Top UK walking spots for you and your dog
20th May 2021
Heading out for a walk is one of the only activities that has remained accessible over the last year or so and taking advantage of the outdoor air and space can be beneficial to your health and wellbeing, as well as giving people the opportunity to spend more time with their pets.
For those with limited mobility who might rely on stairlifts, getting out of the house and enjoying the countryside with our pets can be a real escape from day-to-day life. Carry on reading to find out some of the best locations that are perfect dog walking spots and are accessible to all.
Norfolk is a county surrounded by stunning beaches and sandy coves right on the edge of East England and these flat surroundings make it the perfect location for dog walkers. Zsa from The Barking Bugle recommended Norfolk for its vast variety of trails and walks:
“For anyone who loves walking, Norfolk is a great place to visit with a network of trails which brings over 1,200 miles of walks together. The county is generally fairly flat and is extremely dog friendly. It also offers many easy access walks, one of which is based in the seaside resort of Hunstanton - famous for its stripy cliffs and spectacular sunsets.”
She continues and explains more about the walk from Hunstanton to Heacham along the promenade and how it makes the perfect location for dog walkers.
“This 3.6km walk is along a concrete promenade from the town to the village of Heacham. Overlooking the Wash, you’ll pass through the busy seafront with its sandy beach to quieter sections where you’ll discover rock pools, exposed mudflats and waders feeding along the shoreline. Dogs on leads are allowed on the prom all year round and whilst the main town beach has seasonal restrictions, once passed this section consists of miles of dog-friendly beach for your 4-legged friends to enjoy.”
Bellever Forest, Dartmoor
Dartmoor is one of two national parks in Devon alongside Exmoor and is home to some of the most picturesque walks in the country. Although it is known for its rocky hills and rough terrain there are some great, flatter walks that are perfect for those with limited mobility. We spoke to the team at Visit Dartmoor who gave us a little more insight into Dartmoor and the wonderful scenery it has to offer:
“At Visit Dartmoor we all have our own dogs and love to share our days out with them. Dartmoor is a superb place to have a holiday with your canine companion, thanks to its variety of dog-friendly places to stay, eat and visit. There are fantastic walks to suit every type of dog and their families, from easy flat walks to harder and more challenging hikes over hills and tors for the best panoramic views. Some of our bike-hire centres have “dog-chariots” so that older/less fit dogs or simply those with very short legs can enjoy your cycling adventures with you. Please note, dogs must be on a lead between 1st March – 31st July to protect ground-nesting birds and newborn lambs/foals/calves.”
Jenny from Visit Dartmoor continues and describes a wonderful walk at Bellever Forest: “Bellever Forest near Postbridge is a beautiful place for a walk. Whether it’s a gentle stroll by the East Dart River or an exhilarating walk up to Bellever Tor, it’s a beautiful and tranquil setting and a great place to visit with the whole family. It’s also a wonderful place to bring dogs for a walk, with plenty of space for them to burn energy and the beautiful river for a swim or a quick drink of water.”
The Seven Sisters, South Downs
Another national park with a lot to offer, The Seven Sisters on the South Downs in Sussex is a stunning mixture of sea views and wonderful green walks.
Visit Eastbourne explain a little more about The Seven Sisters on their website: “Found at the point where the South Downs meets the sea, the Sisters were created when ancient rivers cut valleys into the chalk, creating seven peaks. Haven Brow, the highest of them at 253 feet (77 metres), stands majestically to the west of her other sisters who in order are called Short Brow, Rough Brow, Brass Point, Flagstaff Point, Baily's Brow and Went Hill Brow. Under the sea at the foot of the cliffs are a number of gullies and ridges - varied marine life such as sea anemones, snails, and sponges can be found there. Now part of the Heritage Coast, an ‘Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty’ and also a ‘Site of Special Scientific Interest’, the beauty of the area will be protected for generations to come”
One way to experience the Seven Sisters is to walk the coast path from Seaford to Eastbourne as Visit Eastbourne explains more on their website: “The cliffs of Dover might be England’s most famous cliffs, but the Seven Sisters are more beautiful. The best way to experience the Seven Sisters cliffs is by walking the coastal trail from Seaford to Eastbourne.
Derwentwater, Lake District
Derwentwater is a scenic lake in the Lake District and offers pearlescent views across the glassy water and deeply wooded areas, making it the ideal place to walk your dog.
Keswick goes into more detail about the 10-mile Derwentwater Walk: “The Derwentwater Walk is a scenic 10-mile waymarked walk around Derwentwater. On flat and easy paths, the walk passes through ancient woodlands and along the shores of the lake. The scenery is stunning, with perfect picnic stops, cafes and restaurants along the way. Look out for the sculpture of the hands which commemorated the 100-year anniversary of the National Trust's care of Brandelhowe.”
The flat walk is ideal for older walkers and dogs who may not be able to walk as far. The trail can be walked in its entirety or just halfway, depending on the ability of both parties.
Loch Lomond and the Trossachs National Park
Scotland, and Loch Lomond in particular, is a location unlike any other, and its dominating peaks may look daunting to walkers with limited mobilities but there are several great walks that are flat and have easy to handle the terrain.
Disability Scotland says there are lots of accessible walks you can go on, saying: “There are many paths in the National Park that provide particularly good opportunities for disabled people or those looking for easy gradients and smooth surfaces in a variety of scenic locations.”
There are a collection of wonderful walks in the area with short and moderate distances, some of them including Conic Hill and Inversnaid RSPB Nature Trail.
Riverside Country Park, Gillingham
Chris Holmes from Out With The Dog recommends Riverside Country Park in Gillingham. The park is known for its relaxed country walks that are easily accessible for those with may struggle with limited mobility as well as those who may be stronger walkers.
“Coastal walks are always nice over the summer months with many offering good accessibility and flat paths and therefore suitable for all levels of fitness. Try out Riverside Country Park in Gillingham, a relaxed walk along the coast path which forms part of the Saxon Shore Way and is beautiful on a lovely Summers day. It has easy parking, a café and toilets.”
If you’re thinking about heading out with your dog or you’re planning a walking holiday, then think about visiting some of these wonderful locations for a wonderful ramble amongst nature.
This news article is from Handicare UK. Articles that appear on this website are for information purposes only.