Camping holidays could have been invented for dogs and their owners. Fresh air, long walks and trips to the butchers for barbecue fodder are bound to keep tails a-wagging. You get to explore new places and your four-legged friend gets to go with you. It isn’t always easy to find holidays that are suitable for man’s best friend, though, but thankfully we’ve had a little help from the experts.
We’ve asked Amy Woodland from Cool Camping to sniff out five of the best dog-friendly campsites, along with a few top tips on how to keep your pet – and your fellow campers – happy while you’re on holiday…
North Rhinns Camping, Dumfries & Galloway
On Scotland’s far south-west coast, there’s a tiny, dog-friendly gem of a campsite. North Rhinns Camping offers well-spaced and secluded pitches in a lovely rural location. You can tuck your tent among trees and hedgerows in a pitch with its own fire pit and picnic bench. The site has immaculate facilities and a camping pod for those without their own canvas. The Southern Uplands Way long-distance footpath passes nearby offering the opportunity for long walks that’ll keep active dogs and their owners happy. And it’s not far to dog-friendly beaches like Cockle Shore either.
Adults £9; children (3-15yrs) £4.50; Under-2s free.
Forestside Farm, Staffordshire
The campsite at Forestside Farm should keep all members of the family happy. Adults will be enchanted by the stunning views, kids will be pre-occupied by the cows and dogs will be excited by the circular walk around the farm. Situated on a 150-acre, organic dairy it has its own half-acre pool for coarse fishing and offers meadow camping with views of the Weaver Hills and Peak District. There’s lots of country walks in the area and it’s within easy reach not only of the national park but also the family fun of Alton Towers and Drayton Manor.
Backpacker: Up to £15, Couple: Up to £20, Family: Over £20.
Palace Farm, Kent
Dogs are welcomed at Palace Farm in Kent where the fresh seasonal produce on sale reminds you why this neck of the woods is known as the Garden of England. The campsite’s honesty shop sells veg that’s fresh from the farm and you can help yourself to plums from the orchard and blackberries from the hedgerows, when they’re in season. Looking after wildlife is part of the ethos at this tents-only campsite where the hoot of an owl is about as noisy as it gets. Its rural location is close to Leeds Castle, Rochester, Chatham and Canterbury.
Adult £10 per night; child (3 to 15) £5.
Dewslake Farm, Pembrokeshire
There’s ample space for four-legged friends at Dewslake Farm in South Pembrokeshire. This farm-based campsite is the perfect place to stay if you want to discover Pembrokeshire National Park with man’s best friend at your side. It’s a region that’s known for its beaches but nearby Barafundle Bay stands out as one of the best. What’s more, dogs are allowed on the sands all year round, so it’s the perfect place to play fetch with Fido. The Pembrokeshire Coast Path also passes close by the site so local dog walking is no problem either. Camping, glamping, campers and caravans are all welcome.
Grass pitch from £10 per adult and £5 per child per night.
Cerenety Eco Camping, Cornwall
The gate is always open to dogs (among others) at Cerenty Eco Camping in Cornwall. This laid-back, eco-friendly site offers space for tents and small camper vans in three sprawling fields with no designated pitches. It’s got composting toilets, solar power and makes use of recycled materials wherever possible. There’s also a pick-your own permaculture garden and farm animals including orphaned lambs and alpacas. You can walk the dog on country lanes and footpaths straight from the site. It’s just two minutes’ walk to reach the Bude canal and a mile to Bude itself for sand, surf and ice cream.
From £4 – £10 per person per night.
Top 10 Tips for a Happy Holiday with your Dog
A little bit of extra prep is needed if you’re planning on taking your dog camping – but it’ll all be worth it when you’re enjoying your holiday with your most faithful friend. Follow these tips and you should be a happy camper with a dog at your side…
- Before you start looking for a dog-friendly campsite, consider whether the sociable side of camping will suit your pet pooch.
- Check whether dogs are allowed on the campsite you want to visit – before you book!
- A few weeks before you go on holiday, make sure your dog is in tip-top health with all the correct vaccinations.
- Take a familiar-smelling bed or blanket for your dog to sleep on so you can both get a good night’s sleep.
- Pack some old towels especially for muddy paws to protect your tent!
- Consider taking an extra-long lead as many sites ask for dogs on leads.
- Buy an OS map of the area to find dog-walking routes in the area you’re visiting.
- Ask campsite owners and local dog walkers for tips of places to visit when you arrive.
- Keep an eye on the sausages! The barbecue food might prove too tempting for even the most obedient of dogs.
- Make sure you follow site rules and clean up after your dog!
Feeling inspired? Grab yourself a tent and kit yourself out for your next camping trip this summer.
You can also check out even more places across the UK available on Cool Camping’s dog-friendly guide, so you can find the pooch-friendly pitch that’s right for you.