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10 Best Dog-Friendly Vacation Destinations in Canada (2024 Guide)

Written by: Chantelle Fowler

Last Updated on June 13, 2024 by Dogster Team

Blue Heeler and beagle boston terrier cross dogs Hiking Nihahi Ridge Kananaskis Country Alberta Canada

10 Best Dog-Friendly Vacation Destinations in Canada (2024 Guide)

Canada is a beautiful country with stunning scenery and lovely people. But is Canada dog friendly? Well, another aspect that makes the country great is its openness to accommodating pet-loving tourists. So, if you’re considering a trip to the Great White North with your pup, you may need help to find the perfect destination.

Lucky for you, we’ve taken it upon ourselves to round up the ten best dog-friendly vacation places in Canada. Read on to find out where you’ll be traveling next.

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The 10 Best Dog-Friendly Vacation Destinations in Canada

1. Vancouver, British Columbia

Vancouver is one of the most beautiful and dog-friendly destinations in Canada. Its countless wide-open parks and winding trails make the city a dog owner’s dream destination.

Things to Do

There are several dog-friendly hiking trails in the Vancouver region. West Vancouver’s Cypress Falls Park is a beautiful hiking spot that winds through Douglas Fir and Western Red Cedar forests with canyons and waterfalls. North Vancouver’s Skyline Trail is a steep mountain hike that awards hikers a view of the city from the top and a glimpse of a US Air Force jet crash from the 1950s.

Dogs are permitted in all of Vancouver’s parks but must be on a leash unless in a designated off-leash area. Check out the city of Vancouver’s website for a list of all the off-leash parks in the area.

Stanley Park, arguably Vancouver’s most scenic and well-visited public park, has a small, fully fenced-in off-leash dog area. When you’re done spending time there, you can visit the Off-Leash Dog Beach and the Burrard Street Bridge to let your pup explore the beach and the ocean. Then, take a beautiful walk around the seawall and enjoy views of the ocean and mountains.

Popular tourist destination spots like the Capilano Suspension Bridge and Granville Island allow well-behaved, on-leash dogs.

Where to Eat

Vancouver citizens love their dogs, so there is no shortage of dog-friendly patios to grab a bite. Uncle Abe’s on Main Street is a paradise for pups and has a weekly Yappy Hour, serving up special treats just for dogs. Also, Six Acres in Gastown has a fantastic patio for enjoying a couple of brews on a summer day.

Where to Stay

Some of the city’s most prestigious hotels are pet-friendly, including The Westin Bayshore, which allows up to two dogs for no extra charge. You can find many dog-friendly accommodations on VRBO if you prefer vacation rentals over hotels.

Camping spots must be reserved two months in advance, making spontaneous camping trips almost impossible for travelers. However, you can find free campsites a short drive from the city. Mount Seymour Provincial Park, a 30-minute drive from Vancouver, allows camping anywhere north of Brockton Point. This area is considered backcountry, so you need a Mount Seymour camping permit.

2. Banff, Alberta

Banff National Park is an outdoor adventurer’s dream vacation, especially since your dogs can accompany you virtually everywhere.

Things to Do

Like Vancouver, the Banff area is surrounded by pet-friendly trails for all fitness levels. Marsh Loop or Fenland Trail are generally considered easy to tackle for a quick half-hour stroll. Both are easy to find from downtown Banff, so you don’t need a vehicle. For more adventurous hikers, the Lake Agnes Trail near Lake Louise provides a 7.4-kilometer out-and-back trail with a 435-meter elevation gain.

If your dog loves water, you can rent a canoe, kayak, or stand-up paddleboard and hit the ice-blue lakes. We recommend getting to the rental company as early as possible since this is a popular activity, and the rentals are sold out quickly.

Where to Eat

Banff has no shortage of excellent restaurants with fantastic patios. Wild Flour Bakery is a local favorite, serving fresh baguettes, croissants, hot soup, and coffee. They even make dog treats, so your pup doesn’t feel left out. Bear Street Tavern has a year-round courtyard patio that’s always open to doggies, making it a must for those winter vacations to Banff.

Where to Stay

Many hotels in downtown Banff are pet-friendly, including Fox Hotel, but you can also stay at the condos at Hidden Ridge Resort. Even the prestigious castle that is the instantly recognizable Fairmont Banff Springs is pet-friendly.

