Newest Review: ... main starting point for all of the trails on offer. We have, occasionally stuck to the trails and they are ok, they are used more so with ... more
If you go down to the woods today. You're sure of a big surprise.
Delamere Forest Park (Cheshire)
Member Name: benz2922
Delamere Forest Park (Cheshire)
Advantages: Plenty of areas to explore, fun for all ages
Disadvantages: Can become busy, car parking prices
Having such a large dog requires a lot of exercise. As our dog is part grey hound and a mix of other crazy breads (we love him all the same!) he requires a copious amount of exercise, he gets to the park every day but on occasion, to give him a special treat we take him to delamere forest which is an hours drive from where we live.
Delamere forest is situated in delamere, Cheshire which is an exquisite village situated within the countryside. Delamere forest is rather out of the way and even though we have been several times we always manage to get lost on our way there. Once you have managed to find the main entrance however, there are several different car parks. These vary in price as it depends on how far away or how close you are parked to the main visitors area. The prices are roughly between £3 and £5 but that also depends on how long you are wanting to stay. Do note however that Brines Brow Car Park is free and you can stay there all day. We usually use this car park as it leads to forest areas that are more off the beaten track.
At the main visitors centre there are a range of facilities on offer, there is a small, ample shop, a cafe, toilet access and bike hire (we are yet to do this, but its scheduled into the soon to be fitness plan!) Also the main entrance is the main starting point for all of the trails on offer. We have, occasionally stuck to the trails and they are ok, they are used more so with cyclists, dog walkers (on leads only) pushchairs and wheelchair users and well, everybody else really. But most of the paths are suitable for all the above mentioned. The main trails have picnic areas and are great places for spotting wildlife whilst not getting to involved with the trees. One of the major plus points about the main trails is that it is a pick up dog poop zone, whereas the less popular trails and within the trees themselves there is a stick and flick policy which basically means pick up a stick and flick the poop else where if you think there is a danger of it being trodden in - nice!
We however like to stray of the beaten track and during the majority of visits we just walk were ever we fancy, we always get lost but that's the beauty of it. I can't say that in all of the times we have been to delamere forest we have walked the same route. Most of the other main trails are full with visitors and its nice to just get out the way, its more peaceful and quiet and of course being within the forest itself means that we can let the dog run wild. There are no lead policies anywhere of the main trails so there is a perfect opportunity to tire a dog out, especially with there being no shortage of sticks to throw.
All in all delamere forest is 950 hectares which is a very large ground to cover. It is doubtful that you would want to walk the distance but the trails provide short or long routes that take you within the forest and safely back to your car park. If however you are like us and want to be more adventurous there is really no telling how far you have walked and then how far you have to walk back but its all in good fun. There are several lakes at delamere there is the more publicised one, blakemere which you are aloud to let your dog have a paddle in etc but we never really do as it is sometimes very crowded but on one of our wonderings we found a small lake, or it could have just been a very secluded part of the main one, I'm not sure but there was nobody around for as far as we could see and it was very deep into the bushes, so we just let our dog have a long swim whilst we sat on the bank and watched.
Its difficult in a way to explain delamere forest as it is just a forest , but it really is a beautiful place, in areas there are trees that look so old, it really is a sight. On the main trails there is really just sand paths to make it easer for all access but within the forest there are a great deal of obstacles to make it more fun, there are little and big hills, and we came across a stream once which had a log going across it, that was fun to try and accomplish with a two year old.
It really is suitable for all weathers, we prefer to go in the winter as there is nothing better than a strenuous walk to warm you up, this way you can also wear wellies which I think is essential with the dog poop issue! I couldn't really wear wellies in the summer.
There are other things available at delamere forest such as go ape. I have never actually seen this on any of my visits but it is an adventure activity type thing with assault causes and rope walking etc. All of that kind of adrenaline junkie stuff, not for those scared of heights like me! Anyway if you are interested in this their website has a lot more information than I do. Delamere forest is also known for holding a concert or two, again I don't know much about this but the website holds all of the relevant information on this. I almost forgot to mention, delamere forest also sell Christmas trees around the Christmas time (way over priced if you ask me!) but they also have one of the best Santa's grottos that we have seen, we took our daughter last year and it is likely we will be taking her again this year.
I would definitely recommend a trip to delamere forest, it is the perfect place to spend a quiet afternoon and it is brilliant if you have a dog. It has access for everybody and something for all ages to do.
Summary: One to look out for if you are nearby
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