Gruffalo Spotters Trail at Delamere Forest

Gruffalo Spotters is the latest incarnation of the much loved Forestry Commission Gruffalo Trails in 26 forests across the UK (check here to find your nearest one!) and this time features a fantastic app to bring the characters to life.

The closest forest to us with a Gruffalo Spotters Trail is Delamere Forest where we’ve completed the two previous Gruffalo Trails (The original Gruffalo Trail and Gruffalo Orienteering) so it was only right that we went there this weekend to try out the new Gruffalo Spotters app!

Gruffalo Spotters Trail - Delamere Forest

Mich and I had been checking the weather forecast fairly obsessively in the run up to our planned adventure, knowing this was our only chance to do the new Gruffalo Spotters Trail together before the summer holidays.  Even right up till Saturday night it looked like we were going to be well and truly rained off however Sunday morning came round bright and sunny with only a mild threat of rain mid-afternoon.  We decided to take our chances and packed up our picnic bags.  What we hadn’t banked on was that we were going to rock up at Delamere Forest around about the same time as thousands of women running the Race for Life . . . right around the same track we were planning to walk!  Luckily, after the initial surge of pink t shirts had swarmed past us we were relatively unaffected by the race thankfully.

Group of young children exploring Delamere Forest
Clambering round Delamere Forest

The new Gruffalo Spotters Trail takes much the same path as the previous trails and covers just shy of two miles which is a perfectly doable walk for little ones.  Despite the heavy rain during the week the path was dry and clean.  It is a well trodden path through the forest and accessible by pushchair, though not completely flat so be prepared for some good uphill trudging at points.

The Gruffalo Spotters app is free and widely available from all the usual places – it’s advisable to download this before you arrive at the forest just in case you’ve got poor reception or don’t want to use up your data allowance!

Gruffalo Spotters clues
We found the mouse at Delamere Forest
Posing for photos with the footprints at Delamere Forest

All along the trail you will spot clues as to who the next character might be before coming across a sign to tell you who you have found.  Nearby there are two footprint markers (these are both the same – it just saves you waiting too long when there are other families on the trail).  Now this is the clever bit, pointing your phone’s camera at the footprint marker using the app brings the characters to life – a little sketch runs through for each character as though they are really there in front of you!  Once you’ve watched the little animation you can hop into the scene and have your photo taken with the characters!  Our little gang thought this was hilarious.  We struggled to get a decent picture with the Gruffalo himself as he’s a fairly large character and we couldn’t get the kids to spread out enough around the space – in all honesty by this point they were quite tired and more than ready for a picnic lunch so patience was wearing thin!

Gruffalo Spotters augmented reality app
Gruffalo Spotters app at Delamere Forest
Taking photos with the augmented Gruffalo Spotters app

I’d love to be able to share some of the pictures with you however we struggled to get them off my phone and then they just disappeared completely – which was a bit of a shame!

Thankfully, the original Gruffalo statue remains in his usual spot, towards the end of the trail, ready for photos!

Butler / Burgess day out hunting for the Gruffalo at Delamere Forest

*Read about more of our adventures here*



  1. Becky | Spirited Puddle Jumper
    May 17, 2017 / 12:32 pm

    I’ve been meaning to go on one of these gruffalo hunts for ages as I know the children would love it, and I’m embarrassed to say we still haven’t 🙁 100% on my summer holiday bucket list now!

  2. May 18, 2017 / 2:34 pm

    I’ve never been on a Gruffalo hunt! It looks really fun, even for the adults. Love that the characters come to life with your phone. It’s a shame you lost the pictures but the video more than makes up for it!

  3. May 22, 2017 / 7:02 pm

    When the boys were small and completely in love with the Gruffalo there weren’t any trails or films sadly, but personally I still love the Gruffalo… why didn’t you know – sorry couldn’t resist.

    Stevie x

  4. May 23, 2017 / 8:02 am

    I would love to do one of the Gruffalo trails. It’s such a great idea to pair a well loved book with an outdoor activity :o)


  5. May 23, 2017 / 8:48 am

    It’s great that they have two boards up at each place to reduce the wait. We don’t have a trail that close to us so we haven’t been, but it looks great fun #TriedTested

  6. May 23, 2017 / 9:32 am

    Aww this looks great. I’m not sure where the nearest Gruffalo trail is to us being up in Scotland but I’ll need to go have a look. Kids would really enjoy this.

