If you are looking for an outdoor experience that is perfect for you and your pooch then look no further because dog-friendly walks in Leicestershire are certainly not in short supply. An added bonus of course is that some of the best dog-friendly pubs Leicestershire has to offer are on or near most of the routes.
Find Good Places to Walk Dogs in Leicestershire
From reclaimed land to historic sites and then some great views in Higher Leicestershire, you are going to find the best dog walks in this county where conservation and preserving wildlife is key.
The Best Walks in Leicestershire for Dogs
1. Bosworth Battlefield Trail
Get your Tudor fix on this four-mile walk through the fields and woods that once played host to one of the biggest battles in English history. Set off from Ambion Hill on the Bosworth Battlefield Trail. Refuel at Sutton Wharf at a café that sells doggy ice cream before heading back into the woods.
2. Bradgate Park, Newton Linford
You will pass the ruins of the home to England’s Queen for nine days, Lady Jane Grey, into parkland and through woods. You can climb to a good vantage point for panoramic views. If your hound is a hunter it is best to keep him on the lead in certain places where deer roam free.
3. Foxton Locks, Market Harborough
Take on the famous “staircase” of ten canal locks on the Grand Union Canal crossing bridges and walking the two-mile stretch along the towpath to the Foxton Lock Museum. The Canal River Trust has put up some bird boxes where you might see the resident Red Robin. If your canine remains calm you may spot a kingfisher and mating herons too.
4. Burbage Common, Hinckley
Right on the edge of Hinckley is this 200-acre wood and grassland that is amassed with wildflowers from spring and right through summer. There are a few trails to choose from. The Leicestershire Round 102-mile trail passes through the common so you might see some serious hikers pushing ahead.
5. Hoby Field Trail
If Fido is partial to frolicking in fields and you are serious about walking, then this 5.4-mile countryside ramble is tailor-made for both of you. The typically English countryside is gently undulating and there is plenty of chances for off-lead escapades. Be cautious in fields with livestock, however. There is the dog-friendly thatched Blue Bell Inn at the end in Hoby village for refreshments.
The Best Woodland Walks in Leicestershire with Dogs
1. The Outwoods, Loughborough
This woodland walk is going to get your puppy’s tail wagging for sure, especially when there are doggy flapjacks on offer at the converted double-decker bus café that also sells breakfast butties. There are a couple of routes to consider, the longest taking an hour if you don’t stop. If Rover has good recall, he can do the walks off-lead.
2. Bagworth Heath Woods, Thornton
If you are passionate about eco-projects this 185-acre reclaimed colliery site is going to pique your interest. Explore the wetland habitat and demonstration woods with fast-growing poplars. A pit wheel sits on an island in the centre of a large pool as a reminder of the site’s past. You’ll see wildfowl and aquatic plants and there are plenty of pathways amongst the trees for your little tyke to follow.
3. Swithland Woods, Charnwood Estate
This 170-acre native woodland has been designated as a Site of Special Scientific Interest and boasts some of the most scenic dog-friendly walking routes in the county. There are information boards and trail maps at the entrance to the woods and your pup can go off-lead to scamper through the oak, birch and alder trees.
Best Dog-Friendly Country Park Walks in Leicestershire
1. Watermead Country Park
Just north of Leicester is 340 acres of lakes, woodland and nature reserves along the River Soar. There are endless routes including a sculpture trail and all are suitable for humans with hounds. It’s a day out affair so pack a picnic and your pooch and take your pick of a walk that is best for both of you.
2. Melton Country Park, Melton Mowbray
You can walk 10 minutes from Melton Mowbray and you are at this 137-acre park with an abundance of wildlife around a large lake, in the woodland, on the fields and even in the formal gardens. There is easy access two-mile circular walk that takes in most of the country park. The lakeside on this stretch is well-known for dogs swimming and socialising.
3. Burrough Country Park, Melton Mowbray
Take a six-mile walk in this country park in an area of the county known as Higher Leicestershire because of its rolling hills and panoramic views. Persuade your pooch to climb Burrough Hill so that you can see the ancient site of an Iron Age fort. You can join the Leicestershire Round long-distance path through meadows to the village of Somerby.
1. Mountsorrel and River Soar Circular
A 2.7-mile circular walk starting with great views from the castle ruins above the village of Mountsorrel. Way markers guide you to a peaceful part of the River Soar in the form of the Grand Union Canal. If your fur baby likes activity then she will be in her element along the weirs and locks.
2. Barrow Upon Soar Trail
Allow at least an hour and a half for this five-mile trail that starts in Barrow Upon Soar, one of the prettiest villages in Leicestershire. It is nearly five miles of riverside walking that will suit a pooch who likes a bit of peace. You are likely to see other canines and their chaperones along the way.
3. Cropston Resevoir, Charnwood Forest
It is three miles of waterside bliss right in the heart of the county’s prettiest forest. Look out for tufted duck, cormorant, great crested grebe and Canada geese. It is a surfaced footpath that saves those paws from getting muddy. You can follow the footpaths to the quaint village of Cropston to refuel at the pub.
Dog walking in Leicestershire is a dream thanks to the swathes of forest and miles of canal and rivers pathways. Of course, you can pack a picnic and maybe experience some of the best dog friendly days out in Leicestershire that happen to be on your rambling radar.