34 family & dog-friendly attractions in Devon
As a family with a four-legged friend we know it can be a challenge finding days out to please everyone. But the more places you can visit together the better, particularly when you are planning weekend adventures or a family holiday where leaving your pooch at home is not an option. Below is my list of the dog-friendly attractions in Devon that will welcome you all.
I’ve also thrown in a list of some Devon beaches that are dog-friendly all year round.
Lockdown update: Please follow the latest Government guidance and stay local for your once daily exercise. This can be taken in parks, beaches, in the countryside, in forests, public gardens, the grounds of heritage sites and at playgrounds. Always keep two meters away from people not in your household or bubble.
Here is my guide to the outdoor places in Devon where you can exercise in lockdown.
This post about things to do in Devon in winter may help you plan your days out too as it lists the attractions open out of the main holiday season.
Dog-friendly attractions in Devon where they can visit on a lead
Here’s some fun Devon family attractions where your dog can join you on a lead:
Days out with dogs in South Devon
- South Devon Railway – steam railway line between Buckfastleigh and Totnes with museum
- Dartmouth Steam Railway and river cruises – steam train rides between Paignton and Kingswear and boat trips along the River Dart from Dartmouth to Totnes
- Babbacombe Model Village – model village set in beautiful gardens near Torquay
- Babbacombe Cliff Railway – historic cliff railway connecting Babbacombe Downs to Oddicombe Beach
- Greenway National Trust gardens only – Agatha Christie’s former holiday home with winding paths through beautiful gardens.
- Coleton Fishacre gardens only – stunning subtropical gardens in a valley that winds down to the sea
- Saltram grounds – Georgian mansion surrounded by acres of woodlands and riverside walks with play areas and a cycling tracks.
- Bygones – a museum of British history in Torquay with a Victorian street scene, wartime curiosities and vintage amusements
- Totnes Castle – a Norman motte and Bailey castle that you can climb
- The Golden Hind (small dogs on leads) – a full-size replica of Sir Francis Drakes Golden Hind, which was the first ship to sail around the globe. It’s now a museum
- Powderham Castle and grounds – Powderham is the seat of the Earls of Devon. There’s castle tours, a deer safari, adventure playgrounds and walks around the grounds. Dogs are not allowed on the safari or in the walled gardens.
- Morwellham Quay – heritage and living history museum with hands on activities on the bank of the River Tamar.
Check out my post with more things to do in South Devon with kids.
Dog-friendly places to visit in East Devon
- Seaton Tramway – ride a narrow gauge heritage tram through the stunning Axe Valley from Seaton to Colyton.
- Stuart Line Cruises – boat trips along Devon’s Jurassic Coast and the River Exe from Exmouth.
- Bicton Park Gardens – botanical gardens, railway and adventure playgrounds.
- Killerton National Trust grounds only – there’s plenty of walks around the estate of Killerton including den building areas, an adventure playground, children’s trails and tree swings
- Knightshayes National Trust parkland – there’s 250 acres of woodland and parkland that are ideal for dog walks.
- The Bear Trail – a family assault course near Cullompton where getting muddy is essential.
- Devon Railway Centre – miniature railway, models and plenty of opportunities for kids to play.
- Pecorama – miniature railway, models and plenty of opportunities for kids to play.
- The Donkey Sanctuary – a free attraction where you can meet the rescue donkeys looked after by this charity.
- Castle Drogo grounds only – enjoy walk through the Teignmouth Gorge around this 20th Century Castle.
Find more places to visit in East Devon.
Places to visit with dogs in Dartmoor
- Canonteign Falls – climb England’s highest manmade waterfall, enjoy the lakes and let the kids loose on the adventure playgrounds.
- Becky Falls – walk the route of the falls, meet the farm animals and more exotic creatures, and explore the trails of the ancient woodland.
- River Dart Country Park – tire the kids out on the woodland adventure playgrounds, on the pump track, in the swimming lake. There’s also activities like high ropes, kayaking and water zorbing.
- The House of Marbles – discover the history of marbles and see various intriguing marble runs in this museum and gift shop. Outside there’s a playground and games for kids too.
Things to do in North Devon with dogs
- Clovelly Village – step back in time at this historic fishing village near Hartland which is one of Devon’s most picturesque places.
- Lynmouth to Lynton Cliff Railway – take a ride on this 19th Century funicular for incredible views of the North Devon coast.
- The Milky Way Adventure Park – spend a day enjoying the rides and attractions of one of Devon’s top theme parks. Check the attraction’s website for the latest information on areas dogs can visit.
- Arlington Court and National Trust Carriage Museum gardens and grounds – there’s more than 20 miles of footpaths to explore as well as the carriage collection in the stables.
- Quince Honey Farm – visit one of Britain’s top honey farms to find out about beekeeping. There’s also a play centre for kids.
- Hartland Abbey – explore the grounds and gardens of the Stucley family which sit in a valley that leads to the sea.
- Lydford Gorge National Trust – walk the South West’s deepest gorge complete with a series of waterfalls and bubbling pools.
- The Gnome Reserve – meet the World’s largest collection of gardens gnomes in this woodland walk.
Here’s more ideas for things to do in North Devon with kids.
Dog-friendly Devon beaches
One of our go-to things to do with our dog is a trip to the beach. Not all Devon beaches allow dogs in the summer months but we have insider knowledge on the ones that do.
Here’s some Devon beaches that are dog-friendly all year round – please check signs at these beaches when you arrive as some have specific areas designated for dogs:
Dog-friendly beaches in South Devon
- Mill Bay, Salcombe
- Salcombe North Sands, Salcombe
- Landcombe Cove, Strete
- Slapton Sands, Start Bay
- Strete Gate, Start Bay
- Torcross, Start Bay
- Mansands, Brixham
- Goodrington Sands, Paignton
- South Milton, Kingsbridge
- Hope Cove Harbour, Kingsbridge
- Anstey’s Cove, near Torquay
- Dawlish Warren, Dawlish
Here’s some more South Devon beaches we love.
Dog-friendly beaches in North Devon
- Clovelly, Hartland
- Saunton Sands, Braunton
- Instow, Bideford
- Lynmouth Beach, Lynmouth
- Wildersmouth Beach, Ilfracombe
- Woolacombe Beach, Woolacombe
- Barricane Beach, Woolacombe
- Welcombe Mouth, Hartland
- Hele Bay, Ilfracombe
Here’s some more North Devon beaches that come highly recommended for families.
Dog-friendly beaches in East Devon
- Sidmouth Beach, Sidmouth
- Beer Beach, Beer
- Seaton Beach, Seaton
Don’t forget to check signs at these beaches which will give you specific information about the areas dogs are allowed all year round.
Do you have a favourite dog-friendly Devon attraction or a doggy day out that’s not mentioned? Let me know!
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