Motorhome travel: 15 campsites for dog lovers
Love to travel in your motorhome or campervan with your dog? Looking for a campsite surrounded by great dog walks? Here are 15 campsites that are ideal for time away with your four-legged friend...
Hewas Water, St Austell, Cornwall PL26 7JG
17 March – 2 November
Dogs are very welcome at Meadow Lakes, an award-winning site with beautiful lakes and woodlands to explore. Pets are welcome to be walked on a lead anywhere on the park except for the farm animal area and there’s a large dog exercise field where dogs can be let off the lead. The coast and many top attractions are only a short distance away.
Motorhome pitches on site are level and you can choose from grassed or paved hardstanding, that can take larger motorhomes. There are four dedicated toilet and shower buildings with separate cubicles and also a private bathroom. On site there four fishing lakes, all free to fish during your stay. The lakes are surrounded by wildlife and flowers and make a great place to take an evening walk. Meadow Lakes’ other facilities include an outdoor heated pool, bookable hot tub and pets corner and café with outdoor seating area.
Gristhorpe, Filey, North Yorkshire YO14 9PS
1 March – 4 November
For a great choice of dog-friendly beaches, head to the Yorkshire coast where you’ll find Cayton Bay, which welcomes dogs on its sands all year round. Just two miles away from the bay is Crow’s Nest Caravan Park, which has hardstanding and luxury super pitches. Facilities on site include individual wetrooms and family rooms, plus a bar, indoor swimming pool and shop.
Crow’s Nest is particularly dog-friendly because there is an enclosed area where pets can be safely exercised off the lead, with dog bins provided. There’s also no extra charge for taking your pet on holiday with you. An added bonus of this site is the conservatory area that is attached to lounge bar – dogs are welcome in the conservatory so owners can still enjoy a drink and the live entertainment. During the high season there’s also a fish and chip shop open on site. Other dog-friendly beaches in the area include Hunmanby Gap, Reighton Sands and Danes Dyke.
Scotland Gairloch, Wester Ross IV21 2DL
End of March – end of October
On the west coast of the Scottish Highlands with views of the Isle of Skye is Sands Caravan and Camping. Pitches are mostly on grass (with a small number of hardstanding super pitches available). You can choose where to pitch in the designated areas. Select from sheltered spots among the sand dunes or in a raised area to enjoy the views on this 55-acre site. Facilities include a shop offering freshly baked bread. There are also toilets and showers, electric hook-up, a laundry, café and boat-launching slipway. There is a motorhome service point, too. There is also a dog exercise area and nearby walks, as well as the vast open expanse of sand that the site overlooks!
Wroxall, Ventnor, Isle of Wight PO38 3EP
1 March – 1 November
For a great holiday adventure, why not take your pet and your motorhome across the Solent to the Isle of Wight? Dogs travel free on all the ferry routes and the majority of beaches on the island are dog-friendly all year round, with just restrictions in high season on the main resort beaches. The trains and buses on the island are happy to accept well-behaved pets, too!
There are more than 500 miles of footpaths winding their way across the island. Along these routes you’ll also stumble across many pubs and cafés that are more than happy to accept dogs. Appuldurcombe Gardens is set near Ventnor in 14 acres of grounds that were once part of the nearby historic house. The touring and camping area is set within sheltered grassland. Hardstanding pitches are located in a meadow area with a stream adjacent and fully serviced pitches are also available. Facilities include an outdoor swimming pool, bar, shop, seasonal café and takeaway.
Keswick, Cumbria CA12 4TE
7 March – 4 November
Castlerigg Hall occupies a fantastic position overlooking Derwentwater, with excellent walks from the site, and a direct path into Keswick (1½ miles away). There is also a dedicated dog-walking area on site, too. Another walking route leads to Castlerigg Stone Circle, a prehistoric monument of stones under the protection of English Heritage. Access is free, while dogs on leads are welcome on the site.
