While many people don’t mind traveling without their pets, some of us don’t view dogs as regular pets but rather as family members. Once you get a dog, their pictures gradually start to take over your photo gallery, and during the first few months – if not years, they become your main topic of conversation among friends. We can go on and on about the marvel that is dogs, but let’s get straight to the point. Sometimes it is hard to separate an owner from their fur baby and vice versa.
When it comes to holidays, however, there is always a limited number of activities you can do with your canine companion. Even when you do find a dog-friendly destination, in order to have fun yourself, you’re most likely going to have to leave your pup behind somewhere. It is a severely underrated struggle, but it’s nothing a little research can’t solve. This compiled list is filled with places that guarantee a fun holiday for you and your favorite good boy.
San Diego, California
There are two types of beach destinations, the tranquil regions with secluded beaches and the glamorous, energetic piers with lively beaches. If you and your furry companion are big on socializing, then vibrant San Diego will be a perfect match for you. The hotels there are pet-friendly, but that’s not the good part.
If you like water sports, some aqua centers can provide you with the equipment you want, the lessons if you need any, and if your pup wants a piece of the water action, just let them hop on your paddleboard or kayak. For relaxation, you can visit one of the many dog-friendly beaches, like Dog Beach or Fiesta Island. After a long day under the sun, there is no doubt that you’re going to want a hearty meal and a cold beer, and that’s exactly what you’ll find in over 500 dog-friendly eateries. Some places even have special menus for dogs.
If you want a holiday that offers the perfect mix between peace, relaxation, and exploring a new mesmerizing city, Venice is the way to go. As you’re taking an afternoon stroll with your fluffy friend down the narrow cobblestone pathways by the water, you won’t find yourself worrying about cars, roads, or traffic of any kind, because there are none of those in the Floating City.
While enjoying an espresso in the historical Caffè Florian’s outdoor patio, you can trust that the pigeon-filled Piazza San Marco will keep your pooch amused while you admire the architecture. As for your long-awaited opportunity to ride a gondola through the Venitian canals, you’ll be glad to know that your dog will be right by your side on board – at least until they decide that the front of the boat is more interesting.
What Scotland has to offer for dogs is unique. For one, they are firm believers that just because you have a dog, doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy art. At the Summerhall Arts Complex, both you and your pup can visit art exhibitions and attend a theatrical or musical performance followed by a delicious dessert or a cold beer at the cafe or the bar close by.
The best part, however, is that there are dog-friendly cottage retreats situated all around Edinburgh. Picture taking your furry companion for a morning walk on the pristine green hills, then going back into your stonewall cottage. If you prefer walking in the city, you and your pooch will enjoy the Water of Leith walkway.
Prague, Czech Republic
The city is a magnet for any old soul with an eye for sheer beauty. Prague is one place where you can truly see and feel the link between the past and the present, and for the first time, you can have your fur baby right by your side. In the extremely pet-friendly city, you can’t go wrong starting your tour at the colorful Old Town Square where you can watch the astronomical clock tower in motion, marvel upon the Gothic Church of Our Lady before Týn.
In the early morning, you can take a walk over the medieval 516-meters-long Charles Bridge that crosses over the Vltava river. Near the bridge, you’ll find Prague castle in which canines are allowed and access to the outer grounds is free. Then, for an afternoon delight, visit Punta’s Dog-themed Sweet-shop where you’ll get the opportunity to treat your pup to a delicious muffin while you sip on a cup of coffee. Don’t worry, all the ingredients are safe for your pooch’s consumption.
Rio Grande, Puerto Rico
For nature lovers who are looking forward to distancing themselves from civilization, Rio Grande is the place to be. This Caribbean Island is where you can pour your focus into connecting with your inner self and the world around you. As you hike your way to El Toro peak, surrounded by the majestic wilderness of the El Yunque rainforest, you’ll have plenty of time to reflect and bond with your furry companion. Plus, from the peak, the view is simply breathtaking.
After the hike, you and your pup will be exhausted just enough to sit by a tranquil beach where you can enjoy a nice cocktail while your dog lies in the sun. In Carolina, around twenty minutes away from the Rio Grande, you’ll find Hobie beach. Don’t pass up an opportunity to spend the day there and while you’re at it, you can grab a smoothie at the pet-friendly Playa Papaya or a meal at Mist rooftop bar.
For all the joy and love our dogs bring into our lives, taking them on holiday is the least we can offer them in return. Travel is a great way to spend quality time with your furry friend. Whether it is because you can’t find your pup a sitter or because you want to bond with them, any of the previously mentioned destinations are guaranteed to offer you an unforgettable experience.
Remember that just as traveling strengthens bonds between humans, it also builds stronger relationships between humans and their canine companions. That being said, before you travel, make sure you check your destination’s policies regarding pets, their passports, and vaccinations. That way, you’ll have enough time to finish their paperwork.