It is never difficult to encourage a dog to go on a walk, unlike children. When I was small, my parents used to play a ‘bear hunt’ game. They would begin the walk earlier than my brothers and I, and fashion arrows made out of sweets and chocolates on the ground. Our pursuit of those tempting, eatable signs certainly got us moving. This isn’t necessary with most dogs (even saying the word ‘walk’ in our house makes the dogs hysterical) but snacks are still essential. The organic and nutritious ‘Love from Ted’ dog treats, on sale now at Rosara, are great for slipping snuggly into your pocket during a walk.
Are you bored with the same-old dog walk? Well, it is likely that your dog is too. At Nicholsons we are dog-friendly and we want your dogs to enjoy the brilliant walking potential of our locality. Here are some suggestions for local dog walks, so that you and your pet can experience the diversity of stunning landscape, wildlife and fauna which North Oxfordshire boasts.
- The lovely village of Great Tew offers wonderful walking routes. With a free car park available only a ten-minute drive away from Nicholsons, and a variety of tranquil field paths and tracks to explore, this location is ideal. This page gives detailed directions for a peaceful 2-mile walk which traverses the delightful, undulating countryside: http://www.gps-routes.co.uk/routes/home.nsf/RoutesLinksWalks/great-tew-walking-route#. After your walk, you can enjoy refreshments at The Yurt, which provides a cosy interior to shelter from the wintery cold and a lovely outdoor area to enjoy summery warmth.
- Blenheim Palace, situated in the nearby village of Woodstock, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is not only home to the 12th Duke of Marlborough, but is also the birthplace of Winston Churchill. As well as being a prestigious historical monument of Baroque architecture, the building possesses magnificent grounds which are a wonderful setting for walks. This page highlights some potential walks: https://www.blenheimpalace.com/visit-us/plan-your-day/walks/perimeter.html.
- Further afield, but worth the half hour drive, is the Otmoor Nature Reserve. A haven for wildlife - you can follow the RSPB visitors trail across the wet meadows and grassland whilst looking out for the variety of wildfowl, butterflies, dragonflies and birds which populate the area. From songbirds to Emperor Moths, the whole area is a paradise for animal-enthusiasts and botanists. I recommend going at dawn or dusk in order to see the most wildlife and enjoy some tranquillity. If you want to follow a different route here is another well-explained option: http://www.theaa.com/walks/bewitched-otmoor-the-forgotten-land-420804.
Remember, the routes I have highlighted do not cover the extent of possibilities in the area. The GPS Cycling and Walking Routes website (http://www.gps-routes.co.uk) is great for creating the ideal walk for you and your family. From Otmoor, you can walk to the idyllic village of Islip, or from Great Tew, you can continue to Chipping Norton and visit the ancient and mythical Rollright Stones.
Written by: Immy Higgins