The coastal seaside resort of Scarborough, in North Yorkshire, is known as the ‘Queen of the Yorkshire Coast’. With its two attractive bays and gorgeous sandy beaches, England’s first seaside holiday destination has been a big hit since Victorian times. The vibrant seafront is full of charm with its boldly coloured cafes, arcades, takeaways, and restaurants. Perfect for a dog-friendly holiday, there are miles and miles of sands and coastal pathways to discover, and pet-friendly places to eat, galore.
Highlights include Scarborough Open Air Theatre – Europe’s largest, the UK’s last surviving seaside orchestra, and the eye-catching ruins of Scarborough Castle. Read on to find where the friendliest dog-welcoming cafes and pubs in Scarborough are. We’ve also included the best beaches and the most awesome pet-friendly attractions in Scarborough too. Book a self-catering holiday in Scarborough to discover them all at your leisure.
What have we got to get tails wagging?
🐶 Top days out
🐾 Top walkies
🍴 Top dining spots
🏡 Top places to stay
Top dog-friendly days out in Scarborough
Scarborough Castle, high above the town, welcomes dogs-on-leads to join you on your visit. The castle ruins are very impressive, casting a huge presence over Scarborough below. You can get a good impression of how the fortress must have looked when it was intact as the gatehouse and many of its walls still stand today. The castle dates back to before the 12th century and played an important strategic role for Henry II and King John in their many conflicts. It also survived two sieges during the English Civil Wars and came under bombardment during WW1. The views from the castle are fantastic, as are those from the bay below of its memorable structure.
Why your dog will love it: The castle is perfect for a gentle amble at heel with their owners. A nice choice for old or small dogs and pups.
The North Bay Heritage Railway
Welcoming your furry pals, big and tiny, dogs travel for free on the North Bay Heritage Railway in Scarborough. The narrow-gauge railway is one of Scarborough seafront’s top visitor attractions, linking the town to the Scarborough Sea Life Centre. Opening in 1931, it’s a great way to take in the lovely scenery around Scarborough with your dog! The railway centre also offers family-friendly attractions like pedalos, a boating lake and a sky trail.
Why your dog will love it: Your dog will love the sights and sounds of this short railway route as it goes on its journey inland from the seaside.
This oriental-themed Peasholm Park with its pagodas, mock temples and waterfalls is a lovely place to stretch your legs with the dog. It’s also open to the public 24 hours a day. At the centre of the park is the big lake, where you can hire small boats (during summer). Check out the bandstand in the middle of the lake; if a band is playing, the sound of the music across the water is astonishing. Cross the bridge to climb to the top of the island with its crowning pagoda at the top. The park is home to rare trees and plants found in the dell and around the streams that criss-cross areas of it.
Why your dog will love it: The sights and scents of the park will amaze everybody, and your pup may even meet other dogs to play with.
Top dog-friendly walkies in Scarborough
Scarborough boasts two massive sandy beaches: North Bay and South Bay. The quieter of the two is North Bay, which is an unspoiled stretch with rocky outcrops and vibrantly coloured beach huts. South Bay is where you will find the promenade, the colonnades, fish & chip shops, and arcades. It's wide and sandy here too and very popular during the summer. It’s possible to walk between the two with ease where you may encounter the large ‘Freddie Gilroy and the Belsen Stragglers’ sculpture. Unfortunately, there are seasonal no-dog zones at both beaches, however, they are big enough to offer space to everybody. Keen film watchers will recognise this part of Scarborough from their appearances in the recent ‘Saint Maud’ and ‘Scarborough’. Neighbouring Cayton Bay has no restrictions at all and is well worth a visit.
Why your dog will love it: All dogs love the chance to tear about on the sand! It’s a great place to play.
The Cleveland Way
Walk the Cleveland Way with your hounds; this long-distance walking path can be picked up in Scarborough as it traces the scenic coastal line in both northerly and southerly directions. The coastal stretch of the National Trail runs between Saltburn and Scarborough and showcases high cliff walks, old fishing villages like beautiful Staithes, and the ruins of Whitby Abbey. The whole trail takes about four days to complete and offers the ultimate walkies for your cheerful pooch!
Why your dog will love it: This is a great opportunity for them to stretch their paws and enjoy the scenery surrounding Scarborough.
And now for a special treat, Raincliffe Woods is Scarborough’s swathe of greenery up above the town. There’s no such thing as a dog who doesn’t like to sniff at trees and seek out the scents of wildlife, so Raincliffe is the place to head to when looking for an alternative to the beach. There are several trails that wind around the hillside taking in views of the sea. We’d recommend the Graham Trail, a route that takes about 45 minutes to complete; there are lots of places to sit down and take in your surroundings.
Why your dog will love it: It’s a great place to explore and meet other dogs at play.
Top dog-friendly dining spots in Scarborough
Olivers On The Mount Café & Bar
After a great walk in the hills, Olivers On The Mount is a fantastic choice for a decent lunch and something refreshing to drink. There is a large patio area at the front of Olivers with wide views of the bay below. There’s even an extensive takeaway menu available between 10am and 3pm with very reasonable prices. The building dates back to the 1920s, yet it has been tastefully refurbished to make it one of the most eye-catching cafes in town.
Why your dog will love it: After a long climb to the highest point in Scarborough, a timely rest and a snack will make a trip to Olivers On the Mount well worth their time.
The Watermark Café
The Watermark Cafe is a superb dog-friendly café on the seafront in Scarborough, situated in a very convenient location. If you like nothing better than a stroll along the prom with your pooch, then a visit to The Watermark should be high on your agenda. Serving everything from big fat full English breakfasts to light lunches, you definitely won’t go home hungry. The staff are very welcoming and love dogs too!
Why your dog will love it: Dogs big and small will adore this beachside café with its fab views of the beach.
The Scarborough Arms
A firm favourite, this dog-friendly pub is a wonderful spot for a cosy pint and a good hearty meal after a long day of touring the Scarborough area. Within easy walking distance of the town centre and the beach, settle in for a restorative pint with your hound at your feet. The Scarborough Arms has a friendly atmosphere and welcomes the passing trade. The food is great too, which must be music to your dog’s ears!
Why your dog will love it: We don’t know many dogs that aren’t at home whilst sprawled comfortably on the pub carpet or waiting patiently for a snack.
Also seek out: The Belly Rub, The Old Scalby Mills and The Blue Crush Bar & Diner.
Our top dog-friendly cottages in Scarborough
Looking for a couple's break with the dog in tow? Then book a stay at The Old Jet Works, a bijou hideaway in Scarborough close to the Rotunda Museum in the Old Town. This first-floor apartment makes for a comfortable stay and it’s a cosy prospect for a wonderful escape to North Yorkshire.
This spacious holiday cottage close to Scarborough sleeps five guests and welcomes one dog. Set in the lush North Yorkshire countryside, Wold Cottage at Wellspring Cottage is a delightful prospect for a family break. Within short driving distance of the coast at Scarborough, you could also cycle via the Moor to Sea network. Refurbished in 2020, this is lovely rural retreat to enjoy with your dog!
Visit our collection of dog-friendly holiday cottages where you and your pet will find features that are bound to make a holiday in Scarborough totally unforgettable. For more ideas, visit our dog-friendly guide to Yorkshire. Choose your perfect self-catering dog-friendly holiday cottage from our range - book your ideal holiday home without delay.
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.