If the season’s falling temperatures have your thoughts turning to getaways with your dog, you’ll find no shortage of destinations that welcome you with open paws. Check out these five great pet-friendly locations that invite travelers and their dogs to enjoy everything from fall colors to falling prices!
Acadia National Park, Maine
Although many national parks are very restrictive in terms of dog access, Acadia National Park is a notable exception. Look for over 100 miles of hiking trails as well as 45 miles of carriage roads for you and your dog to explore. This park, the first national park east of the Mississippi River, offers miles of rugged coastline as well as an ever-changing palette of fall colors. Along with several dog-friendly campgrounds in the park, nearby accommodations such as Best Western Plus Freeport Inn welcome your four-legged travel companion.
Park City, Utah
Since its founding by miners and the military, Park City has become one of Utah’s most fun-loving destinations. Today, this Rocky Mountain town is a glamorous outdoor getaway with top-notch restaurants, exclusive boutiques, fall foliage fun for Fido, and pampering dog-friendly resorts such as The St. Regis Deer Valley or, beyond Park City, Robert Redford’s Sundance Resort.
Gray Summit, Missouri
Autumn means time for the canine version of the Olympic games: the Purina Pro Plan Incredible Dog Challenge at Purina Farms. Bring your dog to watch the fun, with the September 27 finals including dock diving, agility competitions, Jack Russell hurdle racing, freestyle flying disc competitions, and more. If you can’t make it for the event, you and your dog are welcome to visit the farm (with a few exceptions such as the farm animal and adoptable animal areas) and the daily dock diving and disc throwing exhibitions. With its proximity to Six Flags St. Louis, look for numerous family properties that welcome dogs including Comfort Inn, Quality Inn, as well as Hunters Hollow Bed and Breakfast.
Asheville, North Carolina
Take one dog-friendly community and surround it by 6,000-foot peaks and you’ve got Asheville. Nestled alongside the Blue Ridge Parkway with its dog-friendly trails, the city is also home to the stately Biltmore, America’s largest home. While dogs aren’t permitted in the buildings, they are welcome on the 8,000 acres of the estate and gardens, which present a spectacular show of fall color. Near Asheville, Four Paws Kingdom welcomes travelers with cabins as well as RV sites, all with use of a private dog park, swimming pond for dogs, an agility area, and more.
Texas Coastal Bend
While autumn may be synonymous with falling leaves, it also means a time of falling prices, especially at beach destinations. Autumn is one of the “shoulder seasons” in the travel industry, when demand and weather are somewhere between peak and low seasons. Your leashed dog will be welcome on the Mustang and Padre Island beaches, in many patio restaurants, at The Aquarium at Rockport Harbor, and at dog-centric properties like Port Aransas’s A Laughing Horse Lodge.
If for some reason you decide to leave Fido behind, think about trying DoggyBnB, a new mobile app that uses technology and networking to create a community of friends you know directly or are connected to through mutual friends to take care of your pet with a few taps of your phone.