Last week, life (and lack of hot sunny beach) got to me. I live in a little Market town, near the Hampshire Surrey border, called Alton. It’s not very special. There’s no nice country walks or unique quirky streets, it’s basically a high street and housing estates.
I like to escape, enjoy the weather and explore so with a lack of car, sometimes that can be difficult. On Tuesday I waited until Mike finished work so we could plan a sunny mid week adventure, little did I know he already had one planned (#AwesomeBoyfriend)!
Just 8 miles from Alton lies Frensham Ponds. Between almost 4km of beautiful heathlands,some coniferous & Mixed Woodlands, sits two magnificent Lakes. The site, which is owned by the National Trust is situated in Frensham, Surrey. It’s a conservation site and is a protected area of the United Kingdom (AKA Site of Special Scientific Interest).
The route from Alton to Frensham ponds seemed slightly off road, consisting of narrow country lanes and near collisions. The clean mini we started with ended up slightly disheveled, but, it was worth the journey.
Working from home and living in a village/town where I don’t really know many people can take it’s toll and having a serious Wanderlust issue, a history of working in adventure wonderlands and now being stuck in the UK can lead to a sad, moody Breanne–I needed to get out.
I love being able to walk, explore, take photos, and breathe in the clean, fresh air, mainly I love being outside especially on a sunny day. As I’m sure you all know, adventure travel and active days out are 2 of my passions and this day out did not disappoint.
The two ponds at the site, although I only visited the grand pond, where created in the Middle ages for providing Carp (among other fish) for the Bishop of Winchester. The pond was also used in the 1999 film The Mummy – posing as the river Nile and it was transformed into a medieval fishing village for Snow White and The Huntsman. If I knew about this place earlier, I definitely would have been there during filming in the hopes I’d catch a glimpse of Chris Hemsworth (wow)!
The great pond has it’s own beach and with the temperatures hitting around 30 degrees last week many locals flocked there for a quick summers dip. However, when the temperatures rise, entering the water is not advised and the pond gets cordoned off. This is due to the levels of Blue-green algae changing throughout the season, Blue-green algae can be super damaging to health and can actually cause death in animals. So yeah, not advised.
However, some people decided these warnings weren’t worth listening to and instead thought it would be a great idea to rip down the tape restricting access. Whilst we were there there must have been at least 20 people in the water, young children, adults, animals, everyone. I’m unsure if they ignored the multiple signs around the pond or if they were just to oblivious to notice–I just seriously hope nobody got ill. I honestly can’t believe people would ignore this, though and potentially let their children get ill (Skin rashes and Diarrhea), In fact I was so shocked I wrote to the local radio to express my concerns.
What to do at Frensham Ponds
Not only is there 2 ponds and the heathlands, Frensham also benefits from it’s own sailing club and the Frensham pond hotel. I didn’t go inside the hotel but from what I did see, it looked like a nice hotel in a fantastic location.
So now you know what’s there here’s a few ideas of what you can do with your time.
- Family game of rounders on the common
- Wander around the heathlands and ponds
- Explore the great scenery and take photos
- Have a picnic (no bbq’s allowed)
- Watch the sunset from the hotel or one of the beaches
- Bird watching
- Keep an eye on the wildlife: Rare birds, Snakes, Sand lizards and many more.
- Drink coffee and eat cake at the Tern Cafe
- Climb trees
- Go fishing
There really is so much you can do to fill your time.
How to get to Frensham Ponds
If you’re like me, you’re probably going to need a sat nav to get there so the postcode for the car park is GU10 2QB. Parking is free during the week but on Saturdays, Sundays & Bank Holidays you’re going to pay around £4. The car park also gets pretty busy by around lunch time on really sunny days and it’s illegal to park along the road, so prior planning is necessary.
Surprisingly you can also get there via Stagecoach bus number 19 from Farnham station. Which is great if you’re traveling from London and it stops just outside the great pond.
Although, swimming was prohibited during the day that didn’t stop us adventuring and exploring. Walking around the pond you’ll find plenty of little cubby holes to sit, have a picnic and admire the beautiful scenery around you. You can watch the sunset and relax, or you can walk for miles in the beautiful heathlands, it’s totally up to you. But, I would 100% recommend spending a day at Frensham Common & Ponds.
Let me know in the comments below if you’ve been to Frensham before or you know of any other cool, exciting places to explore. I’d love to start and Active Days Out series…. Let me know below….