Dogs are permitted on all campsites in the area, except for some backcountry campsites, due to wildlife concerns.

3. Kawartha Lakes, Ontario

Just a few hours away from Toronto, the Kawartha Lakes area of Ontario is one of the country’s top cottage vacation destinations. The region is home to hundreds of lakes and rivers and is a dream for outdoor adventurers.

Things to Do

There are countless hiking trails to explore in the Kawartha Lakes region. The Ken Reid Conservation Area is a popular option, offering 12 interconnected pathways. Dogs must be on leashes on the trails but can be off-leash in the designated off-leash dog park.

The Kawartha Settlers’ Village is a pup-friendly historical site on 10 acres. It consists of a collection of historic buildings, homes, and artifacts. Please note that your dog will not be permitted inside the buildings. You can also check out the Old Dog Brewing Company if you’re a beer lover. Your pup can join you on the outdoor picnic tables while you taste-test the brewery’s hand-crafted beers.

Where to Eat

There aren’t many dog-friendly places to eat in the area, but the ones available are fantastic. The Bobcaygeon Inn Restaurant serves classic pub fare and has a dog-friendly riverfront patio and private dock. 72 Bolton Sports Café is a sports bar with a pet-friendly outdoor patio.

Where to Stay

The Days Inn and Suites by Wyndham Lindsay is an award-winning hotel close to many shops, pubs, and a beautiful waterway. It allows two pets up to 20 pounds. If you prefer to be on the water, check out the houseboats in the Kawartha Lakes area. However, be warned that there are pet fees for some houseboat companies, so factor that into your budget.

4. Mont Tremblant, Québec

Mont Tremblant is part of the Laurentian Mountains northwest of Montreal. The year-round ski resort offers winter sports, golf courses, and a shopping village.

Things to Do

Mount Larose is an 11.3-kilometer trail near Montcalm. This challenging route can take four hours to finish, but the stunning view of the Laurentians and St. Lawrence River is more than worth it. Of course, your dog is allowed to tag along with you if they have the energy

The Panoramic Gondola is perfect for summer or fall visits. The gondola takes you to the summit, providing beautiful views of the Laurentians. Dogs are allowed in the Casino Express gondola during the summer. The pedestrian village is one of the best parts of Mont Tremblant. Many businesses are dog-friendly and have tasty treats ready for your pup if you ask.

Where to Eat

La Maison de la Crêpe is a gourmet restaurant serving sweet and savory crêpes for every palette, and dogs are allowed on their small sidewalk patio. Restaurant Antipasto is a must for Italian food lovers. The restaurant serves authentic Italian cuisine and allows customers with dogs to sit beside the pedestrian walkways at specific tables.

Where to Stay

Some of the most prestigious hotels in Mont Tremblant are pet-friendly. This includes the Fairmont Tremblant and Le Westin Tremblant, which allow big dogs and two or more pets. Domaine Summum is a boutique hotel that allows pets to participate in all the amenities on the property, including hiking, swimming, and canoeing. They even provide dog-sitting services.

5. Whistler, British Columbia

Whistler is a small town north of Vancouver, home to one of the largest ski resorts in North America. Many of its 11,000 residents own dogs, so there are plenty of things for you and your pup to do in the area.

Things to Do

Whistle Olympic Park is one of the most dog-friendly attractions on our list. It has over 40 kilometers of dog-friendly trails and a huge off-leash park. You can take your dog with you as you ski, snowshoe, or hike in the area. The “Arfa” Lake Dog Area on Lake Placid Road is great for playing fetch with your pup or swimming in the lake. It has off-leash areas and a sand pit for your little digger to dig to their heart’s content.

Whistler Village has everything you could ever want, from shopping to restaurants to entertainment. Dogs are allowed in the village as long as they’re leashed, and some shops also allow them.

Where to Eat

Many restaurants with patios in Whistler allow dogs to sit alongside their owners outside. Some even have dog-friendly menus. Tapley’s Neighborhood Pub is a casual sports bar serving pub fare and tasty drinks. Their outdoor patio is dog-friendly.

Hunter Gather focuses on fresh dishes with locally sourced ingredients. Their sunny outdoor patio is pet-friendly.

