Where To Go For A Dog-Friendly Staycation In The UK
As lovely as it is to jet off to foreign climes, sometimes you really can’t go wrong with a holiday closer to home – and the best bit about taking a staycation is that you can bring your doggy best friends with you, instead of leaving them behind with friends and family, or shelling out for expensive dog boarding.
But where to go? The great news for anyone with a pooch is that there are many places you can pick between, so many in fact that you may well struggle to make a decision regarding your choice of destination. To help you narrow down your search, here are a few options that could prove to be just what you’re looking for. Enjoy!
If it’s a little trip down south you’re thinking about, why not check out Elm Cottage in Boscastle, a Grade II listed cottage in the delightful wooded Valency Valley, right near the river. You’ll find a tonne of rustic charm in this 17th century cottage, as you will in Boscastle itself, with quaint stone cottages, traditional pubs, tearooms, art galleries and an Elizabethan quay.
You’re also not far from the village of Tintagel, which you may well have heard of before if you’re familiar with the legend of King Arthur. As legend would have it, this is where he was conceived!
Or what about Wood Cottage in Falmouth, a timber-thatched cottage that has beautiful views over the Helford River? The cabin used to serve as an apple store once upon a time, but has now been lovingly restored to create a cosy one-bedroom space for two with modern interiors, contemporary furnishings and high ceilings. Make sure you visit the Durgan, a small fishing village that’s well worth an explore.
The Lake District
If you’d rather head up north and have your heart set on a Lake District staycation this year, what about Low Strawberry Gardens near Hawkshead in Cumbria? This would be perfect if there’s a group of you going, since there are two bedrooms in this stunning lakeside retreat on the shores of Windermere – and you even have your own jetty to enjoy!
You can bring your own kayak or canoe and launch it straight into the lake for a fun time boating about with friends and family. You have Bowness just a short ferry ride away and Ambleside, which is just a 20 minute drive. Make sure you take the time to go and explore the Roman fort nearby, as well.
Wasdale Hall Lodge, meanwhile, is in a particularly stunning part of the Lake District – once voted Britain’s best view.
You’re right on the shores of Wastwater here, the deepest lake in England and it would be perfect for anyone who loves being active while away, since you have Scafell Pike and Great Gable just a short drive away. No excuses for being lazy in this part of the Lake District!
Those of you considering a trip to Wales in the near future might find what you’re looking for and more at Penparc, right on the edge of the Dinefwr Park Estate. This site was originally built as two cottages between 1905 and 1911, with a stunning terracotta roof and stone walls, and room for eight guests and two dogs.
You’re sure to want to explore Dinefwr and its historic house and ruined castle, as well as the wider estate and parkland. Make sure you check out the medieval deer park before heading off to Llandeilo for a spot of shopping and some lunch.
There’s also the National Botanic Garden of Wales right on your doorstep here and the Brecon Beacons National Park, home to the peaks of Pen-y-Fan and lots of amazing waterfalls to discover.
For stunning sea views and coastal walks, meanwhile, head to Castell Farmhouse in Pembrokeshire. You can see the sea from this lovely three-bedroom cottage and you’re right next to the Pembrokeshire Coast Path so you know there are some great walks to be enjoyed – which the doggies are sure to love.
Fishguard is just a 45-minute walk away, while there’s Strumble Head Lighthouse and the seabird observatory a little further out. If you don’t mind a bit of a drive, there’s the 13th-century Cilgerran Castle to discover 17 miles away or Llys-y-Fran reservoir 14 miles inland – perfect for boat trips and long bike rides.
The Isle of Wight
The Isle of Wight is one of the best places you can go for a dog-friendly holiday, with amazing beaches to be found, countless walking trails and, of course, the iconic white chalk cliffs.
Stay in Pomone, a former coastguard cottage on the top of the cliffs at Totland Bay, for some incredible sea views. The house is just one of four that perch up high on the cliffs, surrounded by the sea. Take a stroll along the Needles Headland for a great view of the chalk stacks that rise up from the sea or make your way to Compton Bay, one of the best places for a spot of surfing.
Just make sure that you’re mindful at all times of dogs and children, as you’re just five minutes’ walk away from the cliff edge and the garden here isn’t enclosed.
If there’s a larger group of you, what about Mottistone Manor Farmhouse, a beautifully restored property that can house up to 14 guests and two dogs. You’re right on the dinosaur coastline here, so if you love nothing more than hunting for fossils while on holiday, you’re certainly in the right spot. You’re also only a five-minute drive away from Brook Beach and Compton Bay, so lots of opportunities for swimming and surfing.
This part of the UK is utter paradise for any dog owners who love nothing more than getting out and about with their pooches and having a good old explore.
If it’s a cosy little cottage you’re looking for with open fires and unique features, then Willow Cottage is the one for. You’ve got 2,000 acres or so to explore as part of the Crom estate and you can venture off around Cavan Burren as well, a fascinating prehistoric landscape with all sorts of ancient monuments and tombs to discover.
The site itself dates back around 340 million years to the Carboniferous period, when it was covered in a shallow tropical sea. You can see evidence of this in the fossils embedded in the limestone, so keep your eyes well peeled.
You’ll find waterfalls, abbeys, mountains, boardwalks and forest trails all here, so no matter what kind of adventure you’re seeking you’re sure to find it in Cavan Burren.
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