Top Ten Dog-Friendly UK Holiday Destinations

It's never easy leaving your four-legged companions at home - especially when they give you those sad puppy eyes - so why not take your furry friends with you? We've put together our top ten dog-friendly destinations, including beaches, museums and national parks.

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1. Lake District, Cumbria

The Lake District has been awarded the Kennel Club's top prize in the Great Outdoors category of the 'Be Dog Friendly Awards' two years running. There's lots to explore here with your pooch, including the Ravenglass and Eskdale steam railway in the south-western corner of the Lake District, which welcomes dogs on board for a small fee. Dogs are also welcome to take a free cruise around Lake Windermere.

Park Foot Lake, near Ullswater, Cumbria

A caravan site with gorgeous views over the banks of Ullswater, which is the second largest lake in the Lake District. There are even opportunities to be adventurous and learn to sail a dinghy.

2. Mallards Pike, Forest of Dean, Gloucestershire

Not only is Mallards Pike dog friendly all year round, but it is also easily accessible for pushchairs and wheelchairs. As well as having multiple picnic spots looking over beautiful lakes with dedicated 'doggy beach' sections. There are also numerous routes for a range of walks, running and cycling constructed by the Forestry Commission.

Bracelands, Coleford, Gloucestershire

A vast but meticulously managed site run by the Forestry Commission, deep in the heart of the Forest of Dean. Nearby Symonds Yat is great for walking and kayaking, and is also dog friendly.

3. Amberley Museum, West Sussex

Amberley Museum and Heritage Centre is devoted to the industrial heritage of the South East, surrounded by a stunning 36-acre National Park. This stunning place was voted by the nation as the most dog-friendly day out winner for 2016 (Kennel Club's Be Dog-Friendly Awards). A free bus and train service is provided for both you and your fluffy companion to enjoy travelling around the site with ease.

Coastal Caravan Park, East Preston, West Sussex

A small seaside village with a campsite consisting of 10 pitches, there are three pubs in the village all serving food and local ales. Situated in East Preston, between Littlehampton/Rustington to the west, and Worthing/Brighton to the east

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Walks with dog-friendly cafes

4. Arlington Court, Devon

Arlington Court is a tranquil family estate with over 30-acres of beautiful gardens, rich with wildlife as well as Arlington House and its collections. After your walk, why not treat yourself to a selection of over 15 types of homemade cakes, biscuits and freshly baked scones.

Little Meadow, Ilfracombe, North Devon

This low-impact site is a haven along the favoured Ilfracombe coastline, with stunning views overlooking Watermouth Bay and Hangman Point.

5. Clumber Park, Nottinghamshire

One of the best ways to explore the beautiful 3,800 acres of Clumber Park is with your fluffy companion, as dogs are welcome in all of the outdoor areas, as well as having indoor space devoted to your pooch for relaxing after a long walk. The park is full of picnic spots, whether you prefer a lakeside view, wide open spaces or a more secluded spot where you can enjoy some peace and quiet.

Riverdale Country Park, near the River Trent, Nottinghamshire

Set in a stunning location near the River Trent, you will be welcomed with a warm and friendly atmosphere. There are many restaurants and bars within walking distance and Nottingham is a short drive. The perfect location for walks by the river, fishing, canoeing and boat trips. 

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6. Pobbles Bay and Three Cliffs Bay, Gower

Known as one of the most picturesque bays in the Gower, situated next to the Three Cliffs Bay, this beautiful sandy beach is dog-friendly all year round with plenty for them to discover. Enjoy your walk whilst soaking up the stunning coastal sights. As this beach is surrounded by cliffs, the closest parking is at Penmaen which has a free car park in a small lay-by on the south side of the road.

Dan-yr-Ogof Caravan and Camping Park, Glyntawe, Swansea

A top spot for families, with a "Dinosaur Park" and petting farm surrounded by limestone mountain caves covered in stalactites and stalagmites. The site has been awarded the 2017 TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence Award for things to do in Pen-y-cae.

7. Bamburgh Beach, Northumberland

Dogs are welcome all year with no restrictions on this stunning golden, sandy beach, which was named the most dog-friendly beach of 2016 at the Kennel Club's Be Dog-Friendly Awards. The majestic castle dominates the skyline behind the beach, and the world's first-ever lifeboat was developed and tested here.

Ord House Country Park, Berwick-upon-Tweed

Set in 42 tree-lined acres, offering a mixture of privately owned static homes, and touring and camping pitches. An abundance of amenities including a bar and restaurant, play park, caravan accessory shop and award-winning toilet and shower blocks with baths.

8. Newgale Sands, Pembrokeshire

This beautiful beach with rugged coastal scenery, spanning three miles, is one of Wales's 'Blue Flag' beaches, meaning it has the highest certification for quality, facilities and cleanliness. The southern section is dog-friendly all year round, with restrictions between 1 May and 30 September on the northern third of the beach.

Whitesands Beach, St David's, Pembrokeshire

The stunning beachside location makes this site popular with surfers who can check out the conditions from their tents before deciding whether or not to take the plunge. This site is all about the beautiful view from your caravan.

9. Sandymouth, Cornwall

Sandymouth is a two-mile long National Trust Beach which offers 200 car parking spaces at the top of the cliff. This lovely beach welcomes dogs all year round. It has its own waterfall and surf-hire, as well as a seasonal cafe with toilets.

Tarka Holiday Park, Devon

Just a short distance from Devon’s bustling town of Barnstaple, this peaceful holiday park is surrounded by rolling countryside. Breaks at this site are all about long walks with the dog and lazy days spent exploring the region’s beautiful sandy beaches. The dramatic North Devon coastline is home to the beaches of Saunton, Woolacombe and nearly 200 miles of coast path.

10. Holkham Bay, Norfolk

Holkham is a stunning dog-friendly beach and part of the National Nature Reserve, with no restrictions all year round. There are multiple walking routes you can take dependent on how far you want to go. You could even join the Norfolk Coastal Path for an even longer walk and change of setting. Holkham Beach can be accessed via Lady Anne's Drive on the A149 (opposite the Victoria Inn).

Riverside Leisure Park, Northumberland

Escape to the sun-dappled woodland of sleepy Northumberland for some true time away from it all. Perfect for those content to while away time off the beaten track, this unique holiday park is just a short distance from Northumberland National Park. There’s an indoor pool, onsite fishing, a restaurant, bar and a play area for the kids.