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Pawsome places to visit

So, you’ve found your little piece of paradise by the sea, but are dogs allowed there? The answer can vary greatly within just a few miles or even metres! Consider this your guide to all the best dog-friendly places in North Devon…

To start, there’s our very own Woolacombe Beach. Winner of TripAdvisor’s ‘UK’s Best Beach’ accolade (twice!), the beach welcomes dogs all year round, with some restrictions. During peak season (May to October) you must stick to clearly marked dog friendly zones. The rest of the year though (November to April) smaller crowds mean you can roam where you like.

Similar rules are in place on Barricane Beach just down the coast too (mix of dog friendly and dog-free zones). Set in a bay about half a mile from the main Woolacombe beach, Barricane Bay is great for rock pooling and popular among surfers, as well as doggy visitors.

The breathtaking Putsborough Beach is a popular choice with pups. It has plenty of flat sand and doggy bins provided but some restrictions in place too (as you descend the steps to the beach, the right side is for dogs, the left dog-free). Taken as a circular walk, this is about 4.5 miles from the hotel (total distance). Driving takes a slightly convoluted route, taking around 20-ish minutes (6 miles).

“Putsborough Beach has clear water, great surf and a gentler away-from-it all feel.”



If you are looking for plenty of space and perhaps somewhere to let an energetic pup have a run about, Saunton Sands Beach offers a large expanse of sand and allows dogs all year; there are also waste bins provided. As with all beaches, we’d still recommend that you allow plenty of space (no shortage of that here!) by walking a good distance before losing the lead, and always being mindful of others. Saunton Sands is around 20 minures’ drive from the hotel (7 miles).

Capstone Beach at Ilfracombe is another dog-friendly beach in North Devon with unlimited access all year for well-behaved pets and plenty of corners to explore (low tide best for plenty of space); this is around 15-20 minutes’ drive from the hotel.

Meanwhile Clovelly Beach is another where you are free to take the dog with no seasonal restrictions beyond the usual common sense rules. This is a little further away – close to an hour’s drive. Set in a picturesque village, a major draw to Clovelly is the diverse marine wildlife to be found in the bay; it’s well worth a visit.

Back closer to home, Rockham Bay, Moretonhoe is another nice spot, with some lovely craggy features – ideal for rockpooling and rock hopping but not so ideal for older visitors. Last but not least, Croyde Bay (20 mins’ drive) is out of bounds for hounds from 1st May to 30th Sept but makes a wonderful place to explore for autumn and winter dog walks, with both golden sand and dramatic, craggy headlands.



in North Devon

Here at Woolacombe Bay we have long believed that pet owners deserve better when it comes to accommodation. We offer dog friendly self-catering lets and holiday apartments at our sister properties – the Beach Retreats. All have ample space and excellent facilities, just a frisbee throw from the beach!

Read more about our dog-friendly holiday apartments in Woolacombe…



The hotel does not have dog-friendly accommodation, but the Bay Brasserie is a lovely dog-friendly restaurant.

Furthermore, the self-catering Woolacombe Beach Retreats are a fantastic choice if you’d like a little dog-friendly place to stay by the beach in Woolacombe. Located just 300 yards from the hotel, they offer plenty of space and home-from-home cosyness.



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