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Four Dog Friendly Activities in the Lake District

The ultimate guide to making sure your pooch has a great holiday!


Parkdean Resorts by Parkdean Resorts on 04/05/2018

We all need a holiday every once in a while, and dogs are no exception. Even our four-legged friends should get the chance to have a break, and one of the best places to do this is the Lake District. With its towering mountains, fantastic forests and beautiful lakes, there are endless open landscapes for your pooch to explore.

From historic houses to lake cruises, there are many places in the Lake District where your dog can join in the fun too! Here at Parkdean Resorts, we don’t want your furry friend to miss out on a great day out, so we’ve unearthed some of the best places to take them when holidaying in the Lake District.

Windermere Lake Cruises, Windermere

One of the most popular attractions in the Lake District, Windermere Lake Cruises, offers visitors a chance to take to the water and enjoy spectacular views while learning all about the buildings and bays surrounding the lake.

View over Lake Windermere

Just 10 minutes’ walk from Fallbarrow and less than 15 minutes’ drive from both White Cross Bay and Limefitt, Lake Windermere is located in the heart of the Lake District. Dogs must be kept on a lead while on the boat, but whether you fancy a 45-minute trip or a 3-hour cruise, you and your pooch can ditch the car and hop on board to explore the lake.

Take the 70-minute Red Cruise from Bowness to Ambleside, or vice versa, and enjoy the fascinating commentary on the history of the area. Hop off at Ambleside to take a stroll around this charming town and visit the many quirky shops and famous attractions, such as Bridge House and Stock Ghyll Force

Alternatively, enjoy the Green Cruise on a traditional wooden launch boat. Get off and explore Wray Castle, a mock-Gothic castle owned by the National Trust, with towers, elaborate rooms and beautiful grounds. The Peter Rabbit Adventure is perfect for kids, and also a great place to let your dog run around after the boat journey.

Dog owner at Lake Windermere

Grizedale Forest, Hawkshead

Roughly 30 minutes from all of our holiday parks in the Lake District is Grizedale Forest, the perfect place for your furry friend to explore. With miles of fantastic woodland to discover, it’s safe to say that your pup will need a well-deserved rest after a run around here.

Located between the lakes of Coniston and Windermere, there are plenty of walking and cycling trails to keep you and your dog entertained. Picnic in a quiet spot and admire the local wildlife, such as red deer, buzzards and barn owls. Search for the many sculptures that are scattered around the forest or try your hand at orienteering - a map reading challenge perfect for all ages.

Kids will love the Gruffalo Spotters trail, where they can look out for clues that lead to the Gruffalo - don’t forget to download the free app to see the characters come to life! There’s also an amazing adventure play area where the kids can burn off some energy, while you sit and relax on a picnic bench.

Video sourced from Victoria Lune

Muncaster Castle, Ravenglass

If you’re looking to uncover a little bit of history while holidaying with your dog, then a trip to Muncaster Castle is a must. Although dogs aren’t allowed inside the castle itself, they can enjoy exploring over 70 acres of beautiful woodland and gardens that surround the fortress.

Just over an hour from Fallbarrow Holiday Park, Muncaster Castle’s gardens date back centuries. The earliest surviving feature is the magnificent terrace that was built by the first Lord Muncaster in the 1780s. As well as remodelling the castle, he also planted thousands of trees and built the grand entrance gates, making this a beautiful attraction for visitors for years to come.

Muncaster Castle

Muncaster Castle - Photo © Alexander P Kapp (cc-by-sa/2.0)

For your dog, there are plenty of areas to explore. Take a stroll through Bluebell Heaven or visit the Georgian Terrace and Sino-Himalayan Gardens, where you can follow in the footsteps of the Pennington wives and children. It’s here where you’ll be greeted by breathtaking views of the Lakeland fells.

Head to the special dog friendly viewing area on the meadow to see the Sky Hunters Bird of Prey Display, or visit the Cannon Bank for the Wild Heron Feed, which happens every afternoon throughout the year. There’s a special sheltered outdoor seating area in the café, so you and your four-legged friend can have a bite to eat after working up an appetite exploring the gardens. Some of the walks around the site can get a little muddy during wet weather, so don’t forget to bring a towel for your dog for the journey back home.

Video sourced from Muncaster Castle

Lakeland Motor Museum, Backbarrow

Many museums tend to stick by the rule that dogs aren’t allowed inside. However, this isn’t the case at Lakeland Motor Museum, which is under 30 minutes away from all of our holiday parks in the Lake District. From classic cars to motorbikes, head down memory lane and learn all about the development of road transport through the 20th century, through a unique collection of over 30,000 exhibits.

Nestled next to the River Leven, the museum is the perfect place to pit stop with your pooch while walking along the riverside. Explore the extensive car, motorcycle and scooter collections, before checking out the Campbell Bluebird Exhibition - a tribute to the careers of British racing legends Sir Malcolm Campbell and his son Donald Campbell. The museum is also home to one of the largest collections of motoring memorabilia on display in the UK, including petrol pumps, globes, advertising signs, diecast scale models and much more.

Check out the displays using realistic mannequins, including a Women’s Land Army Girl with a 1940s tractor, and Allied Forces with a World War II Willys Jeep. Immerse yourself in history and visit scenes such as the 1920s garage and the 1950s café. While you and your pooch are exploring historic vehicles, there’s a quiz to keep the children entertained - which consists of 23 clues, questions and directions around the museum, leading them to a special medallion prize.

Video sourced from Vasile Rusu

Have you taken your furry friend anywhere exciting in the Lake District? Share your stories with us on our Facebook and Twitter pages - we’d be delighted to read them!