The Isle of Wight is a popular choice for dog friendly holidays but it’s worth doing a bit of research first as there are some restrictions in place during the summer months.

Wightlink and Red Funnel (the two main ferry companies) say they prefer pets to stay in vehicles for the 40-60 minute crossing, but they do have pet friendly areas if you’d prefer to keep your dog with you. There’s no extra charge for bringing a pet.

Several beaches are dog friendly all year, including Bembridge in the East Wight with its shallow waters and easy parking. Brook Chine in the West Wight is another popular choice along an unspoilt stretch of coastline. Parking is free for National Trust members.

Between May and September most of the busier beaches have restrictions in place (Appley, Shanklin, Ryde, Ventnor and others) but most have a section which welcomes dogs.

There are about 500 places to eat on the Isle of Wight, so it’s not hard to find somewhere which welcomes pets. Personally, we like coastal pubs with sea views along the Esplanades in Shanklin (Steamer Inn, Fisherman’s Cottage) or Ventnor (Spyglass Inn) or one of the riverside pubs nearer to Newport (Folly Inn, Bargeman’s Rest).

There are plenty of dog friendly self catering cottages, though it will limit your choice a bit. As a guide, Hoseasons has about 250 Isle of Wight properties on offer, of which about 75 are dog friendly.

Holiday parks are a popular choice for dog owners, as they are mostly dog friendly and offer plenty of space for dogwalking. There are about 15 caravan parks to choose from, including some big chains and several smaller independent parks. Some charge a bit extra for bringing a dog, but it’s far less than kennel fees! There’s more information on which ones are dog friendly at Isle of Wight Guru (

Photo credit: Isle of Wight Guru (image shows Brook Chine in the West Wight)

About the author

Robbie Lane runs Isle of Wight Guru, which is an independent guide for holidaymakers. It includes advice on cheap ferry travel, accommodation and dog friendly beaches


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