If you’ve made any new year resolutions, we’re guessing that eating better and exercising more are right up there as 2020 goals. If you have a dog as a family member, wrapping up and enjoying a brisk walk in the great outdoors has huge benefits for both physical and mental health.
Written by Vikki Measures | 9th January 2020
10 of the best dog walks in Northamptonshire
Our Michael Graham county of Northamptonshire is mostly rural which means you’re spoilt for choice when it comes to wonderful countryside walks. Here are some of our favourite Northamptonshire dog walks:
Brixworth Country Park
This vast green space lies next to picturesque Pitsford Water and if you’re filled with new year enthusiasm for plodding, there’s a seven-mile circular walk around the reservoir – without a doubt one of the best dog walks in Northamptonshire. There are plenty of shorter trails too but wherever you choose to roam you will see birds and wildlife in abundance so do keep dogs on a lead.
East of the village of Hartwell, between Northampton and Newport Pagnell, Salcey Forest is a glorious ancient woodland which in medieval times was a royal hunting forest. You can follow three different trails here; the easiest is The Elephant Walk, the slightly more taxing The Church Path Trail and the longest of the three, The Woodpecker Trail. Dogs can gambol off lead all around the forest and if you're taking children along, an awe-inspiring tree top walkway will guarantee enthusiasm for a bit of screen-free time.
Brampton Valley Way
Made up of a concrete trail built on the former Northampton to Market Harborough railway line, this 14 mile walk can be joined at various points along the way so you don’t have to tackle it all in one go. You can even take a train ride along a short section of the line to fully experience the sense of history of the place (dog passengers welcome too). If your ideal Sunday scenario is a walk followed by lunch in a traditional country pub, Brampton Halt and The Windhover are both dog-friendly pubs on Brampton Lane, serving real ales and proper hearty food.
With over seven miles of footpaths, you can take a gentle stroll around the lake or if you’re feeling energetic there is a six mile walk to Thrapston with the incentive of a hearty lunch at The Woolpack Inn. Stanwick Lakes is a nature lover’s paradise with plenty of wildlife to enjoy so dogs must be kept on a lead at all times. If you head here in the summer months be especially careful that your dog doesn’t go near the water as blue algae is rife and can be lethal.
Irchester Country Park
Near to Wellingborough, this former ironstone quarry has a choice of three trails in 200 acres of forest land, all of them free-range dog friendly. A play area with zip wires and a cafe make it a great family day out too.
Tucked away on the edge of Northampton in Great Doddington, Harlestone Firs is popular with dog walkers at all times of the year. Covering 300 acres, it has a variety of woods and open fields where you can run your dog ragged before heading to The Harlestone Firs garden centre across the road for post-walk refreshments in their dog friendly café and pet shop.
Sywell Country Park
Close to the village of Sywell and not far from the aerodrome which is also worth a visit, this country park has a beautiful 2.5 mile walk around its reservoir, surely one of the best dog walks in Northamptonshire. Dogs can run free for most of the walk but take care to put them back on the lead in the nature reserve.
This park is a hidden gem, remarkably only a stone’s throw from Northampton town centre. Beyond the Elizabethan walled garden of Delapre Abbey there are 500 sprawling acres of parkland and woodland where your dog can chase sticks to their hearts content before you head to the café for the Abbey’s gorgeous cream teas.
Daventry Country Park
One of the best dog walks in Northamptonshire is guaranteed here as you can choose from one of three circular trails depending on how energetic you feel; the 2.5 mile Reservoir Walk, 1.5 mile Meadow Walk or the gentle one mile stroll. Well behaved dogs can run free for the whole walk but those inclined to chase sheep in the surrounding fields will need to be kept on the lead, especially as lambing season approaches.
On the outskirts of Silverstone village, you could visit this ancient oak woodland every day of the year and not walk the same path twice. Make a note to visit in the spring when the bluebell displays are utterly breath-taking.
Have we mentioned your favourite dog walk? Please let us know of any we’ve missed. You can reach us across all social media, on Facebook, Instagram and twitter and to view Michael Graham homes to buy or to rent, click the property search button now. The homes shown below all benefit from far reaching views and countryside walks to keep any dog happy.