MADRID – Can you, as a dog owner, think of something more fun than going on holiday in Spain with your four-legged friend? Below you will find the nicest and most pet-friendly destinations in Spain.
If you want to take a holiday to Spain with your dog, it can often be a headache. Furthermore, not all hotels or catering establishments allow dogs. And that often makes planning your vacation more complicated than normal. That is why it is useful to know where you are welcome in Spain with your four-legged friend. There are plenty of cities with hotels, restaurants, cafes, beaches, and even special parks for dogs or an animal-friendly art gallery that you can enjoy with your pet. This way you don’t have to be limited because you want to go on holiday with your dog.
The most animal-friendly destinations in Spain
Madrid has a wide range of hotels, cafes, restaurants, and other places where pets are welcome. You can also take your dog on public transport and even go shopping with it. On Esmadrid.com you will find all the places where you can enter with your dog. In addition to an extensive list of all pet-friendly restaurants and shops, you will also find other information about what to do with your dog in the Spanish capital.
Gijón on Spain’s north coast is known as one of Spain’s most dog-friendly cities. The city even received an award for it from the website TravelGuau, which specialises in pet-friendly vacation destinations. In Gijón, all kinds of activities are regularly organised for dogs. In addition, there are many open areas where you can let your dog run free (as long as your dog is not categorised as ‘dangerous’). Moreover, there is an official dog beach. At Playa El Rinconín you can walk and swim with your dog all year round. The range of ‘dog-friendly’ hotels, cafes, and restaurants is also large.
In the province of Lugo, you will find one of the nicest, dog-friendly organisations in Spain: Perriturismo (‘dog tourism’). This company organises dog trips in the Ribeira Sacra area, including lodging, food, walking routes, and tours. The organisation works together with many local companies in Ribeira Sacra and in this way knows how to give you and your dog an unforgettable experience.
Mallorca is one of the most touristic areas in Spain and is also known as a good destination to go with your dog. Every year the number of people who book a holiday with a dog to this island is increasing. This has everything, including a large number of dog parks, the beautiful beaches, the idyllic nature, and the many pet-friendly bars, shops, and hotels that you can find on the island and in the city of Palma. Examples of beaches you can take your dog to are Cala des Gats, Punta Marroig, Cala Gamba, and Cala Blanca.
Valencia also offers a wide range of outings to make with your dog. Beach, nature, shopping malls, restaurants, hotels, coffee shops, parks with special play equipment for dogs, and even bookstores. Dogs are allowed on most occasions. The best spot to walk your dog is in the former river bedding Turia Park. If you follow this all along to the coast you’ll end up in the Ciudad de las Artes y Ciencias, the architectural masterpiece of Santiago Calatrava.
Granada is an extremely charming city and many places have been adapted so that you can enjoy it with your pet. During the day you can stroll through the high mountains of the Sierra Nevada just 30 kilometres from the city, and at the end of the afternoon, you can stroll through the narrow streets of the Arab district of the Albaicin and settle down here and there for a tapas. When you’re done walking, take a ‘taxiguau’ (this is a special dog-friendly taxi service that you can order via the app in several Spanish cities).
Ponferrada is also open to tourists with pets. The city has a similar range of pet-friendly leisure activities to those in Gijón. There are many ‘pet-friendly’ bars and shops and in a large part of the hotels (35%), you can bring your pet. Also nice to know: this is the third Spanish city in terms of the number of dogs per inhabitant.
If you like being outside together, be welcome in Bilbao. A city that likes to receive tourists with their four-legged friends. Here you can walk with your dog along with the most emblematic places. For example along with the Nervión River, the Euskalduna Palace, the Guggenheim Museum, or through the beautiful streets of the old town. Also around Bilbao, in other parts of the Basque Country, people are welcome with their pets.
In Barcelona, you will find more than 1,300 accommodation options where you are welcome with your pet. The number of recreational opportunities What you can enjoy with your dog also says it all: one per 2,585 inhabitants. Therefore, put Barcelona on your list of cities where it is good to stay with your dog. Many bars and restaurants allow dogs, the two of you can have a great time on Llevant’s dog beach and even some art galleries will allow your furry company to come along.
León is also a good place to stay with your dog. There are several activities you can do with your dog. For example, admire the famous frescoes of the Romanesque Sistine Chapel in San Isidoro. For example, take a boat trip on the Riaño reservoir; stroll through the city and visit one of the dog-friendly bars or restaurants. Outside the city, you can walk endlessly through the spectacular landscape of Las Médulas. This has completely changed in character because the Romans exploited mines here. You can bring your pet with you to 24% of the places where you can stay overnight. And don’t forget the many possibilities for hiking trips in the area, where your dog can enjoy nature and the fresh air.
When packing, keep the following in mind: For example, check the current regulations of your preferred destinations in advance. Animals should always be accompanied by their owners. They must also be able to identify their dog. Prepare the trip in advance to have all your pet’s papers in order. For example, let your dog get used to the travel basket in the weeks before you leave. It must of course be large enough. If your dog is on medication, bring enough supplies with you for the time you plan to stay abroad.
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Some municipalities require that you always carry a bottle of water with you when walking your dog. That way, you can rinse away the urine after your dog has urinated somewhere. Fines can also follow if you don’t pick up your dog’s feces. Once at your destination, ask locals about pet regulations. More and more municipalities along the coast are reserving stretches of the beach, especially for dogs. Furthermore, they have set up parks where dogs can let off steam to their heart’s content. Normally the beach is during the high season in summer a no-go area for dogs. But in the winter mostly there is no problem walking your pet along the beach as long as you clean after it.
Websites with useful information about traveling with a dog in Spain