Dog friendly holidays in France

  • Pets
  • France
  • 6 min read
Dog friendly holidays in France

Forget tearful goodbyes or remembering to book kennels. Discover the best dog friendly holidays in France with LeShuttle

Whether you’re heading to France for sunshine, sightseeing, or something in between, there’s no reason why your dog shouldn’t be part of your next holiday.

While the thought of organising a pet friendly holiday can be daunting, particularly in a foreign country, fear not! With advice on dog friendly accommodation, activities, and top pet travel tips LeShuttle is here to help.

Is France a dog friendly country?

France is known for being incredibly dog friendly, with the majority of trains, restaurants, and buses all allowing dogs.

There are certain guidelines that must be followed when you’re out and about, including always keeping your dog on a lead in public parks and gardens. When using public transport, large dogs are also required to wear a muzzle (even if they don’t usually need one), so add this to your packing list before you set off.

You and your pooch can soak up the streets of Paris together

Where can I take my dog on holiday in France?

Booking a pet friendly holiday in France opens up a world of possibilities for you and your canine companion. Enjoy the hustle and bustle of the Parisian streets from a gorgeous pavement café with your pooch, or have fun swimming in the sea. Wherever you want to go there are plenty of dog friendly destinations for you to choose from.

Dog friendly beaches

There are 267 dog friendly beaches in France, so if long walks on the beach and paddling in the sea take your fancy, you’re heading to the right place.

If you’re planning a summer holiday in July and August, it’s worth noting that often public beaches offer restricted access when dogs are allowed (generally before 8am and after 8pm). However, it’s worth checking online or with the local Mairie or Office de Tourisme before you leave.

Depending on where you’re heading, we’ve selected a couple of standout destinations with great dog friendly beaches below:

  • Wissant – 25 minutes from Calais, and all three dog friendly beaches are open year-round.
  • Plage d’Antifer in Le Tilleul – 2 hours 45 minutes from Calais and famed as being one of the most beautiful beaches in Normandy.
  •  Plouharnel in Santec – 7 hours from Calais, and the perfect way to see as much of France as possible with your four-legged friend.

Young woman walking with her dog on the beautiful beaches of southwestern France

Dog friendly accommodation

One of the advantages of travelling with a pet is the chance to explore, and there’s no better way to start the adventure than with your accommodation.

There are several well-known dog friendly hotels in France, but one that stands out is the Grand Hôtel des Bains located in North Brittany. Almost all the rooms have stunning sea views, and even better, the hotel garden leads straight down to a dog friendly beach. You’ll also be able to enjoy coastal walks and incredible sunset seafood dinners.

If you prefer to have your own space, there are also plenty of dog friendly cottages and holiday homes for you to choose from. Calvados is often a popular destination for holidaying with your pooch thanks to the stunning countryside, and when it comes to finding a place to stay, La Ferme & La Bergerie are top of the list.

These flint and stone buildings capture the beauty of Calvados perfectly. Outside the gardens are large enough to offer plenty of space for your dog to run free, and an abundance of shady spots for them to escape the midday heat. Both holiday homes are also within walking distance of  Honfleur and the Réserve Naturelle de l’Estuaire de la Seine, giving you easy access to popular local spots.

Alternatively, Villa Chambre Du Paradis in the Dordogne is the perfect cottage for smaller parties and their pets who want to soak up the south of France. Enjoy walks along the river where you can marvel at the views, and your four-legged friend can take in all the new smells. Or make the most of the region and drive to Bergerac or Bordeaux, both of which are less than 2 hours away.

A couple who is walking on a path at seaside in Brittany, France

Pet friendly road trip ideas

Travelling with LeShuttle gives you the freedom to pack up your pooch and go wherever your fancy takes you.

Popular road trip destinations that are also extremely pet friendly include Paris, Lyon, and Brittany. Driving to Paris from our Calais terminal takes around 3 hours and 30 minutes.

There are plenty of places to stop en route for you and your dog to get out and stretch your legs. When you reach Paris, make sure to stop at one of the many dog friendly cafes and restaurants where you can take in the city’s electric atmosphere.

You could also use Paris as a place to spend a night if your final destination is slightly further afield. If you’re planning a visit to Lyon, the drive will take between 7 and 8 hours depending on which route you take. Aside from Paris, you could also stop in Reims and Dijon both of which are wonderful places to visit. Lyon is known for being dog friendly, so enjoy exploring the historical and architectural landmarks with your pooch by your side.

As we have already mentioned, the sprawling countryside makes Brittany a very popular dog holiday destination. Although the drive is approximately 6 hours, you will get to take in the beautiful French coastline as you travel. Plus, you’ll be able to enjoy a well-earned walk on the beach when you stop.

Wet Samoyed dog sitting on the pebbly river bank with tourists kayaking in the background along the Drome river.

Dog friendly campsites & holiday parks

Why not make your holiday even more adventurous and book a space in a dog friendly holiday park or campsite? Not only is camping a fun thing to incorporate into any road trip, but it’s also a great way to explore more of the French countryside while you travel.

If you’re planning a trip to the coast, Domaine de Kerlann in Brittany is a dog friendly campsite that’s just 5km from some of the region’s most incredible beaches. Onsite there are also two swimming pools complete with waterslides, which children will love.

Equally, Domaine de Litteau in Normandy offers you and your dog the chance to explore the Cerisy forest where the campsite is based. This pet friendly site has plenty on offer for guests, including two fishing lakes and a plethora of other sports and activities. The site also offers touring pitches, so if you’re planning a longer stay in France this could be the ideal spot to base yourself.

Golden Retriever with its head out of the window during a road trip.

Top tips when travelling with your pet

When it comes to travelling with your pet, preparation is key. To ensure you don’t forget anything vital, we recommend creating a separate packing list for your dog so that by the time your departure date arrives you’ve both got everything you need.

To travel with LeShuttle, your dog will need:

  • EU Pet Passport or Animal health certificate
  • To have had the rabies vaccination
  • To have an up-to-date microchip

Other things to be aware of when taking a dog on holiday to France include:

  • Your dog must be over 12 weeks old before you travel.
  • They must have had the rabies vaccination for at least 21 days before your departure date.
  • When driving in France, French law states that pets are restrained, so bring a crate, fixed grill for your boot, or seatbelt to ensure you all remain safe.
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