RSPB Lochwinnoch

School Trips

Home / Scotland / Renfrewshire

We are passionate about nature and are dedicated to saving it. Since we started in 1889, the threats to nature have continued to grow, but we've grown to meet them too.

We are the largest nature conservation charity in the country, consistently delivering successful conservation, forging powerful new partnerships and inspiring others to stand up and give nature the protection and home it deserves.

A huge part of our work is about getting young people outside and experiencing nature first-hand. We can create the ideal session that will meet your group’s needs and instill a passion for nature.

school trip at RSPB Lochwinnoch
RSPB Lochwinnoch school groups

Why book RSPB Lochwinnoch for School Trips and Educational Visits?

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Our stunning reserve offers a range of habitats including loch, grassland, marsh and woodland. It is an ideal place for an exciting school visit. Your class will be able to explore and investigate the abundant wildlife and variety of habitats found on the reserve. With each season bringing a change in wildlife activities, colours, sounds and smells, the reserve is ideal for return visits.
Make the most of your trip and visit our sensory wildlife garden (filled with all things flying and buzzing). Along the nature trail we have many woodland birds, bank voles and even some fairy doors, if you look closely enough. Our ponds have beetles, newts, frogs, dragonflies and damselflies galore! In the bird hides around the reserve you can be lucky enough to spot great crested grebes doing their mating dance, a huge variety of water birds, maybe even some chicks or ducklings, seasonal migrants or even more exciting, some otters. The natural play area is great to run, climb and swing around in. You will also be able to build dens and get a little bit muddy too! Afterwards you can take advantage of our visitor centre, shop, on-site toilets (where of course there are hand washing facilities) and outdoor picnic area.

What activities are available during group visits?

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Looking at different features of birds.
Brilliant Birds (Early & First Levels)

What's special about minibeasts, and how are they suited to their habitat?
Discovering Land Minibeasts (Early & First Levels)

What's special about pond minibeasts?
Discovering Pond Minibeasts (Early & First Levels)

Be detectives in this nature discovery walk.
Seasonal Sensory Walk (Early & First Levels)

Identify and record plants you find.
Plant detectives (First level)

Find out what's special about the birds on the reserve.
Discovering Birds (Second Level)

Investigate minibeasts in their habitats.
Investigating Minibeasts (Second Level)

Explore the reserve habitats for a variety of plants and animals.
Living things and their habitat (Second Level)

Investigate minibeasts in ponds and mud.
Pond Habitat Study (Second Level)

Plan how you might measure the biotic and abiotic factors of the sampling site.
Ecological Investigations and Sampling (Third Level)

Be immersed in the inspirational ecosystem of an RSPB reserve.
Ecosystems (National 3/4/5 Geography)

Investigate the distribution and abundance of organisms using ecological fieldwork techniques.
Ecological Fieldwork Techniques (National 3/4/5 Biology)

Investigate the communities that make up the ecosystems within our nature reserves.
Ecosystems and Sustainability (Advanced Higher Geography)
Sampling (Advanced Higher Biology)

Each programme is designed to last two hours; sessions run from 10am to 12pm and then 12.30 to 2.30pm. Two programmes can be combined to make a whole day visit.

Primary & Early Years per pupil (inc VAT)
£80 for a half day and £130 for a full day for up to 20 pupils (additional £4 / £6.50 per additional child thereafter).
Additional £1 per student for self-led activity as second session instead of staff-led

Secondary S 1- 4 per Student (inc VAT)
£100 half day and £160 for a full day for up to 20 pupils (additional £5 / £8 per additional child thereafter).
Additional £1 per student for self-led activity as second session instead of staff-led

Advanced Higher per student (inc VAT)
£100 for a half day and £160 for a full day for up to 20 pupils (additional £6/ £10 per additional child thereafter).
Additional £1 per student for self-led activity as second session instead of staff-led

What size groups do you cater for?

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We usually cater for single classes of 30 (minimum group size of 10) but can take multiple groups up to a maximum of 60 children (two classes) on a day. If you have a group larger than this, please don't hesitate to get in touch to find out if we can accommodate you.

Do you offer on-site classroom facilities?

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Our sessions aim to be outside as much as possible. We do have a small room that may be used as a base to store bags/packed lunches for the day and can potentially be used at lunch time if the weather is very poor.

Is there first aid on site?

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RSPB learning staff are first aid trained and will carry a basic first aid kit. DfE guidelines state that the visiting school is responsible for providing a teacher/adult helper with a good working knowledge of first aid and an adequate first aid box. Our nature reserve has emergency procedures in place that all learning staff are familiar with.

Do you offer access for visitors with disabilities?

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Yes - we have wheelchair user friendly paths, pond dipping area, bird hides and toilet facilities as well as disabled parking bays.

Do you cater for visitors with Special Educational Needs (SEN)?

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Yes - we can cater for a wide range of needs and often have special educational needs schools use our services.

Anything else?

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Lochwinnoch RSPB Nature Reserve, Largs Rd, Lochwinnoch PA12 4JF
Grid ref NS358580

Lochwinnoch is accessible to groups by public transport.

By train
Lochwinnoch railway station is situated 400 metres south-east of the visitor centre.

By bus (public transport)
Nearest bus stops are on the A737 at Roadhead roundabout (at grid reference: NS 350 586, 750 metres south-east of the reserve entrance) and on the A760 at Newton of Barr (at NS 366 577, 1.2 km north-west of the entrance).

By road/coach
The reserve is located 18 miles south-west of Glasgow, beside the A760 Largs Road, which is off the A737 Irvine Road (easily reached from the M8 at Junction 28A). Car parking facilities are available.
Sat nav POI file: If you have a satellite navigation system that can accept POI files

By bike
National Cycle Route 7 runs through the reserve, adjacent to the A737.

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