Ok, so I think I may have mentioned where we live, once or twice. Just in case you haven't seen that we live down in Poole, Dorset. On the sunny (well sometimes) south coast of England.
As you can imagine, there are a few things to do. Many may think of the beach, the sea, going on boats and all that lovely stuff. Yes, these are fantastic, I am trying to put together a post on some of these, at least what we like. Today though I wanted to talk about one of our favorite places to walk, and that is Upton Country Park.
So, Upton Country Park is 140 acres of parkland, shoreline and formal estate gardens in Dorset.
Marvel at the grand Grade II* listed Georgian Mansion House, enjoy the wildlife along the shoreline, allow the children to blow off steam along the Woodland Play Trail, enjoy one of our regular events – or simply find a quiet spot to admire the amazing horticulture and beautiful botanical Walled Garden. - Quote from http://www.uptoncountrypark.com
As the quote says, you get a lot to do and see when you visit. There are extensive grounds to walk around, you get to see lots of different fauna, wildlife, and more because of the diverse grounds. There are your, what I would call, common woodland type areas. The ground itself goes around some of the Poole harbor lands so you get the marshy, weed areas where there are some wonderful views as well as bird life. Then there are the areas where there are fewer trees and you find things like little streams, duck ponds and so on.
If your looking for a pleasant place to just go and wander for an hour or two, or if you're looking to take you dog out for a walk, then this is a great place to visit. They have even just opened some new areas which they have acquired. The other great thing is that, when finished, you can go in there cafe to grab a coffee - certainly one of my favorite parts.
If you're looking for places to photo, then there is so much to capture here. You can probably see from the few I have included that there's so much. We've probably not even covered a quarter of whats there, to be honest.
We just love the walk. We tend to go along the same track; mostly because the kid's legs would get tired if we tried to explore too much. Also, because one of the first times we went, we walked around, discovered some lovely area and streams, but came out of one of the other exists a little way down. We had to walk back up to the car park.
We often walk past the impressive mansion too. At least part of it seems to be used by the people that work there, but there are some areas you can get walked around. We often see the sign to come in and see. By the way, its all free to visit the park and house. That said, they have just started to charge for parking. You have to pay a small amount to park on the site - however, its free to visit so if you find parking off site it will cost you nothing.
All this really means its a worthwhile place to visit, if you're down in the area and looking for things to do. It's a great site to walk around. There is so much to see. There is a little play area for the kids. The ground itself offers views of trees, harbor, ponds, and stream. You can visit the house and you can grab a coffee. All for the free cost of entry.
For us though, its all about getting out and walking. Walking around Upton Country Park just allows us to immerse ourselves in a quiet wooded area away from the roads. Regardless of it being summer or winter, the walks themselves are easy to do. Winter you may want to take wellies. You can walk from Upton down to Hamworthy. You can walk around a bit part of the harbor. Or you can just grab a coffee. Yes, this year there is a small cost of parking (you can pay for an annual parking ticket if you visit all the time). Considering that, the cost of entry to other similar places nearby against a couple of pounds for parking - its great value and if you find free parking nearby, then its even better.