Labrador beach, Cornwall

Dog friendly beaches in Cornwall

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Cornwall is full of wonderful beaches which are dog friendly all year round and many more which allow dogs seasonally. Whether you’re bounding across vast expanses of golden sand, getting messy in tidal channels, or exploring the county’s extensive coastal paths together, there is no end to the fun you and your dog can have on the Cornish coast.

At Haven we know how important it is to be able to bring your pooch along with you as you explore the charms of your chosen destination. Our holiday parks Riviere Sands and Perran Sands are both located on the north coast of Cornwall, which is a great area for dog friendly beaches. However, we have also included options in other areas of Cornwall so that you can experience the best of the county with your dog in tow. Please read on for our hand-picked selection of the best dog friendly beaches in Cornwall for you to enjoy on your trip.

Watergate Bay, Tregurrian

Watergate Bay, Tregurrian
Watergate Bay: wonderful for a run around

Dogs allowed: all year round

Watergate Bay is located about three miles north of Newquay on the North Cornwall coast and is known as one of the best dog friendly beaches in Cornwall. Backed by high cliffs, the beach boasts two miles of golden sand at low tide meaning there is plenty of space for your pooch to have a good run around. The beach does still tend to get reasonably busy, however, particularly around the main car park in front of the Watergate Hotel.

Watergate Bay is north-westerly facing and picks up a lot of Atlantic swells, creating enormous waves that make for a spectacular sight and are a blessing for surfers. There are several access points along the cliffs, but by far the easiest way to reach the beach is from the valley, where all the facilities are. It’s also worth noting that the majority of the beach disappears at high tide so be sure to time your visit with low tide.

Gorran Haven Beach, Gorran Haven

Gorran Haven Beach, Gorran Haven
Gorran Haven: glorious whatever time of day it is

Dogs allowed: between Easter and September

Gorran Haven is an unspoilt coastal village that sits in a valley, well off the beaten track. At the heart of the village is a cluster of fishermen’s cottages that enshrine a secluded cove. This cove is Gorran Haven, sheltered from the prevailing west winds by Dodman Point, meaning that swimmers can enjoy some of the safest bathing in Cornwall.

This beach is ideal for the whole family, including dogs between Easter and September if they’re kept on leads. The Southwest Coast Path that bisects this beach is also an excellent route to explore with your pooch and the Gorran Haven portion enjoys an abundance of flora and fauna.

Seaton Beach, Seaton

Seaton Beach, Seaton
Seaton: seashells by the seashore

Dogs allowed: all year round

This lovely dog friendly beach in Cornwall has a wide choice of places to eat, parking and those all-important toilets and is in a quieter part of the county to the east of Looe. Seaton Beach has everything you need for a memorable day out with your four-legged friend with a large area of sand and small pebbles as well as a river that runs across the beach that they can enjoy paddling and splashing about in.

The beach is not only very popular with dog owners but also with shore fishermen and is one of the select few beaches in the southeast of Cornwall that provide great waves for surfing. Seaton Beach is located at the entrance to the Seaton Valley Country Park which is home to an array of wildlife such as kingfishers, otters and butterflies. There’s also lifeguard cover daily from early May to late September.

Summerleaze Beach, Bude

Summerleaze Beach, Bude
Summerleaze: a bastion of Bude

Dogs allowed: all year round (on leads from 21 May - 30 September)

Summerleaze is a wide sandy beach popular for the river that flanks it. It is backed with dunes and an impressive breakwater and is home to the Bude Sea Pool that provides free, safe seawater swimming, paddling and even free Swimsafe lessons for children in the summer. Dogs are very much welcome on the beach all year round; however, they must be kept on leads from 21 May - 30 September.

Just a short walk from the vibrant town centre with its shops and cafes, Summerleaze is Bude’s main beach (with a large car park) which has excellent/good water quality and great waves for those who enjoy bodyboarding and surfing. Surfing instruction is available for all ages/abilities and sessions can be booked in the car park. The beach and the Sea Pool are fully RNLI lifeguarded in summer.

Harlyn Bay, Harlyn

Harlyn Bay, Harlyn
Harlyn Bay: vast and tranquil

Dogs allowed: all year round

Harlyn Bay is a spacious sandy beach close to the popular tourist destination Padstow. Backed by sand dunes and low cliffs, Harlyn is a firm favourite with families and surfers, as well as us here at Haven. The beach has a seasonal lifeguard service making safe swimming an option and, most importantly for dog lovers, it is also one of the few quality beaches in Cornwall to be dog friendly all year round.

The coast path crosses the beach on its way to the famous Bedruthan Steps, so it’s a great place to take your four-legged friend on a walk but do bear in mind that the sand becomes almost entirely covered at high tide. There are some basic facilities available in the form of a large car park above the beach and toilets.

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