North Coast Guide for Dog Walkers


At Live It Experience It, we know there’s nothing better than setting off for a long walk with man’s best friend, and where better to do so than on the beautiful North Coast? So, for all those dog owners who might be planning a visit, our journalist Claire Savage has compiled a north coast guide for dog walkers 

North Coast Guide for Dog Walkers:

There are plenty of places to walk with your dog on the North Coast but the beach is always a good place to start.

During the summer (generally from June to September), restrictions apply for walking dogs on certain beaches, such as Downhill Beach and Whiterocks, so it’s worth being aware of this.

Benone Strand also has a zoned activity area for dogs and it’s just common sense and courtesy to respect other walkers when you’re out and about. That’s to say – don’t assume everyone with a dog wants yours jumping around it and also look out for families with children for the same reasons.

So – where to go?

Portrush has both the East and West Strands, with Whiterocks Beach close by.

Portstewart Strand is also a great walk though be aware of cars on the beach. Meanwhile, if you don’t mind a steep upward climb on the way back White Park Bay boasts a rugged landscape and a gorgeous sandy beach. Visitors should be mindful however, that cattle and sheep often graze in the dunes and wander onto the beach.

Runkerry/Bushfoot Beach in Portballintrae is also great for off-road walking with a scenic coastal cliff walk round to the Giant’s Causeway.


After all that walking, a coffee goes down a treat and there are some cafés and eateries which are more than happy to accommodate dogs – some inside and some outside.

In Ballycastle, the Marine Hotel welcomes dogs inside at their Costa Coffee area and in the main hotel, although it may be worth checking in terms of number of dogs and their sizes. Meanwhile, in Portrush, the Inn on the Coast and the Harbour Bar also welcome four-legged friends inside, while there’s a similar story at the Fullerton Inn at Ballintoy.

In nearby Ballymoney you can also drop in with your pooch to Café Country and over in Aghadowey, the Brown Trout Golf & Country Inn is another dog-friendly location where you can grab a bite.

With this brief North Coast Guide For Dog Walkers, you really can bring all the family on that next outing. #liveitexperienceit

Live It Experience It’ is a group of journalists and travel writers who tell the story of our members. We work  collaboratively with our members, which are tourism businesses, to promote Northern Ireland through water, air and land based activities, food and drink and great places to stay. Together we let our visitors know of all of the amazing things Northern Ireland has to offer.  To become a member business in of ‘Live It Experience It’ call our office on 028 3756 8436 or please submit your information through our online form. T&Cs apply –  Sign Up Here Let us tell your story! Live It Experience It is the NW200 tourism partner for 2018. 


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Eleanor McGillie

About Eleanor McGillie

Eleanor spent eight years working in the south west of England - one of the UK's most popular tourism hotspots. During her stint working with key players in the tourism sector she developed a love for all things outdoor adventure. As a journalist she got to travel to remote corners of the world to write travel features about the experiences of a particular place. Northern Ireland's story needs to be told and needs to reach new audiences. Live It Experience It aims to attract tourists from outside Ireland, people from Ireland and people who live in Northern Ireland but aren't aware of the extent of the adventures on our own doorsteps. Eleanor is a member of the Chartered Institute of Marketing (CIM) at Associate Level