Top Dog-Friendly Holidays In The UK

With uncertainty surrounding holidays abroad, 2021 may be the perfect year to plan your first staycation and the great news is that by staying in the UK, your four-legged friend is welcome to tag along with you too! But where is the best place to go in the UK for a dog-friendly holiday? Here at Groomers, we want you and your pooch to experience the best getaway, so we’ve pulled together this guide of all our favourite dog-friendly destinations. Packed with travel tips and things to do when you get there, all you’ll have left to worry about is when to book!

Where can I go on holiday with my dog in the UK?

The UK is a dog-loving nation and with staycations becoming more and more popular every year, the good news is that you can take your dog pretty much anywhere! We would recommend that you check ahead for dog-friendly hotels, restaurants, cottages and attractions before travelling, to guarantee that you don’t get caught short on arrival. Here’s our round-up of some of the most popular destinations to travel to with your dog and some dog-friendly things to do when you get there!

England (North)

  • Northumberland
Bamburgh Castle

Northumberland is a popular dog-friendly holiday destination, stretching across the north of England with its beautiful North East coastline and long-distance trails stretching towards Cumbria in the west. Perfect for lovers of the outdoors, it has eight long-distance trails that pass right through the county that can be broken down into much smaller routes for dogs (and people!) of all ages and abilities. Full of scenic variety, from walks through the hills to strolls along the coast, there are so many places for your dog to explore! 

Top dog-friendly attraction:

Alnwick Castle, used as Hogwarts in the famous Harry Potter film franchise, is a popular destination for fans of the franchise. Although the castle grounds are dog-friendly, dogs aren’t allowed inside or in neighbouring Alnwick Gardens. You may prefer to visit Bamburgh Castle (pictured), which provides a breath-taking backdrop to beautiful Bamburgh beach. Stretching across 2.5 kilometres, Bamburgh beach is dog-friendly all year round and is the perfect place for your four-legged friend to have fun!

  • The Lake District
Labrador at the Lake District

The Lake District, situated in the North West of England, is a popular destination because of its stunning scenery, expansive lakes and English Heritage sites. Popular places such as Amble, Keswick and Windermere are incredibly busy during the summer, so if travelling with your dog, you may want to consider visiting some of the area’s quieter destinations or hitting those hotspots outside of the summer season. The Lake District has 20 English Heritage sites that accept dogs and lots of dog-friendly pubs, so the whole family can enjoy a rest and a nice meal after a busy day of exploring.

Top dog-friendly attractions:

Aside from all of the amazing walking opportunities, dogs are also allowed to take a cruise around Lake Windermere and to travel on the Ravenglass and Eskdale steam railway. There are also lots of amazing dog-friendly English Heritage sites too! 

  • North York Moors
Picturesque view of the North York Moors at Sunset

Expansive stretches of nature from beautiful moorlands to stunning coastlines, it’s no wonder that the North York Moors National Park is a favoured destination for dog-friendly holidays (and has hundreds of dog-friendly cottages to choose from!). Walk the sandy beaches of Scarborough, explore the ruins of Whitby Abbey (then share your famous Whitby fish and chips with your four-legged friend) before stopping off at Helmsley Castle to learn more about its 900-year-old history. 

Top dog-friendly attractions:

We’ve already mentioned the ruins of Whitby Abbey and Helmsley Castle but why not visit Robin Hood’s Bay too? A great mix of winding cobbled streets, coastline, fossil-finding and fishing boats make it the perfect destination for the whole family.

  • The Yorkshire Dales
Man fell-running in the Yorkshire Dales

If you love picturesque countryside walks, fell-running, exploring and love being outdoors, the Yorkshire Dales situated in North Yorkshire is the dog holiday for you! 17 of the walking routes in the Yorkshire Dales are referred to as ‘miles without stiles’ as they are accessible to all, including those with limited mobility, perfect for a family day out even with a pooch and a pushchair as part of the pack! Explore the rural English countryside, take in the fresh air and relax!

Top dog-friendly attractions:

The Wensleydale Railway is dog-friendly, so why not take the dog with you for the ride of his life! Travel through market towns and the rural countryside and spot famous TV locations such as the Finghall Lane station buildings that were used in the Yorkshire Vet and All Creatures Great and Small! Or, if you really want to explore, why not visit the limestone cliff at Malham Cove or the stunning walks around Aysgarth Falls?

  • The Peak District
Woman with dogs looking out to the hills

The Peak District nestled between Manchester and Sheffield boasts stunning views along its hiking trails and campsites. With more than 100 dog-friendly pubs too, it’s the perfect place for a long hike followed by a spot of lunch, or a relaxing afternoon with a beer. 

Top dog-friendly attractions:

Choose one of the many walking routes of the Peak District National Park. Hike the Monsal Trail for stunning views then take the family, including the dog, to Chatsworth House and explore the gardens, before finishing with a bite to eat and a pint of real ale at the Castle Inn.

