27 de October de 2023 mariana

London Dog Walks

Londoners have a special fondness for their four-legged friends. In fact, it boasts the world’s most dog-friendly transportation network and a plethora of dog-friendly activities including bowling alleys, cinemas, pubs, and restaurants. So, it’s no surprise that we also have some fantastic dog-walking spots. Ensuring dogs have opportunities for off-leash exercise is crucial for their well-being. This is not only for mental and physical enrichment, but also because our walking pace doesn’t align with their natural rhythm. If you’re seeking great places to exercise your dog, I’m presenting here some fantastic dog-friendly parks and walking routes. From renowned Royal Parks to lesser-known gems, this is a compilation of the finest London dog walks, along with the best dog-friendly parks!

London dog walks in Greenwich ParkBest London Dog Walks

Kensington Gardens and Hyde Park

Hyde Park, arguably London’s most renowned park, sprawls with a network of trails and pathways. Adjacent to it lies Kensington Gardens, once the private grounds of Kensington Palace, now open to the public, adorned with well-tended flower beds and tree-lined avenues. It’s a haven for dogs, but be sure to keep them leashed around the Serpentine to resist a tempting dip! This park, though bustling, warmly welcomes dogs. Autumn in Hyde Park in a particularly fun time to explore time to explore around with all the falling leaves! As you and your pup explore this expansive green oasis, you’ll encounter beautiful sculptures, memorials, lakes, and gardens. While there’s plenty to keep you both engaged, don’t forget to pause for delightful refreshments at one of the cafés. Nearest train stations: Queensway, Lancaster Gate, Marble Arch (Central Line), and Knightsbridge, Hyde Park Corner (Piccadilly Line).

Regent’s Park and Primrose Hill

The iconic Regent’s Park and Primrose Hill are dog-friendly parks. When combined, they form an extraordinary London dog-walking experience. Begin with a romp in the broad grassy expanse of Regent’s Park—an ideal space for your pup to burn off some energy—then ascend to Primrose Hill, which provides the most picturesque view in London. Exploring Regent’s Park is especially enchanting during the spring and autumn seasons. Dogs are allowed off-leash in both parks, provided they are well-behaved, of course. You can easily reach Regent’s Canal or the vibrant bars, pubs, and restaurants of Camden Town from either location. Nearest stations: Camden Town, Great Portland Street, and St. John’s Wood.


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The Regent’s Canal

The renowned Regent’s Canal, completed back in 1820, connects Paddington with Limehouse, passing through the leafy enclave of Little Venice, Camden, and extending all the way to Victoria Park and Mile End. Towpaths span the entire length of the canal, leading you to numerous hidden gems along the way, including dog-friendly dining spots and plenty of pubs. It’s recommended to keep your pup on a leash here if they have a penchant for chasing birds—there’s an abundance of geese, ducks, and even swans along the route. Nearest stations: Paddington, Little Venice, Camden Town, King’s Cross St Pancras—take your pick!


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The Thames Path

The Thames Path offers a picturesque exploration of London’s iconic river, stretching from Hampton Court to the Thames Barrier. The path provides a diverse range of sights and experiences along both the North and South banks of the river. The path is characterized by its flat terrain, making it easily accessible for all walkers. While some sections may be affected by tides, the Thames Path offers numerous opportunities to enjoy the scenic beauty of the Thames. With an array of charming pubs dotted along the way, it’s an ideal choice for a leisurely stroll with your furry companion, providing a delightful blend of nature, history, and culture.


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Battersea Park

Next on my list of London dog walks is Battersea Park. Nestled alongside the Thames, this family-friendly park offers a diverse landscape with lakes, woodlands, and vast open spaces for your dog to explore. As you wander, you’ll encounter scenic gardens, notable landmarks, and even a few dog-friendly cafes, like the Pear Tree Cafe. Keep an eye out for the memorials and the tranquil Peace Pagoda to get a sense of the park’s rich history. Nearest stations: Battersea Park and Queenstown Road (National Rail).