Where to Stay

Dog owners on a budget will appreciate the accommodations at the Listel Hotel Whistler or Pinnacle Hotel. For luxury dog-friendly accommodations, you can also try the skin-in, ski-out Fairmont Chateau Whistler or mountain lodging like Evolution.

For travelers who prefer to be in nature, check out the Yurts at Riverside Resort. They have several pet-friendly cabins and yurts.

6. Halifax, Nova Scotia

Halifax is a fantastic vacation destination for dog owners on the country’s East Coast, thanks to its various recreational areas and stunning scenery.

Things to Do

Point Pleasant Park is one of Halifax’s best civic spaces. This large, forested park on the peninsula offers beautiful views of the Atlantic Ocean and is a great place to run, bike, or walk with your dog. In addition, most of the park allows dogs to be off-leash.

The York Redoubt National Historic Site was constructed in the 1700s to protect Halifax Harbor. There’s a lot to learn here, and your dog can accompany you on a leash. There are plenty of off-leash parks in the area to let your pup run off steam, including Shubie Park, Irving Big Stop Bark Park, and Sandy Lake Park.

Where to Eat

Salt Yard Social is a two-level waterfront restaurant with a variety of cuisines to suit your fancy. If you want to escape the sun, you and your pup can enjoy the nice shaded patio areas. Good Robot Brewing Company is another place to check out if you enjoy craft beers. The company hosts events throughout the year specifically for dog owners, including a grooming station and beer-flavored dog treats.

Where to Stay

Many of the chain hotels in Halifax are pet-friendly, including the Best Western Plus Chocolate Lake Hotel, Comfort Inn Halifax, and the Coastal Inn Halifax Bayers Lake. We like The Prince George Hotel because it truly pampers its pet guests with a cozy blanket, biodegradable waste bags, bowls for food and water, and an information package highlighting the best dog-friendly places in the city.

For campers, Porters Lake Provincial Park has a great campground close to the city. Many campsites have direct lake access, and most are very private and well-spaced.

7. Robinsons, Newfoundland & Labrador

Robinsons may be a small village, but it has plenty of activities for humans and their canine companions.

Things to Do

Robinsons is a much more relaxed vacation destination. You and your pup can stroll on deserted beaches, watch sunsets, and hike along the many cliffs in the area. Do not miss the famous Wells Farm Market, which has plenty of fresh vegetables to buy.

Where to Eat

We weren’t pulling your leg when we said Robinsons is a small village. There are only a handful of places to grab a bite to eat, most of which don’t have websites. The Pirate’s Haven Restaurant makes delicious home-cooked meals like soups and fresh cod.

For the adventurous diner, you can try cod tongue or mousse pie. The restaurant has outdoor seating, but its website doesn’t explicitly state that it is pet-friendly. They offer takeout, which might be a better option since you can sit on the beach to enjoy your meal uninterrupted.

Where to Stay

Despite being small, there are several pet-friendly accommodations in Robinsons. Pirate’s Haven Chalets & Adventures is ideal for active tourists since there is plenty of open space and walking trails to explore. They also have ATV rentals and scheduled ATV tours, though they are not dog-friendly activities.

You can also check out Pirate’s Haven ATV Friendly RV Park for a pet-friendly campground with picnic tables, firewood, and excellent Wi-Fi.

8. Toronto, Ontario

With a population of 2.8 million people, Toronto is the largest city in Canada. With such a booming population, it only makes sense that there are plenty of dog owners among the city’s residents.

Things to Do

If you want to do something other than walk or hike, check out the Haunted Walk. The tour is available from April to December and is dog-friendly as long as your pup is leashed. Of course, if you enjoy hiking, there are plenty of opportunities in Toronto. Check out High Park, the city’s largest greenspace. There’s even a designated off-leash area for pups and several paths that allow dogs to run free.

If your dog loves water, consider booking a trip on Kajama. This 165-foot schooner allows passengers to take in stunning views of the Toronto skyline from Lake Ontario.

Where to Eat

Toronto is a huge city with countless pet-friendly outdoor patios. Lobster Burger Bar has a fantastic drink and food menu consisting of burgers, seafood, tasty appetizers, and wagyu steaks. They even have a menu just for dogs. Café Landwer is a great all-day café for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. Leashed dogs can sit on the patio outside and may even get a tasty treat or two from their server.

The Hair of the Dog Pub serves delicious comfort food and has a massive patio with seating in the sun and shade if you need to cool down.

