In this article, we will look at the best UK dog walking holidays.
If you and your canine companion loves going on hikes and are looking to get away, why not check out our “pawsome” selection of dog friendly holidays.
From dog walking weekends to longer holidays with your pets, there is something for everyone. You will be able to find dog-friendly accommodation easily en route from self-catering dog-friendly chalets, which usually accept up to two dogs or luxury 5-star hotels. Alternatively, you could opt to go on a guided walking holiday, several companies offer specially selected routes and everything is taken care of for you.
We’ve sniffed out the best dog-friendly holidays in England, Scotland and Wales, so next time you and your best friend want to explore the countryside. Pack your hiking boots and the dog leash and check out some of our recommendations.
Carry on reading to see our favourite dog-friendly destinations in the UK
Popular Dog Walking Holidays in the UK
The Dales Way
One of the most popular walking trails in England, the Dales Way stretches 80 miles from Ilkley in Yorkshire to Windermere in the Lake District. You can walk the entire distance in about 6-8 days, taking in some of the best scenery this country has to offer.
Tired feet and paws can rest up at one of the many dog-friendly country pubs like the Craven Arms in Appletreewick, just a quarter-mile off the trail and well worth a visit. Or spend the night at a hotel that welcomes dogs such as the Traddock in Settle, where your beloved pet can relax in style after a long walk.
South West Coast Path
The South West Coast Path is perhaps the country’s ultimate challenge for keen hikers and is the perfect destination for walking holidays with dogs. The 630-miles of walking trails around the coastline of England’s southwest peninsula offers some spectacular scenery. We are not expecting you and your pup to tackle the whole journey; there are tons of dog-friendly holiday cabins, Pubs with accommodation and Hotels for hounds along the way.
Check out the Carlton Hotel in Ilfracombe, where dogs can stay for only £5.00 per night or the Bay View Inn in Bude with its stunning views.
The Dartmoor Way
The Dartmoor Way is a 108 mile-long circular walking route that winds its way around the Dartmoor National Park, with its varying landscape, picture-postcard villages and bustling market towns
The Dartmoor Way offers many possibilities for a break with your pup, from a day trip and dog-friendly weekends away to a full 1 or 2 week holiday. The area is jam-packed with places to eat, drink and spend the night, such as the impressive Bedford Hotel in Tavistock or the Moorland Hotel in Wooter. Alternatively, you can find lots of dog-friendly cabins or holiday homes.
South Downs Way
For dog-friendly walking holidays, The South Downs Way is hard to beat. It’s the only trail entirely within a national park and runs through no less than five nature reserves
This ancient route is 100 miles long, running from Winchester to the chalk cliffs at Eastbourne and both you and your pack will love exploring the green valleys, lush meadows and ancient woodland. Don’t miss Devil’s Dyke, the largest dry valley in the country, which offers terrific views and photo opportunities and you can enjoy a day off from walking and spend the day in dog-friendly Brighton.
There’s no shortage of places to stay, including Wilmington Priory near Eastbourne or the upmarket Park House Hotel in Midhurst.
Pet-friendly UK breaks don’t come much better than the Peak District; this stunning county offers a warm welcome to visitors whether they have two feet or four. Best of all, it has dog walks to suit all abilities, whatever breed you have. Take a leisurely stroll through the Chatsworth Estate grounds or tackle the more challenging 8.5-mile option of climbing to the summit of Kinder Scout Low. You can rest assured you and your pooch will get your steps in here.
The Peak District has some fantastic walking routes and some lovely dog-friendly holiday lodges, so pack those hiking boots and dog biscuits and discover all the delights Derbyshire has to offer.
The Cotswold Way
This long walk of 102 miles boasts some of the most scenic countryside in the country. Following the route will see you pass through an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty with lush green pastures rolling hills and picturesque villages along with majestic stately homes and historic battle sites.
The route can be walked all year round and the well-marked signs make it easy to follow. There are countless pet-friendly holiday lodges in the Cotswolds, or if you book early, you may even bag a room at the posh Cotswold House Hotel and Spa in Chipping Campden.
