I discovered Wythenshawe Park when I competed in a running race here and I seem to find something new to see and enjoy every time I return. A welcome lesson I learned from the running is that this park is very flat, making it great for gentle walking and bike riding.
The main car park (free weekdays, small charge weekends) is conveniently located opposite the playground and community farm, and down a path from the horticultural centre. We didn’t get much further than this corner of the park, but there was plenty to keep us occupied. The playground here is well equipped and designed for children up to 15 years old. There are plenty of picnic benches and seats – but no shade. Not that this usually presents any kind of problem, but today I did feel a bit like I was melting.
Next door is the small farm with goats, cows, ponies, pigs – often with extremely cute piglets, sheep and various fowl. If you carry on past the farm and follow the sign for the stables, you’ll come to a small field with more animals grazing. Follow it all the way around and you come back to the playground.
Also next to the playground is a path which will take you to toilets and the Courtyard Tearoom.
We had a walk down to the Horticultural Centre, as I was intrigued by the idea of the “safari walk” and “jungle walk”. I was really impressed with what we found – indoor gardens in the hothouses, with fishponds, an aviary and a variety of walkways and themed gardens, including “gardens of the world”. This makes a very pleasant diversion, and would be a good tip if you found yourself caught out by rain-obviously a more typical concern than a lack of shade on the play area!
Our visit today only touched on what this park has to offer – you can sometimes visit Wythenshawe Hall, there are several woodland areas, tennis courts, and pitch and putt. There’s also a wide range of activities -check the council website which is kept very up to date. Coming up soon is woodcarving for over 8’s, a spooky walk for Hallowe’en, gardening sessions and stargazing – so you can even enjoy this park in the evening!