Lincoln Arboretum was originally designed between 1870 and 1872 by the celebrated Victorian gardener Edward Milner. Today, it is Grade II-listed, with its beautiful gardens, lakes and bridges, children’s maze, two fountain features, Victorian bandstand and tea room/café.


Right beside the arboretum is Lincoln Cathedral. This gothic church was the highest building of medieval Europe and is now the seat of the Bishop of Lincoln.

Take a short walk through this historic city, passing both the arboretum and cathedral, as well as parks, gardens and characterful streets.

Lincoln Cathedral, England
The main nave of the Lincoln Cathedral. This gothic church was the highest building of medieval Europe and is now the seat of the bishop of Lincoln/Getty

Lincoln Cathedral and Arboretum walk

2.7 miles/4.3km | 2 hours | easy

1. Cathedral to trees

From the car park, turn right on Westgate and right again along Bailgate. At the cobbled pedestrianised way, keep the White Hart Hotel to your left. This brings you to Castle Hill, with Lincoln Castle to your right. Built 900 years ago, the castle is one of only two in Britain built with two mottes.

Turn left, passing through Exchequer Gate, to be greeted by the magnificent west front of Lincoln Cathedral. Walk right along Minster Yard, and left at the mini-roundabout to Pottergate Arch, passing the statue of Poet Laureate Alfred, Lord Tennyson in the cathedral grounds. At the lights, walk right along Eastgate, and where the road splits, right along Greetwell Gate. Cross at the lights and angle right down Sewell Road, right on Eastcliff Road and left along Lindum Terrace to the wrought-iron-gated entrance to the arboretum.

2. Arboretum

In 2003, £3m worth of restoration work was carried out on the park, resulting in a prestigious Civic Trust Green Flag award every year since 2004, denoting a park of excellence.

Walk past the play area into Coronation Gardens, opened in 1953 to celebrate the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II a year earlier. Walk down the steps to the 300m Arboretum Terrace, where you can enjoy extensive views. There are various paths to the south-west exit, but for the best views go left at the fountain and follow the path down to the small lake with its numerous waterfowl. Cross the bridge along the path up to the Lion Monument and Grade II-listed Victorian bandstand. You can enjoy tea at the Abbey Lodge before exiting right along Monks Road to the traffic lights at Lindum Road. Cross and walk along Clasketgate, past the Theatre Royal.

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Lincoln Arboretum, Lincolnshire
Lincoln Arboretum in summer/Credit: Geograph

3. High Steet

Turn right at the junction with High Street, and at the top, right again up The Strait. This connects with Steep Hill. At the junction of roads, take the second left up Wordsworth Street and along Drury Lane. Turn right on Union Road to The Lawn, set in eight acres of relaxing grounds.

4. Joseph Banks

Here, you will find the Joseph Banks Conservatory, a tropical house themed with plants reminiscent of voyages the botanist took with Captain James Cook. Past the conservatory is the walled John Dawber Garden, which includes a sensory garden together with a garden representative of Lincoln’s twin town of Neustadt an der Weinstrasse, Germany, and its friendship city of Tangshan, China. Back on Union Road, turn right at the mini-roundabout along Westgate, back to the car park.


Lincoln Cathedral and Arboretum map

Lincoln Cathedral and Arboretum map

Lincoln map