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Chiswick House and Gardens

Chiswick Park, a picturesque escape in London, has served as an inspiration for some of the world’s finest outdoor spaces. It boasts sweeping green expanses, fragrant gardens, water features, and charming woodland. While there are areas off-limits to dogs, there are plenty of dog-friendly spots for them to stretch their legs. Don’t miss the annual Chiswick House Dog Show held on the grounds. Nearest train stations: Chiswick or Turnham Green (District Line).

Greenwich Park

Greenwich Park, graced by the Royal Observatory and the Meridian Line, exudes a distinctive historical charm. Its vast stretches of green and vibrant floral gardens offer panoramic views across the river to St. Paul’s Cathedral. The park also hosts a wealth of historical sites and fascinating features for both humans and their canine companions to explore. Here, you’ll discover expansive green areas and blooming gardens, along with sweeping vistas across the river to St. Paul’s Cathedral. It offers not only one of the best London dog walks but also a great opportunity to further explore the area. Nearest train station: Cutty Sark (DLR).


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Hampstead Heath

Hampstead Heath, while technically not a ‘park,’ is a wonderfully untamed expanse. It encompasses rolling meadows, ancient woodlands, grand residences, and natural swimming ponds—a true haven for a playful pup. Rich in history and surrounded by some of London’s finest pubs, it also offers one of the city’s most breathtaking views from Parliament Hill. The summit of Parliament Hill in Hampstead Heath offers some of the most spectacular views of London. Despite its popularity, the sheer size of the park allows for many uninterrupted rounds of fetch. This nature-rich haven features woodlands, heathlands, and a dedicated swimming pond for dogs. It also boasts historical landmarks and points of interest, making it as captivating for you as it is for your furry companion. Don’t miss out on the chance to also walk around Hampstead Village. Nearest train stations: Golders Green, Hampstead, or Kentish Town (Northern Line), and Hampstead Heath or Gospel Oak (London Overground).


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Highgate Wood

A short stroll from Hampstead Heath will lead you to this ancient woodland retreat. Highgate Woods is a haven for wildlife, offering accessible scenic walks. In spring, the forest floor comes alive with a carpet of bluebells. While there’s less open green space compared to other parks, dogs will love exploring the scents in the undergrowth. This leafy enclave provides a countryside escape within the city. Located between East Finchley and Highgate, it boasts a profusion of bluebells in spring, lending a beautiful hue to the landscape. As if that weren’t enough, there are excellent trails for dogs, along with a diverse range of critters and wildlife habitats. Nearest stations: Highgate or East Finchley.


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Richmond Park

When it comes to dog-friendly parks, Richmond is hard to surpass. Initially established as a deer park by King Charles I, keep this in mind as you walk your furry friend. It’s brimming with open grasslands and woodland trails that hold appeal year-round. It offers an abundance of open space and woodland for your dog to explore. Make sure to explore the stunning Isabella Plantation, featuring vibrant flower gardens, babbling streams, secluded paths, and picnic-friendly lawns. As a National Nature Reserve, it’s also home to some of London’s most treasured wildlife. Therefore, be aware of any seasonal dog restrictions. The deer rutting (September to October) and birthing (May to July) seasons should be avoided to ensure the safety of both your dog and the deer. The Isabella Plantation is a captivating woodland garden to visit with your dog, but remember to keep them on a lead. After your time in the park, take pleasure in exploring the nearby attractions, indulging in delightful restaurants, and relaxing at charming cafés. Nearest station: Richmond (National Rail and District Line).

Alexandra Palace and Park

Encompassing the grand Victorian palace, this parkland offers ample space for a game of fetch. Your dog will relish exploring a blend of woodlands and grassy expanses, with ornamental gardens and a serene lake to appreciate along the way. You can also delve into the fascinating history tied to both World Wars, or simply soak in the panoramic London skyline from the iconic hilltop. Nearest station: Alexandra Palace (National Rail).