Northumberland Coast Path
The Northumberland coast has some of the best coastal walking in Europe. The path runs 62 miles from Cresswell to Berwick-upon-Tweed, past magnificent castles, long sandy beaches and quaint seaside villages. The diverse wildlife makes it perfect for nature lovers and their canine companions.
If you have a taste for the finer things in life, book a room at the award-winning Doxford Hall, where there is an additional cost of just £15 for your pet. You can walk the surrounding heritage trails or indulge in a pampering spa day, or check out the popular Bamburgh Castle Inn.
The Cleveland Way is 110 miles and traverses the heather-clad North York Moors National Park before heading south to Filey by the coastal route, which takes in idyllic villages and pretty seaside towns like Robin Hood’s Bay, Staithes and Whitby. Walk along the dramatic coastal cliffs and breath in the fresh air with Fido by your side.
There are plenty of dog-friendly pubs en-route and you will be spoilt for choice when it comes to holiday cottages that welcome pets and dog-friendly accommodation, like the Seacliffe Hotel in Whitby with its breathtaking views or the Endeavour B & B in Staithes with its gourmet English or Irish breakfast.
Hiking in Wales with your Four-legged Friend
Snowdonia National Park
Snowdonia is an amazing place to come walking with your dog with a countless network of routes for all abilities; whether you prefer the challenging ascent of Snowdon, the highest mountain in Wales and England or a leisurely stroll by the sea, there are walks to suit everyone. Either way, you are guaranteed spectacular scenery and a wondrous landscape to enjoy on a dog-friendly walking getaway here, from crystal clear rivers and lakes, miles of golden sands or snow-peaked mountains.
You can book a room for the night in one of the many dog welcoming hotels such as the Waterloo Hotel in Betws-y-Coed or the prettily named Fairy Falls Hotel in Trefriw, where you can rest those weary legs and tuck into delicious homemade food.
Dog-Friendly Walking Holidays in Scotland
The Borders Abbeys Way
This gentle 68-mile route takes you and your canine companion through the peaceful countryside charming market towns nestled in the Scottish Borders. The region is renowned for its historic abbeys (hence the name), which can be found in Melrose, Kelso Dryburgh and Jedburgh.
Revel in the peace and quiet with walking routes along riverbanks, forests and lush green farmland dotted with wildflower meadows. You will find plenty of dog-friendly accommodation in the Borders, from quirky holiday lets to the luxurious Cringletie House Hotel in Peebles.
The Arran Way
Just a short ferry trip from the west coast of Scotland, this stunning island offers a variety of trails for you and your dog to explore. Discover resident wildlife and take in spectacular views around the coast or head inland for more challenging mountain trails.
The Arran Coastal Way is a 65-mile circular route and a walk all dog owners should experience and some excellent hotels accept dogs like the Dunvegan Guest House nestled in the pretty town of Brodick.
Dog-Friendly Hiking Holidays for Singles
Some companies specialise in holidays where you and your dog can walk to your heart’s content as well as sorting out the accommodation such as Explore, Contour Holidays and Encounter Holidays, although not specifically for single people it is possible to book a single room.
Packing for a Walking Holiday with your Dog
There are some essentials you need to take with you when you walk long distances with your pooch.
- First aid kit – Essential for any injuries en-route
- Quality Harness/backpack & leash – A dog harness with a handle is essential and you can purchase ones with bags so Fido can carry his own provisions. We recommend taking a short leash to keep your dog under control near other dogs and wildlife
- Water and food bowls – You can purchase collapsable ones that take up less room
- Doggy hiking boots – Depending on the terrain, you may or not need these, but they are very handy should your pet suffer a paw injury
- GPS tracker – If the worst happens and your pup runs off, a tracker could be invaluable
- Dog drying towel – Rarely can you walk your dog in this country without rain at some point and a drying towel is lighter and absorbs more water than an ordinary one
- Paw balm – Walking for long periods is hard on paws, so a soothing balm each evening will keep them in tip top condition.
- Poo bags – Always clean up after your dog even if you are in the middle of nowhere
A long-distance walking holiday is an excellent opportunity to forgo the boarding kennel and bring your four-legged friends along with you; with an abundance of wide-open spaces, fresh country air and a treat at the end of each busy day, it’s a memorable experience for both you and your pup
Let the adventures begin!