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The Dog Friendly Lighthouse Holiday Guide

Dog looking at lighthouse

If you are looking for a dog-friendly lighthouse holiday, look no further. Here is a selection of lighthouse cottages that welcome you and your furry friend. Not all lighthouse holiday cottages are pet-friendly, but you will find plenty that are.

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Lighthouses tend to be in remote places, and there are often walks nearby that are ideal for walking your dog.  Do research, ensure your pet is allowed, and don’t let your dog off the lead when walking around sheep and livestock. Some walks may not be possible due to the surroundings and wildlife restrictions, so check beforehand.

Often there will be additional charges for pets staying at cottages, so again, do check.

General tips for dog owners

If you take your furry friend on a lighthouse holiday, you’ll want everything to be stress-free for you and your pet.

Changing routines and environment and travelling can upset pets, so you must decide if it’s worth taking them with you.   Instead, you might leave them with a pet sitter or in kennels.

If you are planning to take your dog or cat abroad, then do check the guidelines on taking your pet abroad.

Dog in sea with lighthouse

Also, check out the RSPCA guide to taking pets away on holiday.

When preparing for your travels, make a list of things you’ll need that will help your holiday run smoothly.

Check the cottage is suitable for your pampered pooch and that there is enough space for the size of your breed of dog. Ensure there aren’t any restrictions, such as allowing them on furniture.

When booking accommodation, make sure you let the owners know that you let them know you’re bringing a pet.

Once you’ve arrived, give them time to adjust to their new environment and ensure they are comfortable and happy.  The garden may be walled, but there may be cliffs nearby, and they may need to be kept on a lead or supervised.

Plan your journey

Ensure you have plenty of water for your dog on the way to your lighthouse holiday, especially if the weather is hot.  Give your dog regular breaks to stretch, especially if they are not used to long-distance travel.

Dog at beach

Make sure you have enough essential items.   Take medication and treats for your dog, as shops may not always be close to hand or stock your normal supplies.  And don’t forget the all-important doggy poo bags, leads, collars, and a tag with your dog’s details.

Research for your lighthouse stay

Take some familiar items with you. When you arrive at a new location, it may be unsettling for your pet, so bring some familiar items, such as a favourite blanket or toy.  Give them time to explore their new area and stick to usual routines to keep them settled.

Be prepared and find out the number of a local vet, and you may want to give them a health check before travelling.

You’ll want to visit many places whilst on holiday, but you’ll need to ensure they are prepared for four-legged visitors too.

Many museums won’t allow dogs unless they are guide dogs, and you may have to keep them on a lead.

Dog at cafe

Many pubs and restaurants allow dogs but may need to check in advance.  The guide below lists some pubs that are dog-friendly near lighthouse holiday accommodation.

If you leave them on their own for a while, make sure it’s ok to do this

It may be obvious, but make sure your dog is well-behaved. There may be children staying at other cottages or other pets. There may be animals nearby, so you’ll need to ensure they are well-behaved and find out when and where to let them off the lead.

Although the cottage may be pet friendly, it’s a good idea to make sure that there’s nowhere for your excited hound to escape.  Make sure they are microchipped, and if you let them off the lead, make sure there aren’t any dangers nearby, such as cliffs or wild animals.

Check if the nearby beaches allow dogs too.

Also, check out the RSPCA site, The good dog guide.

Dog relaxing on beach

Dog-Friendly Lighthouse Holidays

Trevose Head Lighthouse, Cornwall

Trevose Head Lighthouse is a few miles from the village of Padstow and is located on the South West Coast Path, which follows the headland.

Brook and Nimbus Cottages sleep four and are dog-friendly at Trevose Head Lighthouse.

Trevose Head Lighthouse
Trevose Head Lighthouse

Walks

Trevose Head is part of the National Trust and welcomes dogs, with dog bins and dog-friendly walks available.

Here are some guidelines for walks around Trevose Head with your dog.

Where to eat

Located on the harbour at Padstow is the Shipwright’s, an original fishermen’s pub which is family and dog friendly.

Here is another guide to dog-friendly pubs in Cornwall.

Penlee Point Fog Signal Station, Cornwall

The Old Signal Station once serviced Eddystone Lighthouse and is located within the Mount Edgcumbe Estate at the base of 82 steps.

The Old Signal House sleeps six, and dogs are allowed by prior appointment.

Penlee Fog Signal Station
Penlee Fog Signal Station

Walks

There is a great circular walk along the coastal path around Rame Head, which passes Penlee and heads into Cawsand. Part of the walk passes The Fort and through the delightfully named hamlet of Wiggle.

