For her birthday in March our hooman was the lucky recipient of a National Trust membership card which gains us free access to the hundred of National Trust places around the UK. We are slowly making our way around as many as possible but we wanted to share with you our favourites local to us in Surrey, all three are well worth a visit! It is worth noting that all National Trust properties have their own rules for dogs, some require dogs to be on the lead at all times, others state that dogs must be under close control, it is worth checking the requirements for each site before you visit!
Hatchlands Park – as our closest National Trust location just outside Guildford, Hatchlands Park has become a firm favourite in our walking repertoire. The walk all the way around the edge of the park takes about two hours with shorter routes available for those that would rather enjoy a cup of coffee and slice of cake in the cafe! Most of the walks are through the ancient woodlands and open fields, lots of places to run and plenty of good sniffs. The walks are usually very quiet, we usually only see a handful of other people when we are walking which is perfect if your pooch likes to have their own personal space. The park is beautiful all year round but in the spring the bluebell woods are some of the best in the country. Measures are taken to ensure the bluebells continue to flourish here, take notice of the signs and make sure you keep your paws firmly on the path! Hatchlands Park also has it’s very own lake, perfect for a tranquil picnic, or a chaotic game of save the stick in my case!
Polesdon Lacey – located in between Guildford and Leatherhead, Polesdon Lacey offers a huge variety of walks to suit every need, you could take a quick meander around the beautiful grounds of the stately home or you could take the long 4 hours walking route around the edge – it’s entirely up to you! We love the variety this location offers, when we visited in April we discovered the hidden bluebell woods that laid just off the beaten track, totally untouched and simply stunning. There is also a selection of cafes and shops to keep those hoomans happy. One thing to watch out for is the livestock, dogs must be kept on leads in the areas where livestock are grazing to prevent any problems arising. The fields that contain livestock are generally well signposted and can be avoided if desired.
Winkworth Arboretum – nestled in the depth of the Surrey Hills near the town of Godalming, we first visited this beautiful arboretum in the autumn with our bestie Tilly and the very talented Alice Loader, at the time the arboretum was full of the beautiful red, orange and yellow colours of the autumn leaves and the views were simply spectacular. We decided there and then that we needed to go back to explore further and boy, we are glad we did! We visited in May with Tilly, Archie (@archiesgreatadventures) and Winnie (@winniethedaxie) and we were not quite prepare for the majesty of the bluebells that we found. The carpets of flowers all around us as we walked were breathtaking. Of course, Winkworth has more to offer than just bluebells, the boathouse in the grounds is well worth a visit, as is the vast meadow across the network of bridges!
Where are your favourite National Trust places? We’d love for you to leave us a comment with any you think we should add to our visiting list!
Photos are by myself and Aura Photographs.