Did you know that April is National Pet Month? Not only is the spring weather ideal for getting out and about and exploring but as its National Pet Month, it’s the perfect time to treat your dogs to a little break away by booking a North Devon adventure!
North Devon is one of the most dog friendly areas in the UK, with miles of beaches, some of which accept dogs all year around, attractions that are happy for your dogs to join you and loads of accommodation, so you can all have a lovely, comfortable stay.
When it comes to visiting North Devon, there is an array of places to stay from camp sites where you can bring your own accommodation with you, perfect for those of you on a budget to luxury hotels where your dog is pampered as much as you are.
Here are some suggestions for great dog friendly places to stay across the North Devon region.
For those of you who like being out in nature, you might want to look at some of the camp sites that are available, like Tarka Trail Camping, located on the outskirts of Barnstaple. This well placed campsite is perfect for exploring the coast and countryside areas of North Devon and you are just five miles from both Bideford and Barnstaple, giving you access to all the amenities you could need. The site is adjacent to the Tarka Trail, which is ideal for walking and cycling and has plenty of places for you and your dog to explore! Bring your own tents or motor homes and enjoy some incredible views, including the amazing sunrises and sunsets that can be seen at this time of year.
Image: Tarka Trail Camping
Hidden Valley near Woolacombe is an award winning campsite and touring caravan park in the rolling hills of north Devon. Dogs are welcome at the park and will love spending time in the dog exercise area and the camping field, where they can free roam when it isn’t in use.
Camping isn’t for everyone, even those that like being outdoors, so if you’re looking for a compromise, check out what is on offer at Strawfields. The site has a camping area, as well as four shepherd’s huts for those that want to experience some glamping and three cottages, giving you plenty of options. This is a great place for those that want to get away from it all as it is in a peaceful and rustic location, while only being a few minutes from the award winning beaches. The site does have a couple of resident animals, so all doggy guests will need to stay on a lead when exploring the site, but there are plenty of nearby places they can explore off lead and of course, lots of beaches where they can dig and chase waves to their heart’s content!
Another popular option for those visiting with dogs is to stay at one of the region’s holiday parks. These parks have a range of different accommodation options, catering for various budgets and party seizes, plus they often have a whole host of onsite facilities, including swimming pools and spas – perfect for those that like an active holiday.
In Westward Ho! there is Braddicks Holiday Centre, which is set alongside an award winning beach and is close to a host of others as well as rolling countryside and top attractions. They have several dog friendly caravans and villas and the pet friendly options are set within lovely grounds with your own exercise area and easy access to the South West Coast Path.
Also, near the beach at Westward Ho! is Beachside holiday Park, where you can find a range of static caravans and apartments in an enviable location with extras, including hot tubs. The park has some lovely views of the North Devon coast and by staying here, you are close to the village centre where you can find pubs, attractions and eateries.
Seafield Holiday Park is another option in this part of Devon, the site has a range of options for you and your dogs including three different caravans, three different villas and a holiday cottage, so you can easily find the perfect property for you.
Another resort which borders a beach is Croyde Bay Holiday Resort. This site, nestled just behind the sand dunes on Croyde Beach has its own private beach access and is just a few minute’s walk to the village. You can find a whole host of things to do without leaving the complex, including swimming pools and gym, as well as an onsite surf school – ideal for those who want to explore the region’s surfing beaches with confidence. The complex has a series of Waggy Tails accommodation which have their own enclosed patio and outdoor furniture, so your dogs can be inside and outside without you having to keep an eye on them all the time.
Image: Croyde Bay Holiday Resort
North Devon is also home to some Parkdean Resorts, Ruda which is near Croyde and Bideford Bay, on the outskirts of Bideford. Both parks have an incredible array of entertainment and facilities, including clubs for the kids, swimming pools, arcades and sports areas, so everyone is guaranteed a good time without having to head out too far. Both sites are also pet friendly and have a range of accommodation options, so you can pick the property that is right for you.
One of the most popular places to visit in North Devon is Ilfracombe, with its historic tunnels beaches and foodie reputation, it is a great place to call home for a few days. There are a host of holiday parks nearby including Ilfracombe Holiday Park which is right at the highest point in the town and is just a short journey to the harbour. Set within thirteen acres and with amazing views over the town, this is a very picturesque holiday park with lots of onsite facilities including a heated swimming pool and sauna, as well as clubs for the kids during the high seasons. There are several dog friendly accommodation options on site and plenty of good country and coastal walks which are accessible from the site, plus a host of popular family friendly attractions many of which are also happy for your dogs to join you!
