Dog-friendly beaches in Devon

Coastal, Pet friendly, The Great British Outdoors

Posted by Hannah Jury on 20th October 2020

Let’s face it, we all love to visit the beach during our holiday, and your family dog is no exception! The beach offers vast expanses of sand to play fetch on, places to dig, and the sea is ideal for a little doggy paddle. The coastlines of North and South Devon have some exceptional beaches but where are the best dog-friendly ones? It's a good idea to do a spot of research in advance, because it can be quite frustrating when you pay for parking, saunter down to the beach with your four-legged chum only to find out that your hound cannot accompany you onto the sands because of a restriction.

We have compiled a helpful guide to our favourites and a current list (as of spring 2020) of the popular, the obscure and the brilliant. Best of all, they are available year-round and the majority of them are free! Here is our rundown of the best dog-friendly beaches in Devon. Stay at one of our dog-friendly cottages in Devon too so you can visit more than one of them.

Dog-friendly cottages

Skip ahead to:


The top dog-friendly beaches in North Devon

The top dog-friendly beaches in North Devon

The craggy North Devon coast is home to some exceptional dog-friendly beaches, including some of the longest unspoiled, sandiest stretches in the South West of England. Head to Northam Burrows Country Park in Westward Ho!, Croyde Bay, the lush Putsborough Sands and Woolacombe Beach. To the west, you have the lesser-known, natural havens of Mills Mouth and Bucks Mills to discover too. It's an excellent part of the English coast to enjoy a dog-friendly holiday in a self-catering holiday cottage by the ocean. There are even some great dog-friendly pubs to discover in North Devon too! Read on to uncover the best dog-friendly beaches in North Devon.


Putsborough

Putsborough Sands, near Croyde

Set in a picturesque location between Croyde and Woolacombe on the North Devon coast you will find the wide Putsborough Sands beach. One half of this sandy beach does have a restriction at times during the year for the benefit of families and surfers. However, the other half of the beach has plenty of space for your four-legged friend to run amok and tire themselves (and you) out.

Local information: WCs and showers, lifeguards in summer, cafes and shops nearby, close parking

Dog restrictions: Dogs are welcome all year round, however dogs are banned in selected areas from 1st April to 31st October.

Stay nearby: Braemar | Sleeps: 4 guests

Putsborough cottages


Saunton Sands

Saunton Sands, near Braunton

Located just around the coast from Putsborough is the far-reaching Saunton Sands near Braunton. The three and a half miles of sand that are found here are extremely popular with those looking for a refreshing amble, and your pooch will love sniffing around here and plunging into the water. There are dunes that back the beach that are great for chasing sticks and balls or a little game of hide and seek!

Local information: WCs and showers, lifeguards during summer, cafes and shops nearby, close parking

Dog restrictions: Yes - However, dogs welcome all year round south of the red dog bin in Zone C.

Stay nearby: West Saunton Cottage | Sleeps: 4 guests plus 1 dog

Saunton Sands cottages


Westward Ho!

Westward Ho!

The resort town of Westward Ho! is a favourite for dog-walkers as the 2-mile sandy beach is extremely accessible, and for the majority of the year is entirely dog-friendly. At the northern end of the beach you’ll find large rocks to climb over, a pathway around the edge of the golf course, and an informative visitor centre. The beach is also backed by a large area of grassland, but be aware of lead restrictions when there is livestock grazing.

Local information: WCs and showers, lifeguards in summer, cafes and shops nearby, close parking

Dog restrictions: Yes. Dogs welcome all year round at the north end, restrictions enforced at the southern end during summer months.

Stay nearby: The Balcony | Sleeps: 4 guests plus 1 dog

Westward Ho! cottages


Croyde

Croyde

Croyde is a small bay found between Saunton Sands and Woolacombe and while it is not dog-friendly for the whole year, it is still a great place to visit during the spring, autumn, and winter months. Croyde is a sandy beach backed by dunes so our advice is to take a ball or find a stick and enjoy a run-around. Baggy Point is also found close to the beach, a stunning location owned by the National Trust - follow the path here and indulge in the spectacular views across the sea.

Local information: WCs and showers, lifeguards in summer, cafes and shops nearby, close parking

Dog restrictions: Yes. Dogs not permitted between May and September. Croyde is privately owned.

Stay at: Dunes at West Croyde | Sleeps: 8 guests plus 3 dogs

Croyde cottages


Woolacombe

Woolacombe

Woolacombe is constantly being voted as one of the top beaches in the UK, in part due to this 3-mile-long stretch of golden sand winning both the Blue Flag and Premier Seaside Beach awards for its cleanliness, water quality and facilities. The sand here is ideal for running about, and there are rock pools to cool your paws off, or take a dip in the sea!

