Skip to content

Visiting Lyme with your dog

Dog walking at Wakehurst
Go for walkies at Lyme | © RGB Kew

Lyme has always been a place where dogs can enjoy themselves and you'll find plenty of places to walk your dog here. There’s ancient parkland, moorland and natural woodland in which to stretch your legs. Find out where your dog can go and the facilities available.

Help us to protect nature between April and July

Spring and early summer is a time when birds travel near and far to nest at Lyme and deer and highland cows are calving. Help us to protect the nature the calls Lyme home by keeping to paths and designated cycle trails and keeping your dog on a lead everywhere in the parkland, aside from the 6km of dedicated off lead space.

The Canine Code

We’ve worked with our partner Forthglade to come up with this Canine Code, which helps to make sure everyone can enjoy their day:

  • Keep them close: using a short lead helps to keep your dog from disturbing ground-nesting birds and farm animals. It's essential to use a short lead around sheep. But if cattle approach you, it's best to let your dog off the lead, and call them back when it's safe to do so.
  • Pick up the poo: please always clear up after your dog. If you can't find a bin nearby, take the poo bags home with you.
  • Watch the signs: keep an eye on local signs and notices wherever you're walking. They'll tell you if a beach has a dog ban, for instance, or if a path has been diverted, or if you're in an area where dogs can run off-lead.
  • Stay on the ball: remember that not everyone loves dogs, and some people fear them. So make sure your dog doesn't run up to other people, especially children.

Where can I walk with my dog?

Dogs are welcome in all areas of the park and garden. At this time of year, to protect the wildlife that calls Lyme home, we ask that dogs are kept on leads in most areas of the park.

Recognising how important it is for dogs to be able to get exercise off the lead, we offer a secure off-lead dog-walking area in Knightslow Wood all year round, as well as a route through Pursefield Wood. To find out more, keep an eye out for signs in the park and use the map below to plan your visit.

For the rest of the year, dogs are welcome off lead and under close control in most areas, and always on a lead around livestock and wildlife.

Thank you for helping us care for the wildlife around you during your visit.

Countryscape / National Trust
Download this handy map to see where you can walk off-lead at Lyme | © Countryscape / National Trust

Where else can my dog go?

Assistance dogs are welcome in all areas of Lyme.

Eat: If you're looking for a bite to eat there are options whatever the weather.

At the house: Eat in or take away from the Servants' Hall Café. Dogs are welcome to sit in at in the top half of the Ale Cellar, space permitting. We ask that visitors keep their dog at the table when going up to order or to use the doggy doorbell provided.

At the Timber Yard: Visitors with dogs are welcome to sit in the Muddy Paws Engine House, an indoor seating area in the Timber Yard, which follows the same opening hours as the Timber Yard Café. Dogs are not allowed inside the Timber Yard Café so if you’re visiting alone, please use the doggy doorbell and one of our team members will pop out to take your order.

Shop: Pop into our Timber Yard Shop with your four-legged friend to check out our range of dog treats and accessories.

Crow Wood Playscape: Dogs on a short lead are welcome in the play area. Help us ensure this is a clean, safe space for children to play in by being extra-vigilant with dog fouling and not taking dogs near the tunnels or onto the play equipment.

Where can't my dog go?

Only assistance dogs are welcome inside the house, Timber Yard café and Hall Shop.

Keeping control of your dog

Our definition of close or effective control is: ​

  • Being able to recall your dogs in any situation at the first call
  • Being able to clearly see your dog at all times (not just knowing they have gone into the undergrowth or over the crest of the hill). In practice, this means keeping them on a footpath if the surrounding vegetation is too dense for your dog to be visible
  • Not allowing them to approach other visitors without their consent
  • Having a lead with you to use if you encounter livestock or wildlife, or if you are asked to use one

Dog events at Lyme

If you love dogs and nature, you’ll enjoy our dog events at Lyme. Whether you’re looking for a challenge or a friendly stroll, we have something for you and your four-legged friend. Join us for canicross, a fun and exhilarating way to explore the parkland with your dog or meet other dog owners and share tips and stories at our dog walking social group.

A dog walker and their dog on the path at Bathampton Meadows
A dog walker in Bathampton Meadows, Bath | © National Trust Images/James Dobson

Dog walking social group

The Dog Walking Social Group is a great opportunity for you and your four legged companion to make new friends! The group meets once a month and takes a different route each time. It's a wonderful chance to explore different areas of the park, socialise your dog and find out more about the work going on throughout the estate. The whole walk lasts between one to two hours though you're welcome to break off at any time.

1 of 2
Two deer at Lyme Park in Cheshire with the house in the background

Discover more at Lyme Park

Find out when Lyme Park is open, how to get here, things to see and do and more.

Our partners


We've partnered with natural pet food maker Forthglade so that you and your dog can get even more out of the special places we care for.

Visit website 

You might also be interested in

Visitor walking the 'green corridor' at Bathampton Meadows, Somerset

Dog-friendly places to visit 

Discover the best places for a dog walk, from coastal adventures and dramatic mountains to more leisurely walks near you. Plus find information on dog-friendly cafés and read our Canine Code.

Visitors on a walk with their dog in Heddon Valley, Devon

Visiting National Trust places with your dog 

If you’re bringing your dog to the places we care for, here’s information on the Canine Code and pawprint rating system to plan your visit.

Dog enjoying a Forthglade treat at Attingham Park, Shropshire

How we're working with Forthglade for dog-friendly visits 

We've partnered with natural pet food maker Forthglade to create the Dogs Welcome project, helping you and your dog to get the most out of the places in our care.

Grand house with columns reflected in a lake and surrounded with autumn trees at Lyme Park, Cheshire

Visiting the house at Lyme 

Step inside the house and discover unusual objects and strange secrets as you walk through six centuries of family history at Lyme in Cheshire.

Visitors having lunch at Cragside, Northumberland

Eating, drinking and shopping at Lyme 

Feeling peckish during your visit to Lyme? There's a choice of eateries, each serving a wide range of snacks and drinks. After you've refuelled, head to the shops to browse for a special gift or souvenir.

Daffodils in the Italian Garden at Lyme, Cheshire

Explore the garden at Lyme 

Explore all the different areas of the garden at Lyme. This winter appreciate the formal geometry around the house with straight edges, columns of yew and clipped hedges demonstrating man’s dominance in comparison to the wild moors and parkland beyond.

Grandparents swinging a child by the arms and legs in the parkland at Lyme Park, Cheshire

Discover the estate at Lyme 

There's over 1,400 acres of historic parkland to explore at Lyme in winter. Discover thriving wildlife during your walk into nature, and seek out the follies for some of the best views over Cheshire.

A dog enjoying a winter walk in the grounds at Trelissick, Cornwall

Dog-friendly places in Cheshire and Greater Manchester 

With dog-friendly gardens, countryside and ancient woodland to choose from in Cheshire and Greater Manchester, you're spoilt for choice for your next adventure with your dog.