Dogs are allowed on Whitsand Bay, and Cawsand Bay has seasonal dog restrictions.  There is one stile along the route, and part of the route sometimes has horses. 

Check out Blue Monkey Cornwall, which has further ideas for dog walks in Cornwall.

Where to eat

The Bay Bar and Restaurant at nearby Cawsand is dog friendly.

Start Point Lighthouse, Devon

Start Point Lighthouse is located on the southern side of Start Bay near Dartmouth. Salcombe and Plymouth are also a short distance away.

Landward Cottage at Start Point Lighthouse sleeps four and accepts dogs.

Start Point Lighthouse
Start Point Lighthouse

Walks

The South West Coast path passes close to Start Point Lighthouse, and there are plenty of places to walk your dog.  There are often fields with livestock, so dogs must be kept on a lead. This blog gives some good advice about walking in the area.

Where to eat

The Cricket Inn at Beesands is dog-friendly and also offers accommodation.

Dungeness, Kent

Dungeness is located at the tip of the Kent coastline. There are two lighthouses, here and the base of a previous tower. The Old Lighthouse is open to the public, though dogs are not allowed in the tower.

The Fog Signal Building and Radar cottages both sleep two and are located within the Experimental Station site. Both accept dogs.

Dungeness
Dungeness Old Lighthouse and Experimental Station

Walks

Dungeness has miles of shingle beaches, but if you want smoother sands, head for Camber Sands, about 7 miles away.

Although you can walk your dog around the Dungeness peninsula, be aware that it is part of the nature reserve.  There are lots of properties, many of which are not fenced off.  Please respect the privacy of these owners, some of which are residential and some are holiday homes.  Don’t allow your dog to roam freely in people’s gardens.

Where to eat

The Pilot Inn doesn’t allow dogs inside, but you are welcome to sit outside with them.

The Warren Inn at Romney Marsh is a little further away and welcomes dogs.

Happisburgh Lighthouse, Norfolk

The village of Happisburgh is on the North Norfolk coast and boasts the UK’s only independently operated working lighthouse.  The lighthouse is open to the public on various open days from Easter throughout the summer on Sundays, and private visits can also be arranged with notice.

The lighthouse keeper’s cottage at Happisburgh Lighthouse is dog-friendly and sleeps 5.

Happisburgh Lighthouse
Happisburgh Lighthouse

Walks

There is a Happisburgh Trail around the village, and the beach is very dog-friendly.

Where to eat

The Lighthouse Inn at Walcott is dog friendly.

Souter Lighthouse, Tyne and Wear

Located south of South Shields, Souter Lighthouse stands on the clifftop at Whitburn and was the first lighthouse to use alternating electric current.

Now owned by the National Trust, Souter Lighthouse is open to visitors, and there is a shop and cafe.  You can stay in the lighthouse cottages, which are dog friendly.

Souter Lighthouse
Souter Lighthouse

Walks

The Leas is an area of grassland stretching for about 2.5 miles, and the Whitburn Coastal Path passes by. There are many walks and things to do with your furry friend.

Where to eat

For something a little different, visit The Grotto at Marsden, where the pub is carved into the cliff face.  A clifftop lift will take you to the beach level, where there is a pub and restaurant, which is also dog friendly. 

Isle of Man

Douglas is the main town on the Isle of Man, reached by ferry from Liverpool or Heysham.  When arriving by ferry, your first glimpse will be Douglas Head Lighthouse overlooking the harbour. You can stay in the lighthouse cottage with your dog.

Douglas Head Lighthouse
Douglas Head Lighthouse

Langness is located on a promontory near Castletown, and there are some great walks nearby.  The Old Herring Tower can be seen from Langness Lighthouse, which offers accommodation and is dog-friendly.  Nearby, Castletown offers pubs and restaurants.

For more advice about bringing dogs to the Isle of Man, check out the specialist Facebook page.

Where to eat

The Visit Isle of Man website has useful advice on eating places with your canine companion.

Buchan Ness Lighthouse, Aberdeenshire

Buchan Ness Lighthouse is located on its own island, connected to the village of Boddam by a short bridge. Just to the north is Peterhead, one of the fishing capitals of the area.

The cottages at Buchan Ness Lighthouse are dog friendly.

Buchan Ness Lighthouse
Buchan Ness Lighthouse

Walks

There are plenty of places to walk and visit nearby with your dog.  Indeed you can walk right round your own lighthouse island!

Check out New Slains Castle, a ruined castle overlooking the cliff top near Cruden Bay which has a fascinating history.

