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Family-Friendly Walks in Cheshire this Spring

By Jenny Schippers – 4th March 2021
Prettiest Walks in Cheshire this Spring

Family-Friendly Walks in Cheshire this Spring

 

As lockdown restrictions in England ease towards the end of March 2021 and we can travel slightly further to meet friends and family for walks in Cheshire; it coincides perfectly with the change in seasons and the opportunity to witness some spectacular Spring flowers.

The return of picnic-ing in our favourite park sounds like a real treat after months of being stuck indoors with only our immediate family for company. Now as the days get longer, the sun warmer, and the government restrictions looser, we can begin to explore further for our walks in Cheshire this Spring.

Whilst following government guidance, we are now able to explore National Trust Gardens, discover Bluebell walks and the opportunity to access countryside estates that have been closed over the Winter months/lockdown period.

The last of the Snowdrops and Crocuses will remain until mid-March, the Daffodils take over and will bloom until the end of April, and then the Bluebells will begin pushing through in April and last until May. Throughout Cheshire, there are plenty of walks that will incorporate these Spring flowers as well as including great spots to picnic, play, and relax.

Going into Spring, it is also worth considering a National Trust Membership if you have a couple of properties close to you or are planning a UK staycation. This monthly cost of approximately £8-10 per family will give you unlimited access to the parks, gardens, and eventually houses (when they begin to reopen) as well as free parking, thus making for an inexpensive day out.

The majority of National Trust Gardens will have spectacular displays of Spring flowers as well as a calendar of outdoor events during the warmer months including treasure trails for children making them the ideal place to socialise. As always with a National Trust property, you are guaranteed clean toilets, plentiful parking, and the opportunity to pick up a snack or hot drink along the way.

Family-Friendly Walks in Cheshire this Spring

 

National Trust Properties

 

We are blessed in the North West to have several fabulous National Trust Gardens that are already brimming with Spring flowers and offer extensive open parkland and gardens to explore. National Trust tickets are released on a Friday for the two weeks ahead. Although booking is not essential, it is recommended, specifically during the school holidays and at weekends. Here is a list of some of my recommended National Trust Gardens to visit for walks in Cheshire this Spring:

 

 

Spring Flower Walks

 

The Dingle – located in Appleton, the Lumb Brook Valley or ‘The Dingle’ as it is affectionately known features a shallow brook and woodland trail. During the Spring months, the woodland floor is a carpet of bluebells.

Moore Nature Reserve – located close to Moore village, this 200-acre wetland nature reserve comprises of woodland, lakes, and ponds. There are bird hides dotted along the water’s edge and the opportunity to see the bluebells during the Spring months.

Anderton Nature Park – located close to the Anderton Boat Lift, this nature reserve is awash with spring flowers and makes for a lovely day out. Read all about our last visit here.

Port Sunlight – located on the Wirral Peninsula, this pretty garden village is a great place to visit year round but particularly during the Spring months when the manicured flower beds are in full bloom.

Lovell Quinta Arboretum – located close to the Swettenham Arms (home to a beautiful Summer Lavender meadow), the Lovell Quinta Arboretum is a 28 acre woodland created by Bernard Lovell of Jodrell Bank fame. During the Spring months, the woodland floor is a carpet of seasonal flowers.

 

Countryside Gardens & Estates

 

Many of the impressive countryside estates in Cheshire open their well-manicured lawns and gardens to visitors during the Spring and Summer months. Often these privately owned homes are closed to the public for the remainder of the year so make sure you book ahead to enjoy a walk in one of these Cheshire gardens this Spring.

Adlington Hall & Gardens – located close to Prestbury and expected to reopen this Spring. The estate features a historic Tudor home, formal gardens, and woodland.

Cholmondeley Castle Gardens – located close to Malpas and expected to reopen this Spring. The estate features a formal garden, lakeside, and woodland walks as well as a Children’s play area.

Arley Hall & Gardens – located close to Northwich and open daily. The estate includes a woodland walk, formal gardens, playground, and café.

Dorfold Hall Estate – located close to Nantwich and open to the public Tuesdays and Bank Holiday Mondays April to October. The estate features a Jacobean house and landscaped gardens.

