If your pup is like most, he or she loves the great outdoors. Cincinnati has a nice stash of dog parks (like at Washington Park and Armleder Park), and they’re perfect spots for unfettered doggie fun. But many regular Cincinnati and Hamilton County parks also allow dogs, with just a few common-sense provisos (like keeping to the trails and cleaning up messes). Check out five of our favs:
1. French Park This Amberley Village park is right in the middle of greater Cincinnati, but feels like it’s worlds away. The property—best known for its French House estate—has 275 acres of creeks, meadows, wooded hillsides, trails, and a spacious lawn. Take a rest from your roaming at the shelter, which has a nice view of the distant city basin. cincinnatiparks.com/french-park
2. LaBoiteaux Woods This oft-overlooked park on the city’s west side is a kid brother to the much larger Mt. Airy Forest nearby. More than two miles of wooded hiking trails—complete with one of the city’s best communities of wildflowers—are a refuge for man and beast alike. cincinnatiparks.com/index.php/laboiteaux-woods
3. Sharon WoodsSharon Woods features wooded areas, playgrounds, meadows, the Heritage Village Museum, a centerpiece lake (complete with harbor and playground) surrounded by a 2.6-mile paved trail, and one of the city’s finest snack bars. Explore a little beyond the lake and you’ll find a nature trail that leads to a 90-foot limestone gorge. Just keep the pup on a leash. greatparks.org/parks/sharon-woods.html
4. Winton WoodsKingfisher trail is a good bet for a quick one-mile hike through this huge park. Winton Woods boasts nature trails, a lake, a harbor, plenty of shelters and picnic areas, a golf course, and even a farm, all spread over some 2,550 acres. greatparks.org/parks/winton-woods.html
5. Alms ParkThis beautiful east side hilltop park is the lesser known of Cincinnati’s “pavilion parks” (the grande dame being Ault Park). Thanks to its slightly lower profile, Alms Park usually experiences smaller crowds on its 90-odd acres of trails, lawns, and overlooks. cincinnatiparks.com/index.php/alms-park#8
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