Mole, an introvert. He is introduced to the world about him by Water Rat, who takes him on various excursions and becomes his friend. Mole learns to swim, to row, and to find the meaning of the wind in the willows. He even learns to see Him who brings Life and Death to all creatures.
Water Rat, an extrovert. He becomes Mole’s friend and shows him the world of stream and forest.
Toad, a wealthy playboy. He lives at Toad Hall, the most magnificent residence in animal land. He becomes addicted to every fad. He takes Mole and Water Rat on a short-lived trip in a gypsy caravan and then becomes an automobile owner, driving the fastest and gaudiest of cars. He gets into and out of all sorts of scrapes.
Badger, a recluse who lives in the Wild Wood. No one dares bother him. He likes People but hates Society. Even so, he helps other animals, including Toad. When Toad Hall is taken over by the stoats and weasels, he helps the other animals drive out the intruders.
Otter, who joins Mole and Water Rat on their first picnic.
Sea-Farer, a seagoing rat who visits Water Rat and tries to tempt him into traveling about the Wide World.