England (South)

  • Cornwall
Dog running across a beach in Cornwall

Visit the South West Coast of the UK to the furthest point and arrive at Cornwall, the perfect destination for your UK dog holiday. Cornwall boasts a subtropical climate, with temperatures of at least 10 degrees for 7 months of the year, guaranteeing at least some nice weather whilst you visit. Not only that, but a large proportion of Cornwall’s stunning beaches are dog-friendly with 51 welcoming dogs all year round and 81 having some seasonal restrictions. It’s a little known fact that there are actually only 7 beaches in total in Cornwall which prohibit dogs making it the perfect dog-friendly holiday destination. You may want to bear in mind that Cornwall is a very popular tourist destination in summer, so if your dog is more nervous, it may be worth visiting outside of the summer months. 

Top dog-friendly attractions:

Many of Cornwall’s main attractions are dog-friendly making it really easy to have an action-packed holiday with the whole family. Visit the Eden Project, a global garden of plants originating from the Mediterranean to South Africa and California. Dogs aren’t allowed indoors but are allowed to explore the outdoor sections with you, as long as they’re kept on their lead. How about a stop off at the Cornish Seal Sanctuary too? Let Fido make friends with all of the seals whilst he wanders around with you! Then finish your trip by exploring Land’s End and walking its stunning coastal trails.

Wales

  • Snowdonia and North Wales
Conwy Castle, Wales

Loved for its rolling hills, stunning mountain ranges, pretty villages and valleys, Snowdonia is an incredibly versatile place with lots to do and lots of opportunities to involve your dog too! You can even take the dog to Mount Snowdon’s summit! If that sounds a little too strenuous don’t worry, there are lots of lovely, picturesque walks through the National Park too.

 Top dog-friendly attractions:

Although we’d really recommend exploring the Snowdonia National Park, there are lots of other dog-friendly attractions in North Wales. The Sygun Copper Mine, a Victorian mine that’s been a tourist attraction for over twenty years gives both you and the dog the opportunity to explore underground! Although Caernarfon Castle isn’t dog-friendly, Conwy Castle is perfect for a doggy exploration, as are Conwy Water Gardens, just a 13-minute drive from the castle. If you’re looking for a nice beach to roam around on, Point of Ayr beach is beautiful and is dog-friendly, even in the summertime.

  • South Wales and Pembrokeshire
Dog running on Rhossili Bay, South Wales

If you’re looking for a reason to visit South Wales, then Rhossili Bay is it. Dog-friendly, it’s Wales’ number one beach, part of Swansea’s Gower Peninsula, an area full of natural beauty. With three miles of coastline to explore, take in the sights and have fun with the whole family.

 Top dog-friendly attractions:

As well as exploring Rhossili Bay, you may also like Barafundle Bay with its crisp blue waters and surrounding cliffs. It’s a half a mile walk to this little beach from the nearest car park, so plenty of opportunities for the dog to get a decent leg stretch. 

How can I travel with my dog?

Golden Retriever sitting in the boot of a car

So you’ve picked your destination and you’ve booked some dog-friendly accommodation, now all that’s left to think about is the travel. Whether you’re planning on travelling to your destination by car or by rail, you’ll need to pack essentials for your dog to help them with the journey. Here are our top tips for dog-friendly travel, to help make your dog’s holiday a total success:-

  • Take your dog’s bedding and/or blankets for the journey. Not only will it give your pooch a comfortable place to sleep, they’ll feel relaxed as their bed will carry all of the familiar scents of home.
  • If travelling on a train, consider a pet carrier for smaller dogs and be sure to keep larger dogs under control
  • Make sure your pet is microchipped and wearing an ID tag, just in case it wanders off.
  • Take dog food with you, especially if it’s a specific brand that could be hard to get hold of. Whilst travelling, feed your dog at the same intervals that it would be fed at home. 
Parson Russell Terrier eating kibble out of a purple bowl


  • Travel with lots of water as dogs can easily get dehydrated, particularly when travelling in a car. Make sure your dog has plenty of water and air and never leave your dog locked in a car.
  • Take a travel water bottle for when you’re out hiking with your dog and always pack collapsible bowls in case your dog-friendly accommodation doesn’t supply feeding equipment.
  • For their health and well-being, make sure their flea, tick and worming treatment is fully up to date and travel with their vaccine records and your pet insurance documents, in case of any mishaps or emergencies during your holiday. 
  • Pack towels for your dog, a grooming brush to keep on top of their coat and a cool mat if you’re travelling to a warm destination.
  • Pack treats and toys to keep your dog happy and relaxed and to guarantee smooth travel to and from your location!

Everyone at Groomers would like to wish you safe and happy travels on your dog-friendly holiday this year, wherever you end up! For all of the last-minute essentials for your dog-friendly holiday explore our My Pet section and get your dog fully equipped for the holiday to remember!

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