There’s no need to leave your four-legged friend at home for your next Cotswold adventure, with SoGlos discovering 18 dog-friendly attractions that welcome every member of the family.
While it’s often required that dogs remain on the lead, these attractions are perfect for an enjoyable day trip, family outing or simply soaking up the beautiful Cotswold countryside – which both two and four-legged visitors are sure to enjoy!
The only remaining pleasure garden of its kind, Painswick Rococo Garden near Stroud is full of wonders, from quirky sculptures and follies to woodland walks and quintessential Cotswold views.
With regular seasonal activities, a rustic playground and plenty of outdoor space to explore, it’s the perfect place for families to nurture their sense of adventure – with four-legged friends coming along for the ride!
For more information, visit rococogarden.org.uk.
Complete with amazing architecture, woodland trails and towering trees, the gorgeous Painswick Rococo Garden is perfect for a picturesque dog walk. Pooches are also allowed inside the café, which is stocked with doggy snacks to get tails wagging after a day of adventure.
Introduce four-legged friends to a host of other animals at Burford’s Cotswold Wildlife Park, with dogs allowed to accompany their families around the grounds. With many spacious lawns to roam, pets are sure to have a ‘paw-some’ day out – while there are plenty of activities to keep kids happy, too!
Wander around Batsford Arboretum’s incredible natural collections with your dog, with 56 acres of stunning parklands to explore. Well-behaved pooches are also allowed in the onsite café and garden centre.
Everyone’s welcome to hop aboard the train at Gloucestershire Warwickshire Steam Railway, with dogs allowed to travel in standard carriages for a flat-rate fare – as long as they’re not on the seats or tables and kept away from carpeted areas and those tasty buffet cars!
One of the country’s most spectacular tree gardens, Westonbirt Arboretum promises hours of fun and exploration, with dogs free to roam the Silk Wood, where there are seasonal trails to keep walkers entertained – and the Gruffalo’s Child to find!
Perfect for a family day out, Cotswold Motoring Museum takes visitors on a journey through motoring history with canine companions welcome to tag along. Meanwhile, the pretty surroundings of Bourton-on-the-Water are ideal for dog walks.
Hungry hounds will love watching their owners fish for supper with Bibury Trout Farm’s ‘catch your own’ fishery open daily from March to October. And, with plenty of green space and a water meadow to explore, Bibury is a great spot for a dog walk in the beautiful Cotswold countryside.
A favourite animal attraction in Bourton-on-the-Water, Birdland Park and Gardens allows dogs to join in the family fun, with water bowls provided to keep thirsty canines happy while kids marvel at penguins, pelicans and more.
Surrounding an unfinished Victorian mansion, Woodchester Park is a secluded woodland valley just waiting to be explored by dogs and their human companions – with a number of picturesque routes for scenic walkies and lakes to doggy paddle in, too.
Open during the summer months usually until mid-August, Cotswold Lavender offers the chance to wander around stunning and beautifully-scented, purple-hued fields, with four-legged pals welcome to tag along. A perfect backdrop for the most Insta-worthy dog snaps.
Dogs can join their families on an adventure through time, paying a visit to what remains of a grand country estate from Roman Britain. Accessible from the Cotswold Way, Great Witcombe Roman Villa is not only steeped in history but boasts gorgeous views, surrounded by plenty of open space for zoomies.
Located in the grandeur of Bathurst Estate, Cirencester Park is a great spot for a family day out, with dedicated doggy walking areas where four-legged friends can run, sniff and play. It’s also hosting DogFest, celebrating all things dog on Saturday 18 to Sunday 19 September 2021.
Pooches can get their paws wet at Greystones Farm, with riverside walkies that are suitable for the whole family. And there’s lots more for pups and their humans to discover at the ancient site in Bourton-on-the-Water, from Iron Age fortifications to blooming wildflower meadows.
Home to plenty of trails and bridle paths to get tails wagging, dogs are welcome on a scenic walk through Cotswold Water Park, with picnic spots along the way for a well-deserved rest. Not to mention it’s the perfect destination for pups who love to paddle!
Head to Bourton-on-the-Water for an enjoyable visit to The Dragonfly Maze, weaving through the yew hedge pathways with your furry friend, while little ones can have fun solving the riddle to reveal the hidden golden dragonfly.
While dogs might not be able climb up the Cotswolds’ highest castle, there’s plenty of fun to be had at Broadway Tower’s dedicated canine playground, featuring paw-some agility obstacles. Meanwhile, the surrounding countryside is made for outdoor exploring, with an expanse of open space, several walking routes and spectacular views.
A romantic haven in the heart of the Cotswolds, Cerney House Gardens offers a slice of rural paradise for visitors and their doggy pals, with a gazebo walk, woodlands, a vegetable garden and much more to discover. This year, it’s open seven days a week until Sunday 31 October 2021.
Welcoming dogs throughout its estate, Newark Park is a National Trust site in Wotton-under-Edge, offering plenty of pretty parklands to explore with canine companions in tow. The three-levelled garden is also a great spot for a picnic.
For more information about Painswick Rococo Garden, visit rococogarden.org.uk.
By Annabel Lammas
Wednesday 28 July 2021
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