Tandle Hill Country Park (AKA Tandle Hill Park or just simply Tandle Hill) is one of the best country parks in Manchester. One of the best ways to enjoy Tandle Hill is by doing a walk around the park. The Blue Trail (AKA the Tandle Hill Walk) is the main trail that circles the country park. In this guide, we’re going to tell you everything you need to know about Tandle Hill Country Park and the Tandle Hill Walk.
Anyway, before reading this guide, feel free to watch our epic aerial footage of the country park at sunrise.
We hope you find this guide helpful. For other great nearby walking routes, read our guides about Pendle Hill, Holcombe Hill and Rivington Pike (guides coming soon).
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About Tandle Hill Country Park
Simply known as ‘Tandle Hill’ by locals, the country park is actually the oldest country park in Oldham. Managed by Oldham Parks and Countryside Services under Oldham Council, Tandle Hill is a hidden gem tucked away in a fairly metropolitan space in Greater Manchester. The country park is only small, measuring around 0.48 square kilometres (48 hectares). But, the country park is full of natural beauty with mature beech woodland and a mix of other woodland and grassland.
Certainly, Oldham Parks and Countryside Services do a great job of protecting and managing the natural areas, whilst still providing services and organising activities for visitors. We’ll talk a bit more about this later in Things to Do at Tandle Hill.
So, where exactly is the country park located?
Where Is Tandle Hill?
It’s located in Royton in the Borough of Oldham in Greater Manchester. Please click on the image below to access an interactive map of the area on Google Maps.
Now you know where the country park is located, let’s look at some details about the fantastic Tandle Hill Walk.
Tandle Hill Walk Information (The Blue Trail)
- Type: Loop
- Distance: 2.4km
- Time: 1–1.5 hours
- Accumulated elevation gain: 60m
- Difficulty: Easy
- Trailhead: Tandle Hill Country Park Car Park
- Nicky Nook Walk Map: AllTrails
FYI – the Blue Trail encircles the entire park and involves some hilly sections, especially the section that leads to the main lookout, where the War Memorial is found. The other trail in the country park is called the Green Trail. This is another circular walk with well-surfaced footpaths that’s suitable for people using wheelchairs, pushchairs or motor scooters. For more information about the Green Trail route, click here.
Tandle Hill Walk (The Blue Trail) Trail Description
Starting at the car park, near the Countryside Centre and cafe, you’ll soon pass some picnic benches and an adventure play area. You’ll then arrive at the circular route, which can be walked in either direction. Personally, Beck and I did the Tandle Hill Walk in an anti-clockwise direction. That was because we visited for sunrise, and, by doing the Tandle Hill Walk in an anti-clockwise direction, we’d arrive at the main lookout sooner, ready to watch the sun pop up from beyond the horizon.
You’ll find waymarkers throughout the country park, but, the walking trails in the park are very easy to follow. After passing by lovely woodlands, the undulating trail finally arrives at the main viewpoint, which is also known as the Tandle Hill Viewpoint. As mentioned, this is where you’ll find the War Memorial, which stands tall on the hill.
We were lucky to have a clear morning to watch the sunrise. The frost-covered countryside created a magical setting as the sky above paraded orange and purple hues.
After enjoying the sunrise, we continued the Tandle Hill Walk, passing through more areas of pretty woodlands and forest. As it’s only a short walk, you’ll find yourself back at the picnic area in no time.
So, what else is there to do at the country park? Let’s look at your options below.
Things to Do at Tandle Hill Country Park
Other than doing the Tandle Hill Walk, there are many other things to do at the country park. Firstly, pencil in a stop at the Tandle Hill Country Park Cafe for a hot beverage. Once you’ve enjoyed a cup of tea or coffee, then you’ve got a few activities to choose from.
Cycling is possible within the country park along the Thornham Cycle Way (the Red Trail). Although, you’ll have to be considerate of walkers, especially when it’s busy on the weekends. Dog walking is also another popular activity at the park. Whilst bird watching is something you can do throughout the park too.
If you’re visiting with children, they’ll love the adventure playground, which was funded by the National Lottery Adventures in Play scheme. Otherwise, pack some lunch and enjoy the lovely picnic area, which has many tables.
FYI – there’s also a permanent orienteering course at the country park. For more information, head to the Greater Manchester Orienteering Activities website.
How to Get to Tandle Hill
The quickest and easiest way to get to the country park is to drive there yourself. You’ll find free parking at the end of Tandle Hill Road which meets the park.
If you don’t have your own set of wheels, we recommend hiring a car using Rentalcars.com. You’ll find a wide variety of cars on Rental Cars for good prices. The website is user-friendly and booking online is super easy.
It’s possible to get to Tandle Hill using public transport. You can get a train to Rochdale from Manchester and then a bus (#409) to Thornham Summit. From there, you’re looking at an approx. 1.5km walk to get to the country park. Feel free to check the train times and prices here. We recommend using Trainline and Google Maps to help plan your journey.
Despite public transport being an option, we recommend driving (if that’s possible) as it’s much less time-consuming.
There are plenty of other great natural spaces near Tandle Hill. In reality, you’re only a stone’s throw away from the incredible Peak District. But, if you’re looking for walks that are even closer, we highly recommend checking out the underrated West Pennine Moors. You’ll find excellent countryside walks there that are rarely too busy.
Below, you’ll find the most frequently asked questions about Tandle Hill.
What Are the Opening Hours?
The country park is open all day, every day. Although, the cafe is usually open from around 10am to 3pm.
How Much Does it Cost to Go to Tandle Hill?
It’s free to visit.
Is There Parking at Tandle Hill?
Yes, there’s a decent-sized car park located here.
Are There Toilets at Tandle Hill?
Yes, there are public toilets with disabled access and also baby changing facilities. These can be found near the car park.
Is Tandle Hill Family Friendly?
Yes, there are activities and services at the country park which make it super family-friendly. Indeed, the kiddies will enjoy a trip to the country park.
Is Tandle Hill Wheelchair Friendly?
Yes, the Green Trail is an even-surfaced path that circles most of the country park. There are also wheelchair-friendly toilets.
Is Tandle Hill Dog Friendly?
Yes, you’re welcome to bring doggo on a walk at the park.
These are our five hiking gear essentials for visiting the country park.
- Merrell Moab Mid Gore-Tex Hiking Boots: these hiking boots are super comfortable and lightweight.
- The North Face Venture Jacket: a fantastic windproof/waterproof jacket.
- Osprey Skarab 30L Day Backpack: a great backpack for walking, which has plenty of space to store your gear.
- The North Face TKA Glacier Fleece Jacket: an excellent warmth:weight ratio fleece jacket that’ll help keep you warm.
- Columbia Convertible Trousers: a value for money pair of water-resistant convertible trousers.
- Visit Tandle Hill Tavern: this is one of the closest pubs to the country park. It’s a nice and cosy pub that’s dog-friendly.
- Go on a longer walk: why not explore more of the surrounding area? From the country park, there are walks linking you to surrounding areas such as the Irk Valley, Crompton Moor and the Oldham Way.
- Explore nearby national parks in the northwest of England: make sure to also check out the Lake District (coming soon) and Yorkshire Dales.
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