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The Canine guide to Devon holiday cottages

Destinations

The Canine guide to Devon

Discover dog-friendly Devon with our guide - we consider it to be one of the best places in the UK for a holiday with pups in tow. Set all four paws down on Devonian soil and start exploring the sandy dog-friendly beaches and dramatic moorland the area’s known for.

From endless walking trails on dramatic Dartmoor to the breathtaking views you can enjoy while dining by the coast, you and the pack are sure to have a wonderful getaway. There are even family-friendly attractions that welcome dogs who want to join in the fun, so the canine never has to be left out. We’ve used our expert knowledge of dog-friendly Devon to create this guide and make it easy for you to pick and choose where you and the pups could go during your break.

Discover dog-friendly Devon

We are committed to ensuring canines and their puppy parents enjoy top dog holidays with our selection of dog-friendly accommodation. If you have yet to book your holiday retreat, take a look through our wonderful collection of dog-friendly cottages in Devon.

If you're all set for a place to sit, stay and lie down, then settle down and have a paw through this definitive guide. It includes advice on Devon’s most dog-friendly beaches, a plethora of Fido-friendly attractions which includes an attraction featuring a tiny world where your canine companion will feel like a giant, and where's best to grab a Scooby snack if you want a coastal restaurant that’s perfect for you and the pup to catch the sunset.

Click to fetch Devon's...
🐾 Top walkies
🏖️ Top beaches
🐶 Top days out
🍴 Top dining spots
🏡 Top places to stay

The best dog-friendly W-A-L-K-I-E-S in Devon

Dog walking in Devon

From the dramatic north coast to the tranquillity of the south with all the breathtaking countryside and moorland in between, Devon has varied and exciting terrain for you and the canine companion to uncover.

You and the playful pup could burn off energy on a long winding walk that includes coast and country or if you’re walking with an old dog in tow, pick out a beautiful woodland or quiet country route for the pair of you to explore together while on your Devon dog-friendly holiday.

1. Walk the city of Plymouth

Walk Plymouth city centre

One of the top places in Devon for dog walks is the scenic port city of Plymouth, known for its maritime heritage, great shopping and wonderful harbour.

Walk along the front on the circular city nature trail or visit National Trust’s Buckland Abbey for a choice of three walks you and your dog can explore.

2. Dartmoor’s breathtaking views

Dartmoor Devon

The rugged and unforgettable Dartmoor National Park is another favourite place for dog walkers and perfect for those looking for long hikes across dramatic moorland or short, relaxing strolls through pretty woodland.

The Tavy Cleave and Hare Tor Walk is a great way to see classic Dartmoor as you will pass by natural landmarks, see the sheep and ponies who make this stretch of national park their home, and take in breathtaking views of the surrounding landscape.

3. The renowned Tarka Trail

The Tarka Trail

It’s almost impossible to plan a walking holiday to Devon without planning a stroll along the beautiful Tarka Trail.

While walking this route you’ll pass through the dappled light of scenic woodland, venture into bustling towns and peaceful villages, and trail along the dramatic coastline that North Devon is famous for. It’s a fantastic walk that you and your canine companion will have an excellent time uncovering. This trail stretches for 180 miles so pick out a section that you can conquer during on a day out; we recommend the Fremington Quay to Barnstaple stretch of path. (The cakes at the Fremington Quay Cafe are to die for though, so make sure you factor in time for a lounge here!)

Let the dog lead the way across this beautiful country on coastal trails, paths with unforgettable views and walks that end at a welcoming dog-friendly pub. Here we've just touched the surface, so for more inspiration on where to stretch your legs, take a look at our full guide on ‘The best dog walks in Devon’.

The best dog-friendly beaches in Devon

Best dog-friendly beaches in Devon

The South West is famous for its wonderful sandy beaches and wealth of surfer hot spots, wide family-friendly beaches, secret coves and hidden shorelines that can only be reached after a long walk. With so much coastline within reach, there is a fantastic choice for doggos and their owners to have fun down by the seaside too!

1. Saunton Sands, near Braunton

Dog-friendly Saunton Sands

First on any list, this wide, sandy stretch of beach has long been a favourite among canines; they even have an annual doggy event for you to watch out for: Paws on the Beach. As it’s located on Devon’s dramatic north coast where swells roll in from the Atlantic, Saunton Sands is a hit with surfers and water sports enthusiasts alike so take this chance to get out on the water.

