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14 of the Best Dog Walks on the Isle of Wight

Despite its size of only 70-miles long, dog friendly walks on the Isle of Wight are not in short supply. An added bonus is that the trails incorporate some of the best dog-friendly pubs the Isle of Wight has to offer.

Find Good Places to Walk Dogs on the Isle of Wight

Only four miles from the mainland give Fido a ferry trip and once on this picturesque island you will be faced with some of the best dog walks you will ever come across. Sun, sea, sand, surf and sailing with historical sites and sweeping views will make this staycation across the water one you will never forget.

The Best Walks on the Isle of Wight for Dogs

1. Vetnor Downs

Bring your holidaying hounds up to this stretch of heather-studded countryside managed by the National Trust that makes dog walking on the Isle of Wight a delight. It is only 2.6 miles long through kissing gates in the heather and up a relatively steep hill for views of the mainland.

2. Needles Headland

Commit to this invigorating seven-mile hike across the downs which has some of the best views on the island. You can visit a Cold War rocket test site, a 19th-century fort and a monument dedicated to Alfred Lord Tennyson who loved to holiday here. You furry princess will be treated like royalty at the dog-friendly café on the route.

3. Mottistone Meander

Go walkies through Mottistone Gardens through the farmed countryside to the coastal cliffs of Sudmoor Point in the South. Depending on Fido’s fitness levels you can take a pick from either the 2.8-mile walk or the figure-of-eight meander. Keep your canine on a lead in places where there is livestock and be warned that some of the cliff paths can be slippery.

4. Carisbrooke Castle

Famous as the last place that King Charles I was imprisoned, this romantic hilltop castle has lots of outside space for Fido to frolic. Take the outward stretch along the ridge of Bowcombe Down and be prepared to clock up seven miles on this hike that takes you along the Shepherd’s Trail.

5. The Tennyson Trail

This stunning but challenging 14-mile route weaves through the beautiful Brightstone Down and Forest, arriving at the coast to spectacular views over Freshwater Bay of the Needles. The last leg follows the Coastal Path to Tennyson Down before finally reaching the stunning Alum Bay. Set aside a day for this, one of the best coastal dog walks on the Isle of Wight.

The Best Forest Walks on the Isle of Wight for your Dog

1. Combley Great Wood

Walking around Combley Great Wood is a great way to spend hours with the family and your four-legged friend. It is a route of roughly two miles, crossing Deadman’s Brook and leading you up and out of the lush woodland to the island’s largest town of Ryde. Rover will be rewarded with treats at one of the dog-friendly pubs here.

2. The Landslip

It might only be two miles long but be warned it is not plain sailing and is steep in places. It starts at Smuggler’s Haven tea rooms with steps leading down to ancient woodland that has pathways to Monks Bay. From here you head up the hill past the 11th-century church of St Boniface.

3. Firestone Copse

This is one of the most popular woodlands walks on the Isle of Wight with dogs and Fido will have a clutch of NBFs by the end of it. Before the walk even starts your four-legged bestie will be splashing in the brook to keep cool for a choice of walks in the magical slice of the island.

Best Dog-Friendly Coastal Walks on the Isle of Wight

1. Bembridge Beach

Stroll along this dog-friendly beach, beginning at The Tollgate Café and following the harbour’s shoreline to the coastal path along the white cliffs of Culver. It is a doable distance of two miles, three miles if you count the cliff climb. There is plenty of opportunity for playing fetch and splashing in the shallows.   

2. Links and Ledges Walk

Whizzing down the sands at St Helen’s Dulver makes this one of the best coastal walks with dogs on the Isle of Wight. This 3.5-mile beachcomb includes skirting the Isle of Wight Golf Club and has low-tide and high-tide alternatives, so check the tide table. It is a circular walk that is level most of the way, not counting the cavorting on the dunes

3. Niton to Sandown

Starting from the cliffs of Niton, this close to 10-mile trek is for doggies that can go the distance. It follows the Isle of Wight Coast Path starting high above the shoreline and descending to the sandy beaches of Shanklin and Sandown. St Lawrence and the seaside resort of Ventor are on the route too.

Country Park Walks

1. Robin Hill Country Park

Keep to the Canine Code and put your pup on a long lead through 88-acres of parkland, sculpture gardens and woodland. There are activities for young children too in the Lower Valley of this theme park. The pathways are all pretty level and you can choose a route that is best suited to you and your pet.

2. Pan Country Park

Be in the company of the island’s birds of prey such as buzzards, kestrels and sparrowhawks hunting above the grassy meadows and woodland. Choose a trail that includes bridges over streams where you can stop and see dragonflies, woodpeckers and jays. In the meadows with Mutley in summer you might see the spectacular Wasp Spider too.   

3. Fort Victoria Country Park

You can take a fossil or rock pool guided tour in this dog-friendly country park that is mostly sand, rocks and boulders. It is about half a mile of beach where you might come across fragments of turtle shells dating back more than a million years when the area was a tropical swamp.

Last Word

Officially the UK’s sunniest place, the Isle of Wight has a staggering average of 2,000 hours of sunshine each year and has some of the best dog walks in England. Each route is not so remote that it doesn’t take in some of the best dog friendly days out on the Isle of Wight too.

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