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Eight of the Best: Walks in Parklands and Gardens

Think of a classic British walk and lots of people think of the vast natural landscapes of moorland and hills, typical of many of our National Parks. However variety is the spice of life and we shouldn’t overlook some of the nation’s parklands and gardens that provide an alternative walkers’ paradise. iFootpath has plenty of routes to discover, here are a few of our personal favourites…

 

hackfall parklandParklands and gardens might sound like overly manicured spaces in principle, but actually they provide a wonderful walking environment. With historic parklands you will be able to marvel at the skills of parkland designers of the past, such as Lancelot Capability Brown, who had amazing talent in transforming unremarkable countryside into stunning landscapes with enticing vistas. Many of these designed landscapes have beautiful features to discover as you explore the sites, from towering specimen trees to tranquil lakes, herds of deer to herbaceous borders, and thought-provoking sculptures to impressive fountains and follies.

Many of the parkland and garden walks are more accessible than an average countryside walk, usually with no stiles or awkward obstacles and with well-maintained paths. The iFootpath guides will take you on a guided tour of each of the parks, discovering all the key hidden gems and explaining the relevant history along the way. Which one will you visit this summer?

Hackfall Woodland Park, North Yorkshire

A 4 mile circular and fairly strenuous trail around the woodland of Hackfall, near Masham in North Yorkshire. The magic of Hackfall is undeniable. From a castle and follies to wonderful old trees, Hackfall is steeped in history. Its unique buildings sit alongside waterfalls and ponds in an ancient woodland teeming with life. Read more...

Richmond Park, London

A 5 mile circular trail on the paths of Richmond Park. Richmond Park is a large bustling park where fallow deer, red deer and a whole host of wildlife share the area with joggers, cyclists and walkers. One of London’s Royal Parks, the park dates back to the early 1600s and is popular with residents and visitors alike. Read more...

clumber parklandWat Tyler Country Park, Essex

A 1.5 mile circular easy access walk around Wat Tyler Country Park near Basildon in Essex. Once a Victorian and Edwardian explosives factory, today the site is 125 acres of diverse habitats including meadows, hedgerows, blast mounds, tidal waterways, reed beds and marshes. This short, easy access trail takes in a number of the key features including the wildlife garden, bird hides, viewing platform, miniature railway, marina and sculptures, but there are plenty of other quieter paths should you wish to extend the walk. Read more...

Knole Park, Kent

A 3.5 mile circular pub walk from the White Hart in Sevenoaks, Kent. The White Hart is a beautiful old coaching inn which has been serving the needs of travellers for more than 300 years. The walking route follows a circuit around the adjacent Knole Park, a 400 year old deer park. The beautiful landscaped grounds make for easy walking with great views and plenty to see including wildlife, veteran trees and long ancient avenues. Read more...

Whisby Nature Park, Lincolnshire

A 1.5 mile circular easy-access walk around Grebe Lake, within Whisby Nature Park near Lincoln in Lincolnshire. Whisby Nature Park comprises a series of lakes surrounded by grassland, marsh and scrub. The lakes have been created from the remains of sand and gravel quarry pits, and now support a wide array of wildlife. This trail performs a simple loop around one of the lakes, passing several bird hides, creating a short walk for everyone to enjoy. There are many other trails and paths should you wish to extend your visit. Read more...

Lyme Park, Cheshire

A 5 mile easy-going, circular pleasant walk along the Macclesfield Canal and through the grounds of Lyme Park in Cheshire. Lyme Park was originally owned by Sir Thomas Danyers in 1346. The land passed by marriage to the Leghs in 1388 and the first recorded house on this site was 1465. It remained in the possession of the Legh family until 1946 when it was given to the National Trust. Read more...

lyme parkland smlClumber Park, Nottinghamshire

A 5 mile circular trail around Clumber Park, a large estate managed by the National Trust in Nottinghamshire. The route will give you chance to see many of the park’s key features including Clumber Lake, Clumber Bridge, Clumber Chapel (often referred to as the ‘Cathedral in Miniature’) and a section of Limetree Avenue (the longest double-lined avenue of lime trees in Europe). Read more...

Windsor Great Park, Berkshire

A 5.5 mile loop around Windsor Great Park, once part of the royal hunting ground and now providing miles and miles of peaceful walking in amongst the hustle and bustle of East Berkshire. Windsor Great Park is 5,000 acres in size, dates primarily to the 13th Century and is managed by the Crown Estate. Throughout the walk you’ll have magnificent views of Windsor Castle as well as a chance to see some of the famous statues within the park such as the Copper Horse. Read more...

 

View a full list of All iFootpath garden and parkland walks

 

27 May 2018

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