Aside from the long sandy beach, there are dunes and grassy areas to explore so the pup will have a great time discovering every inch of this terrific dog-friendly beach.

2. Combe Martin Beach, Combe Martin

Combe Martin Beach for dogs

A relatively small section of sand but with seemingly endless coastal trails, it’s ideal for dogs ready to burn off some energy on a long walk by the sea.

High cliffs make this a dramatic and beautiful part of North Devon to explore with the doggo in tow who’ll have a great time wandering the rocky paths, playing in the waves and digging in the sand. The town itself is a popular attraction with a delightful selection of cafes, pubs, and shops to delve into when your group are ready for that well-deserved coffee, cake and bowl of water.

3. North Sands, Salcombe

North Sands in Salcombe

Down on Devon’s scenic south coast sits North Sands, a dog-friendly beach that’s ideal for canines and their humans year-round. Soak up the sun from this beautiful shoreline, regularly named as one of the best dog-walking beaches in the area.

Take your dog here to meet other playmates and splash through the gently rippling waves. It has amenities allowing humans the chance to chill out and relax along with their canine companions who’ll have a great time exploring the each together.

To save you time, we’ve gathered together a full list of all our favourite dog-friendly beaches in Devon, from small coves in coastal towns to huge expenses of sand perfect for playful pups to race across. Pick out a dog-friendly beach from our list of Devon's dog-friendly beaches and you’ll soon be sinking your feet into the sand with Fido by your side.

Sniff out the best dog-friendly attractions in Devon

Dog-friendly attractions in Devon

Walkies is always a top dog activity among canines, but what about the rest of the family? It’s time to step up your holiday game with a trip to a dog-friendly attraction in Devon. With excellent things to do for families, adult groups and couples, ranging from historical and National Trust attractions to the more unusual and quirky dog-friendly days out, you’ll be all set for a fun holiday with the pup by your side.

Whatever kind of holiday the dog and its human companions are after, we reckon we can recommend an exciting day out for you. Check out these three entertaining holiday options.

1. If your dog loves the seaside… Clovelly village

Clovelly

This coastal escape is more than simply a village, it’s an exceptionally steep cobbled street and the shops and activities throughout make this a wonderful place for a day’s exploring. There’s so much to see and do in this seaside location that you even have to pay to enter the village! When you reach the bottom of the hill, you and the pup are welcomed with a dog-friendly beach: a delightful sandy patch where your canine can stretch their legs and splash through the cool waves.

2. If your dog loves adventure… Mortehoe

Mortehoe

For energetic canines ready for a real chance to stretch their legs and discover the rugged North Devon Coast, Mortehoe is a top dog adventure. Explore this remoter section of the coastline with a visit to the National Trust Heritage Centre then follow the path all the way out to take in those breathtaking views from Morte Point. There’s even a sandy secret beach to uncover and after pop into one of the tearooms in the village for a well-deserved bite to eat.

3. If your dog loves feeling like a giant… Babbacombe Model Village

Babbacombe Model Village welcomes dogs

It’s the chance every Yorkshire terrier dreams of: to finally be the biggest dog on the playground. In Babbacombe Model Village, your pup will pass houses at head height and humans no bigger than their paw. Let the dog march around like Godzilla, towering over the scenes while you and the other humans in your group enjoy a relaxed day gazing down on the intriguing towns, villages and celebrity mansions at this attraction. 

A long-time favourite among holidaymakers and UK road trippers, Devon is full to bursting with fun activities for families, couples and groups with dogs in tow. For more choice of things to do while on holiday with the pup, take a look through our guide to dog-friendly attractions in Devon.

The best dog-friendly places to eat in Devon

Places to eat with dogs in Devon

It’s easy to get bogged down when hunting for the perfect dog-friendly pub when you should be looking forward to all the adventures you're going to have in dog-friendly Devon. Let us lead the way to a few top dog pubs, cafes and restaurants that we think you and Fido will love. Spend a relaxed lunchtime or fun evening out at one of these three dog-friendly places to eat.