  7. May 23, 2017 / 10:34 am

    Love this. Such fun photos and great for all the family. We did this when in Sherwood Forest a few years ago. They look so great now with the app though. xx

  8. mummy here and there
    May 23, 2017 / 11:08 am

    This looks so much fun, I really want to go and visit X #triedtested

  9. May 23, 2017 / 12:18 pm

    This looks absolutely amazing. My girls would love it there! #triedandtested

  10. May 23, 2017 / 12:59 pm

    we’ve not tried the new trail yet, we’ll have to check it out!! #TriedTested

  11. May 23, 2017 / 5:27 pm

    We have a gruffalo trail near to us in the Lake District, the kids love it! #triedtested

  12. Kiki
    May 23, 2017 / 8:38 pm

    That’s a lovely idea for a day out – Gruffalo Trail plus the app. Handy and interactive. I’ve seen one near me but not done it as little one is too young, she’d just run and roll in the mud! This one is to bear in mind for the future though. #TriedTested

  13. Jo - Pickle & Poppet
    May 23, 2017 / 9:31 pm

    Looks like you had a great day – we went on our trail a few weeks ago. A shame that our forest doesn’t have two sets of footprints at each point as we stood in a queue at points which is never great with a three year old.

  14. May 23, 2017 / 11:46 pm

    This looks like so much fun! My toddler loves the gruffalo, I will have to see where the nearest one to us is! Great pictures too! #triedtested

  15. May 24, 2017 / 10:08 am

    I love the great outdoors and having a theme/activity for little ones is such a great idea! Definitely one to visit in the future. #TriedTested

  16. Jodie Melling
    May 24, 2017 / 8:10 pm

    This looks like lots of fun and I’m glad to know first hand that it is do-able with a pram as that’s good. This is definitely on my places to visit list.

    Jodie x

  17. May 24, 2017 / 8:27 pm

    Your children are the perfect age to take advantage of the new Gruffalo app #triedtested

  18. May 26, 2017 / 9:48 pm

    I would love to do this, we still haven’t got round to it but it’s on the list. Looks like you all had a lot of fun. #TriedTested

  19. May 27, 2017 / 8:06 am

    This looks like such a lovely thing to do! Good job the weather cleared up for you! Thanks for hosting #TriedTested

  20. May 27, 2017 / 1:35 pm

    The Gruffalo Spotters app sounds like an interesting take on making exploring the woods more exciting. We’re big fans of the trails so would love to try it out when my mummy gets out of hospital x #TriedTested x

  21. May 28, 2017 / 8:25 am

    This is on my list of things to try and do during half-term with the girls – we were waiting for it to come to the forest near where my nieces live. What a shame you lost the photos with the characters but glad the Gruffalo statue was still there to have photos with. #TriedTested

  22. May 30, 2017 / 6:13 am

    We loved the spotters app, I think the technology is fab. Such a shame you couldn’t get the images off your phone. We keep going to the one at Cannock Chase, we should come back to Delamere at some point x #TriedTested

  23. May 30, 2017 / 7:49 am

    We have been fans of the Gruffalo trail for several years as it was Monkey’s favourite book when he was about three. Love it. Although we have not tried this new spotter app. I really need to sort it out and give it ago. Thanks for hosting #Triedtested

  24. May 31, 2017 / 10:25 am

    We recently visited a local forest that had the Gruffalo Spotters Trial too and it was so much fun. My daughter loved finding the characters and then seeing them come to life on our phones 🙂

  25. May 31, 2017 / 11:07 pm

    I absolutely loved the video for this darling.
    The pictures you’ve taken are great & they make me want to head there.

  26. June 18, 2017 / 12:57 am

    Thank you so much for writing this post, I spotted it earlier in the week and we will be going and doing the trail for Father’s Day. Xx

    • Colette
      June 18, 2017 / 8:02 am

      Oh what a lovely day out that will be today! X

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