What’s in a name you may ask? Well, rather a lot if you’re a globe-trotting hound – and even more if that name has canine connections!
With that in mind, we’ve compiled a hotlist of the most doggy-themed places in the UK – read on to see which ghostly ones are best for brave dogs, which are best for the historical hound about town, and which ones are perfect for pooches with a royal wedding in mind.
A village in West Dorset situated by the River Piddle… there’s no need to explain its connection to our canine friends. It used to be known as Piddletown, but due to its unfortunate name, it fell out of favour and is now more about the muddy types of puddles our dogs know and love. We too prefer the name of Puddletown even if for us pooch owners, it still means getting out a mop and bucket.
On the shores of the Southampton Water, this village is home to historical landmarks such as Netley Castle and Netley Abbey. There are lots of country walks including Westwood Woodland Park, a 200-acre Nature Reserve of ancient woodland and grassland, and the popular Royal Victoria Country Park, home to the Netley Chapel, the only remaining part of the famous Royal Victoria Military Hospital. Originally built for 19th century soldiers returning home from war, the hospital is now in ruins, so sadly no good for poorly paws on a walk.
Black Dog Village, Devon
A typically picturesque Devon village with thatched houses, and great for rambling where you can walk the Two Moors Way, not forgetting to stop at the Black Dog Inn for a drink. On one of the highest ridges of land between Dartmoor and Exmoor, it has spectacular views across both moors. Legend has it that a ghostly black dog used to guard the entrance to an important tunnel during the Civil War. Nowadays, dogs of all colours are welcome, though black dogs with a sense of humour seem to find hours of amusement here for some reason.
While we appreciate some of our more refined canines may be offended by the tone this blog is taking, we feel the majority of our pooches would head to this beauty spot in an instant! A stone’s throw from Lickey Hills Country Park, it's perfect for adventurous canines who have 524 acres of rolling wood and heathland to play in.
Hound Tor, Dartmoor, Devon
This eerie deserted medieval village consists of a cluster of 13th century stone longhouses on Bronze Age land. The ghosts of its ancient dwellings and graves were allegedly inspiration for The Hound of the Baskervilles; legend says that the hound was a dog who had been turned to stone by witches and has returned to stalk the moors, and there have reportedly been many sightings of a big black dog in the area. This is scary stuff, so is only recommended for the bravest of canines!
Set amongst acres of open countryside, this village is pawfect for pooches who like to explore and humans who like to accompany them on their impressive adventures. Home to the Woofferton transmitting station, it is great for the intelligent canine who counts modern history among his many interests.
The Isle of Dogs, London
First mentioned in Henry III’s papers, it is thought that Edward III kept greyhounds here, leading to its strange name. Just 20 minutes from the Tower of London (nervous pooches will not be up for this), you can also take royalist dogs to Buckingham Palace. The area has lent its name to a new Wes Anderson film about dogs being quarantined on an island due to an outbreak of canine flu – dogs with the sniffles are best left at home!
Labrador Bay, Devon
Now, any self-respecting Labrador will have already made sure that you know about this place. A beautiful coastal reserve near the picturesque village of Shaldon on the South West Coast Path, it has breath-taking views over Lyme Bay. Adventurous pooches will love the stories about the notorious Jack Rattenbury and his smuggling friends who used the Teign Estuary to bring in their illegal wares.
A village with leafy lanes on the banks of the River Parrett, this is the perfect place for you and your canine chum to explore Bridgwater Bay and the glorious Quantock Hills. There are lots of lovely villages with dog-friendly pubs, all surrounded by beautiful Somerset countryside. In fact, the Campaign for Real Ale has compiled a list of dog friendly pubs in the area, so it’s the perfect excuse to head to this lovely village.
Petworth, West Sussex
Home to the majestic Petworth House, this country house and park is home to the finest art collection of the National Trust. But fear not, non-art loving canines, it is also bang in the middle of the South Downs National Park. With lots of fabulous coastal walking on your doorstep, this is the perfect holiday for any type of pooch. The spectacular chalky cliffs are better for dogs on leads but there are also lots of wooded areas just perfect for a safe stroll – just be mindful of the resident deer.
Have we inspired you and your pooch to visit a furnomenal dog-friendly location? Have a paw through our dog-friendly cottages across the UK; you may just find one within barking distance of our doggy-named places!