The best dog-friendly beaches in South Wales holiday cottages


The best dog-friendly beaches in South Wales

Kate Atkin 04 September 2023

Chasing after balls, splashing in the sea and bounding across the sand: dogs love beaches. Nothing makes tails wag faster than hearing 'walkies!' so why not treat your four-pawed pal to a bucket and spade day out they will never forget? With mile upon mile of dog-friendly beaches, South Wales is perfect for a seaside adventure with your canine.

From secluded hidden-away coves to suit the most adventurous of pups, to wide-open stretches of sand perfect for the whole pack, we’ve sniffed out some of the best dog-friendly beaches in South Wales (some would say some of the best dog-friendly beaches in the UK) that your four-legged best friend will be sitting up and begging to be taken to!

Here are six South Wales beaches that allow happy hounds and their owners to play on the sand all year round – and why not combine a visit with a short break or relaxing week away in one of our dog-friendly South Wales cottages? Once you've read this guide, feel free to check out our guide to dog-friendly beaches in Wales.

Our personal favourite dog-friendly beach in South Wales

Barafundle Bay, Pembrokeshire

Dog-friendly beaches South Wales - Barafundle Bay

Backed by rolling dunes and fragrant pine trees, the multi-award-winning Barafundle Bay is often described as one of the best beaches in Britain and it’s easy to see why. Owned by the National Trust, this dog-friendly beach in South West Wales forms part of the South Pembrokeshire Heritage Coast and the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park.

Its pristine swathes of soft golden sands lapped by crystal-clear waters have been likened to those of the Caribbean, and what beach-loving canine could resist the chance to bound across tropical shores? Luckily, your tail-wagging companion need not miss out on this treat of a beach as it is dog friendly all year round. Only accessible on foot, it has the air of an undiscovered gem.

Good to know

  • For the sat nav: SA71 5LS
  • Any restrictions? None
  • Parking: Parking is available at Stackpole Quay car park (National Trust).
  • Accessibility: The beach is only accessible by a half-mile ramble from the nearest car park. There’s a steep walk down to the sand, but the stone steps are suitable for dogs and it's worth the effort. The route is not suitable for wheelchairs or pushchairs.
  • Facilities: Because this beach is isolated, there are no facilities. The closest toilets and eateries are at Stackpole Quay or in Stackpole village.
  • Stay nearby: Chestnut Cottage - Stackpole | Sleeps 2 dogs + 6 humans

The dog-friendly South Wales beach with the best facilities

Rhossili Bay, Gower Peninsula

Dog-friendly beaches South Wales - Rhossili Bay

Stretching for 3 miles on the south-western tip of the Gower Peninsula, the glistening sands of Rhossili Bay eagerly await four-legged sandcastle-bombers. Often recognised as one of the best beaches in all of Wales, this beautiful bay is taken care of by the National Trust and has also nabbed the greatest award (and the only one that we are really interested in) – ‘the UK’s No.1 dog-friendly beach’! Playful pups are welcome all year round to splash in the surf, admire the incredible views and sniff out the intriguing shipwreck, Helvetia, washed up on the beach. If you’re lucky, you might also catch a glimpse of seals and dolphins riding the crests of the waves. Take a look at our canine guide to Gower to find out more.

Good to know

  • For the sat nav: SA3 1PP
  • Any restrictions? None
  • Parking: National Trust-owned car park in the village of Rhossili.
  • Accessibility: The beach is reached by steps so is not suitable for wheelchairs or pushchairs.
  • Facilities: There are toilets, a shop and a visitor centre selling refreshments.
  • Stay nearby: Milan Cottage | Sleeps 2 dogs + 4 humans

Best hidden dog-friendly beach in South Wales

Pobbles Bay, Swansea

Dog-friendly beaches South Wales - Pobbles Bay

The secluded little cove of Pobbles Bay requires a bit of effort to get to, making it somewhat of a Welsh hidden gem. One of the best beaches in South Wales for the more adventurous canine, the reward for your windswept stroll across the cliff path is a gorgeous sandy beach backed by limestone cliffs and sand dunes, where happy hounds can run, play and socialise to their heart’s content. The beach lies to the east of the distinctive headland of Three Cliffs Bay, and at low tide, it's possible to scamper along the shore to Three Cliffs, Tor Bay and as far as Oxwich Bay. 

