Devon is renowned as a top spot for holidays with dogs. The county’s great outdoors includes two National Parks, a Geopark, Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty and magnificent coastal walking. The South West Coast Path runs along the South and North Coasts of Devon, offering spectacular coastal walking territory for you and Rover. Paws on the shores are welcome on a choice of Devon dog friendly beaches including year round pooch friendly beaches at Instow, Saunton, Beesands and Shelly. The region goes that extra dog mile with many top family attractions and activities open to the family pet dog too including The Milky Way theme park and South Devon Railway. Other attractions like The Big Sheep and Crealy have onsite day kennel facilities. Devon has hundreds of dog friendly cottages, B&Bs, holiday parks and hotels to choose from, and many of Devon’s old inns and cafes are dog friendly. Exmoor and Dartmoor are also great National Parks for holidays with horses featuring riding centres with livery facilities and B&B accommodation nearby, and a choice of farm cottages with onsite paddock and stabling facilities.
Dog Friendly Dartmoor & Exmoor
Devon’s National Parks Dartmoor and Exmoor are criss-crossed by a huge choice of trails through open moorland, woodland and alongside rivers and reservoirs. Choose from long distance trails and challenging hikes for active dogs or gentle strolls. Dartmoor offers 450 miles (730km) of public rights of way and Exmoor has over 1000km of footpaths and bridleways to explore. Guided walks from Park visitor centres which welcome dogs are widely available. Visitor centres are good starting points for maps and guides on pooch friendly walks and invaluable advice on Tick Information and guidelines on controlling dogs. Dogs do need to be kept under strict control around livestock, and on a short lead during lambing and bird breeding seasons – the two National Park websites offer detailed advise on the issue, and you can pick up the useful ‘Paws on Dartmoor’ leaflet guide at National Park visitor centres in Princetown, Haytor and Postbridge.
Exmoor’s coast and countryside is great for walking with dogs. Coastal walking is spectacular around Combe Martin and Lynton & Lynmouth, and many of the Exmoor coast’s cove beaches from Watermouth Cove to Combe Martin and Wild Pear beaches are dog friendly. In and around the edge of both National Parks you’ll find an extensive choice of cottages welcoming well behaved dogs, and many properties can also arrange stabling for horses if required. North and Mid-Devon also offers spectacular dog walking areas and trails in wooded river valleys. The Tarka Trail runs for over 180 miles through the heart of North and Mid Devon and this central rural area is brimming with pet friendly farm cottage complexes perfect for families and the family pet too!
Coastal Walking with Dogs
On the South Devon Coast sits Torbay’s English Riviera Geopark featuring magnificent coastal walking around Torquay, Babbacombe, Paignton and Brixham. The South West Coast Path along the South Devon Coast is a real favourite with dog walkers. Bolberry Down near Salcombe is a top spot along the coast path where dogs can roam free on beautiful Soar Mill Cove and the Bolberry area has a wide choice of dog friendly cottages usually where pets stay free! South Devon’s Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty covers 130 square miles of coast, estuaries and countryside from Brixham’s Berry Head to Jennycliff in Plymouth. Download over 40 walks on the AONB’s website. Another great area for walking holidays with dogs is East Devon’s Jurassic Heritage Coast. Find pet friendly accommodation in popular gateway towns to this spectacular coastline including Exmouth, Budleigh Salterton, Sidmouth and Seaton.
Dog Friendly Beaches
Devon beach holidays are a year round favourite with pooches, and paws on the shores are welcome on many Devon beaches all year round. Whether you’re holidaying on the north or south coast of the county, dog friendly beaches are numerous ranging from pretty cove beach gems like Ness Cove at Shaldon and Elberry Cove near Paignton on the south coast to the award-winning golden sands of Putsborough at Woolacombe on the North Coast. Search for dog friendly beaches in Devon with excellent water quality on the Good Beach Guide website.
Pet Friendly Cottages
You’ll find pet friendly cottages and lodges across Devon from Torbay and South Hams to the North Devon Coast and Dartmoor. Coastal cottages often sit just yards from dog friendly beaches. The region is one of England’s best for walking holidays with four legged friends, and Devon has hundreds of dog friendly cottages with moorland, coastal, riverside or woodland walks direct from your door. Washing off facilities, private enclosed gardens, and local dog friendly inns usually feature as standard. Many welcome more than one pet, either free or for a small extra charge (per pet or per week/stay).
Pet Friendly Accommodation
Devon also has hundreds of dog friendly B&Bs, holiday parks, seaside apartments and dog friendly inns around its coast and rural interior. Beautiful country house hotels in the heart of Dartmoor welcome dogs or stay in a cosy dog friendly B&B in Mid-Devon near the Tarka Trail. Well behaved pets are welcome in stylish apartments in a variety of locations from Torquay, Paignton and Exeter to Axminster near the Jurassic Coast and on luxury country estates in South Devon. Torbay and South Devon contain numerous pet friendly holidays parks close to the coast path and Geopark walks feature onsite dog exercise areas, private gardens or acres of country walks. The region also has some fantastic traditional dog friendly inns with rooms, many recommended by CAMRA.