Some of us can’t bear to leave our pets at home when we travel. (Some of us can, case in point our forever-barking rescue Chihuahua mix, Puppet.)
We’ve done the research for you, and starting with the Northeast coast, here is your go-to list for where to swim, play and stay with your DOG! The best dog beach, the best pet-friendly patio dining, and the best bungalow-style motel or mom and pop.
We’ve visited and reviewed some of the properties, for which we’ve provided a link to our post. The others are suggestions based on affordability and other positive reviews we’ve combed through online.
- Dogs on leashes are allowed on the beach
1 South Front St.
- Right on the water
- Casual-type dining menu for lunch, more “fine” dining for dinner
3172 S. Fletcher Ave.
Fernandina Beach, FL
- Fernandina Beach’s only oceanfront motel
- Newly renovated
- Good prices starting at $129 for a weeknight, $149 weekends
- Dogs on leashes are allowed on the beach before 9 a.m. and after 5 p.m.
218 1st St.
Neptune Beach (Atlantic Beach, Jacksonville Beach, and Neptune Beach are all within about a 5 mile radius)
- 1 block from the ocean
- Casual dining with a beach vibe
11 1st N.
- While it almost pains us to promote a chain (you know we’re all about locally owned, family owned) after much research this seems to be the only pet-friendly hotel in the area
- Good reviews online
- A little above our Triple-B budget at approximately $209 off-season
- Dogs on leashes are allowed at Mickler’s Beach Park, 1109 1/2 Ponte Vedra Blvd.
816 A1A North #100
Ponte Vedra Beach
- Located on a large pond not far from the ocean
- Large and varied menu
1000 PGA Tour Blvd.
Ponte Vedra Beach
- Again, a chain, but the only one in the area we could find that accepts pets
- Reviews we read were mostly very good
- Check with them before booking; on one site we saw they charge a $100 non-refundable pet fee
- Off-season rates are very reasonable at $139
Read the full story of this little-known beach town next to one of Florida’s most popular tourist attractions, here
- Dogs on leashes are allowed on Vilano Beach
- Colorful, friendly, great view of the Intracoastal
- Within walking distance of the beach and the mom and pop
- Lots of food choices, make sure you try one of their signature “beacharitas”
50 Vilano Rd.
- Funky, retro, one building from the beach
- Very affordable rates starting at $99 per night off season
- Dogs on leashes are allowed on St. Augustine Beach
501 A1A Beach Blvd.
St. Augustine Beach
- More to offer than the name “cafe” implies, including live music, breakfast, lunch and a full innovative dinner menu
- Vegan and vegetarian menu items
- 1 block from the beach
860 A1A Beach Blvd.
- Not exactly a cozy cottage or mom-and-pop, but nevertheless not a chain. AND, they have a TIKI BAR!!
- Mixed reviews online leaning more toward the good. We believe in trying a place ourselves anyway, and also that some people just like to complain!
- Good rates for all they have to offer (big pools, restaurant, etc.) at $129/night off season
- Dogs on leashes are allowed on Crescent Beach and Fort Matanzas Beach.
Read about this seafood shanty perched right on the edge of the water, here
8805 A1A South
St. Augustine (I think everyone likes having “St. Augustine” in their address line since most people are familiar with that town, but this place is 4 miles south of Crescent Beach, which is 10 miles south of St. Augustine!)
- Very casual dining, outdoor seating with a gorgeous view
- Live music
- Gluten free menu options
8448 A1A South
St. Augustine (Again, pretty much right in Crescent Beach!)
- An intimate, beautifully landscaped property of two cottages and three suites, with only one cottage being pet-friendly; Pelican Cottage. Book way in advance!
- All enthusiastic, top-notch reviews
Read the full story of this lush, shady beach town here
All parks below allow dogs on leashes:
- Malacompra Beachfront Park, 115 Malacompra Rd.
- Old Salt Park, 16th Rd.
- Varn Park, 3665 N. Oceanshore Blvd.
50 Plaza Dr. #101
- We couldn’t find a listing of a bar/restaurant with pet-friendly dining, but ice cream is the next best thing to a cold grownup libation!
- Free dog sundae with dog bones crumbled on top for your best friend
5454 N. Oceanshore Blvd.
- Very unique cottage-feeling accomodations, the original section is made of coquina rock
- Gorgeous, huge tree-shaded grounds with a path through the woods to the intracoastal
Read the full story of this throwback to the best childhood memories kind of town, here
- Dogs on leashes are allowed north of N. 10th St. and south of S. 10th st.
2805 S. Oceanshore Blvd.
- Beachy, old-timey, been around for a century kind of feel (well, okay, since 1947)
- Wine and beer only
2480 N. Oceanshore Blvd
- Cottage style, unique and creative rooms
- Very cool tiki bar on site for impromptu gatherings or festive parties (self-catering)
- “5-Star and 4-Paw”
- Good rates for such a special place, $125/night
Do you have any pet-friendly businesses to add to our Northeast Florida list? Please let us know! And check back soon for Part 2: Central Atlantic Coast.