Poole, a bustling coastal town in Dorset, is a haven for dog owners and their furry friends. With an abundance of green spaces, picturesque walking trails, and scenic coastline, there’s no shortage of places to explore with your four-legged companion. In this post, we’ll highlight the top 10 dog-friendly parks and walking trails in Poole to help you discover the perfect spot for your next adventure together.

  1. Poole Park
    Located in the heart of Poole, this 110-acre park is a popular destination for dog walkers. With its beautiful lake, well-maintained pathways, and vast open spaces, Poole Park offers a pleasant and relaxing environment for both dogs and their owners. Dogs must be kept on a lead in certain areas, but there are designated off-lead areas where they can run free and socialise with other pups.
  2. Upton Country Park
    Upton Country Park is a vast estate featuring 130 acres of parkland, woodland, and shoreline. With miles of walking trails, open meadows, and an enclosed dog play area, it’s an ideal location for your pup to burn off some energy. The park also hosts regular dog-friendly events and activities throughout the year. Most of the Country Park is off-lead with the exception of the play areas, back of the house and the walled garden. The cafe has ice creams and hot drinks, but dogs cannot go inside so bring a friend to hold your dog while you pop in for a take out refreshment!
    Upton Country Park - Dog Walking
  3. Baiter Park
    This waterfront park offers stunning views of Poole Harbour and Brownsea Island. Baiter Park features a large open space for dogs to run and play. The park’s flat, paved pathways make it accessible for all dog walkers. Baiter leads onto Whitecliff park, see below!

  4. Hamworthy Park
    Hamworthy Park is a picturesque spot located along the shores of Poole Harbour. The park boasts open grassland and a sandy beach. It’s a great place to enjoy a coastal walk with your pup while taking in the beautiful views of the harbour and beyond. In summer you will find families enjoying their beach huts with BBQs and picnics on the grassy areas, so if your dog is keen on a snack you’ll be better keeping them on lead when it’s busy!
  5. Canford Heath Nature Reserve
    With over 850 acres of heathland, Canford Heath Nature Reserve offers a unique and diverse landscape for dog walking. There are several well-marked trails to follow, providing the opportunity to spot local wildlife and enjoy the stunning scenery. Dogs must be kept on a lead during bird nesting season (March to August), but are allowed off-lead outside of this period. It can get very warm on the heath in summer so make sure you take plenty of water for you and your pup.
  6. Branksome Woods and Chine
    Branksome Woods offers a lovely tree shaded walk alongside the stream which leads to Branksome Chine Beach. There’s multiple paths to take and lots of beautiful trees and flowers to admire on your way. The woods lead to the beach where you’ll find an all-year dog-friendly area signposted near the car park. There’s a cafe and toilets here too. There are now beach BBQs at the beach and on a busy summers day many locals will be enjoying a picnic or BBQ in the evenings so make sure you keep your dog on a lead if they like to share snacks with strangers! There are bins all along the prom for depositing your poop bags.
  7. Whitecliff Park
    This popular park overlooks Poole Harbour and offers beautiful views of the Purbeck Hills. With a large open space, Whitecliff Park is perfect for letting your pup run and play. The park also has a children’s play area, making it a great spot for family outings. There’s dedicated bike and pedestrian paths as of 2022, and there is more planned work ahead so you may see some of this underway. Be careful near keyhole bridge as there is no longer a gate so dogs have direct access to the road, we recommend putting your dog on lead in this area.
  8. Delph Woods
    Delph Woods is a small yet beautiful woodland area in the Broadstone suburb of Poole. The woodland paths and open spaces provide a serene setting for dog walks, and there’s even a small stream where your pup can take a refreshing dip on a warm day. Our favourite spot when the rhododendrons are out! Parking is very limited so we recommend getting there early or during the week.

  9. Sandbanks Beach
    Sandbanks beach is a blue flag beach which also has a year-round dog friendly area towards the ferry and the end of the peninsula. The beach has plenty of dog bins along the prom for your poo bags. There is a large carpark however during the summer months and on weekends you may find this busy as it’s such a popular spot with tourists and locals alike. There’s a row of shops, cafes and restaurants nearby for you to grab a bite, usually you can sit outside with your furry friend and enjoy a coffee, such as Oriel. On hot days we recommend walking here before 10am and after 7pm as the sand can get hot for your pups feet and due to the lack of shade they can overheat.
  10. Turlin Moor Nature Reserve
    Located in Hamworthy, Turlin Moor Nature Reserve is a hidden gem that offers a mix of wetlands, grasslands, and wooded areas. The reserve is home to a variety of wildlife, making it an excellent spot for nature lovers and their dogs to explore. It can get boggy in the wetter months so make sure you have your wellies and a towel to clean up after your walk! Keep your dog on a lead during bird nesting season to protect the local wildlife. Parking is free and in summer there is shade for your car which is ideal. At weekends there are usually sports played on the pitches so you may find less parking available then, and less open space for your dog.

Poole is a fantastic destination for dog owners, with a diverse range of parks and walking trails to suit all tastes and abilities. From coastal paths and scenic harbour views to serene woodland walks and open meadows, there’s something for everyone! So, grab your dog’s leash and head out to explore the top 10 dog-friendly parks and walking trails in Poole – your furry friend will thank you!

If you’re short on time or need a helping hand, consider booking a walk with Poole Dog Walking. Our experienced and friendly dog walkers will ensure your beloved pet enjoys the best of Poole’s outdoor spaces, keeping them healthy and happy. To learn more about our services or to schedule a walk, visit our website or give us a call today. Let Poole Dog Walking take care of your pup’s exercise needs while you focus on your busy schedule, knowing they’re in safe and caring hands.


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