I’ll start this post by saying our ‘next trip’ would have been Walt Disney World Florida and I have written plenty about that here. It is unfortunate that we can’t go as planned but we aren’t the only ones and it is for the best at this time. That does not stop us from planning our future Disney trip and plenty of others that we would love to do too.
For the last two years we have enjoyed a Winter holiday with our friends and their adorable cockapoo, Ares. At first we spent our time in Yurts in the Lake District with the second in a hotel in the Cotswolds. These breaks (as they would with dogs) are largely spent on walks or in dog friendly pubs. As the world might be back travelling come Autumn/Winter a dog friendly break will be more than welcome. I would love to see Scotland or even get on the channel tunnel and head to France depending on when and cost.
If we are not able to safely travel until next year then we will definitely be thinking about rebooking our Florida holiday. This will depend on Disney’s most popular times, (we wouldn’t want to pick a highly popular date) holidays available at work and how much flights and hotels will be in the new year.
I already know my husband really wants to get back to the Lake District. He’s a walking kinda guy and misses the great outdoors after a while. Before we drop a lot of money on a bigger holiday we may have to plan a weekend break up in the Lakes to involve plenty of walks, fresh air and good food.
This also goes for the Peak District. We are lucky enough to live within a couple of hours drive of the Peak District so this will be a day trip for us, most likely on the motorbike as it will need a run after being stood for so long.
That is it for now. From the above we have possible trip ideas for a day, a weekend, a week and a fortnight. When all this is over we will hopefully be healthy and in a position to travel again to one (or all) of the options above.
Pack that backpack. Humans and dogs alike need supplies over the course of the day, especially on walking holidays. If it is warm or a cool day we end up carrying drinks such as a flask of tea, a cold drink and water for Mia. This can get very heavy so I tend to carry mine while my other half carries his and Mia’s.
Invest in some good shoes. We have a pair of walking boots each (well my husband has a few) and plenty of thick walking socks. On one of our Snowdon walks we saw people heading up and down in trainers or sandals and I would not trust my ankles on terrain like that in any weather.
Planning for the weather. We are in the UK after all. Sometimes if we feel like the weather may take a turn whilst on our walk we’ll pack our rain coats, if it’s going to be worse we’re packing our waterproof trousers. There has been a few occasions we have had to walk in damp trousers and it isn’t comfortable.
Plan the route. And try not to get lost. There are plenty of times we have managed to find ourselves ‘off the beaten track’. My favourite (so far at least) was the time my husband convinced me that going up a bank was a shortcut. It was very steep uphill, he and Mia had gone ahead and as I scrambled to the top I found myself face to face with a cow. It was a terrifying moment and it took me a minute to realise that the cow was on the other side of a short wall.
Planning the route doesn’t just mean we won’t get lost. It also means that you know what to expect. On our holiday with friends in The Cotswolds we ventured off on a walk and found the route to be a dead end. We were lucky that we could take a detour, walk back for a few hundred metres and change direction (and that we are pretty relaxed with minimal expectations) but if not it would have been a very short walk for two very energetic dogs.
Take a look around. There is a lot to be seen when out and about and a main point of a walking holiday is to see the sights. Stopping to get the flask out and tuck into that packed lunch is one of my favourite things to do.
Have you been on any walking holidays or dog friendly stays?
Before we continue with this post I would like to state I hope everyone is staying safe and adhering to the current government guidelines. This post is merely to recount my tales and for entertainment purposes.
Monsal Trail surely has to be one of the most popular walks in Derbyshire. It is a simple route, hopefully I will never need a map for this one, is a lovely flat path thanks to its history of being an old railway, and the character is still aplenty. Oh and there is plenty of places to eat along the way. I will always think of food, ya know, in case you’ve eaten the picnic before you’ve even set off.
We have walked along Monsal Trail more times than I can remember. If we haven’t walked along it we have parked up outside Hassop Station and stopped for breakfast before going onto somewhere else. Side note: Hassop Station do an excellent breakfast range and have a fantastic selection of books and artwork in the shop attached. There is also bike hire here and on a sunny day becomes quite busy. There are a few car parks along this route and we tend to either park at the cafe or down into Bakewell.
As mentioned the route does still hold a lot of character and this comes in the form of tunnels, some quite long and dark for a time, that have the names in signage across the top. The route also has plaques and boards stating the history of certain parts and I remember one explaining how a pulley system was used on the line.
I distinctly remember the time before last that we walked along Monsal Trail was one of the hottest bank holidays in Britain. It was a beautiful day spent with friends and our dogs walking and talking. We were lucky to start the route away from the sun down on Millers Dale and did not notice how warm it was until we veered off course onto Monsal Trail. We stopped for an ice cream and loo break at The Refreshment Room and then headed back down to where there was cool water for the dogs and plenty of shade for both them and us humans.
We will walk along Monsal Trail many more times yet and I cant wait to explore more sections on the route.