Motorhomes staying at Castlerigg Hall are placed on level hardstanding pitches with hook-up, most also having water and drainage. Superior pitches have a guaranteed lake view, 16-amp hook-up and picnic table. Among the other amenities on site are a first-rate restaurant/tearoom serving food throughout the day, a shop, laundry and dedicated dog shower. The toilet and shower building has privacy cubicles, a bathroom and disabled facilities. The site is home to quite a few pets, including miniature donkeys, kune kune pigs, ducks, goats, Shetland ponies, chickens, cats and dogs. You might well also spot deer, red squirrels, badgers and owls.
Montgomery, Powys SY15 6EB
Daisy Bank is an adult-only site set in seven acres of countryside between Bishop's Castle and Welshpool. Its resident dog, Archie, has his own scenic trail along the lower boundary of the park – dogs can be let off the lead here as it’s fully fenced and it’s also very pretty for owners to enjoy. In the information hut opposite reception you’ll find a leaflet detailing all of ‘Archie’s Trails’ – a guide to walks of the local area and Shropshire Hills. The site has two award-winning amenity buildings with five-star facilities. These include wetrooms, a disabled suite and a laundry.
The site is laid out into four areas with all pitches being fully serviced and hardstanding. There’s also free WiFi and a shop. Daisy Bank is set in a very scenic area so, once you’ve worn yourself out with all the doggy walks, you can relax on site and enjoy the views!
Normans Bay, Pevensey, East Sussex BN24 6PR
29 March – 5 November
With a dog-friendly sand and shingle beach adjacent to the site, the Camping and Caravanning Club’s Normans Bay is perfect for doggy holidays. There’s plenty of beach for playing, running and swimming, and there’s no shortage of other walks, either. A longer walk will take you to Pevensey Castle, one of Britain’s oldest fortresses or you can join the 1066 Way, which leads you on a tour of Battle and Hastings. There are a couple of dog-friendly pubs serving food within walking distance, too.
The club site has 200 pitches and three toilet and shower blocks. There’s also washing machines and a well-stocked shop. The train station is a 10-minute walk away for easy access around the area and there’s a bus service in the town. Eastbourne is five miles away and most of the parks and gardens are dog-friendly here, too.
Aviemore, Inverness-shire PH22 1QU
Set within the Cairngorms National Park, this campsite is perfect for lovers of the great outdoors. The surrounding area is a combination of landscapes and mountain views bounded by the woodland of Glenmore Forest Park. From the site is direct access to the beaches and shores of Loch Morlich – ideal for canines to run about and go for a doggy paddle. The area is also full of wildlife and the National Park has hundreds of miles of footpaths and trails so there is plenty of exploration to be had. Pitches on site are dotted throughout the trees or set in more open areas.
There are 215 pitches in total with hardstanding and electric hook-up available. On-site facilities include toilets, showers and a laundry. Glenmore is in a rural location with the closest town, Aviemore, seven miles away. In the town are several pubs, shops and a supermarket.
Bridgerule, Holsworthy, Devon EX22 7ED
Set in 17 acres of woodland and surrounded by countryside, Hedley Wood Caravan Park is a doggy paradise near Bude on the Devon/Cornwall border. Dogs are welcome here; they stay for free and each dog even receives a free welcome pack – now that’s definitely pet-friendly treatment! Around the site is plenty of countryside for walking or you can spend the day exploring Dartmoor, the South West Coastal Path or Hartland Heritage Coast. Many of the beaches at nearby Bude are dog-friendly and the local attractions, pubs and cafés also welcome dogs, and there are dog day kennels nearby if needed. On site is a dedicated dog walking area and also dog showers.
There are 100 pitches at Hedley Wood, including ones with electric and there’s a limited number of premium en suite pitches that have their own wood cabin with private toilet and shower. Other facilities include nature trails, a shop, bar and restaurant.
