In a Nutshell
A sprawling stately home and estate, with beautiful landscaped grounds for dog friendly walks. This is one of the National Trust's more dog friendly properties, with pup welcome everywhere apart from the house itself.
Parking and Pooping
Stourhead is in Wiltshire, close to the border with Somerset. Due south from Bath, it is easily accessed from the A303 running east/west and the A350 running north/south through the county. A National Trust property, there is plentiful parking provided at a charge for non-members and free for members. There is plenty of grass around the car park and toilets are accessible without paying any entry fee if you are just visiting the café and shop.
From the car park you are quickly through the ticket office and from there a winding path down into the estate. Keeping right takes you to the house and formal gardens, whilst left takes you further down towards the Spread Eagle Inn, through the courtyard to the entrance to the grounds. If you're less mobile, there is a buggy service down to the Spread Eagle Inn and also some blue badge parking by the Inn as well, which gets you much closer to the landscaped gardens without the walk.
The paths are generally well kept and easy to walk on being mainly gravel and its possible to do a full circuit of the lake using a mobility scooter if needed. There are benches dotted around the paths and gradients are quite mild.
The circular lake path takes your fully around the landscaped grounds, where you can take in the views and the various follies and temples. The walk combines shaded sections through the wooded areas and more exposed sections by the lake, so perhaps not one that's suitable for pup on a hot day, especially when taking into account the walk from the car park to the main landscaped gardens as well. Plan for about an hour to walk round at a leisurely pace.
Keeping the Humans Amused
Aside from the views, the Palladian house is well worth a visit, though you'll need to take it in turns as this is the one place pup can't go. Near the car park you have the NT shop and small garden centre, along with a restaurant area, all dog friendly. Down by the Spread Eagle Inn, you have the Inn itself, along with a snacks counter, charity book shop and art gallery. There are picnic tables in the courtyard.
You have a few options here. The restaurant by the car park is dog friendly and has a reasonable selection of hot meals and snacks. The snack counter in the courtyard by the Inn has a smaller selection of cakes, some paninis and sausage rolls etc and hot/cold drinks. Or you can treat yourself to a pub meal at the Spread Eagle Inn.
For up to date info and prices check out the NT website here
Last Visit: May 2023