Short Walks in Bedfordshire

Descriptions - Videos - Proper parking instructions

Rye Meads

Description and Walk

This well-maintained RSPB wetland reserve beside the River Lea is a big favourite with birdwatchers, walkers and photographers due to its trails and hides.

Common terns and other seabirds nest on specially made rafts during the summer, while snipe, green sandpipers, shovelers, gadwalls and tufted ducks move in during the winter.

There is an artificial sandbank and a hide where spotting Kingfishers is a good bet during the late spring, early summer. The sandbank has a tree nearby which makes for a natural perching point for Kingfishers; an ideal place to grab shots of the mating pairs. However, a decent lens is needed for a really good picture - probably 300-400 mm or more. The lens we took was too small – see video.

If you particularly want to see a kingfisher, just wait in the hide and before long one will turn up – about every 20 minutes when we were there. Once the bird is perched they tend to sit for a while giving good photo opportunities. At least, that’s what we found.

Short Video of RSPB Rye Meads

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Parking address:  Rye Road, Hoddesdon, Hertfordshire, SG12 8JS.

You can park in the Visitor Centre car park for a small fee, and hence make a contribution to the upkeep of the site, or else you can park right outside on Rye Road for free.

Google Map

Rye Meads car park

Paid parking is available at the visitor centre.

Alternative parking at Rye Meads

There is free parking just outside.

Place/s to Eat

The Rye House pub is a Greene King restaurant pub with garden. It's in Rye Road, not too far from the nature reserve.

Address:  Rye Road, Hoddesdon, Hertfordshire, EN11 0EH.

Tel: 01992 465151


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The Rye House pub.

Further Information

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RSPB Rye Meads, here.

The Rye House pub here.

Google map here.

PDF with details

The pdf, below, contains address and parking location details similar to the ones on this page. Print out the pdf file if you want something to carry with you. Pdf opens in a new tab.