Dog-friendly holidays in Somerset you and your pooch will love
PUBLISHED: 11:19 05 September 2017
Andrea Cowan reveals her favourite spots in the county to have a break - where the dog can come too
Research indicates that staycations are on the up – by almost 25 per cent compared to this time last year according to one survey (by travel group, Sojern).
This is good news for the family dog who might have a chance of a holiday with its two legged companions.
Somerset is blessed with some fabulous dog friendly beaches, countryside and historical attractions, so you don’t need to stray too far for that well deserved break. But what about suitable accommodation? I’ve done some research on your behalf, checking out places that not only accept dogs, but also go the extra mile to welcome them.
Cossington Park on the edge of the Somerset Levels
If you are planning a big family get-away, complete with dogs, then this could be the ideal destination.
Cossington Park is a luxurious, historical family house with accommodation for 12, plus there is a separate cottage for six. Set in stunning gardens and grounds of 22 acres, dogs pretty well have free rein, other than the children’s play area.
In addition to the beautiful grounds ready to explore, Cossington Park is ideally positioned for both countryside and seaside walks. As luck would have it two of the closest beaches, Brean and Berrow, allow dogs at all times of the year.
The price is £25 per dog (or other pet) which includes a ‘welcome pack’ including an artificial dog bone, dog biscuits, poo-bags, a cushion, blanket and towel. And if you would like a ‘dog’s-eye’ view of the premises, check out the video on the website of a tour by Max, the border terrier.
Middlewick near Glastonbury
For a stay with a difference, visit the award-winning Middlewick, nestled at the base of Glastonbury Tor.
The 16th century farmstead has been converted into self-catering cottages, set in 16 acres of orchards, fields and gardens. But we’re here for the exciting glamping options: three E-dens (innovative pods that have appeared on the TV programme, George Clarkes Amazing Spaces) and a Shepherds Hut – to which dogs are warmly invited.
The glamping accommodation is situated in a quiet paddock with views up towards Glastonbury Tor (which is, incidentally, an easy walk with your dog). The pods have their own barbecue and for cooking under the stars, there is the newly renovated farm shop packed to the rafters with local produce including lamb, pork, eggs and honey from the farm, plus plenty of options for the pooch.
If your dog doesn’t mind being left alone for a short while, you can make use of the indoor heated swimming pool and steam room. Otherwise, buy a prepared picnic and head off into the fields and wild flower meadows; alternatively there is an onsite summer café and regular dog-friendly events such as pizza night.
The price is £15 per dog for a stay of up to four nights.
We have even more Somerset staycation ideas for you...
Batcombe Vale near Bruton
Batcombe Vale is a quiet and relaxing campsite set in an ‘Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty’. At 25 years old, it is also one of the longest established campsites in Somerset.
Camping is possibly the most pet friendly holiday there is and, taking into account the price of kennels, it is also one of the most cost-effective. Batcombe Vale, a dog paradise, is just £2 per dog, per day.
The campsite is set in 120 acres of rolling farmland and visiting dogs have the run of one of the large fields adjacent to the campsite. The site itself has eight acres of woods, lakes and gardens which dogs can explore on a lead.
There are also numerous walks and footpaths going directly from the campsite, including a picturesque 30 minute walk to the local dog-friendly pub, The Three Horseshoes. The English Heritage picturesque moated medieval castle, Nunney Castle, welcomes dogs on leads, as does the East Somerset Railway (except for special on-board events).
The Masons Arms in Odcombe
Their pub is very much the heart of the village, with a restaurant providing traditional favourite meals and even brewing its own ales. There are six bedrooms, all on the ground floor, as well as a camping field.
Dogs are very welcome. There is a charge of £5 per night, covering up to three dogs per room. A Doggy Welcome Pack has been prepared which includes a dog bed, blanket, water bowl, feeding mat and a guide with local information including walks from the pub. There is an enclosed exercise area in the gardens and well-behaved dogs are welcome to join you for your meals.
The Luttrell Arms Hotel in Dunster
The Luttrell Arms Hotel is situated in one of England’s prettiest medieval villages within the stunning Exmoor National Park.
This privately owned country house hotel has 28 bedrooms, the majority of which are dog-friendly. There are five feature rooms with four-poster beds, original features and fireplaces. The remaining rooms are superiors, some of which enjoy private terraces and garden access making them perfect for guests with dogs, along with standard rooms, which are just as stylish and well-designed but a little smaller.
The price is £10 per dog, per night in a standard or superior room. Dog beds are provided along with information on the best suitable walks, beaches and places to visit, including Dunster Castle gardens. They are welcome everywhere within the hotel grounds except the restaurant, although canine companions can accompany their owners for meals in the lounge, at the bar or in the garden.
The Old Cider House in Nether Stowey
Set in the beautiful Quantock Hills in West Somerset, this bed and breakfast guest house has two designated pet friendly rooms (yes, cats can come too): Orchard, a twin on the ground floor, and Poets, a first floor double bedroom.
Over the last decade, owners Ian and Lynne, along with their black Labrador Ozy, have welcomed many dogs. They have devised a ‘welcome pack’ for their canine visitors which includes home-made dog biscuits, a bowl, a mat, a towel and even an ID tag to wear for the duration of their stay, just in case they wander off on their own. There is also an information pack on dog friendly walks in the area.
Dogs are allowed in the allocated bedrooms, the lounge and the garden (as long as they won’t chase the resident chickens). The price of £3 per dog, per night includes the welcome pack and a sausage breakfast.
Planning on getting your first pet dog or perhaps adding another pooch to the family? Take our quiz to find out which dog would suit you best!