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Epping Forest

Moving into Essex, Epping Forest is a sprawling natural haven with woodlands, lakes, rivers, quaint bridges, and rich history. It stands as London’s largest open space, making it a paradise for dogs. With nine marked trails of varying lengths, there’s a lot to explore for both you and your furry companion. Nearest station: Theydon Bois.


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The Lee Valley Walk

A notable addition to our roundup of the best dog walks in London, the Lee Valley Walk is a substantial nearly 16-mile trail stretching from Limehouse Basin to Waltham Cross along the River Lea. Along this route, you’ll pass through iconic locations like Hackney Marshes, Waltham Abbey, and Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. While tackling the entire trail might be a feat, the section around the marshes offers an especially enjoyable jaunt with your four-legged friend. There’s plenty of open space for them to frolic, and you can cap off the outing with a well-deserved pint at the Lord Napier and Star in Hackney Wick. What could be better than that? Nearest stations: Limehouse, Hackney Wick, or Tottenham Hale.

Blackheath to the Trafalgar Tavern

This is a fantastic spot for your dog to let loose, provided they’re well-trained for the roads and bustling South East London traffic. If not, it’s best to keep them on a lead. Start your journey at either Elverson Road or Blackheath train station, then embark on a loop around Blackheath, taking in stunning views of Canary Wharf and the city’s skyline. Next, venture into the UNESCO-listed Greenwich Park, where various paths lead you past the Observatory, a deer park, and even a small boating lake. Conclude your adventure at the riverside Trafalgar Tavern near the National Maritime Museum, where you can relish views of the Thames. Additionally, there are plenty of dog-friendly spots nearby – a true win-win! Nearest stations: Elverson Road DLR or Blackheath.

The Parkland Walk

Next on my list of the best London dog walks is the famous Parkland Walk – a five-kilometre-long stretch which takes you from Finsbury Park to Highgate along an old, abandoned railway line. As London’s longest nature reserve, you may be lucky enough to spot some of the resident species of wildlife along the way, and you’ll pass abandoned railway platforms, graffitied walls and even a sculpture of a Cornish sprite towards the Crouch End part of the trail. Perfect for dogs, you can extend the route by adding a loop of Finsbury Park or by heading up to Ally Pally’s panoramic beer garden. Nearest stations: Finsbury Park or Highgate.


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Hampton Court to Kew Bridge

Another relatively long one here, this time taking you along the mighty River Thames towpath from Hampton Court to Kew. You’ll start off by passing Hampton Court Palace – the former home of King Henry VIII and the current home of gardens, gigs and (supposedly) ghosts and ghouls. Continue along the river through Kingston and past Eel Pie Island – where the Rolling Stones once played a gig – then you’ll find yourself at Twickenham. Take a look on the opposite banks of the river here and you’ll see Ham House – a 17th-century house which is now owned by the National Trust. Journey onwards through Richmond and you’ll end up at Kew – home of the Royal Botanic Gardens. You can buy a ticket for that here.. Nearest station: Hampton Court.


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Victoria Park

Kicking off this section of the best dog-friendly parks in London we have Victoria Park – or ‘Vicky Park’ as it’s affectionately known – a spacious spot which is considered one of East London’s biggest draws. It’s the city’s oldest park and has two sides which span Grove Road – the eastern half is more suitable for doggos, as there’s ample space for them to run free and for throwing balls, frisbees or (insert here). Post pup-walk, head to the Pavilion Cafe for a brew and a pastry – they’re pretty darn good. Nearest stations: Hackney Wick or Cambridge Heath.

Crystal Palace Park

Another South East London gem, Crystal Palace Park is considered a real life ‘Jurassic Park’ due to the collection of 30 dinosaur sculptures found hidden among the foliage here. Ok so they’re not the most realistic of sculptures – they were after all made over 160 years ago – but seeking them out sure makes a dog walk fun. On top of this, the dog walking park also plays host to one of the country’s largest mazes as well as a boating lake and even a city farm. Nearest station: Crystal Palace.

Hope these London dog walks help you discover exciting new paths to explore with your furry friend. Enjoy the adventures and the beautiful sights the city has to offer!

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