Best places in the UK to go on holiday with your dog

Updated 26 June 2020 | by Thomas Hughes


Where is the best place in the UK to go on holiday with your dog? Clickstay's travel experts examined the data to answer this question.

Based on discussions with holidaymakers in their database, they identified the key factors dog owners look for on holiday. The most important were long scenic walks (either on the beach or in a rural setting), a choice of local pubs for a pint or a meal and a wide variety of dog friendly holiday rentals to choose from.

Clickstay used this criteria to analyse a combination of proprietary and third party data* to find out:

  • The proportion of dog friendly holiday rentals in each area;
  • The percentage of local pubs which identify as dog friendly;
  • The number of beaches classified as dog friendly;
  • The number of walking trails which are suitable for dogs.

They then combined all of these metrics to give each area in the UK an overall dog friendly percentage score.

*Scroll to the bottom for more details on the methodology.


Top 10 Dog Friendly Locations



Overall Dog Friendly Scores



Study finds Cumbria is the most dog friendly area in the UK for a holiday

Cumbria was the overall winner after scoring highly in all categories. A key factor was the sheer number of dog friendly walks.

"This will come as no surprise to anyone who has visited the Lake District which is renowned for its incredible variety of scenery and trails. There is so much to explore and having your dog with you makes it even better. Many people don't realise that there are also beautiful beaches in Cumbria as well, such as those at St Bees. When you add the high proportion of dog friendly accomodation and pubs into the equation, it's clear that the Lake District is the perfect place for dog lovers to go on holiday" said Tom Hughes, Founder and Managing Director of Clickstay.


"Devon came a close second after also scoring highly in all categories, especially as it has the biggest proportion of dog friendly pubs. Ultimately your best destination depends on personal preference: for example if you prefer walking on beaches to hills then you might prefer Devon to Cumbria" he added.


Most Dog Friendly Locations for Pub Goers



Dogs welcome in the majority of Devon's Pubs

Devon recorded the highest proportion of dog friendly pubs with 53% welcoming dogs. The area is extremely popular with British holidaymakers who flock to the county during the summer.

"Dogs are deeply engrained in Devonian life so it's not surprising that so many pubs welcome them with open arms. There's little better than seeking refuge in a local establishment after a long walk on one of Devon's many famous beaches" said Tania Jennings, another of Clickstay's travel experts.



Most Dog Friendly Locations for Holiday Rentals


Northumberland takes the top spot

Northumberland National Park is a big attraction to the county in the North East of England, drawing an average of 1.5 million visitors per year over the past three years. The many trails, such as the famous Sycamore Gap, make it particularly popular with dog walkers.

"Northumberland is perhaps one of the most underrated destinations in the UK for dog owners. Not only do you have the world class national park, but you also have unspoilt coastlines. There is a strong love of dogs there too and this is reflected in the number of holiday rentals which welcome pets" said Tom Hughes.


Most Dog Friendly Locations for Beach Lovers


The South West Dominates

Cornwall finished in first place with 127 dog friendly beaches. The region is globally renowned for its dramatic coastline. Many of Cornwall's 300+ beaches are not suitable for dogs as they're too steep or rocky; however as it has over 400 miles of coastline it still has comfortably more dog friendly beaches than anywhere else in the UK.

"Cornwall is synonymous with beautiful, expansive beaches which makes it a popular choice for dog owners looking for some sun and sand. Neighbouring Dorset and Devon also scored highly, finishing second and third respectively, making the South West of England the undisputed go-to for dog owners who like beaches" said Tom Hughes.



Most Dog Friendly Locations for Countryside Walks


Cumbria is a Dog Walker's Paradise

With over 600 dog friendly walking trails Cumbria, which encompasses the beautiful Lake District, is undoubtedly the best location for countyside walks, both on and off the lead. Whilst the Scottish Highlands had more trails overall a higher proportion are not suitable for dogs as they are steep and precarious.

"The Lake District in particular offers a wonderful diversity of walking trails where you can take your dog. There is a fantastic range of difficulty so there is something for all dogs regardless of capability" said Tania Jennings.



Research methodology