Tails, trails and real ales: discover the 3 best Lake District dog walks that’ll satisfy humans and their four-legged owners!
Year on year, thousands of visitors from across the nation flood to the Lake District in their hoards to experience its breath-taking ridges, glistening lakes and picturesque valleys that span as far as the eye can see. With many also bringing their dogs, to help you plan your trip, we share the 3 best Lake District dog walks as voted for by our guests.
For many, a last-minute escape to one of the UK’s most striking regions sounds like the getaway we desperately deserve, however for others, the thought of leaving our furry companions at home is simply too hard to bare. Yes, we’ve turned into a nation of dog-lovers, where it seems our loyal companions are the ones owning us instead!
The perfect destination for dog holidays
Well the good news is that the Lake District has been named the most dog-friendly place in the whole of the UK, and dogs aren’t just welcome… they’re encouraged! Which means there’s no reason for you not to bring man’s best friend along on the journey.
Lucky for you, the Lake District is rife with dog-friendly accommodation and pet-friendly shops, not to mention the abundance of pooch-friendly pubs scattered across the region, making it the perfect destination for both you and your loyal companion to unwind.
To help you plan for your Lake District dog holiday, we’ve listed our top 3 Lake District dog walks as voted for by our guests. Not only that, but we’ve enlisted the help of our hotels’ very-special canine representative, Yogi, who has agreed to rate each of the walks out of 5 from his own pupspective!
A trip to the Lake District would not be complete without walking the circumference of the region’s most picturesque lake. Therefore it comes as no surprise that this beloved trail bagged the gold medal when it comes to our guest’s favourite Lake District dog walks.
Picture yourself surrounded by a vista of panoramic mountains that perfectly frame the natural beauty that is Derwentwater Lake. This 9-mile lakeside walk will take you through dense woodland and across wandering trails, all while letting your four-legged-friend get up close and personal with what the landscape has to offer. While on your route, the pair of you will pass intriguing local landmarks including the ‘Hundred Year Stone’, ‘Chinese Bridge’ and the ‘Entrust hands’ to name a few.
Be sure to swing by our 4* Lodore Falls Hotel on your way round where you can unwind in our dog-friendly lounge; or, if the weather’s nice, why not pull up a chair out front and enjoy a refreshing beverage while watching the ripples of the lake dance in the distance? We’ll make sure your furry friend is welcomed with plenty of treats on hand and even provide towels for a doggy-dry-down if your dog has been for a swim!
We recommend starting in the centre of Keswick at the Moot Hall where you’ll receive plenty of guidance as to which way to head.
Yogi’s Puppraisal: 5/5
“Splashing about in the water, fetching sticks alongside the lake shore, chasing red squirrels throughout the woods… whether you’re a lively lab or a placid poodle, this is a long walk that’s guaranteed to make any dog’s tail wag!”
The second pick for best dog walks voted for by our guests is the extraordinary Ullswater.
The lake is not only the largest body of water in the Lake District, but arguably the most scenic. It’s the perfect hub for exploring all the natural beauty that the Lakes has to offer, boasting remarkable views for visitors and meandering nature trails to exhaust your pets.
If you’re up for the challenge, have a go at tackling the Ullswater Way, a 20-mile walking route around the edge of the lake. This will allow you to explore all Mother Nature has the offer and while doing so, you can discover the scenic ports and charming villages scattered around the borders.
The beauty of taking your canine friend for a walk around Ullswater is that the Ullswater Steamers are all dog-friendly. Therefore, if a 20-mile ramble around the lake makes you feel a bit uneasy or the unpredictable Cumbrian rain sets in halfway round, you can cut your walk short and hop aboard a heritage passenger vessel to return you to your starting point!
If you’re planning on scheduling an Ullswater walk into your pet-itinerary but don’t have time for the full route, we’d recommend attempting the Howtown to Aira Force stretch.
Begin your walk in the quaint hamlet of Howtown and head west to Glenridding, where our friendly team at the Inn on the Lake will be ready to greet you and your happy pooch, providing you with the perfect mid-walk pitstop. Once you’ve refuelled on tea, coffee, gin and doggy treats, you can continue your journey on to Aira Force waterfall where you will end your walk blown away by another Lake District gem.
Yogi’s Puppraisal: 5/5
“Walkies don’t get much better than Ullswater! With so many different routes to choose, it’s like a brand-new walk every time. There are plenty of areas to splash around in the water and run around, plus it’s a real treat when I get to scamper aboard a Steamer!”
The final walk that made it into our best Lake District dog walks list is perhaps not as challenging as its predecessors, but will still provide you with enchanting views of Derwentwater and the Borrowdale Valley, which gently merge into visions of Bassenthwaite Lake.
This dog walk is ideal for man and dog wanting that picture-perfect memento to trademark their Lake District dog holiday without the struggle of trekking up the region’s more challenging peaks.
We recommend starting this dog walk by leisurely strolling up Spooney Green Lane. This will take you into Brundholme Wood where you’ll be surrounded by a canopy of luscious trees that your pooch will love running around in.
Following a brief trail through the rich woodland, you will arrive at an open, zig-zag path that will direct you to the fell’s summit where you will be graced with uninterrupted views of neighbouring fells.
So long as there aren’t any local woolly Herdwicks knocking about (and of course, how well-behaved your doggy is!) the walk provides your canine companions with ample opportunity to run around and play, while still suitably tiring them out from the uphill climb.
Since the walk doesn’t take too long, you can get it out of the way in the morning then return to the town centre where our Keswick hotels will be open for lunch and refreshments!
Allow our skilled chefs at the Kings Arms to rustle you up some hearty, Cumbrian grub while you and your four-legged-friend recharge in the lounge & bar, or watch the world go by while you sip a delectable cocktail in the chic Front Bar at the Inn on the Square – dogs are encouraged to join!
Yogi’s Puppraisal: 5/5
“This wonderful doggy-walk is right on my doorstep but still remains one of my favourites. I can always find plenty of sticks to entertain me on the journey up and love the feeling of my ears flapping in the wind at the top! Not to mention all the other dogs I get to meet on the way.”
Book your Lake District dog holiday today!
Now that you’ve read our insider’s guide to the best dog walks the Lake District has to offer, it’s about time you started thinking of treating your own loyal companion to a fun break away. After all, what better way than to experience the unparalleled vistas that the Lakes has to offer than by doing it all alongside your best friend?
All 6 of our charming Lake District Hotels are dog-friendly, so we’ll make sure that both you and your furry pal will receive a warm welcome and plenty of tasty treats on arrival! We understand that dogs are important members of the family which is why we make sure their stay is just as comfortable and memorable as we want yours to be.
Be sure to ask for your exclusive Hike & Bike guide book for £2.95 from our reception when staying with us. This details plenty of walking routes right from the doorstep of each of our hotels.
You can read more about our dog-friendly rooms here.