Further to our recent ramblings on the best dog-friendly cafes, pubs and restaurants within Shrewsbury, we thought we’d spread our wings a bit, escape from the metropolis and see what lies a bit further afield. If you live in Shropshire, or have even just visited, you don’t need us to tell you what a beautiful county it is. As one of the most rural counties in the country, it takes very little effort to find yourself surrounded by nothing but beautiful countryside.
There are so many amazing walking areas in Shropshire, it’s hard to know where to start but we thought we’d go for ones we’ve done ourselves and that can be combined with a refreshment stop because, in our opinion, there’s nothing better than coffee and cake with your walk!
Within spitting distance of Shrewsbury is Haughmond Abbey and Hill. This is a lovely woodland walk – ideal if it’s hot and you’re wanting to do a shady walk although not so great if it’s been raining as it can get very muddy. Owned by The Forestry Commission, there are several trails of varying lengths to follow and there’s a nice little café in the car park where you can sit outside with the dogs. Haughmond Hill
A little bit further away, just off the A5 towards Oswestry, is Nesscliffe Country Park. This is our home turf and no matter how often you walk through the woodland, it never feels like the same walk. There are easy short loops or you can extend the walk to link up with Hopton and The Cliffe. Many of the paths around here are sandy so there are stretches where the dogs could almost be at the beach. And certain routes take you really high up to where the views are simply stunning. When you’ve walked up an appetite, head over to The Three Pigeons in Nesscliffe, where you can sit in the beer garden or bar with your hounds and refresh. Map of Nesscliffe
One of our favourite places is the Shropshire Hills Discovery Centre in Craven Arms. You can enjoy a short(ish) walk around their 30 acres of meadows or pick up leaflets in the shop for detailed longer walks. We’ve done the ‘Riverside Ramble’ which is a really easy 2 miles but there are 3 other walks to choose from of varying lengths ranging up to 10 miles. Back at the Centre, there’s a really nice café although dogs are only allowed outside. Shropshire Hills Discovery Centre
Another of our favourites is Attingham Park, which is a National Trust property and has an entrance fee if you’re not a member. Although one of the busiest National Trust properties in the country, it doesn’t take long to escape the crowds and find the deer in the parkland. There are also 2 cafes where you’re able to sit outside with the hounds. https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/attingham-park
Although we’ve not tried our final suggestion ourselves, we have it on very good authority from some very discerning doggy friends that The Bridges in Ratlinghope is fantastically dog-friendly. Their website contains details of several walks – some within the local area and others that start/end at the pub itself. This is definitely on our list of places to try. http://thebridgespub.co.uk/walking/