Archive for the ‘Interesting DogFriendly Places’ Category

Dog-Friendly Santa Barbara California

Saturday, August 19th, 2017

Dog-Friendly Santa Barbara California

Santa Barbara, the Queen of the California Missions, was founded in 1786. The current Mission was built in 1812 after an earthquake destroyed the last one. There was a large earthquake in 1925 and the entire center of town had to be rebuilt. It is now almost entirely a Mediterranean architecture. Santa Barbara has been a paradox for dog lovers. Most locals think it is dog-friendly, while visitors have their doubts. Due to a political “situation” Santa Barbara for many years was the main holdout in California about allowing dogs on outdoor patios. Recently this problem has been relaxed and dogs can find patio dining here as well as in the rest of the state. In addition, the beaches of Santa Barbara are not as pet-friendly as those south of here in Ventura County, but they are more pet-friendly than the beaches of Los Angeles 90 miles to the south. Today, Santa Barbara is dog-friendly in most respects.

Santa Barbara is home to many dog-friendly resorts and hotels. The San Ysidro Ranch is an upscale resort. The good news for dog lovers is this place is very dog-friendly. The bad news is it can cost $600 per night. They do have a Privileged Pet Program and even dog massages. For a more moderate but still high budget hotel with dog-friendly perks and doggy room service try the Fess Parker Doubletree Resort located right in town. The Best Western Beachside Inn, the Blue Sands Motel and the Secret Garden Inn and Cottages are also dog-friendly. For someone looking for a pet-friendly suite hotel for a long stay there is an Extended Stay America. Santa Barbara has a large number of pet-friendly vacation rentals as well.
Santa Barbara Dog Travel Guide

Botanical Garden

In Santa Barbara you can find a number of dog-friendly attractions. Explore Chumach Painted Cave State Historic Park and see Chumash Native drawings from the 1600s. Leashed dogs are welcome. You can tour the Santa Barbara Botanical Garden with your dog as well. Or explore the Stearns Wharf which is California’s oldest working wharf. There are shops and patios for food available to you and some of the stores will allow your dogs. If shopping is your thing, then explore the downtown State Street Shopping Area with your dog. There are a number of pet-friendly stores here including the world headquarters of Big Dog Sportswear, a famously dog-friendly chain. You can also shop with your dog at the La Cumbre Plaza Shopping Area.

Today it is easy to find dog-friendly restaurants in Santa Barbara. This was not always the case as the city health department parted ways with the Santa Maria Branch of the health department and with most of the state and stopped dogs from sitting on patios at restaurants in town. Now finding dog-friendly patios is not such a challenge. The Brewhouse Restaurant at 229 West Montecito Street has handcrafted brews and a menu of comfort foods for you – and a menu for your dog as well. Another extremely dog-friendly restaurant is the Summerland Beach Cafe in Summerland just south of Santa Barbara. This restaurant is set in a Victorian house with a large outdoor dining area. Summerland Beach, right across from the restaurant, is a dog-friendly beach as well.

There are a number of dog-friendly beaches in the area. Summerland Beach, 8 miles south of town, is one. Leashed dogs are allowed in Rincon Park and Beach on Bates Road in Santa Barbara, Arroyo Burro Beach and Goleta Beach County Park. There are a number of off-leash dog parks in and around Santa Barbara. The Douglas Family Preserve is an entire park where off-leash dogs are allowed.

Nearby Santa Barbara are Ventura and Ojai, the quaint Dutch town of Solvang and San Luis Obispo and Cambria.

Dog-Friendly San Jose & Silicon Valley California

Thursday, August 17th, 2017

San Jose Dog Travel Guide…

San Jose was one of the original Spanish settlements in California and was founded in 1777 by Felipe de Neve. It is now the state’s third largest city and is best known as the center of Silicon Valley and the computer hardware and software industries. In addition to San Jose, the Silicon Valley area consists of Palo Alto and Stanford University, Santa Clara, Mountain View and Sunnyvale and the peninsula cities of San Mateo, Redwood City and San Carlos. The area has a number of very dog-friendly pockets where shops, restaurants and parks welcome your four legged friend.

Dog-friendly hotels are not hard to find in San Jose and Silicon Valley. The Cypress Hotel at 10050 South De Anza Blvd in Cupertino is perhaps the most dog-friendly with special doggie packages and pet sitting available. The upscale Fairmont Hotel in downtown San Jose is also pet-friendly. The Best Western Plus Brookside Inn in Milpitas offers good value as does the La Quinta San Jose. In Palo Alto small to medium sized dogs are allowed at the Sheraton Palo Alto and the Westin Palo Alto. There are also a number of dog-friendly hotels in the area around the San Francisco Airport in the northern part of San Mateo County. In Half Moon Bay along the coast the Half Moon Bay Inn at 401 Main Street offers pet-friendly lodging.

