Just around the corner from where I work is Roundhay Park in Leeds. This is a very large park with lots of different paths where you can go for walks, or just hang out having picnics, etc. I try to take a full lunch break once or twice a week when I go to the park for a nice walk as a form of light exercise, and it's so lovely and refreshing. You never think of just going for a casual walk when you work in the city centre - then it's always about walking for the sake of making errands. But since I changed jobs in the end of last year and ended up being neighbours with this amazing park, I appreciate a good walk a lot more.
If you want to stay away from the crowd and the tarmac paths around the open green areas, with dogs and prams, you can choose to walk on one of the many paths through the forest arund the lake. This is my preference, as the forest makes me calm and reminds me of my home back in Sweden.
You really are spoilt for choice in this park - both when it comes to number of paths, and also the scenery. Having grown up by the coast I really miss the sight of open water, but I guess the lake in Roundhay Park helps a little bit. I just wish I could jump in for a swim!
Do you, just like me, appreciate a good walk in the nature, with good scenery and the smell of fresh water? If so, I can recommend having a look at Yorkshire Water's map of lakes and walks they manage around this area, which can be found here. Yorkshire Water is actually doing a brilliant job with upkeeping our lakes in Yorkshire, and they've just released Blueprint for Yorkshire - stating their plan for the next 25 years and how they aim to protect the environment.
I think it's great having access to water where you can stroll around - watching the wildlife, having a picnic, walking your dog... I think I'd go crazy if I couldn't do this. Sure, I still miss living by the coast and feeling the sea breeze on my face and in my hair, but the lakes around Yorkshire will do for now.