The most welcoming dog-friendly places to eat in the Lake District holiday cottages

Eating out

The most welcoming dog-friendly places to eat in the Lake District

Elianne Reed 05 August 2019

The Lake District is one of the UK's most beautiful places to visit for so many reasons. Breathtaking scenery, glistening lakes and, of course, fabulous dog walking country. It's also the place to come to if you're a bit of a foodie, with an array of excellent pubs, restaurants and cafés to discover during and after long country walks with your favourite hound.

Here at Canine Cottages, we believe that our four-legged friends deserve a treat after all that exploring too. The question is, where can you have a bite to eat with a hound or two in tow? We've put together a selection of the best dog-friendly pubs and restaurants to visit - the places to head to after mountain and lakeside walks; those much-loved establishments which will welcome you even if you have more than one set of paws with you. You'll even find those places who are brave enough to welcome four legs and children at the same time, as well as a few dog-friendly pubs for that well-deserved pint after a solitary walk. 

Have a read through our guide to the best pet-friendly places to eat in the Lake District and find somewhere to stop and pause a while.

Best dog-friendly places to eat in the Lake District after a country walk

The Golden Rule, Ambleside

The Golden Rule in Ambleside
From Instagram: @willdennett


It's a bit off the beaten track and tucked away up a steep hill, so perhaps better for the more active dog, but it's worth it to experience this gorgeous old-fashioned pub. Excellent beers, friendly locals and a secluded beer garden make this hidden gem a superb end to a day's hiking. If truth be told, this dog-friendly pub only offers snacks, but it had to be included as one of our Lake District favourites.

Where to stay:

The Bothy, Windermere (sleeps 2 dogs and 2 humans)

Stiles of Ambleside, Ambleside

Sometimes you just fancy a Cumbrian-roasted coffee and a delicious piece of homemade cake after a walk on wet rainy days (not that we're suggesting for a minute that sunny days shouldn't involve cake too). Grab the pups and make your way to Stiles, a top-notch dog-friendly cafe where you'll be offered the heaven of a dry towel to rub wet hounds down as well as some lovely biscuity treats if they are good.

Where to stay:

Manor House Cottage, Wray (sleeps 3 dogs and 5 humans)

The Punch Bowl, Crosthwaite

The Punchbowl
From Instagram: @punchbowlinncr


An inviting and relaxed affair, ideal when you don't want to cook after a long day exploring the Lakes, this restaurant in the heart of the Lyth Valley offers both a classic contemporary restaurant and a cosy bar area. Experience the 'a la carte' menu in the restaurant if somebody doesn't mind staying at home to look after Mutley. If there's no way that will be tolerated (which we imagine will be the case) take him along and sit at the tables by the bar or outside on the terrace - equally as lovely.

Where to stay:

Top Bank, Crosthwaite (sleeps 2 dogs and 2 humans) 

Best dog-friendly places to eat after a day on the water

Poppi Red, Hawkshead

Poppi Red cake
From Instagram: @eseal


After a gentle stroll followed by a tranquil cruise gliding around Lake Windermere, you can't beat an afternoon treat at the colourful and vintage-style Poppi Red. Choose from the scrumptious selection of cakes and pastries, then sit back, espresso in hand, to look over your photos of the day. On rainy days, this sunny dog-friendly café is guaranteed to put a smile on your face!

Where to stay: 

Angel Cottage - Hawkshead, Hawkshead Village (sleeps 1 dog and 2 humans) 

Red Lion Inn, Hawkshead

Days out on Windermere or Esthwaite Water will be sure to work up an appetite, and there's no better place to satisfy it than the oldest pub in Hawkshead. Hugely welcoming to our four-legged friends, it offers a doggy menu and snacks for hungry hounds on leads as well as a lovely terrace to laze out on sunny days. 

Where to stay:

The Briars, Hawkshead Village (sleeps 2 dogs and 8 humans)

The Dog and Gun, Keswick 

Dog and Gun pub
From Instagram: @leebolton


The northern Lake District also has some lovely expanses of water, including Bassenthwaite Lake and Ullswater with its spectacular Aira Force waterfall. With a name that would tempt any working hound, the Gun and Dog is an extremely dog-friendly pub that will not only fill hungry human tummies with its hearty food (try the amazing Hungarian goulash), but it also has its own doggy menu for puppers who can feel their post-walkie tums rumbling too. 

Where to stay: 

Gallery Cloisters, Keswick (sleeps 2 dogs and 6 humans)

Best places to eat with multiple dogs in the Lake District

Sticklebarn, Ambleside

Sticklebarn pub Lake District
From Instagram: @thistle_girl


A fabulous place to stop after exploring Sticklebarn and the Langdales, this pet-friendly pub, run by the National Trust, welcomes multiple mutts. There's a warm fire to cosy up with the resident dogs and a terrace with shade for sunny days, not to mention the finest ale and tasty, planet-friendly food for the humans.

