Fido is the only companion you need on vacation. After all, he won’t argue about the day’s activities and he’s happy to eat anywhere, any time. Check out these epic dog-friendly vacation ideas that offer something special for travelers who are ready to go it alone with nothing but a dog and a bone.
Posted by Billy Francis
Hike the A.T. Together
Hiking the Appalachian Trail with your dog is the “ulti-mutt” outdoor adventure for solo travelers. Spanning over 2,180 miles from Springer Mountain in Georgia to Mt. Katahdin in Maine, the long journey through the oldest mountain range in North America will be a test of endurance and stamina for both you and Fido, but it’s bound to build your bond. Along the way, you’ll meet other hikers who’ll dish out your pup’s trail nickname and tell you tales to pass the time. Earning the crown of a 2,000 Miler typically takes between five and seven months, but people with less time on their hands can pick a trail highlight instead, like McAfee Knob in Virginia, one of the most photographed sections of the A.T. Before you set off, plan your stops and equip your pup with the best hiking gear for dogs.
If you need a break from camping, book a night at La Quinta Inn Roanoke Salem near McAfee Knob.
Soar Solo in a Seaplane
With nobody but the pilot for company, you and your four-legged friend can depart on a once-in-a-lifetime journey high above Emerald City with Kenmore Air. This 20-minute flightseeing adventure offers a bird’s-eye view of Seattle, Elliot Bay and Lake Union’s famous houseboat community. Make it even more special by booking a charter flight that lands on a remote island for a gourmet meal for two catered by Northwest Floatplane Picnics.
Residence Inn by Marriott Seattle Downtown Lake Union offers pet-friendly rooms with an alternate view of the lake you flew over.
Dance with your Dog at a Festival
From Mardi Gras to Barktoberfest, pet-friendly festivals are a fun way to let loose and spend time with your pooch surrounded by revelers in high spirits. Celebrate your four-legged friend, meet other dog lovers and take part in fun games at a pet-centric gathering like Annual Doggie Street Festival in San Diego. Or, buy tickets for the backwoods bash, Albino Skunk Music Festival, where bands rock the main stage under the lights at The SkunkFarm in Greer, SC. If you want something even more unique, attend the Cheese Rolling Festival in the British countryside and watch as people chase a wheel of cheese down a hill and try to be the first to catch it. Keep an eye out for more weird and wonderful upcoming festivals near you on BringFido.
From chasing cheese to the Cheltenham Chase, complete your festival weekend with Fido at this Gloucester hotel and enjoy a peaceful meal on the on-site restaurant’s pet-friendly patio.
Sign Up For Camp
Camp is a time to connect with your canine, learn new things and escape the distractions of daily life. You can do all this and more at Camp Gone to the Dogs set in the countryside of Stowe, VT, and overlooking Mount Mansfield. Here, expert dog trainers help Fido "try his paw" at agility, obedience and behavior classes. Nestled in the pet-friendly Berkshires in Beckett, MA, Camp Unleashed is another great place to bond with your best friend. Paint your pooch, give her a massage, and enjoy the daily wine and cheese hour together. Both camps offer weekend retreats on various dates throughout the year.
Cruise For Two
Take to the high seas with your hound on a European solo adventure. Tallink Silja Line offers pet-friendly cruises on the Baltic Sea from Sweden’s capital city of Stockholm to Helsinki, Finland or Tallinn, Estonia. Voyages depart in the afternoon and arrive in the other European capital cities the next morning. If you’re setting sail from the U.S., Queen Mary II offers transatlantic travel for terriers between Southampton in England and New York. Canine concierges take care of pups traveling in the large pet area with 24 kennels, a lamp post for British Bulldogs, and a fire hydrant for their American cousins.
Glamp Under the Stars
If you’re searching for a way to disconnect with your dog and reconnect with nature, book a glamping weekend with your Weimaraner. Glamping is the ideal choice for outbound hounds who still require creature comforts, and no one does it better than Under Canvas. With campsites located in incredible destinations across the country, Under Canvas invites you and your pooch to sleep under the stars in style. Wake up to pristine Appalachian views at Under Canvas Smoky Mountains, “paws” for the night on a South Dakota road trip at Under Canvas Mount Rushmore, or find peace with your pup near Glacier National Park at Under Canvas Glacier.
Fly Fishing with your Four-Legged Friend
Nothing beats the peace and quiet of a fishing trip with your pooch, far from the hustle and bustle of big cities and daily distractions. Pack your waders and head to Steamboat Springs with your dog. This Colorado town has a history of fly fishing that dates back to when the first residents, the Ute Indians, fished the Yampa and Elk Rivers, alpine lakes, and streams. Or, bring your canine angler along to fish for cutthroat trout, mountain whitefish, and lake and rainbow trout in the crystal clear waters at Bear Lake State Park in Idaho.
Grill up your fresh catch at this adorable pet-friendly cabin with one queen bed, just right for a solo traveler in Steamboat Springs.
Hang Ten with your Hound
There’s not much room on a surfboard, which makes riding the waves an ideal pet-friendly activity to try when you’re flying solo with Fido. Learn how to surf with your dog in “Surf City USA,” Huntington Beach. Good Kharma Surf Instruction combines dog training and surfing to improve your dog’s obedience while also getting him ready for the open water. Once your pooch has mastered the class, show off his new skills at Huntington Dog Beach where the Surf City Surf Dog Competition is held each year.
After a day of carving, immerse yourself in comfort at Kimpton Shorebreak Huntington Beach Resort within walking distance of the pet-friendly sand.