Travelling with Pets

Dog-friendly walks in France

From beaches to stunning countryside, find the best places to take your dog when you next holiday in France.

Travelling with your dog is a lot of fun. You can experience some of the beautiful locations together on refreshing walks, with stops to see natural beauty spots. Here we’ll outline some of our favourites for you to venture to and go over some all-important rules for walking your dog in France. Please remember that social distancing rules may change and to keep up to date with French rules and regulations concerning travel post-COVID-19 lockdown. See our latest COVID information here.

The dog-walking laws in France

It’s important to know the rules before you embark on any walks to keep you and your dog safe. During the summer months, dogs are excluded from all guarded public beaches, so look out for ‘wild’ or unguarded beaches when taking your pooch for a walk, or go further down the beach where it's quiet.

It's also worth noting that hunting season in France runs from September to March. When exploring the countryside at this time it's not uncommon to come across snares and other traps, so remember this when walking near or through farmland.

red border collie enjoying the beach laying on its side

Dog-friendly beaches near Calais

It’s definitely worth checking if you can take your dog to the beaches that you’re staying near. Some simply don’t allow dogs, and others are only accessible at certain times of the day or year. Make sure you always keep your dog on a lead, as for many dog friendly beaches, this is mandatory. See our guide to Dog friendly beaches in France for more four-legged-friendly locations and brush up on the rules online beforehand where possible.

Berck-sur-Mer

Popular with families and especially during the warmer months, at this beach dogs must be walked on a lead while near any of the designated swimming areas. It’s just under an hour’s drive from Calais, so minimal stops if you’re excited to get to the beach! Every April, the skies of Berck-sur-Mer are filled with colour as the town celebrates its International Kite Festival – well worth a visit.

Le Touquet-Paris-Plage

A 55-minute drive from Calais will get you to this small seaside town with its wide beach. You can take your dog onto the sand and into the water on a lead, as well as enjoy the promenade and dune walks available. Discover more about visiting with our handy guide.

Escalles Beach

A stone's throw away from Calais is the small village of Escalles. Surrounded by green rolling hills and cliffs. Escalles boasts a wonderfully large beach, which is perfect for running around with the family dog. The sand here is flat and there's plenty of space to get active. There’s also an old windmill and a WWI monument nearby, but remember that dogs need to be kept on a leash at all times.

Veulettes-sur-Mer

Just under 3 hours from Calais, one of the largest pebble beaches of the Caux Plateau offers plenty of space for you and your dog to enjoy. It’s lined with cafes and restaurants, some of which also allow dogs to sit outside with you while you dine (but please check ahead). Dogs can go on the beach on a lead anywhere except near swimming areas.

man and jack russel dog walking in the woodland with dog on a blue leash

A little further afield

For those of you travelling further into France, there are many beautiful stretched of countryside and parks for you to enjoy with your dog. Take a scenic walk or two and create some pawsome memories.

Liausson

North west of Montpelier in the south, the commune of Liausson sits in the Hérault département of France, in the mountains. Walking through this part of France is perfect for dogs, as you have space to let them run around without worrying too much about livestock (this is often the main reason why dogs have to be kept on leashes in the countryside). Hills and mountains surround you, and there are some great walks that take you around the scenic Lac du Salagou. Take a stroll from Route de Liausson to Col de Portes for a brisk hours' walk.

Montagne de Beaune

In eastern France, in the Côte d'Or department, you'll find the Burgundy's wine capital, Beaune. This town is incredibly picturesque, and nearby lies the area of Montagne de Beaune (Beaune Mountain), which is a great place to take the family (and dog!) for a walk. Gentle slopes guide you alongside the mountain, and the vineyards of Sur les Grèves carpet the hillsides, producing some of the region's finest wines.

Haut Jura Regional Park

It's worth noting at this point that, particularly in the French countryside, there are limitations on where you can take your dog. All but one French national park (Cévennes) have a complete ban on dogs, but several of the regional parks do permit our furry friends to walk around, as long as they're kept under control. Right on the eastern border to Switzerland sits the Haut Jura Regional Park.

This park is a fantastic wonderland for dogs, with the Jura Mountains boasting peaks of up to 1600 metres. Walking through this part of France is a revitalising way to throw yourself into nature, and most of the walks here will take you through thick forest. There are some farms dotted around too, so remember to keep the dog on the lead when you hear cowbells!

Sentier des Douaniers

This beautiful coastal pathway lies less than 3 hours from Calais. You’ll discover stunning sights as well as the wonders of the outdoors, no matter which part of the pathway you choose to take. Whether you are an experienced walker who wants to spend all day marching along the pathway, or you just fancy a more casual stroll, this pathway has something for everyone and every dog! Find out more here.

red sleek dog travelling by car with head out of the window looking ecstatic

Take your pooch to France with Eurotunnel Le Shuttle

Travelling with pets on Eurotunnel shuttles is easy and convenient. We have lots of resources to help you get ready to holiday with your dogs, including our Pet compliance checklist and Travelling With Your Pet page with a video to show you how it works. Complimentary poop bags are just the beginning!

 

Please see our COVID-19 advice page for the latest updates to travelling with us.

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