Dog Friendly Swanage

If you are thinking about bringing your faithful friend with you on a holiday or day trip to Swanage, you’ll find lots of accommodating places to visit, where dogs are made to feel most welcome. 

Beach and seafront 

Monkey Beach is dog-friendly all year round and is located between the Stone Quay and Swanage Pier. This is a small pebble beach with public toilets, parking and places to eat out all located close by. 

Dogs are also welcome on the central beach from 1st October to 30th April each year. This is a sandy beach and dogs are allowed off lead at this time of year. 

For an extra bit of on-lead exercise, there is a wide promenade next to the beach and seafront with access to shops and places to stop for something to eat or drink. 

Dog friendly attractions and activities 

No member of the family has to be left behind when heading out for a day of adventure in Swanage. Take a look at all the dog-friendly attractions and activities available. 

With 340 acres to explore, your pooch will love sniffing everything at Durlston Country Park! You can walk there via the South West Coast Path or park in their car park. Within the country park, dogs are welcome inside Durlston Castle, the art gallery and café – which has both indoor and outdoor seating with wonderful views across the Jurassic Coast. It’s free to visit and dogs must be on lead or under very close control at all times as the country park is also a National Nature Reserve. 

Two of Swanage’s other heritage attractions also welcome dogs. Stroll along Swanage Pier and take in the views of the Bay and Old Harry Rocks or travel in style with Swanage Heritage Railway through the Isle of Purbeck to Corfe Castle. 

If you and your dog want to venture a little further out of town, dogs are welcome on boat trips with City Cruises Poole which depart from Swanage Pier. 

Parks and gardens 

Swanage is lucky to have many parks, gardens and greenspaces including The Downs, Prince Albert Gardens and the Recreation Ground, all of which allow dogs off lead if under control. 

Days Park is a large open space popular with dog walkers, families and football teams. It is particularly colourful during the springtime and has a garden area with benches. 

Closer to the town centre, King George’s Field has a large grassed area for dogs to run around as well as a children’s play area, skate park, football pitches and wildlife wetland. 

For more information about where you can exercise your dog in the local area, visit the Dorset Council or Dog Friendly Social websites.


Not only is Swanage blessed with a beautiful beach and wonderful coastline, it is also surrounded by countryside. There’s miles of public footpaths and bridleways to explore as well as signposted walking trails to follow too. 

The South West Coast Path is always a popular choice, however, there are flatter routes if you head inland which are likely to be quieter with less people and other dogs. 

Washpond Lane Natural Greenspace is located on the edge of Swanage and specifically welcomes dogs off lead. With a variety of surfaced and grass paths as well as benches and some fantastic coastal views, you can also access the wider countryside from the nearby footpaths. 

If you are in need of a dog walking or pet-sitting service while you are on holiday, Charlotte from Pet Care Services offers these services to both visitors and locals.

Where to stay 

Looking for the ‘pawfect’ place to stay in Swanage? Catering for all tastes and budgets, we’ve got some great dog-friendly options including hotels with sea views, homely B&Bs, self-catering accommodation and campsites too. 

Whether you are seeking some peace and quiet or want a room with a view, you and your dog will have a wonderful holiday to this nostalgic coastal resort. 

Dog friendly places to stay

More to see and do...

Walking and Trails

There are lots of walking routes and Public Rights of Way to explore in Swanage.

What's On

There's a packed events programme throughout the whole year in Swanage.

Things To Do Nearby

There are many small villages nearby to Swanage which can easily be reached on foot, bike, car, bus...