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Top 5 dog friendly UK holidays

With the announcement all motorhome and caravan sites in England and Wales are permitted to open from May 17th 2021, now’s the perfect time to plan your escape to the country for rest and relaxation or go full steam ahead with activities on holiday.

Fianna Hornby

Words by: Fianna Hornby

Published on 18 May 2021 | 0 min read

Research by Auto Trader UK has shown that 62% of people are planning on going on UK in the next 12 months. Of those surveyed, 60% of motorhome and caravan buyers have a dog. Auto Trader UK research has shown 77% of dog owners want to take their dog away with them on holiday in their motorhome of caravans.
If you are looking to go on holiday with your dog, you need to be sure that the motorhome or caravan park you stop at accepts our four-legged friends. In this article, we list the five best dog-friendly sites operating in the UK.
What are the rules at the moment for UK holidays?
  • 1. All types of holiday accommodation in England, including motorhome and caravan parks with shared facilities, are able to open from 17 May 2021 at the earliest. After this date, no more than six people or two households will be able to stay together.
  • 2. Numbers are set to be reviewed to be lifted ahead of the 21 June 2021.
  • 3. In Northern Ireland, the current guidance is still ‘you should not travel unless it is essential. If you do have a permitted reason to travel, you will have to self-isolate for a period of 10 days on your return home.’
Here is the current government guidance for England, Wales,Scotland and Northern Ireland. As the rules are very different per area, it is always best to check the advice on the area you live in.
1. Red Shoot Camping Park, New Forest
When it comes to outdoor activities, nothing quite beats New Forest. Situated within the green rolling hills of Hampshire is the Red Shoot Camping Park.
This family-run campsite has been designed especially for children with a unique play area that will even make the grown-ups want to join in. Opposite the park is a traditional inn serving up wholesome family fare. If you are unfamiliar with the New Forest area then you may be surprised to know that it is brimming with fun family attractions including a water park, zoo, and reptile centre. And, once it's time to relax, soak up the park's peaceful surroundings and spend the evening gazing up at the stars with the kids. Their website states four legged friends ‘are more than welcome too as we’re very dog-friendly.’ Address: The Red Shoot Camping Park, Linwood, Ringwood, Hampshire, BH24 3QT Book here.
2. St. Austell – Heligan Caravan & Camping Park
This five-star rated campsite is set in a secluded small, landscaped garden that offers views of Mevagissey Bay, and is naturally sheltered by the woodlands belonging to the Heligan Estate, which is home to the Lost Gardens of Heligan.
The site allows up to two dogs per pitch and has both grass and hardstanding pitches and the facilities here include a toilet and shower block with wet room, a children’s play area, a shop and a laundrette. If you are looking to spend a day at the beach, the site is only two miles away from the coast and a number of dog-friendly beaches including Portmellon, Mevagissey, Hemmick, Portholland and Gorran Haven. Address: Heligan Caravan & Camping Park, Pentewan, St Ewe, Saint Austell, PL26 6EL. Book here.
3. Newquay – Hendra Holiday Park
The Hendra Holiday Park offers more than 700 pitches over 12 large fields and is set within a huge 80 acres of countryside, whilst also being located a mere mile away from the town of Newquay with its golden beaches. The site offers a plethora of facilities, and these include a bar, showers, a café, a restaurant, a supermarket and even a pizzeria for takeaways. For those looking for leisure facilities, there are plenty of options, with outdoor and indoor pools, playgrounds and outdoor fitness facilities.
For those with dogs, there are specific pitches for dog owners, and these are neatly positioned close to the designated dog-walking area, and the website handily lists the many pubs in Newquay that are dog friendly. The nearby beach of Fistral also has dog-friendly areas that can be used all through the year and is popular with families. Address: Hendra Holiday Park, Lane, Newquay, TR8 4NY. Book here.
4. Whitby – Whitby Holiday Park
Occupying a clifftop location, the Whitby holiday park offers stunning views of the nearby coast and countryside. Robin Hood’s Bay, Saltwick Bay and the Cleveland Way coastal path are all nearby, with the latter two accessible from the park itself. Whitby Abbey is just a short stroll away, and there is a footpath that leads from the site to the beach below, which is dog friendly.
The majority of the pitches in this park are on grass, and have connections for electricity, although there are some hardstanding pitches available at the other side of the park, but despite being closer to the amenities, they don’t have the coastal views. The facilities on the site are plentiful with a recently refurbished bar that offers entertainment at peak times, a shop, a toilet block, a games room, a play area and a laundrette. Address: Whitby Holiday Park, Whitby YO22 4JX. Book here.
5. Swansea – Three Cliffs Bay Holiday Park
This award-winning family-run campsite offers some of the most breath-taking views of any coastal campsite in the UK. The site overlooks Three Cliffs Bay with its rocky terrain and golden sandy beaches. The beach here is dog friendly, and when the tide is low there is plenty of space for your dog to run around, and this amazing shoreline also has salt marshes, sand dunes and of course the three limestone cliffs that give this area its name. The beach is within comfortable walking distance to the holiday park and is situated on the Wales Coastal Path. Amenities here include showers, a toilet block, a disabled room and a family room, and there are pitches with electrical hook-ups if needed. There is also a shop on-site, a coffee shop, and a farm shop that sells a wide range of local produce including dairy goods, bread and barbecue food. Address: North Hill Farm, N Hills Ln, Penmaen, Swansea, SA3 2HB. Book here.
What are the best caravans for holidays with your dog?
If you want to take your dog away with you regularly, we would recommend sizing your caravan up so you have more space.
If you are a couple, normally a 2-berth caravan would be perfect for you, however, if you want more space for your dog we would recommend a 4-berth caravan - this would mean your dog could have their own bed if you wanted.
What are the best 4-berth caravans?
A 4-berth caravan has space for 4 people (or dogs, although we wouldn't recommend leaving 4 dogs unattended in a caravan).
Read more about the 5 best 4-berth caravans available here.
If you are a family, it would be best to buy or rent a 6-berth caravan, as these comfortably sleep 6 people.
What are the best 6-berth caravans?
A 6-berth caravan has space for 6 people, or 6 dogs. We definitely wouldn't recommend leaving 6 dogs unattended in a caravan!
Read more about the 5 best 6-berth caravans available here.
What are the best tow cars for caravans?
When you are purchasing a caravan, it is really important to think about how you will tow it.
If you're looking to find out more about what caravan your car can tow, you can find out here. In our New Car Awards 2020, the Kia Sorento was nominated as 'best car for towing.' If you would like to find a Kia Sorento, you can search here.

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