England's best kept secret
Rutland consists of 2 market towns, Oakham and Uppingham, and more than forty picturesque villages of thatched, stone-built cottages, there's so much to see in Rutland it's hard to know where to start.
You'll find plenty of opportunities to enjoy an active break in Rutland. Water sports enthusiasts should head for Rutland Water where you can hire a canoe or rowing boat to paddle around the sheltered creek and harbour at Whitwell. If you're feeling a little more energetic, you could even launch a sailboard or boat and strike out further across the reservoir. Cycle hire is also available and for the really energetic there is a 25 mile cycling and walking circuit around the water. Also dont forget the new water fun parkwww.aquaparkrutland.co.uk
Throughout Rutland you'll find a host of villages to explore, each with its own unique character and local charm. Like Exton with its thatched cottages or Clipsham, with its topiary walk featuring dozens of trees shaped to commemorate local, national and international events and Tickenote whose church has an elaborate carved Norman arch.
Whatever you choose to do, you'll find that Rutland is England's best kept secret, set amidst part of the English countryside that's largely undiscovered and still unspoilt.
This internationally famous nature reserve is managed in partnership with Anglian Water and the Leicestershire & Rutland Wildlife Trust and provides one of the most important wildfowl sanctuaries in Great Britain, regularly holding in excess of 20,000 waterfowl. It is a site of special scientific interest, is designated as a European Special Protection Area and internationally recognised as a globally important wetland RAMSAR site.
The Reserve occupies a narrow strip of land running for 9 miles around the Western end of Rutland Water and covering a total of 600 acres. This was created in the 1970's with the construction of the reservoir. There are currently 27 Bird hides and nature trails from two visitor centres with experts to help you with identification.
The Reserve offers an exciting environmental display, viewing gallery and excellent schools service plus In Focus optical shop and Wildlife Trust shop in the Anglian Water Bird Watching Centre at Egleton.
Owing to an increasing demand for water, Anglian Water has undertaken a major engineering scheme due to be completed by the end of 2010. As part of this project new shallow water lagoons are being constructed in the reservoir. These will ensure that water levels remain constant in the lagoons as additional water is abstracted from the reservoir, making sure that there is no impact on wildlife.
The Reserve is also home to the successful Osprey project where the first Osprey chick to fledge in Central England for 150 years was hatched in 2001. Ospreys are regularly seen fishing over the reservoir from April - September.