North Essex is a superb dog-friendly holiday destination providing a mix of accommodation, dog friendly places to eat and drink, and days out that you can share with your furry family member. When seeking the perfect dog-friendly holiday destination, it is important to consider both the accommodation on offer as well as the places that you can go with your dog. After all, there is no use in taking the beloved family dog on holiday, only to find he or she is barred from most of the attractions and activities on offer. Unfortunately not everywhere offers a good combination of the two elements, which is why north Essex makes a great dog-friendly holiday destination choice.
>>> View a list of fabulous pet-friendly places to stay in north Essex
There are plenty of holiday accommodation options available in north Essex to holidaymakers with dogs. From self-catering period cottages through to more modern properties there is something to suit everyone's tastes and budgets. Areas that are particularly popular and offer multiple dog-friendly holiday accommodation choices include Colchester itself, towns on the coast, and the Dedham Vale.
Mersea Island is an interesting dog-friendly holiday destination. A tiny estuary island, it is separated from the mainland by a causeway, which floods at high tide. The island itself is split into two parts: West Mersea and East Mersea. Dogs are allowed on beaches at Mersea Island, including in Cudmore Grove Country Park, a nature reserve with a beach, toilets, an information room and a refreshment kiosk which is open on certain days. There are also a number of dog-friendly pubs and catering establishments on the Island, many of which serve delicious fresh fish, seafood and Mersea's famous oysters.
St John's Abbey Gate in Colchester and Mistley Towers in Mistley on the River Stour, are both owned by English Heritage. They are free to enter dog-friendly attractions that are worth stopping by for a look around and although dogs have to be kept on leads, it provides your four legged friend with an opportunity to stretch their legs while you take in the sights. A little further afield and inland, take a trip into the beautiful Essex countryside and head past Halstead to Hedingham Castle where you can enjoy both woodland and lakeside walks in the castle grounds before stopping for a picnic. If you happen to walk the Valley Walk route in February or May you will be in for a treat as, depending on the month, visitors are able to see dramatic displays of snowdrops or bluebells. If the weather is too poor to picnic outside, then dog-friendly pubs can be found in Castle Hedingham and surrounding villages.
When it comes to exercising your dog, if you want to explore further afield than just around your holiday accommodation, head for Colchester. Around the town itself are a number of dog-friendly public country parks and nature reserves. Of particular note for visitors is Gosbecks Archaeological Park, which is a Scheduled Ancient Monument featuring Iron Age and Roman remains. It is mainly flat terrain, with a large car park making access to the park easy. The site is perfect for dog walkers who are holidaying in the area and who want to experience one of the more unusual dog-friendly sights that north Essex has to offer.