Stoke Road, Paignton, Devon TQ4 7PF
23 March – 2 November
Dogs love nothing more than running free through the countryside, exploring and seeking out new smells so they’ll be happy with the 40 acres of countryside at Whitehill Country Park and the many dog-friendly beaches close by. At Whitehill there’s also a large exercise area, plentiful woodland walks and doggy accessories in the shop, while Whitehill’s website has a downloadable dog information guide. Dogs are also welcome in the site’s Hayloft Bar, on the terrace and in the café’s outside seating area. And don’t worry if your pet gets muddy after all the adventures because there’s also a dog shower to clean them off.
Other facilities on site include toilets and showers, a craft centre and outdoor heated pool, with the café also offering takeaway. The pitches are available on grass or hardstanding with electric hook-up. If you fancy heading off site, several local pubs welcome dogs. Dartmouth Steam Railway and Babbacombe Model Village are just two of the local attractions that are dog-friendly, too.
Greetham, Oakham, Rutland LE15 7FN
Rutland Caravan and Camping is a Caravan and Motorhome Club Affiliated Site in a rural location with both adults-only and family-friendly pitching areas. All pitches are serviced with water, drainage and electric. The site provides a dog shower and a woodland walk that pets will enjoy. There’s also an indoor pool and small shop on site, with a short walk taking you to Greetham village.
Rutland may be England’s smallest county but there’s plenty for you and your pet to explore here. Rutland Water offers walking, watersports and wildlife galore situated around a reservoir with the pretty Normanton Church at its centre. Also nearby are Barnsdale Gardens, Burghley House and Belvoir Castle.
Sampford Peverell, Tiverton, Devon EX16 7EN
5 March – 4 November
Minnows Touring Park is a Caravan and Motorhome Club Affiliated Site with 59 all-weather pitches in 5½ landscaped acres alongside the towpath of Grand Western Canal. The towpath runs beside the canal with a variety of circular walks incorporating the towpath and local footpath networks – it’s the stuff dog-walking dreams are made of. All pitches on site have electric with hardstanding pitches for motorhomes. There are also 14 fully serviced pitches. Facilities include toilets and showers, a laundry and WiFi. Bus and train services are within walking distance.
Northrepps Road, Cromer, Norfolk NR27 0JR
15 March – 15 January
Curious noses and muddy paws will love sniffing out adventure among Forest Park’s 100 acres of Norfolk woodland and rolling countryside. This campsite is just one mile from Cromer and so sandy beaches are a short walk away.
The site owners are committed to conservation and you will see plenty of wildlife while enjoying a walk around the site or on one of the many cycle routes. Pitches are located on grass with electric (there are currently no hardstandings) and there are three washrooms located across the site. There’s also a laundry, a shop with local produce, clubhouse and heated indoor pool. For meal times and evening relaxation there is a bar and restaurant where you can dine in, choose to take away or just have a snack in the café. There is an outdoor seating area for fine days and also entertainment in peak season.
Shield Hill, Haltwhistle, Northumberland NE49 9NW
9 February – 29 November
AA Campsite of the Year North East Winner 2017/18, Herding Hill Farm is just 15 minutes’ walk from Hadrian’s Wall. Dogs will love the countryside around the wall and will surely be tired and content after a day’s walking. Herding Hill Farm is surrounded by open space and rolling hills form the site's backdrop. Due to the rural location, the site's peaceful and tranquil with plenty of wildlife.
There are 10 hardstanding pitches with three fully serviced, a family bathroom, drying room, cycle storage, licensed shop and an eight-person sauna that can be hired for exclusive use. Breakfasts and homemade pizzas are available.
New Park, Brockenhurst, Hampshire SO42 7QH
26 March – 31 October
The New Forest is a wonderful place for dogs, with numerous tracks and trails across beautiful heathland, dense woodland and expansive coastlines to explore. As well as being welcome on site, there are also plenty of dog-friendly pubs and attractions within the National Park, including the grounds of Beaulieu National Motor Museum and Exbury Gardens.
Long Meadow Campsite is the ideal location for exploring the New Forest. From the rear of the site there’s direct access to the forest and the shops, restaurants and pubs of Brockenhurst are within walking distance. The site has 100 spacious pitches set in a 19-acre meadow with toilets, showers and hardstandings.