Eaton Hall – located on the outskirts of Chester and the official seat of the Grosvenor family, one of the largest landowners. The estate is opened to the public 2 to 3 times per year, keep an eye on their website for details of when you can enjoy the formal gardens.

Grappenhall Heys Walled Garden – located close to Appleton and open Tuesday to Friday. This kitchen and walled garden were once part of a grand country estate and along with the accompanying woodland and paved walks, the walled gardens are great with children. The Café is currently closed.

Ness Botanical Gardens – located on the Wirral Peninsula and open daily. The 64 acres of botanical gardens with stunning views across the Dee Estuary to North Wales are looked after by Liverpool University. Booking ahead is now requested so please check their website for details.

Walton Gardens – located close to Stockton Heath, this grand estate is open daily to the public and includes beautiful formal gardens, woodland walks, a playground, a children’s zoo, crazy golf, and parkland. Head to the woodland for a sea of yellow daffodils during the Spring months.

Rode Hall & Gardens – located close to Alsager, this Georgian estate features the region’s famous Snowdrop walk which was unfortunately cancelled this year. The hope is that it will reopen on 1st April and visitors can enjoy the stunning formal gardens.

Bluebell Cottage – located close to Dutton, this plant nursery and private gardens are open to the public April to September each year where visitors can enjoy the pretty landscaped garden, orchard and wildflower meadow.

Marbury Park – located close to Northwich, this country park with its lime avenue, arboretum, and mere are a legacy of Marbury’s days as an elegant country estate. Nowadays the bluebells and daffodils are a real draw during the Spring months as well as the many woodland trails.

National Open Garden Scheme – this nationwide initiative offers visitors the opportunity to access private gardens during specified dates each year. There are various dates to choose from and you can search for open gardens near you using the handy tool on the website.

 

Waterside Walks in Cheshire

 

We are blessed with a huge network of waterways and canals in Cheshire, a relic of the region’s industrial past. Nowadays enjoy these traffic-free waterside walks this Spring, the perfect way to safely explore the history of your local area.

Nantwich Riverside Loop – beginning in the pretty town of Nantwich, this walk takes in the River Weaver before crossing fields to meet the Shropshire Union Canal. An easy 3 miler with a mixture of pathways and fields (with some steps).

Higher Poynton to Lyme Park circular – starting at the Poynton Marina, walk the Macclesfield Canal through the woodland and grounds of Lyme Park. An easy 5 miler with a mixture of pathways, fields, and wooded trails.

Anderton Boat Lift and Great Budworth circular – a moderate 7.5 miles starting at the Anderton Boat Lift and following the Trent & Mersey Canal towards Marbury Park. This walk is a mixture of canalside paths, wooded trails, farmland, and pavement. It is not suitable for prams the entire way, but you could easily trim the walk by completing the Anderton Boat Lift to Marbury Park return or visiting the Anderton Nature Reserve instead.

Higher Walton to Hill Cliffe Circular – this moderate 6-mile route begins on Bridgewater Canal at Walton Gardens before crossing through fields to Hatton and then looping back to Hill Cliffe via Firs Lane. There is the opportunity to shorten this walk by heading to Appleton Reservoir from Walton Gardens before taking the walk up to Hill Cliffe.

Little Bollington to Dunham Massey Circular
– This gentle 8 miler begins in Little Bollington and follows the Bridgwater Canal to Dunham Massey, the walk includes a section of the River Bollin and Trans Pennine Trail. You can also access Dunham Massey along the route.

These walks are not suitable in their entirety with a pram. Refer to All Trails or My View Ranger for further details of the routes.

 

Fancy Reading More?

 

I hope you have enjoyed reading all about ideas for walks in Cheshire this Spring. If you fancy reading more from me including plenty more walking inspiration please refer to a collection of my previous blog posts below including:

 

 

All the above can be repurposed at any time of year. As always, respect the Countryside Code and local Government Guidelines. Please follow Girl About Cheshire on Instagram for more Cheshire-based adventures and staycation inspiration, as well as joining the #MakingMemoriesInCheshire community using the hashtag in your posts.

 

Thanks!

Jenny x

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