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6 coolest dog-friendly destinations in the U.S. to take your pet in 2022

Vacationing with family and friends can be challenging when everyone doesn’t agree on daily activities. Why not skip this frustration and take your dog instead? As long as you choose suitable activities your dog will be excited to join you. Plus, you won’t have to worry about finding someone to watch and care for them while you’re away. We’ve compiled a list of cool dog-friendly destinations in the U.S. to help when planning your 2022 getaway.

1. Sedona, Arizona

Surrounded by massive red rock formations and towering canyon walls, Sedona is a wonderful choice when vacationing with your dog.

Things to do

  • Take a scenic hike on one of Sedona’s many dog-friendly trails. According to the USDA Forest Service, the Boynton Trail is a popular hike because of the beauty found among the “towering buttes, crimson cliffs, and natural desert gardens.”
  • Take a guided tour with Red Rock Adventures including vortex and Indian ruins tours. This company got a 5.0 rating on BringFido where reviewers commented on how great the guides were to their dogs.
  • Dine at the Creekside American Bistro and Mesa Grill. The restaurant’s dog menu includes a cheddar omelet with turkey jerky, grilled chicken, and venison stew.


According to BringFido, there are 181 pet-friendly hotels in Sedona. They include the Sedona Real Inn & Suites, which welcomes dogs with pet baskets, water bowls, a leash, and treats.

Small dog hiking in Sedona.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

2. Brunswick Islands, North Carolina

Located in the southeastern corner of the state, the Brunswick Islands include six secluded barrier island pet-friendly beaches.

Things to do

  • Caswell Beach tops’s list of the “Top 5 Dog-Friendly Beaches in North Carolina.” The beach welcomes well-behaved dogs year-round and they can run free daily from dawn until 9 a.m. Additionally, from October 15 until March 15 well-behaved dogs can run off-leash from dawn until dusk.
  • According to BringFido, Bald Head Island is one of the 10 best dog beaches on the East Coast. A short 20-minute ferry ride takes visitors to this tranquil island. Vehicles aren’t allowed here, making the roads perfect for leisurely dog walks.  The island also has 14 miles of beaches to explore as well as nature trails along the island’s marshland, perfect for bird watching. Some areas are off-limits to dogs during turtle nesting season, May 1 through November 15.


There’s a nice selection of pet-friendly accommodation around Caswell Beach including the Drifters Reef Motel, which has a 4.9 rating on BringFido. There are 35 pet-friendly hotels on Bald Head Island including oceanfront quaint cottages and luxury homes.

3. Lake Placid, New York

According to the Lake Placid Regional Office of Sustainable Tourism, this little Adirondack town is “super pet friendly.”

Things to do

  • Take your dog on a kayak or paddleboat adventure on Lake Placid.
  • Hike the rocky Lake Shore Trail that hugs the lake and end up at a dam with scenic views.
  • Drive to the top of Whiteface Veterans’ Memorial Highway to enjoy spectacular views spanning hundreds of miles and reaching as far as Vermont and Canada.


There are plenty of pet-friendly hotels in Lake Placid including the Lake House, which received a 4.5 rating on BringFido and TripAdvisor. One pet parent was delighted that her first-floor room had a patio and grassy area convenient for potty breaks.

Woman kayaking on lake with a small dog.
Image used with permission by copyright holder

4. Lehigh Gorge State Park, Pennsylvania

If you’re interested in taking a camping trip with your dog, the Lehigh Gorge State Park is a popular destination in the Poconos. The pet-friendly Lehigh Gorge Campground is privately owned in a rustic setting and earned a 4.0 rating on TripAdvisor. In 2022 Pennsylvania state parks will be offering more pet-friendly campsites. If you prefer a less rustic experience you can rent a camping cottage in nearby Tuscarora State Park. The cottages have wooden walls and floors as well as windows. Each cottage has bunk beds, a fridge, a stove, a microwave, an electric outlet, a table, and chairs.

Things to do

  • The Lehigh Gorge Trail follows more than 20 miles of the Delaware and Lehigh National Heritage Corridor. Beautiful woodland waterfalls can be spotted at several locations along the trail.
  • Hop onto a pet-friendly vintage train and take a narrated 70-minute ride following the Lehigh River over bridges and through the state park.

5. Bar Harbor and National Acadia Park, Maine

Located on the east coast of Maine, Bar Harbor and Acadia National Park make for a wonderful spring or summer getaway with your dog.

Things to do

  • There are 100 miles of trails and 45 miles of carriage roads that you can explore with your dog in Acadia National Park.
  • Take a two-hour narrated pet-friendly sightseeing and nature cruise of Frenchman Bay. You’ll enjoy the breathtaking scenery of coastal Maine and the national park.


There’s a great selection of pet-friendly hotels in Bar Harbor. The Hanscom’s Motel and Cottages received a 4.0 review on TripAdvisor where one pet parent loved the quiet setting near a beautiful rocky beach.

Man running on the beach with a dog. o
Image used with permission by copyright holder

6. San Diego, California

The San Diego Tourist Authority refers to this city as a “pet-friendly paradise.” Visitors are drawn to this location for its balmy weather and beautiful beaches.

Things to do

  • Take a stand-up paddleboard lesson with your dog at SUP Pups.
  • Let your dog run free on Dog Beach located on the west end of the San Diego River Floodway.
  • Dine at the Backyard Kitchen and Tap, where dogs are served a burger patty or chicken breast.


According to BringFido, San Diego has 803 pet-friendly hotels and many go the extra mile for pets. For example, at Blue Herron Cottages, dogs can run and play in a fenced-in courtyard.

Vacations are more fun with your best friend

Take your dog’s personality into consideration when choosing a vacation. Matching your destination and activity list with your dog’s skill level and temperament will help ensure you both enjoy the vacation.

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Vera Lawlor
Vera was the pet columnist for 201 Family magazine and has contributed pet and animal welfare articles to Bone-A-Fide Mutts…
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