Dog-friendly beaches in Sussex

Coastal, Pet friendly, The Great British Outdoors

Posted by Kate W on 16th September 2020

If you’re searching for a Sussex dog-friendly beach where you and your canine companion can soak up salty sea air, splash through rippling waves and dine in beachfront cafes, you’ll soon find a wonderful pet-friendly beach in our guide.

With dog-friendly golden beaches in Sussex where you can leave pawprints in the sand, to pebble and shingle shores with magnificent chalk cliffs as their backdrop, you’ll be spoilt for choice!

We’ve selected a few of our favourite dog-friendly beaches in West Sussex and East Sussex for you to uncover. Take your pick and begin planning an exciting holiday where you and your best friend can get exploring or relax with the family.

Dog-friendly cottages in Sussex

Skip to:

Dog-friendly beaches in West Sussex

Dog-friendly beaches in East Sussex

The best dog-friendly beaches in West Sussex

1. Climping Beach

A Site of Special Scientific Interest just west of Littlehampton, Climping Beach is a shingle beach full of wildlife with a designated Local Nature Reserve called West Beach nearby. Look out for birdlife as you explore this exquisite dog-friendly beach in West Sussex. It’s a quiet, rural beach and made up of shingle and pebbles with sandy beach exposed when the tide is out.

Dogs: Dogs allowed to roam freely and on a lead in one of the car parks

Lifeguard: There is no lifeguard service

Local information: Beach café, car parks and accessible toilets.

Stay nearby: The Cart Barn, Chichester | sleeps 2 and 1 dog

2. Goring Beach

Backed by a large grassy area and colourful traditional beach huts, Goring Beach by Goring-on-Sea is a typical West Sussex beach with a pebble and shingle shore leading to a wide expanse of sand exposed by the retreating tide. Let your canine companion race across this pretty West Sussex dog-friendly beach before settling down with the whole pack for a picnic by the sea – don’t forget the dog treats!

Dogs: Dog-friendly, however, between 1st May and 30th September dogs are only allowed between the two groynes near the Sea Lane cafe.

Lifeguard: There is no lifeguard service

Local information: There’s a beach café, car park, toilets, and plenty more facilities in Goring-on-Sea behind Goring Beach, including parks and gardens.

Stay nearby: Little Oakwood, Steyning | sleeps 2 and 1 dog

3. Middleton-on-Sea Beach

Otherwise known as Elmer Sands, Middleton-on-Sea Beach is a sandy Sussex beach for dogs to enjoy. Let playful hounds splash through the lapping waves and dig in the sand at this wonderful Sussex beach. It’s relatively quiet with impressive sea defences, and mostly used by locals for dog walking so chances are, your pup might make a few friends during their coastal dog walk.

Dogs: Dogs welcome

Lifeguard: There is no lifeguard service

Local information: While there isn’t a host of beach facilities, there are plenty in town right behind Middleton-on-Sea Beach – from chip shops to corner stores.

Stay nearby: Chenies, Middleton-on-Sea | sleeps 16 and 1 dog

4. Shoreham-by-Sea Beach

An intriguing destination with the winding River Adur immediately to the west and home to a historic harbour that you may like to explore during your day out to the coast. The shingle beach has occasional rocky areas with a wide expanse of sand when the tide is out and it is particularly popular with kitesurfers and windsurfers. The Monarch’s Way long-distance footpath runs close by, so perhaps you and Fido might like a rural dog walk after your beach adventures are completed?

Dogs: Dogs are welcome all year

Lifeguard: There is no lifeguard service

Local information: There are cafes, restaurants, shops and accessible toilets in Shoreham-on-Sea.

Stay nearby: 3 Church Street, Steyning | sleeps 4 and 1 dog

5. Littlehampton Beach

This wonderful seaside resort is certainly one for families with a promenade, amusements, beach huts, theme park, seafront gardens and the unusual addition of the UK’s longest bench. You can enjoy beach games while dogs will have a wonderful time playing fetch with the family on this great sand and shingle beach.

Dogs: Dogs are welcome on West Beach all year round and restricted on Long Beach during the spring and summer.

Lifeguard: RNLI lifeguards patrol the beach during the summer.

Local information: Promenade, amusements, car parks, theme park, gardens, and cafes, pubs and restaurants.

