My Top 5 Walks in Northamptonshire

My Top 5 Walks in Northamptonshire

As much as we try to get away to different parts of our beautiful country, the truth is that the places we visit over and over again are a little closer to home. This is especially true since becoming parents earlier this year. As much as I love the Lakes and the Peak District, not to mention some of the coastal trips we’ve done, the places that I truly love are in my home county of Northamptonshire.

Here are a few of my favourites.

1. Summer Leys Nature Reserve

I love Summer Leys, it’s a little gem just on the outskirts of Wellingborough. It’s mostly hard standing paths (there is just one patch that gets muddy in the winter) around flooded gravel pits that provide an oasis for a variety of wildlife. We went a couple of weeks ago and loved sitting in a hide watching a variety of birds feeding. It’s usually quiet and parking is free.

summer leys

Top Tip: For a longer walk from Summer Leys, follow the Nene Way footpath for a couple of miles or so to Irchester Country Park

2.Harlestone Firs

Harlestone is another favourite, it’s so close to Northampton, yet it’s a great place to escape to and enjoy a few minutes peace. It can be busy as walkers, runners, mountain bikers and horse riders all share the same space, yet I love going there and getting away from it all.


Top Tip: It’s a great place to go to enjoy the Autumn colours, as shown by the above photo taken a couple of weeks ago.

3. Badby Woods

I love Badby Woods, it’s been a favourite of mine since I was a little girl. The area has it all: pretty villages, woodland and it’s also the start of the Nene Way.


Top Tip: Why not carry on through Fawsley Park and enjoy views across the countryside. The hamlet of Fawsley, with it’s church and hall (now a country hotel) is also worth stopping by.

4. Everdon Stubbs

Ok, so it’s another woodland walk, and it’s another childhood favourite of mine, but I make no apologies for that. The Stubbs are a beautiful backdrop for a walk. The villages of Everdon, Little Everdon and the hamlet of Snorscombe are also worth a look if you’ve got time.


Top Tip: Head here in the spring for a truly stunning display of bluebells

5. Stanwick Lakes

Stanwick is another favourite. There is an impressive visitor centre,  outdoor activities for all the family, not to mention a fantastic adventure playground and cafe.


Top Tip: Stanwick is a great place to go in the winter. The paths are pushchair/wheelchair accessible all year round, plus parking is cheaper Nov-Feb!

Do you have a favourite local walk or place you visit time and time again?

Looking for more places to go in Northamptonshire? Here’s another 10 ideas:

My Top Free Days Out in Northamptonshire
Northamptonshire Pub Walk 
Family Friendly Elton-Fotheringhay Circuit 
Castle Ashby Gardens
Fermyn Woods Country Park
Barnwell Country Park
Sywell Country Park
The Lyveden Way
Kelmarsh & Great Oxendon Tunnels 
Delapre Abbey

Get the OS Maps here by clicking on the images below:



  • pattertravelers pattertravelers November 30, at 23:11

    Yes! We’re always visiting our old favorites in the Columbia River gorge in Oregon. Childhood favorites can bring back the best memories and it’s so nice to be able to share them with your own kids.

    • TheHelpfulHiker TheHelpfulHiker December 04, at 07:37

      Definitely, I totally agree! I love taking Finn to the places I went when I was growing up, it makes it so much more special 🙂

  • Rosie @Eco-Gites of Lenault Rosie @Eco-Gites of Lenault December 04, at 06:29

    What a lovely variety of walks – you can’t beat getting outside even at this time of year and I am planning a nice long walk with the dog today. #MondayEscapes

    • TheHelpfulHiker TheHelpfulHiker December 04, at 07:40

      Thanks, I love getting out in the winter. Hope you have a lovely walk. I can’t wait to visit my parents in Normandy next year, such a great place for walking!

  • Lindsay Lindsay December 04, at 13:16

    Love this, thanks! We’re really local to summer lees and stanwick, but definitely going to visit the other three for a run about/so the boy one can hit things with sticks…!

    • TheHelpfulHiker TheHelpfulHiker December 04, at 13:35

      Glad you enjoyed it. The 3 woodland walks are all fab and full of sticks! Let me know what you think of them 🙂

  • Claire at Tin Box Traveller Claire at Tin Box Traveller December 05, at 18:26

    These all look like beautiful places to go for a walk – no wonder you visit them regularly. One of our favourite local walks is around the Forest of Bere in Hampshire. I think I have pictures from every season this year! I must do a compilation post 🙂 #thelist

    • TheHelpfulHiker TheHelpfulHiker December 06, at 07:46

      A compilation post is a fab idea, I’ve got so many photos of these places all year round I should put them together. I just had a look and the Forest of Bere looks great, will pay a visit if we’re ever around there 🙂

  • Packing my Suitcase Packing my Suitcase December 11, at 06:57

    What a gorgeous place!! The bluebells are so pretty, I’ve never seen them in person and would love to!

    Thank you so much for linking up with #MondayEscapes

  • Sarah Sarah March 14, at 08:52

    All of these walks look amazing! Sarah #OutdoorBloggers

  • Su {Ethan & Evelyn} Su {Ethan & Evelyn} March 15, at 19:04

    OMG! Harlestone Firs looks amazing! You are making me wanting to go there now. We also have a bluebell field nearby. It is just gorgeous. We went there on my little girl’s 2nd Birthday. It was very blissful. <3 #OutdoorBloggers You can read our day here:

  • Helena Helena May 18, at 14:44

    We loved Stanwick Lakes when we visited for a geocache Halloween mega once. #OutdoorBloggers

  • Nicole Nicole January 28, at 07:28

    Some of these look lovely! I’ve only ever been around Stanwick Lakes, but would love to explore some new places in Northamptonshire!

  • Isabel Isabel March 13, at 20:36

    Oh wow, these all loo, absolutely stunning – love the pictures! We really should explore our immediate environment more, no need to always travel super far.. #adventurecalling

  • Mcquinny Mcquinny July 25, at 09:18

    Hello! I came across your blog when searching for walks in Northamptonshire and just wanted to say thanks for your recommendation of Summer Leys. We were on holiday in the area and decided to visit – what a hidden gem! Quiet, peaceful, lots of wildlife – a great little walk!

    • The Helpful Hiker The Helpful Hiker July 25, at 11:31

      Thank you so much for your comment and I am very glad that you enjoyed Summer Leys as much as we do. It really is a lovely place.


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