UK206 contributions
Sep 2021
We spent about 4 hours here and had a thoroughly enjoyable day in a lovely natural environment. There are different trails of varying lengths, which the helpful young woman on Reception explained when we arrived. She gave us a colour coded map and we found them easy to follow. We walked the shortest trail and then returned to the Reception area where the cafe is situated for lunch. It was lovely sitting outside overlooking the reserve eating very fresh,tasty baguettes with a good mug of coffee.
After lunch we did the longest trail; it was so peaceful and there were 6 or so birdhides to stop off, sit down for a rest and look out over the water. I'm not an expert and , to be honest, not that interested in knowing the names of all the birds but it was so peaceful just sitting and soaking in the natural environment. My husband has binoculars and enjoys seeing which birds he can spot and identify.
After our walk we had a look around the shop before leaving.
We thought all the staff were friendly and welcoming, all facilities exceptionally clean, the routes are all clearly marked and there is information relating to the birds one might see in all the hides; so at £4.50 entrance fee per person excellent value.
Written September 9, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Pam R
Doncaster, UK9 contributions
Apr 2022
Had to leave a review after reading that someone called this brilliant nationally recognised nature reserve with it's important and rare habitat 'hell on earth'. I don't think we've visited the same place and I visit Potteric Carr regularly!

We are so lucky to have this natural oasis just outside Doncaster town centre. It's true you can hear the traffic from the nearby road and the infrequent trains that pass, but this is another reason why this place is so amazing with such a diverse range of wildlife and habitats co habiting right next to our busy town.

The reserve is well looked after by the Yorkshire wildlife trust and their brilliant volunteers. None of the buildings on site are derelict and are accessible unlike many other reserves I've visited.

It's true that if you're visiting to see birds you'll spot a lot more if you have some binoculars. I visited yesterday 11th April and saw avocets, pochards, tufted ducks. shovelers, grebes, long tailed tits, gadwalls, lapwings, swans, geese as well as the usual blue tits, robins, chiff chaffs, blackbirds, chaffinches, wrens and much more. I didn't see marsh harriers on this occasion but I usually do. I've seen deer, bitterns, spoonbills, peregrine falcons and a glossy ibis on previous visits.

After about three hours walking around the reserve it was lovely to enjoy a delicious bacon butty and bowl of chips in the cafe overlooking the reserve.

There's so much 'Donny bashing' goes on but there's a lot for us to be proud of in Doncaster and Potteric Carr is one of those things.
Written April 12, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Alison W
7 contributions
Jun 2021 • Couples
I was very disappointed with this place. We were warned about one of the walks having lots of biting insects. We decided to avoid that walk but got absolutely bit to death anyway. You couldn’t get close to any of the wildlife, so unless you take binoculars or have a very powerful zoom camera you can’t tell what kind of birds you are looking at. They are all so far away. Some of the paths are very overgrown with many nettles. You would be better off going to the lake at lakeside where there are hundreds of birds and it’s free.
Written June 18, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Ian L
Sheffield13 contributions
Jan 2020
Always wanted to see a murmuration of starlings, and when we heard it happened here we couldn't wait to go back to this wonderful nature reserve and see it.

As always the welcome was friendly, the food in the new cafe great; especially the thrice cooked chips, which are to die for.

But the place is the thing. A lovely view over the first lake, sunset over the huge scrapes with thousands of birds. Birds of prey flying over the murmuration. a range of walks with lots to see. Knowledgeable staff. A very tempting little shop. The lot.
Written February 13, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Honest4us
Doncaster, UK18 contributions
Oct 2021 • Couples
If you like to be charged £9 per couple for a walk, and then be subject to decaying buildings and road noise everywhere you go.. this is the place for you!!

I don’t mind paying for anything if the cost is reflected in the item/experience received. This place did not deliver in the slightest. Apparently a nature reserve for birds, we saw one duck the whole time we were there. I imagine the wildlife is scared off by the constant drone from the dual carriage way, train tracks, and motorway; which are next door.

The facilities are poorly maintained. Rotten benches, paths and facilities. No idea where the reinvestment goes. To top it off there was a lovely pile of rusty shopping trolleys and push bikes that had been pulled out of the river by staff, and left in eye site of the paying visitors.

There is one million, free, local walks I’ll be going on before returning to this dump.
Written November 6, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Madauntmary
16 contributions
Jan 2020
Always wanted to see a big starling murmuration, then found out we could see one here. We gathered at the beautiful visitor centre at 3.45 (January 5th). It wasn’t long before all the little groups arrived and merged. Awesome to see. Quite a big reserve with lots to see. Lovely cafe which has vegan options. Nice shop. Car park closes at 5pm in January, don’t know about other times of the year. We will be back!
Written January 5, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

grevs
Gloucestershire, UK3 contributions
Jun 2021
We stopped here to break up our journey.
The visitor centre has lots of information about the wildlife and maps are are hand for you to discover different areas. The paths are easy and you can walk as little or as much as you want. There are plenty of hides with information about the birds.
All of the staff are very helpful and friendly.
Café has a good selection of food and toilets are clean.
There was a display of different binoculars to try before buying.
Brilliant place to visit.
Written June 27, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

alysia1971
Doncaster, UK12 contributions
Aug 2014 • Solo
Once, not long ago, you could go to Potteric Carr, walking down a path and enjoying what nature has to offer in a natural surrounding, then we get the wild life trust taking over, and it becomes a series of tarmac paths letting you know where you can go and cant go. erecting buildings housing cafes and picnic areas. And charging you £4 a pop for the privilege. I feel like my experience of nature now has to be micromanaged by some do gooder of an organisation who without there would be no birds, flora or fauna. we should be so grateful to them, its just another eco organisation taking over an area, building unnecessary structures, tarmacking over lovely natural paths and erecting signs letting you know what they want you to know. I wish they would all sod off quite frankly, hatfield moor is the same, Sherwood forest is a micromanaged nightmare, Clumber park is getting to be a don't do this don't do that place as well. If we all stayed clear it would let nature do its thing and hopefully not fund the jobsworths who see fit to incessantly build all over the site. They do more damage to the site than if they just left it alone.
Written November 4, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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Potteric Carr Nature Reserve - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (with Photos)