If you want to stay in a park close to the UK’s best loved beaches, make sure to take a look at the parks around Woolacombe. Woolacombe beach welcomes dogs with some restrictions from April to November in some places, while Zone C has no restrictions at all. Other nearby beaches also have seasonal restrictions or no restrictions at all and are easy to reach from Woolacombe.
Woolacombe Sands Holiday Park is perfect for families and has a stunning beachside setting. When you book to stay at one of their dog friendly properties, your dog will get their own doggy welcome pack, which includes a collapsible bowl, travel water bottle, rubber ball, blanket, poo bags and doggy dentastix – everything you need for a day out with your four legged friends!
Image: Woolacombe Sands Holiday Park.
A lot of holiday makers coming with their dogs like to stay in cottages or other self-catering properties. These give you a lot more flexibility and privacy and you will have a lot more room. These properties also often have their own enclosed outdoor areas for your dogs to enjoy. You can find properties in all the popular areas, like Ilfracombe and Woolacombe, for instance, there is Byron Woolacombe Holidays, where you’ll find 50 privately owned, self contained holiday apartments of different sizes all designed to high specification. There are a selection of apartments that welcome dogs and you can even use the outdoor shower onsite in case your friends get a bit dirty on your travels.
Another option is Old Smithy Holidays where there is no extra charge for your dogs. Located in the village of Welcombe, which is a designated area of outstanding natural beauty, the bungalow is detached and has an enclosed garden, as well as a private parking space, ideal for those of you who want to bring their cars so they can explore the wider area.
In the stunning North Devon countryside, there is Corffe House and Holiday Cottages where you can find a Grade II listed manor house that can sleep up to 22 and nine self-catering holiday cottages. Two dogs are permitted to stay in Corffe House and the cottages can take one dog each. The estate features five acres of private land, as well as an indoor heated pool, toddler pool and spa bath as well as an all weather tennis court. The central courtyard has a BBQ that guests are also welcome to use – ideal for those warmer summer evenings!
For those of you who want a coastal property, check out the portfolio at Beach Cove Coastal Retreat With everything from quirky beach huts, holiday apartments and properties with hot tubs, you can be guaranteed of wonderful beach views. There are a selection of dog friendly properties, all of which give you easy access to dog friendly beaches and coastal walks, so you’re never too far from a seaside adventure!
Dogs are also welcomed at several of the region’s farm locations. One option that is a huge hit with families and their dogs alike is Lower Campscott Farm Holiday Cottages, where you can join in with daily animal feeding, ride tractors and explore the farm at your leisure. Located near both Woolacombe and Ilfracombe, the farm is well placed for visiting the region’s award winning beaches and is rural enough for you to truly relax and rejuvenate.
Torridge House Farm Cottage is set within rolling hills and wooded valleys and though it is a small farm, there are nine cottages surrounded by fields and woodlands, it is a wonderful rural escape for young families, walkers, runners, cyclists, explorers and anyone who wants a peaceful break away. The cottages are all kitted out to a high standard and have their own gardens offering space and privacy, giving you peace of mind where your dogs are concerned.
On the outskirts of Bideford, where you can easily access the town, as well as the beaches and countryside walks is Robin Hill Farm cottages, which are hidden away at the end of a private lane and surrounded by valleys and rolling fields. The cottages are all former farm buildings that have been lovingly converted, with their own enclosed gardens. The farm is a dog’s paradise and the three dog friendly cottages have towels and taps, perfect for muddy paws and there are crates available on request. The farm has eight acres of pasture to bound around and the team are on hand to recommend the best places for you and your dog to visit during your stay.
There are also a host of cottages on offer from My Favourite Cottages who have a range of different properties for those that want a little more choice.
It isn’t just holiday parks and cottages to choose from, there are several hotels in North Devon that are happy for dogs to stay too.
The Woolacombe Bay Hotel is a spa-enhanced sanctuary by the sea, which is perfect for those who want to relax or those that want to be active. The hotel has its own spa for you to indulge in some pampering and there are some lovely dog friendly rooms. The Carlton Hotel is another option perfectly located in Ilfracombe ideal for exploring the National Park and the Atlantic Coast. The hotel accepts children of all ages and dogs and is perfect for both tourist and business trips.
These are just a few of the options available for a dog friendly break in North Devon – you can see more accommodation options and things to do during your visit here.