Stay nearby: Goodwood House Chichester, Chichester | sleeps 8 and 1 dog

The best dog-friendly beaches in East Sussex

6. Glyne Gap

A hidden gem of the Sussex coastline, this East Sussex beach has its own Galley Hill Viewpoint from which you can look out across the sandy shore and take in miles of coastal views. There are lots of rock pools exposed when the tide rolls away, which your dog can sniff about in and kids can enjoy investigating, and there's a delightful café on the beach which you can pop into when you’re done exploring.

Dogs: There are restrictions along the St. Leonards stretch of beach during the spring and summer months.

Lifeguard: There is no lifeguard service

Local information: Beach café and pubs, as well as big-name shops including a Tesco superstore behind the beach.

Stay nearby: Fish-tales, Bexhill-on-Sea | sleeps 6 and 1 dog

7. Norman’s Bay

A shingle beach divided up by wooden groynes provides a wonderful setting for afternoon dog walks in this Sussex village of Little Common. Kitesurfers and windsurfers make the most of winds that sweep this coastline and dogs will love racing between the water and their owner. At low tide, be aware and avoid the potential sinking sands that appear. If you head east, you’ll reach the shingly dog-friendly Sussex beach of Cooden, before hitting the sandy shores of Bexhill Beach which is a fantastic place for dogs to explore during the cooler months, but restrictions come into place during the summer.

Dogs: Dogs are welcome

Lifeguard: There is no lifeguard service

Local information: Train station, pub and toilets by Norman’s Bay; two pubs in the nearby village of Little Common.

Stay nearby: The Beach Bung - Pevensey Bay, Pevensey Bay | sleeps 4 and 1 dog

8. Holywell Beach

Set to the eastern edge of Eastbourne, this exquisite little beach backed by sky-high chalk cliffs is a picture-perfect setting for a dog walk. This East Sussex dog-friendly beach is quaint and a delightful stop during your holiday, with Italianate gardens for you and your four-pawed pal to wander through and a tearoom with lots of outdoor seating where you and your pet can unwind and soak up the sea air.

Dogs: Dogs are welcome but must be kept under close control

Lifeguard: There is no lifeguard service

Local information: Cafes, pubs, gardens, toilets, shops and a car park.

Stay nearby: Olive Tree Apartment, Eastbourne | sleeps 3 and 2 dogs

9. Seaford Bay

A 4-mile stretch of shingle provides the perfect place for a long, relaxed beach walk with your dog by your side. It’s entirely pebble and shingle but a great location for a family day out splashing in the sea, playing games, and picnicking on the rocks – all activities your playful pup will happily join in with! Sailing, kayaking and canoeing, and swimming are popular activities here and there’s a cycle trail that runs behind the beach which you may like to take advantage of too.

Dogs: Dogs welcome all year but with a seasonal ban in the central area of the beach  

Lifeguard: The voluntary lifeguard service, Seaford Lifeguards, patrol the beach at weekends and Bank Holidays from May to September.

Local information: There are a host of places to eat, drink and shop in nearby Denton and East Blatchington. Seaford Head is an impressive place to take in the views and where Fido can survey his territory – it is requested that you stay more than 5 metres away from the head, however, so please keep your dog on a lead near the cliffs if they don’t immediately come to heel.

Stay nearby: Starlings, Brighton | sleeps 5 and 2 dogs

10. Cuckmere Haven Beach

With one of the best-known and most magnificent beach views on the Sussex coast, Cuckmere Haven Beach is a wonderful choice for a seaside dog walk. It’s set within a national park; venture inland for a walk along the banks of Cuckmere River or take in the impressive Seven Sisters chalk cliffs during your beach day out. While you enjoy the views, your pup can scamper about on the beach or sniff through the grass, uncovering sticks and animal trails in the national park behind this dog-friendly beach in East Sussex.

Dogs: Dogs are welcome

Lifeguard: There is no lifeguard service

Local information: Seven Sisters country park visitor centre, café, toilets and car park.

Stay nearby: Pump Cottage - Beddingham, Lewes | sleeps 2 and 2 dogs

Map of dog-friendly beaches in Sussex

For more inspiration…

Escape to any one of these fantastic dog-friendly beaches in Sussex for an unforgettable day out on a coastline lined with towering chalk cliffs and charming towns waiting to be explored.

Once you’ve decided on your favourite dog-friendly beach, why not browse through our range of pet-friendly cottages in Sussex for more holiday inspiration? You’ll soon find a wonderful place to stay on your next getaway to the Sussex coast with your four-pawed pal.

Dog-friendly cottages in Sussex

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.