Good to know

  • For the sat nav: SA3 2AL
  • Any restrictions? None
  • Parking: The nearest car park is in the village of Southgate (National Trust).
  • Accessibility: The beach is reached on foot via the coastal path from Southgate, just over half a mile away. It is a mostly level walk followed by a steep, sandy descent. The walk back up from the beach is fairly strenuous.
  • Facilities: There are no facilities nearby, but Southgate car park has a coffee shop and toilets.
  • Stay nearby: Bryn Y Mor | Sleeps 1 dog + 8 humans

Best dog-friendly beach in South Wales for exploring

Ogmore Central Beach, Vale of Glamorgan

Dog-friendly beaches in South Wales - Ogmore Central Beach

If you have a keen explorer in your pack, the beach at Ogmore-by-Sea on the Glamorgan Heritage Coast is sure to be a hit. A mixture of sand and pebbles, the beach seemingly stretches on forever, with an exciting assortment of craggy rocks and rock pools to sniff out along the way. Located where the River Ogmore runs into the sea, this dog-friendly beach in South Wales has a reputation as being one of the cleanest beaches in the region and is also popular for swimming, surfing, fishing and walking. At low tide, curious canines can discover a series of mysterious caves and terraces.

Good to know

  • For the sat nav: CF32 0PH
  • Any restrictions? None
  • Parking: A pay-and-display car park is located just above the beach.
  • Accessibility: The beach is easily accessible by the long ramp which goes down the side of the cliff.
  • Facilities: There are toilets by the car park and usually an ice cream van. This is one of the best dog-friendly beaches in summer due to the seasonal lifeguard patrol. Further facilities, including a pet-friendly pub, can be found nearby in the village of Ogmore-by-Sea.
  • Stay nearby: Somerset View | Sleeps 1 dog + 6 humans

Best dog-friendly beach for something different in South Wales

Jackson's Bay, Barry Island

Dog-friendly beaches in South Wales - Jackson's Bay

After all those evenings spent chuckling away at the telly, watching BBC’s Gavin and Stacey, you and your four-pawed pal might have your hearts set on visiting the famed Barry Island. Luckily for you, there is a great pet-friendly beach nearby perfect for furry frolics. This lovely little cove is popular with families and kayakers – even those with four legs! It’s the ideal stretch of sand to walk off those fish and chip suppers after a fun day enjoying all the attractions and amusements that Barry has to offer.

Good to know

  • For the sat nav: CF62 5TU
  • Any restrictions? None
  • Parking: There is parking available within a 5-minute walk.
  • Accessibility: The beach can be reached by a footpath around Nell's Point or alternatively down a tarmac footpath from Redbrink Crescent. It is possible to get pushchairs down this path, although care needs to be taken because of the slope.
  • Facilities: There are public toilets immediately adjacent to the slipway leading down to the beach, but no other facilities. Refreshments can be found nearby in Barry.
  • Stay nearby: Bwthyn Eglwys - Cowbridge | Sleeps 1 dog + 4 humans

Most scenic pet-friendly beach in South Wales

Three Cliffs Bay, Swansea

Dog-friendly beaches in South Wales - Three Cliffs Bay

Wide, sandy and backed by wild dunes, a small pebble bank, and three signature limestone cliffs, Three Cliffs Bay is one of the best dog-friendly beaches in South Wales and certainly one of the most beautiful. Best of all, despite its obvious attractions, it rarely gets busy and in winter, it’s often empty, creating a vast open space for Fido to let off some steam. Nothing beats the feeling of sand in your paws and the wind running through your fur! This is one of Gower's most photographed locations, so be sure to bring your camera for some canine selfies.

Good to know

  • For the sat nav: SA3 2HD
  • Any restrictions? None
  • Parking: There is a pay-and-display car park in Southgate on the cliffs, from where the coastal path can be followed just under a mile to the beach. 
  • Accessibility: Walking to the beach involves some rough terrain. The most direct route includes a bit of a scramble over the sand dunes, although there is a flatter route through the valley from Parkmill. However, at high tide, the river (Pennard Pill) may not be crossable here, meaning you'll have to climb back over the dunes.
  • Facilities: There aren’t any facilities on the beach, but there are toilets, a shop and a coffee shop in Southgate. There is a seasonal lifeguard service and it is only advisable to enter the water during this period.
  • Stay nearby: The School House | Sleeps 1 dog + 2 humans

Even more doggy adventures in South Wales

Book your South Wales escape and browse some of our fantastic dog-friendly cottages in South Wales. Your pups will go wild for these cosy abodes where you can snuggle up together after long walks in the fresh Welsh air on these fabulous South Wales beaches. Whether you're looking for a celebration house for a big group and their canine counterparts, or an intimate cottage for a romantic escape, we've got you covered.

Disclaimer: Whilst every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information at the time of writing, please ensure you check carefully before making any decisions based on the contents within this article.

Top 6 dog-friendly places to eat in Northumberland
Eating out
Ruth King 26 February 2024
The Canine guide to Barmouth
Towns and cities
Ed Roberts 26 February 2024
The Travel Chapter Limited trading as Canine Cottages is an appointed representative of ITC Compliance Limited which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (their registration number is 313486) and which is permitted to advise on and arrange general insurance contracts as an intermediary.
The Travel Chapter Limited trading as Canine Cottages | The Travel Chapter Limited is registered in England and Wales. | Registered office Travel Chapter House Gammaton Road Bideford EX39 4DF Company No. 02431506 | VAT reg: 143053210.