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Best dog-friendly towns along the California coast?

I'm driving up the coast on the 1 and 101 from Los Angeles to San Francisco for the first time, and will be bringing my small dog along. I'll have a week to make the trip and want to see some new places.

What towns are the most pet-friendly and why? What towns should we avoid and why? Budget is not an issue, just looking for the best stops along the way with dog-friendly hotels, places to eat outdoors, dog beaches/parks, etc. 


4 Answers

top answer by
Ernst from Long Island (New York)

Santa Barbaraand Summerland are very dog friendly! I lived in Santa Barbara for 6 years and although I didn't have a dog, I can recommend some places to you.  :)  Check out the beach (Hendry's Beach) at Arroyo Burro Beach County Park - there are on and off-leash sections. It's the best dog-friendly beach I've seen anywhere. There's also Douglas Family Preserve which is up on the bluffs with great views of the coast.  It was saved from development in large part because of a donation from Michael Douglas. 

Loon Point Beach in Summerland is also great for dogs and horses!  Nearby, the Summerland Beach Cafe has an awesome breakfast and is dog friendly!

Photo of Hendry's Beach taken from the Douglas Family Preserve:

Hendry's Beach:Douglas Family Preserve:Loon Point Beach:Summerland Beach Cafe:

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Santa Barbara (city)
  2. Summerland (city)
  3. Arroyo Burro Beach County Park (attraction)
  4. Douglas Family Preserve (attraction)
  5. Summerland Beach Cafe (restaurant)
  6. Loon Point Beach (attraction)
7 thankscomments (2)

answered by
Kelly from Sunnyvale

Tons of places for dogs all up and down the coast. Definitely check out Big SurCarmel, and Fort Funston!

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Big Sur (city)
  2. Carmel (attraction)
  3. Fort Funston (attraction)
3 thanks

answered by
Nancy from Morro Bay

Morro Bay is super dog-friendly! Take a stroll toward Morro Rockalong the Embarcadero and you'll make lots of friends! Our friends' dog Otis the Boxer comes to visit (with his staff) every summer, and he's a rock star -- he even goes kayaking on the bay with them!

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Morro Bay (attraction)
  2. Morro Rock (attraction)
  3. Embarcadero (attraction)
2 thanks

answered by
Tiana from Beverly Hills

Mentioned in this answer:

  1. Santa Barbara (city)
  2. San Diego (city)
1 thanks

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