Local information: WCs and showers, lifeguards in summer, cafes and shops nearby, close parking

Dog restrictions: Dogs are not allowed between the rocks at the north end of the beach and the stream from Good Friday or 1st April (whichever is earliest) until the first Monday in November. They must be on leads from the stream to Mill Rock from the same dates but may be exercised without restriction from Mill Rock onwards.

Stay at: Millrock | Sleeps: 4 guests plus 1 dog

Woolacombe cottages


The top dog-friendly beaches in South Devon

South Devon is a superb contrast to North Devon, as the beaches here are higher in number and as the coast wends this way and that, it gives way to coves and hidden bays. So, head to South Devon for quiet intimate beaches or long stretches for you and your hound to conquer. From Blackpool Sands to Beesands, the South Devon coast is just gorgeous. Read on to uncover the best dog-friendly beaches in South Devon!


Soar Mill Cove

Soar Mill Cove, near Salcombe

At the other end of the county, near the seaside town of Salcombe, you’ll find the pretty Soar Mill Cove beach. This sandy cove is the perfect place for fun, games, and swimming after a short stint along the South West Coast Path or for exploring the small rock pools nestling at either end of the beach.

Local information: Parking

Dog restrictions: No 

Stay at: Court Barton Farm | Sleeps: 6 guests plus 2 dogs

Salcombe cottages


Beesands Beach

Beesands Beach, near Kingsbridge

Situated near the South Devon town of Kingsbridge is Beesands Beach. As you stroll along this shingle beach you will be able to watch the boats roll in with the catch of the day and find a new favourite stick nestling among the rocks on the beach. Allowing dogs for the entire year, Beesands Beach is a mile in length and backed by fields so there is plenty of space to stretch legs.

Local information: WCs and showers, cafes and shops nearby, close parking

Dog restrictions: No

Stay at: East Delvers | Sleeps: 4 guests and 2 dogs

Kingsbridge cottages


Torquay

Torquay

Torquay in South Devon is a fantastic dog-friendly beach location for humans and pooches looking for lazy days at the beach, pub lunches and coastal exploration. You’ll be able to sniff out plenty of sandy beaches in the wider area too where your hound can run, chase frisbees and crash through waves. 

Local information: Parking, WCs, park close by, cafes, bars and shops, disabled access

Dog restrictions: No 

Stay at: Riviera Apartment | Sleeps: 4 guests plus 1 dog 

Torquay cottages


Teignmouth

Ness Cove Beach, near Teignmouth

You will find Ness Cove beach at the foot of the Ness Headland, accessed through an original smugglers tunnel. The shingle beach gradually slopes down to the water and is generally quiet, as it is away from the main estuary beachfront in Shaldon. Due to the tunnel and steps, access is limited so please bear this in mind.

Local information: WCs and showers, cafes and shops nearby, close parking

Dog restrictions: No

Stay at: Dunraven | Sleeps: 5 guests plus 2 dogs

Teignmouth cottages


Salcombe

Salcombe North Sands Beach

North Sands Beach in Salcombe nestles between two headlands and sits in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. The South West Coast Path is nearby and so the beach can be a great stop-off point during a longer walk. The large sandy area is perfect for families to run around while the tide is out, but be aware that the beach is totally submerged at high tide.

Local information: WCs and showers, cafes and shops nearby, close parking

Dog restrictions: No

Stay at: Ferndale Treetops View | Sleeps: 4 guests plus 2 dogs

Salcombe cottages


Blackpool Sands

Blackpool Sands Beach, near Dartmouth

Blackpool Sands beach is a gem on the southern coast of Devon and is an award-winning, privately managed 'Blue Flag' family beach with glistening blue water. Although the beach has strict restrictions in place during the summer, from November–March, Blackpool Sands is popular with dog owners due to the magnificent beauty of the area and the different nooks and crannies to explore.

Local information: WCs and showers, lifeguards in summer, cafes and shops nearby, close parking

Dog restrictions: Yes. Dogs are not permitted from the 1st March to the end of the Autumn half-term

Stay at: Cliff House | Sleeps: 10 guests plus 3 dogs

Dartmouth cottages


Find your nearest dog-friendly beach on our map

  • Green tab = beaches in this blog
  • Blue tab = dog-friendly beaches without restrictions


More inspiration

Explore the Devon coastline on your next holiday. Whether you're looking to get in the water, walk along the cliffs or comb the sands, there is so much to see and do on your next getaway. Find some more inspiration with these guides.


Holidays perfect for both you and your dog

If hitting the beach is just one adventure with your dog you've got planned, make it a holiday with our collection of dog-friendly holiday cottages all over the UK! We have self-catering dog-friendly properties all around the coast in Devon, so whether it's just you and the pooch or a larger extended family gathering, we have dog-friendly accommodation big and small for you. If you want to stay in a busy holiday resort or you would sooner head to a more remote coastal spot, then we have the best pet-friendly holiday cottages for you. 

Dog-friendly cottages



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.