Doggone Beaches

The days are long and the nights are warm and there’s no better place to be during the sunny season than at the beach. And, there’s nothing better than taking a long walk on the beach with your best friend (four-legged best friend, that is). So, here are some of our favorite beaches for the dog days of summer.
Photos by Julie Clegg
Long Beach, Washington
Over 20 miles of continuous sandy beach await you and your pup at southwest Washington’s Long Beach Peninsula. From rocky headlands at Cape Disappointment State Park in the south to remote Leadbetter Point State Park on the Peninsula’s northern tip, a sprawling silver strand of dune lined beach offers plenty of room for the two of you to wade, play and amble. A wide array of dog-friendly accommodations ranging from surfside campsites to cabins nestled in quiet pine groves can be found in Long Beach’s handful of quaint communities. On our last visit, we stayed at the lovely and very dog-friendly Adrift Hotel ( For sunset strolling take to the paved Discovery Trail.
Kalaloch Beach, Washington
While Olympic National Park’s majestic mountains and rainforest are off limits to your Rover, over 10 miles of its majestic beach are not. Dogs (on leash) are permitted to roam the stunning wilderness beaches of the Olympic Coast at Kalaloch and Rialto (south of Ellen Creek). You and your buddy will be deeply entranced by Kalaloch’s crashing surf, spiraling sea stacks, towering bluffs, hidden caves, tidal pools, and long line of sun and salt blasted stacks of drift logs. Dog-friendly accommodations are available at a handful of cabins and campsites including our favorite, Kalaloch Lodge (
Double Bluff Beach, Washington
For dog and beach lovers in Washington State, Whidbey Island’s Double Bluff is legendary. Perhaps the most dog-friendly and dog inviting beach in the entire Pacific Northwest, Double Bluff is one of the largest off-leash beaches in the country. Spread out beneath a pair of towering bluffs is two miles of wide, hard packed sandy shoreline for you and your intrepid pup to explore. Your dog will love splashing in the relatively calm waters. You’ll marvel at the splendid views across Puget Sound to the snow-capped Olympic Mountains and the shimmering Seattle skyline with lofty Mount Rainier rising behind it. You and your beach bound hound won’t be alone here, so be prepared to meet some new friends.
Guemes Island, Washington
Reached by a short ferry ride from Anacortes, Guemes is one of the least populated, least visited, and least developed of the San Juan Islands. It is also one of the best places in the archipelago for taking your four-legged friend for a quiet stroll on the beach. Also known as Dog Island for the wild dogs that once inhabited it, the alternative name is now mostly used to denote its canine loving and welcoming atmosphere. And nowhere is dog-coddling more prevalent on the island than at its lone lodging option, the Guemes Island Resort. A rustic and quaint collection of cabins on 20 acres of beachfront property, the resort insists that among the things you bring, is your dog!
Blake Island, Washington
If you are lucky enough to have your own boat, or better yet, have friends with boats, then cruise over to Blake Island, a 475-acre state park located just eight miles from downtown Seattle. The island features five miles of saltwater beach shoreline providing magnificent views of the Olympic Mountains and the Seattle skyline. There are 44 campsites sprinkled throughout the island, but they fill up fast, so be sure to book yours early. Dogs are welcome anywhere on the island (with the exception of inside Tillicum Village), but since it is a state park, they must remain on-leash at all times.
Westport, Washington
Located in the sleepy fishing town of Westport, Washington just two hours from Seattle and three hours from Portland, pet-friendly condominiums, Vacations by the Sea, is situated just steps away from 18 miles of sandy beach and total doggy bliss. Many places tout their pet friendliness, but Vacations by the Sea delivers. Of the 44 available rentals, over half of them are dog friendly. That, combined with its close proximity to the beach and countless amenities for pets and people, Vacations by the Sea is the perfect beach retreat for you and your travel hound. and
Copalis Beach, Washington
Along Hwy. 109, keep an eye out for signs that say “Beach Access,” where, when they say access, they mean access. The region is home to Griffiths-Priday Ocean State Park, a 364-acre marine park with 8,316 feet of saltwater shoreline on the Pacific Ocean and 9,950 feet of freshwater shoreline on the Copalis River. The park extends from the beach through low dunes to the river, then north to the river’s mouth. The Copalis Spit natural area, a designated wildlife refuge, is also part of the park. Dog-friendly overnight accommodations include our favorite, Iron Springs Resort, featuring 25 cozy cabins tucked away on 20 acres, flanked by forest on one side and ocean on the other.
Cannon Beach, Oregon
What wayfaring beach lover, can resist Oregon’s signature beach? Miles of splendid shoreline, all public and all open to you and your canine companion spread north and south. Walk within the shadows of Haystack Rock, a 235-foot sea stack and quite possibly the most recognized natural feature along the entire Oregon Coast. Escape the crowds by heading south to adjacent Tolovana Beach. Looking for a dog accommodating place to call it a night after a tiring all day outing on the beach? Cannon Beach has plenty to choose from including the Hallmark ( and Surfsand Resorts ( To pick up doggie supplies, swing by Dogs Allowed, where you will find organic food and treats plus dog toys and accessories.

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