Where to eat

Check out the nearby Seaview Hotel in Boddam, which is dog-friendly. 

Covesea Skerries Lighthouse, Moray

Covesea Skerries Lighthouse is located near Lossiemouth and is open to the public for tours. 

You can stay in the cottages at Covesea Skerries Lighthouse, which are dog-friendly.  

Walks

There are lots of walks along the Moray coast with your dog.

The Lossiemouth Fisheries Museum houses the former optic from Covesea Skerries Lighthouse and is worth a visit. 

Where to eat

The nearby Steamboat is dog-friendly.

Noss Head Lighthouse, Caithness

Located near Wick, Noss Head Lighthouse stands at the edge of dramatic clifftops. 

The lighthouse cottage at Noss Head Lighthouse sleeps six and is dog friendly.

Noss Head aerial
Noss Head Lighthouse
Photo: Ben Makin

Walks/places to visit

Wick is a great place and harbour to visit. The Wick Heritage Museum houses the former optic from Noss Head Lighthouse.

Where to eat

Mackays Hotel in Wick is welcoming and offers some ideas on their blog for dog-friendly places to visit. 

Corsewall Lighthouse, Dumfries and Galloway

Located at the top end of the Rhinns of Galloway, Corsewall Lighthouse guides vessels into the sheltered Loch Ryan.  Now run as a hotel with self-catering apartments, dogs are allowed in the ground floor section of the lighthouse building.

Corsewall Lighthouse
Corsewall Lighthouse

Where to eat

The hotel has a lovely restaurant, and there are lots of walks nearby.  Dogs are welcome in the lounge and conservatory, and visitors are welcome to dine with their dogs in the lounge area.

Mull of Galloway Lighthouse, Dumfries and Galloway

Mull of Galloway Lighthouse is located at the southern end of the Rhins of Galloway and is mainland Scotland’s most south-westerly point.

Walks/Where to eat

There is an excellent visitor centre and the nearby Gallie Craig Coffee House, and there are some fantastic walks along the headland, though be aware that cows may be roaming freely on the road!

Dogs are welcome at the Mull of Galloway as long as they are on a lead.  They are welcome in the RSPB visitor centre, and at the Gallie Craig Coffee House, outdoor seating is provided for walkers and their furry friends.  

Unfortunately, dogs are not allowed inside the lighthouse.

Tiumpan Head Lighthouse, Isle of Harris

A different kind of hotel – one for the furry kind! Tiumpan Head Lighthouse is located on the Isle of Lewis and was built in 1900 as one of the last major lighthouses by the Northern Lighthouse Board.  Following automation, the cottages were sold in the 1980s and are now run as dog kennels and a cattery.

Tiumpan Head Lighthouse
Tiumpan Head Lighthouse

There is accommodation available nearby on the Isle of Lewis and Harris, and in nearby Stornoway, there are pubs and cafes to visit.

Point Lynas Lighthouse, Anglesey

Point Lynas Lighthouse is located on the headland at Llaneilean in Anglesey.  Like Great Orme’s Head Lighthouse in Llandudno, the lantern is located on the ground floor in front of the building due to its elevation.  It stands at the tip of the promontory.

Point Lynas Lighthouse Anglesey
Point Lynas Lighthouse

Walks/Where to eat

The coastal path from Point Lynas to Mynydd Eilian is dog-friendly, and along the coast at Red Wharf Bay is the Tavern on the Bay, where dogs are allowed on the outside. There are views from here across to the Great Orme.

St Ann’s Head Lighthouse, Pembrokeshire

There is a great coastal path around St Ann’s Head taking in both the High and Low Lighthouses, West Blockhouse coastal defence.  Dogs must be supervised at all times.

St Anns Head Low Lighthouse
St Ann’s Head Lighthouse

St Ann’s Head Lighthouse Cottages 1 and 4 offer dog-friendly accommodation.

Where to eat

The Hibernia at Angle welcomes dogs in the bar and beer garden.

Nash Point Lighthouse, Glamorgan

There are two lighthouses at Nash Point, though only one is now operational.  The Low Light was discontinued in 1923, and originally, the two lined up to mark the dangerous Nash Sands.  The lighthouse was automated in 1998, and you can now stay in two lighthouse cottages. Ariel and Stella Cottages at Nash Point Lighthouse sleep five and are dog-friendly.

Nash Point Lighthouse

There are many walks around the lighthouse and St Donats, but dogs must be kept on a lead.

Where to eat

The nearby Plough and Harrow at nearby Monknash is dog friendly.


Check out Lighthouse Accommodation for more inspiration and dog-friendly lighthouse cottages.

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