1. Best for that surfer vibe: The Thatch, Croyde

The Thatch

Live music, a vibrant atmosphere and a beer garden to chill out in, The Thatch is a great spot for canines who enjoy meeting people and making friends. Watch a band over one of their local ales or go during the day for a peaceful midday meal in a warm and welcoming environment. Although Croyde Beach has seasonal dog bans, parts of nearby Saunton Sands are dog-friendly all year - ideal for those pre-dinner walkies. 

2. Best dog-friendly pub: The Rugglestone Inn, Widecombe-in-the-Moor

The Rugglestone Inn

A beautiful stone pub with delicious local produce, surrounded by the breathtaking beauty of Dartmoor, The Rugglestone Inn is the ideal place for long walkies before settling down to a tasty Sunday lunch. There are even farm animals on site - although this does mean you’ll need to keep the pup on a lead. You can walk into the centre of this quaint village if doggo needs to stretch their legs then sit and relax inside the cosy inn with a tired but happy dog by your feet.

3. Best for catching the sunset: The Pier House, Westward Ho!

The Pier House

The ideal setting for holiday dining, The Pier House is right on the shore of North Devon’s coast with a breathtaking view of the Atlantic on your doorstep. Westward Ho! beach nearby is partly dog-friendly year-round (check restrictions) while Northam Burrows Country Park just next door is always dog-friendly and often plays host to friendly ponies and sheep.

Dinner with the dog shouldn’t involve so much research, so relax and browse our favourite pubs, restaurants and cafes in our post on dog-friendly places to eat in Devon.

Sit, stay and lie down in Devon most dog-friendly cottages

Devon's dog-friendly cottages

Like you, we love dogs. Energetic pups, old dogs and cultured canines are all welcome to holiday with us and we can bet we have the perfect holiday cottage to suit every kind of doggo and their human companions.

If you are searching for a Devon holiday escape but can’t bear to leave the pup behind, we have a wonderful selection of dog-friendly getaways for you and your canine companion to enjoy.

Here are 3 of our best dog-friendly cottages in Devon:

Best cottage for salty sea dogs: Instow Breakers, Instow

Instow Breakers

Sleeps 3 dogs and 6 humans

Got a pack of beach-loving canines to bring on holiday? This seafront cottage with the fantastic pup-friendly Instow Beach ahead and wonderful walks and cycling trail close by, is ideal for you, your family and up to three dogs in need of a break. Let the team race around the beach, take them out exploring the local Tarka Trail, and let sleeping dogs lie on the patio on warm summer days.

Best cottage for a luxury dog-friendly holiday: Beach End, Dartmouth 

Beach End

Sleeps 3 dogs and 12 humans

Doggos deserve five-star indulgence on their holidays too! Take a trip to this stylishly decorated retreat set on the River Dart where beautiful surroundings contend with opulent interiors. Head out for riverside walkies or snuggle up in the lounge while your canine companion snoozes by the wood burner.

Best cottage to escape it all: Hembury Gate The Shippon, Great Torrington

Hembury Gate The Shippon, Great Torrington

Sleeps 2 dogs and 4 humans

A chocolate box cottage surrounded by miles of farmland and country lanes, it’s a scenic escape for you and the canines. The peace and quiet offered by this property will create a relaxing and restful holiday where you can let the doggos race about the garden while you sink into the hot tub. Enjoy the tranquil location and get away from it all with your pup companions.

We welcome all breeds, have escapes in all corners of the county and some of our holiday retreats even allow up to five canines meaning you can bring the whole pack! Read the full post detailing our favourite dog-friendly holidays in Devon.

If it's a romantic retreat (with the dog!) that you're after, our romantic dog-friendly cottages in Devon are sure to fit the bill.

Fetch the lead, the dog bed and the treats and get packed for a holiday to dog-friendly Devon - with the canine companion by your side, you’ll have a fantastic time whatever you get up to together.

We’ve covered the best walkies, beaches, attractions, places to eat and cottages in dog-friendly Devon, but there’s so much more. Continue exploring by reading our blog, or uncover the best that this county has to offer by staying in one of our dog-friendly holiday cottages in Devon.

And if you fancy a trip elsewhere, feel free to browse our dog-friendly holiday homes throughout the UK. 

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