Dog friendly beaches in France

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There are plenty of dog friendly beaches in France that your four-legged friend will love!

Bringing your dog with you on your road trip adventure across France, it’s a dream for those of you that are particularly attached to your canine friends.

It can be hard separating from the four-legged member of your family on the eve of a holiday, and even when you’re abroad enjoying yourself they can be sorely missed. So why not take your pooch with you?

Dog-friendly France

There are around 17 dogs to every 100 people in France which is one of the highest ratios in the world. The dog population is estimated to be around 10 million and a study even showed that 40 percent of French dog owners regarded their pets as the most important thing in their lives. Almost every town boasts at least one ‘poodle-parlour’ (salon de toilettage), which is ideal if your dog is in need of a spruce up and you feel like taking a break from the drive.

With widespread adoration of dogs across France, it comes as no shock that there are plenty of dog-friendly hotels and resorts, too. But be sure to keep an eye out when booking your accommodation to ensure your dog is welcome.

Can you spot Marcel on this beach in Normandy?
Can you spot Marcel on this beach in Normandy? Credit: Aurélie Four for @lecorgi

Dog-friendly beaches

One aspect that really sells France as the ultimate doggy destination is its coastline, which is a true haven for all canines. The hundreds of miles of beaches provide plenty of opportunity for sandy paws and soggy coats – utter bliss!

Much like the UK, not every beach is dog-friendly and those that are, are often seasonal. But with France’s 267 dog friendly beaches, you’ll still be spoilt for choice. Whether you’re looking for a dog-friendly beach for your destination, or just a few ideal stop-off points along the way, there’s a beach perfect for a game of fetch, whatever the weather.

A trip to the beach is a treat for any dog who enjoys the sunshine after a quick dip!
A trip to the beach is a treat for any dog who enjoys the sunshine after a quick dip!

If the trip you had in mind was shorter rather than longer, you’ll be glad to know that you needn’t travel far from Calais to find stunning sandy locations for your dog. Here are some towns and areas with dog-friendly beaches you may want to visit along the Western coast of France, once you’ve departed from Calais:

Wissant

Where in France: Pas-de-Calais, Hauts-de-France
Distance from Calais: 20km / 0h 25m

Wissant is a small town just 25 minutes’ drive away from Calais with three beaches. The one worth sniffing out is Plage Dune d’Aval, as the local government permits dogs all year round. Visit the Information France site to find out more on this quaint town.

Le Touquet

Where in France: Pas-de-Calais, Hauts-de-France
Distance from Calais: 70km / 0h 55m

Just an hour’s drive away from Calais is a town affectionately referred to as ‘Paris-on-Sea’. Le Touquet is known for its stretch of coast and its vintage glamour, once being a playground for the British literary establishment liked PG Wodehouse, Noel Coward and HG Wells. There are two distinct beaches, Plage Nord and Plage des Dunes, both boast soft sand and allow dogs all year round. There are also a number of things to see and do which we’ve covered here.

Le Tilleul

Where in France: Seine-Maritime, Normandy
Distance from Calais: 275.3km / 2h 45m

A 2-hour-and-45-minute drive from Calais, Le Tilleul is home to a large stretch of coast. Plage d’Antifer is the go-to beach and is regarded as one of the most beautiful beaches in the Haute-Normandy region. No doubt your dog will enjoy the scenery as much as you, but please remember that dogs must be kept on a leash on this beach.

Frequent traveller Miss Bouba at the beach in Le Touquet!
Frequent traveller Miss Bouba at the beach in Le Touquet! Credit: missbouba.and.us/Instagram

Vierville-sur-mer

Where in France: Calvados department, Normandy
Distance from Calais: 394km / 3h 45m

Vierville-sur-mer is a village located just 20 miles from Bayeux and is where you’ll find the dog-friendly Omaha Beach, a stunning 2.5km stretch of white sand supervised during the summer months. Walk to the east of the beach to find monuments commemorating the Allied landing on June 6th 1944. Dogs are allowed on a leash here, all year round.

Santec

Where in France: Brittany
Distance from Calais: 600km / 7h

As of 2015, all beaches within the Santec region of Brittany are now dog-friendly, so a trip to any of the many beautiful beaches there is a great idea. It’s generally best to pick quieter stretches of coast, and Plouharnel, in the south of Brittany is a safe bet. Leashed dogs are allowed on its beaches all year round, including an untouched stretch of dunes along the Atlantic coast near Penthièvre, the perfect location for a peaceful walk with your best friend.

Plage du Ris in Douarnenez is a stunning setting and worthy of a visit when in Brittany.
Plage du Ris in Douarnenez is a stunning setting and worthy of a visit when in Brittany.

Taking your dog to France with the Eurotunnel

Our Taking Your Pet Abroad page has lots of useful info on the legal and mandatory requirements, such as your pet’s passport, up-to-date microchip and vaccinations. The page also features a comical video of Barley, a friendly talking dog looking forward to his upcoming road trip.

Our Top Travel Essentials for a Dog-Friendly Holiday page features best practice tips like making sure to stop frequently during the drive any to keep tail-waggers happy. Trunk routes and autoroutes feature frequent rest areas (aires) where you can park up and the efficient highway roads make any journey through France from Calais a breeze, even with pooch passengers.

Now that you’ve discovered that there are plenty of dog-friendly beaches to visit in France, it’s time you gathered your family and headed off on your next adventure! Book your tickets with us now to ensure you get the best possible fares.

Top image credit: Aurélie Four for @lecorgi