Rydale Country Clothing

Dog Walks in the South East

30 Jun 2023 |

The South East is an ideal spot for anyone with a dog. Nearly all green spaces are dog-friendly, meaning you’ll have plenty of places to explore. You could probably find a new walk every weekend and during the summer, the views are even more spectacular.

Although your pooch will have to be on their lead for the most part due to bird-nesting season and roaming cattle, they’ll still love the sheer amount of space to run around on! There’s a variety of walks listed here, with some long-distance routes included. Don’t forget that you don’t have to complete an entire route, even just one section of these walks is a substantial distance of a mile or two.

Below we’ve listed five of our top dog walks in the South East, perfect for anyone in the area or for visitors to the area. Most have well-designated paths or signage, ideal for if you’re new to the area!

Nymans, Handcross, Haywards Heath, West Sussex

This National Trust park is very popular amongst locals and with such beautiful countryside, that’s no surprise! With ancient oak and beech woodland to explore as well as a lake and plenty of wildlife for the children to spot, it’s the perfect spot to spend an entire day outside.

At Nymans, there are three circular walks of varying length. The shortest walk is 0.75 miles but does feature some uneven terrain along with some steep paths. You’ll pass by the stream and wildflowers on this walk too. The middle-distance walk, the Centenary Walk, is 1.5 miles and again, there are a handful of slopes to navigate as well as lots of muddy spots. Don’t forget to wear your proper walking boots for these walks!

The Millenium Walk is the longest walk at 2.5 miles, taking you along a mediaeval path, through woodlands and lots of bridges and steps. Whilst it’s not considered a hike, it can feel like it at times with lots of unsteady terrain and puddles throughout.

Nymans is incredibly dog-friendly, allowing them on all routes. However, until the end of August, dogs must be kept on a lead due to bird-nesting season. It’s a Site of Special Scientific Interest because of the breeding birds. It’s advised that you stick to the designated paths too as not to disrupt the wildlife throughout the woodlands.

Olney Circular Walk, Olney, Buckinghamshire

Just on the outskirts of Milton Keynes, the town of Olney is a popular spot for its circular walk. It’s a varied walk, with a stretch along the River Great Ouse, the lakes in Emberton Country Park as well as stunning countryside views.

The full walk is 4.5 miles; however, you’ll find many people walking a shorter stretch of this walk, especially around Emberton. Be aware if you do the full 4.5 miles, you will have some roadside walking so make sure your dog is comfortable with the potential vehicle noise.

Scotney Castle

When you arrive at Emberton Country Park, you’re greeted with lakes, meadows and woodland. Even if you just walk this part of the walk at just under 2 miles, it’s still a decent walk for anyone. Here is where you’ll find more amenities, such as picnic areas, a visitor information centre and a cafe in the grounds. They even stock a special ice cream just for dogs!

After a long walk, you’ll be grateful for a stop off at the local pub, The Cherry Tree. They’re very dog-friendly so expect to see lots of other furry companions there too.

It’s best to walk this route in dry weather because parts of this route can be cut off due to flooding. You’ll also have to walk across fields on this walk too so expect to get muddy during it!

Copt Hill, Alton, Hampshire

A 6-mile walk isn’t for everyone but if you’re a regular on the walking circuit, it could be your cup of tea. It should take around three hours to complete, so perfect for an early morning walk or an early evening stroll, especially during summer light nights.

You’ll experience a range of scenery and walk through urban areas, parks, country land and woodland all in three hours! It’s a great spot for children too, with plenty of animals to spot. From alpacas to pigs, they’ll have such fun seeing them fairly close.

There’s a riverside portion to this walk, which is a popular part with locals, especially during the summer. Again, keep your dog on a lead for the most part to not disturb wildlife. However, when you go through Anstey Park during this walk, there’s plenty of room to let them off their lead, 32 acres of space to be exact!

Scotney Castle, Lamberhurst, Tunbridge Wells, Kent

28% of Kent is considered an area of outstanding natural beauty so if you’re looking for scenic countryside, this is the place to go. A spot for something a little different is Scotney Castle. Whilst dogs aren’t allowed inside the castle itself, they’re more than welcome in the shop, gardens and around the estate.

With 780 acres to explore, you can spend anything for an hour to an entire day wandering around! If you walk around the full grounds, it will be just over nine miles long. Of course, you can always just walk shorter sections, such as the two woodland areas, Nap Wood and Sprivers Wood.

There are plenty of public footpaths and waymarked routes for walkers alike, due to it being popular for families. However, it’s one of the most dog-friendly outdoor spaces in the UK so you’ll be sure to meet lots of dog walkers on this walk.

With the castle, house, garden, and estate to venture into and around, there really is something for everyone on this walk. Take along the entire family, we’re sure parents and grandparents will love the cafe and tearooms!

Hindhead Commons and the Devil’s Punch Bowl, Surrey

For one of the most scenic dog walking routes in the country, Hindhead Commons is the place to head to. Walk in the footsteps of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, who is said to have thought up ideas for the Hound of the Baskervilles right here.

With views of the Surrey Hills, this designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty is popular with so many walkers yet still feels quiet and serene at most times of the day. Children will love the chance to spot various animals on this route, including insects, wild ponies and even rabbits and deer during the winter.

Two heathland areas here are now connected by the Hindhead Tunnel so there is a vast amount of space here to check out. Again, with flat areas and lots of hill walking, there really is a route for everyone.

The South East is often an underappreciated but beautiful area of the country, with some incredible outdoor spaces and scenic views for miles. You’ll also find most green spaces are very dog-friendly in the area as well as families so expect to see lots of different people visiting any of these spots.

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