Where to Stay

Hotel X Toronto is a beautiful hotel with great amenities for you and your dog. Take advantage of their pet-sitting services to sneak away with your dog for the day and enjoy the heated rooftop pool at night. You’ll also receive dog beds, food bowls, and water bowls if needed for your stay.

The Kimpton Saint George Hotel welcomes all pets to stay with them. There are no limits on size, weight, or number of pets per room. There isn’t even a cleaning fee or deposit required. In addition, you’ll enjoy pet-friendly amenities like beds, treats, and pee pads.

9. Victoria, British Columbia

Victoria is the capital of British Columbia and one of the most beautiful cities on our list. It’s a bucket list destination if you and your pup are avid adventure seekers.

Things to Do

There is no shortage of green space in Victoria to explore with your pup. If you love flowers and plants, add The Butchart Gardens to your to-do list. This 118-year-old internationally renowned garden has over a million visitors annually and has been designated a National Historic Site of Canada.

Dallas Road is the most iconic dog walk path in Victoria. You can start your journey at Clover Point and walk along the path toward the Ogden Point Breakwater. There’s an off-leash dog park along the way to let your pup run off some steam and make new friends.

Arbutus Cove Park offers an easy 1.6-km loop with a fantastic swimming spot. The beach is big enough for a game of fetch, and the entire park is off-leash. Then, you can hop on the Victoria Harbor Ferry to zip along the calm waters of the city’s inner harbor. You might even see marine animals like seals or whales.

Where to Eat

Barb’s Place is a must-visit restaurant if you’re big on seafood. This seasonal food stand is at Fisherman’s Wharf, where you’ll see several quirky, colorful float homes and many other tasty culinary delights. Spinnakers Brewpub is the city’s first brewpub, offering tasty hand-crafted beer and a fresh menu. In addition, they have two fantastic patios that are more than welcoming to dogs.

Darcy’s Pub Downtown is a fabulous restaurant in Victoria’s historic downtown. It has a substantial outdoor patio for you and your pup to enjoy.

Where to Stay

The locally owned Chateau Victoria Hotel & Suites is one of the best places to stay with your pup. It provides amenities like towels, wipes, treats, dishes, blankets, and bedding. The Hotel Grand Pacific is another excellent option. For $50, it offers a Pampered Pooch Package that gives your pet a doggy bed, food, organic treats, and a disposable clean-up kit.

If you prefer camping, Goldstream Park has a great campground close to awesome hikes and walks.

10. St. Andrew’s, New Brunswick

St. Andrew’s may be a small town that won’t take more than an hour to explore on foot, but you’ll want to give yourself a few days there to explore all the area has to offer with your pup.

Things To Do

Kingsbrae Garden is one of the top destinations in the area for dog owners. It’s home to over 50,000 perennials and many themed gardens. You can also take a gander at many garden animals, including alpacas, pygmy goats, and peacocks.

No visit to the area is complete without stopping at the beach in the southernmost part of town. This isn’t a stereotypical sandy beach, but it is more rugged and rocky. It offers stunning views of Passamaquoddy Bay and is a beautiful place to rest on a hot summer day.

Where to Eat

The Gables Restaurant is a waterside eatery with a romantic setting perfect for date nights. Their pet-friendly outdoor tables provide a great view of the water. Char and Chowder focuses on locally sourced and seasonal food, offering menu items like seafood chowder and lobster rolls. In addition, it has a large outdoor seating area perfect for pups to tag along.

Where to Stay

The historic Algonquin Resort is a luxurious hotel perfect for pet owners of all species. Guests of the dog variety are given treats at check-in, and there are many grassy areas around the resort for relief purposes.

The Woodhaven Country Lodge, on the shores of Passamaquoddy Bay, is the number one place to stay in the region. Its accommodations are child and pet-friendly and close to many attractions, such as the Bay Ferry, kayak tours, and King’s Landing.

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Summing Up

There certainly is no shortage of fantastic dog-friendly vacation places in Canada. Whether you want to hike up mountains or window shop in idyllic locations, there’s a perfect Canadian vacation spot for you and your dog. Before you make any travel plans, contact the hotel and location tourism companies to confirm that they can accommodate you and your pet.

Safe travels!

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Featured Image Credit: BGSmith, Shutterstock

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