Nothing beats taking your dog on holiday, especially to The Lake District, where dogs are often made as welcome as humans. Having had a few country walks ruined by stiles that our greyhound Max just couldn’t get over I thought today I would share a couple of walks we enjoyed in the Lakes with Max and news of a lovely competition from Good Life Cottages Lake District Cottages for dogs who love walking – er, that’s most dogs I think!
We climbed Loughrigg Fell with Max, he may be big and have long legs but he hates stiles and is built for racing flat out on flat not hill climbing, so this was a good test. It’s a lovely gentle start along the river, through bluebell woods, across Loughrigg Terrace with stunning views looking across the lake to Grasmere. Then it gets a little steep, but nothing Max couldn’t handle with the encouragement of a biscuit, just a bit of a scramble towards the summit.
We walked this route, from the White Moss car park, across Loughrigg Terrace, and back down again. We also lied to the kids and told them it was named after my youngest, that’s another story here! There are also longer routes from Ambleside which is full of pubs and cafes and very dog friendly. Max made a friend there too…
If you want to give your dog, or yourselves, a break from fells, this fairly flat lakeside walk is a fun adventure. As long as your dog has sea, or rather lake legs, as there are boats involved!
Starting at Ambleside you take a traditional wooden boat to Wray Castle jetty. It’s small but dogs are allowed, we had to carry our greyhound on and it was pretty hysterical, but nimbler or smaller dogs should be fine! Before you begin your walk you can pay to visit Wray Castle which is owned by the National Trust or just enjoy the views.
You then take the path left of the boathouse to follow the lake shore south to Ferry House. It’s a 4 mile walk along the shore and through woods. Catch the Cross Lakes Shuttle back from Ferry House to Bowness where you can stop off for a cup tea and slice of cake at the Pier Cafe before catching the third boat of the day back to Ambleside.
Skelworth Birdge to Elterwater
My friend and Lake District guru Sarah inspired me to go to the Lake District more, she hooked me in with instragram updates and then talked me through our first family trip over OS maps in Nottingham. She suggests Skelwith Bridge to Elterwater as an easy level walk with no stiles but plenty of interest along the river with meadows and cascades. It’s also great for younger children, she’s tried and tested it. Sarah also says The Britannia Inn at Elterwater is dog friendly and has an excellent reputation.
Dog friendly Lake District Pub Walks
If you fancy a pub walk we also bought Dog Friendly Pub Walks by Gilly Seddon and Erwin Neudorfer, which shares 15 great pubs that welcome dogs with 20 walks with easy to follow guides and maps. The routes are stile free too. Easedale, Knipe Scar and Thirlmere jumped out at me, but there are lots of lovely choices.
Dog friendly attractions
Dogs in the Lake District really are part of the family. Steamers, boat trips, railways and gardens. So many attractions are open to four legged friends. Lots of great ideas here from Lake District Gems.
Win a bundle of doggy kit worth £100!
Good Life Lake District Cottages are currently running a competition to win some gorgeous prizes for your dog from Ruffwear, including a harness, leash, bowl and toy. It’s so easy to enter and I know my two dogs would love this gear, I’m looking into a harness for our newest addition, Luna, so I can take her running more easily.
Do you have dog friendly Lake District Walks to suggest? Let us know about them in the comments!