Where to stay: 

Black Fell Cottage, Outgate and Tarn Hows (sleeps 3 dogs and 8 humans)

The Wateredge Inn, Ambleside

Just feet from the enchanting Lake Windermere, you don't have to sacrifice those amazing views for a minute when you stop for breakfast or lunch at this famous dog-friendly inn. Dine alfresco on the lakeside terrace or, if it's a bit nippy, head inside to sit by the cosy log fire. There are water bowls both inside and outside for thirsty hounds, and waiters have been known to give treats when puppy dog eyes are out in full force.

Where to stay: 

Brae Cottage, Ambleside (sleeps 2 dogs and 2 humans)

The Cuckoo Brow Inn, Far Sawrey

Cuckoo Brow Inn
From Instagram: @ilinghsu5410


Head to this lovely pub after a walk over Claife Heights and Windermere Viewing Station. No matter that you come with wet dogs, muddy boots or even grumpy children, you and your hoard will be welcomed with open arms. Championing local produce wherever possible, the game for the delicious steak & Flakebridge cheese pie is from the area, as are the excellent real ales.

Where to stay: 

Sawrey Stables, Near and Far Sawrey (sleeps 3 dogs and 7 humans)

Best dog-friendly places to eat which cater to families 

Luigi's, Ambleside

kids eating at pasta restaurant

All kids love pasta, so you won't go wrong with a meal out at Luigi's, a dog-friendly restaurant in the heart of Ambleside. Introduce young taste buds to the different shapes of pasta while the lovely waiters lay a dog bed at the side of your table for Fido to have a snooze. There may be some begging for the yummy pasta from under your feet, but treats and water are provided so that you don't have to share.

Where to stay: 

Knipe Fold, Outgate and Tarn Hows (sleeps 2 dogs and 6 humans)

The Tower Bank Arms, Near Sawrey

This delightful pub will easily be recognisable as the little country inn in the Beatrix Potter children's book, "The Tale of Jemima Puddleduck". If you've got little ones with you, you'll probably have visited various Potter locations, including Potter's former home Hilltop, just behind the pub, so this should also be on your hit list. Children are catered for with a special menu and dogs are welcome in the bar area and garden.

Where to stay: 

Meadowcroft, Near Sawrey (sleeps 2 dogs and 8 humans)

Granny Dowbekins, Pooley Bridge

Dog in basket at Granny Dowbekins
From Instagram: @grannydowbekins


Both child and dog-friendly, you won't be worried about taking a large brood of dependants to this traditional English tearoom and tea garden. The staff are kind to both children and dogs and the food is fabulous: warm fluffy home-baked scones, mouthwatering cakes and hearty pies, with superb views of the River Eamont and Ullswater to boot. Children will love the gingerbread biscuits of the nearby bridge so make sure you order some before they run out!

Where to stay: 

Grammar School House, Watermillock (sleeps 2 dogs and 8 humans)

Best dog-friendly pubs for one man and his dog

Old Dungeon Ghyll, Ambleside

man and dog walking

When it's just you and your dog looking for a place to rest weary limbs after a few hours of solitary walking through the Langdales, this good old traditional pub offers open fires, a friendly atmosphere, great ales and pub grub to tempt you both in. Dogs are allowed both inside and outside but not in the formal dining room. There are water bowls and tasty snacks on offer in the Walkers Bar, where four legs are as welcome as two.

Where to stay: 

Seathwaite Tarn, Skelwith Bridge (sleeps 1 dog and 4 humans)

The Drunken Duck, Ambleside

Set up on the hills between Ambleside and Hawkshead - the views of the fells from this pub are simply phenomenal. A former farmhouse, it has been a pub for around 300 years so historical hounds will be sure to love this one. Take them into the garden or bar where you can try a local ale and some hearty fare.

Where to stay: 

Easedale Tarn, Skelwith Bridge (sleeps 2 dog and 4 humans)

Hawkshead Brewery, Stavely 

dog in pub garden

Traditional pub grub at good prices awaits you at this brewery, set in the prettiest little village a few miles from Lake Windermere. Dogs are welcomed inside where they can slurp from one of the water bowls, and there are lots of excellent walks nearby when Rover gets itchy paws.

Where to stay: 

Top Bank, Crosthwaite (sleeps 2 dogs and 2 humans)

Come and stay with us in the Lake District!

All that eating and drinking deserves somewhere comfy and welcoming to return home to. Have a peek through our dog-friendly cottages in the Lake District to find somewhere gorgeous for you all to stay. 


For even more top dog-friendly places to go in the Lake District, including attractions, dog walks and beaches, check out our Canine guide to the Lake District.


For even more great places to chow down with your pooch, why not go out for a dog's dinner at the UK's most dog-friendly pubs or the UK's most dog-friendly cafes?

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.

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