Let’s go outside: discover the hidden gems on your doorstep in Northampton this winter

Forget battling bugs or crowds and sweating in the summertime – winter is the ideal time to get outside for a walk and explore the picturesque countryside surrounding our town.
Forget the hustle and bustle of summer – THIS is the best time to make the most of our amazing area. Picture – supplied.Forget the hustle and bustle of summer – THIS is the best time to make the most of our amazing area. Picture – supplied.
Forget the hustle and bustle of summer – THIS is the best time to make the most of our amazing area. Picture – supplied.

From country parks to forest strolls, there’s a wealth of outdoor walks and adventures right here on our doorstep.

Enjoy time beside the water

Located just a few miles from Northampton, Sywell Country Park is a tranquil area surrounding the former drinking water reservoir. The park features walking trails, wildlife viewing and a visitor centre, and in winter it's a peaceful spot for leisurely walks; don’t forget your wellies or walking boots for the full 2.5-mile circuit of the reservoir.

Brixworth Country Park, to the north of the town, boasts a large lake and a network of trails through woodlands and meadows, making it a great place for family walks.

Or another top setting for a stroll is Pitsford Water with its seven miles of well-maintained tracks hugging the reservoir and promising stunning views. A haven for outdoor enthusiasts, this nature reserve is particularly good for birdwatching - you can spot diving birds, waders, and more - and also supports a number of rare plants.

Take in the countryside

The Northamptonshire Heritage Trail is a circular long-distance walking trail that covers 50 miles of rolling hills, charming villages, and historic landmarks in the county.

Or check out the Brampton Valley Way, a former railway line that stretches for 14 miles from Northampton to Market Harborough converted into a traffic-free cycling and walking path through beautiful countryside. Ideal for walking, cycling and horse riding, it passes through lovely rural landscapes and even two tunnels.

Head for the treetops

Situated about seven miles from Northampton, Salcey Forest is a green oasis made up of miles of ancient wood banks, building remains and beautiful trees including a number of rare veteran oaks. If you’ve no fear of heights, don’t miss the treetop walkways which offer panoramic views of the forest canopy. The forest also has various walking and cycling trails, making it an excellent spot for outdoor adventures.

Or you can explore a 200-acre area of woodland at Irchester Country Park, a short drive from Northampton. There’s a network of woodland and lakeside walks, as well as an adventure course with zip lines, and a play area for children.

Seeking something more sedate?

The magnificent Castle Ashby Gardens, in the village of Castle Ashby, features beautifully landscaped gardens (including the romantic Italian Gardens, the pretty Orangery and impressive Arboretum) and lakes. You can explore the gardens' paths, admire the flower displays, and check out the menagerie too.

Right here in Northampton, Delapré Abbey and its surrounding 500 acres of parkland offer peaceful walks and a chance to explore 900 years of history; you can find details of walk routes at the visitor welcome desk, and also try out riding, fishing or golf there.

Stay safe out and about

– Dress for success with breathable layers when you’re out walking in winter as sweating is one of the easiest ways to get cold

– Beat the wind chill with a wind-stopper coat that stops it feeling colder than it actually is

– Check the weather forecast and plan accordingly

– If going to more remote areas, carry essential equipment like maps, compasses, and navigation aids

– Always make sure your phone is fully charged.

Keep it clean and green

As the world struggles with the impact of climate change, developing sustainable and efficient energy solutions is crucial. Jackery offers a range of portable power stations and solar generators – and you can save up to 50 per cent in the Jackery Black Friday sale until November 28!

One of the largest Black Friday deals include the Explorer 1000, with a capacity of 1002Wh which has a whopping 50 per cent off at only £524 (RRP £1049) when purchased directly from the Jackery Amazon Shop.

See their other great savings for the great outdoors at uk.jackery.com/pages/black-friday

Amazon Black Friday offers are valid until 27 November 2023 while Jackery is offering an additional one-day promotion for purchases directly from the Jackery UK online shop until 28 November 2023.

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