For dog-friendly shopping and dining there are a number of excellent options in the San Jose area. The upscale Santana Row Shopping Center, at Highway 880 and Interstate 280, has a large number of dog-friendly shops as well as patio dining. Los Gatos, a community that sits against the Santa Cruz Mountains, is a great area to walk around with your dog. You can shop and dine here as well as hike the Los Gatos Creek Reservoir Trail to the Lexington Reservoir or walk the paved Los Gatos Creek Trail towards Campbell. Campbell and Saratoga, both nearby to Los Gatos, are also dog-friendly. Palo Alto’s downtown has a quaint shopping area to walk around and is very pet-friendly as well. Stanford Shopping Center, just north of the Stanford Campus, offers an excellent open-air dog-friendly shopping location.

Dog-Friendly restaurants in the area are not hard to find. La Fondue, in Saratoga, not only welcomes dogs but offers complimentary filet mignon for their canine guests. They have two patios with doggie tie down areas. In Redwood City, the Redwood Creek Grill offers a doggie menu as well. Steak Out, in Mountain View at 383 Castro Street, is a burger and beer garden with a large dog-friendly outdoor area and a visiting dog named Stout. There are other pet-friendly patio restaurants in Palo Alto, Santana Row, and most other areas of town.

For dog-friendly parks where you can jog, hike or hang out with your dog there are a number of options. The Stanford University campus offers a large amount of grassy areas as do the hills above the campus in what is known as the “Dish Loop” to the large antennas on the hill. The Palo Alto Baylands Preserve is against the bay and offers trails as well. Closer to San Jose there are the Los Gatos Creek Trail between Campbell and Los Gatos, the Guadalupe River Park & Gardens downtown, Ed Levin County Park on the east hills in Milpitas and Fremont Older Preserve in Cupertino. There are also many fenced off-leash dog parks in San Jose, Palo Alto and many of the cities that make up the area. There are a number of dog-friendly beaches in the Half Moon Bay and Pescadero area, about a 1/2 hour drive from Palo Alto and in the Santa Cruz area about a 40 minute drive from San Jose. William Street Park in San Jose hosts a huge “Bark in the Park” event each September with over 10,000 dogs and people attending.

Nearby pet-friendly trips from San Jose include dog-friendly Carmel and Monterey, San Francisco, Napa Valley and very close by, Santa Cruz.

San Jose Dog Travel Guide…

Dog-Friendly San Francisco California

Sunday, August 6th, 2017

Click Here for’s San Francisco Dog Travel Guide and Directory

Baker Beach San Francisco

San Francisco has a population of 805,000 in only 47 square miles. This makes it the second most densely populated city in the U.S. after New York. This is good for people visiting with dogs as it makes the city very walkable. To walk from anywhere to anywhere else in San Francisco you would not have to walk more than 7 miles. Most of the visitor areas are within three miles of each other, however. San Francisco is very scenic and has many hills some of which are quite steep with sidewalks made as stairs. There is a lot to do for a visitor with a dog in the City by the Bay.

San Francisco is a city of neighborhoods where you can easily walk to where you want to go. To get around town between neighborhoods you can drive (although parking can be expensive), take the famous cable cars or the MUNI buses or subways. Dogs are allowed on all of these, although they may require that you muzzle your dog. You should have a muzzle with you when using the public transportation with a dog. BART, the larger subway trains that connect San Francisco with the airport, Oakland, Berkeley and the East Bay only allow dogs small enough to be carried. Since most tourists to San Francisco want a cable car ride, that is the choice we would take if one is available.

One neighborhood where tourists inevitably end up is the Fisherman’s Wharf area. There are little shops, patio dining and all kinds of tourist attractions here. Dogs will enjoy walking the area with you and can go in some shops and patio restaurants. Also nearby here is Ghirardelli Square, famous for chocolate and ice cream. The Ghirardelli Square Shopping Center also has a number of stores that welcome your dog and dogs are allowed in the common areas. Usually, there will be all kinds of street entertainment in this area as well as carriage rides. Next door is the Italian neighborhood with shops and restaurants.

You can visit San Francisco’s famous Chinatown with your dog although it is a somewhat crowded area to walk. Also, there are very limited options for outdoor dining so you may need to get food to go here. Other activities in San Francisco for you and your dog are to walk the most crooked street in the world on Lombard St, view the city from the hill at Coit Tower, walk the 3.5 mile Barbary Coast Trail or drive the 49 Mile Scenic Drive where you can follow the signs. The 49 Mile Drive will visit most of the major sights in the city. Once or twice each year you can take your dog to a San Francisco Giants baseball game at AT&T Park but during every game there is a viewing gate where you can catch a few plays. There is also usually an annual Bark and Wine Ball where people and dogs can party it up.

San Francisco has many dog-friendly restaurants. Rogue Ales Public House has a dog menu as well as food and drink for the people in your party. Cuisine choices at dog-friendly restaurants range from organic and natural foods to hamburgers, smoothies, fish and steak. One of our favorites is ice cream at Ghirardelli Square. For dog-friendly shopping there are many choices including the world famous Union Square district especially around Christmas, Westfield San Francisco Center and Ghirardelli Square.

San Francisco has more off-leash areas for dogs than almost any city in North America. New York and Calgary may have more, but there are a lot in San Francisco. There are over twenty off-leash dog parks in San Francisco. For a large city, there are a lot of dog-friendly beaches as well. Baker Beach in the shadow of the Golden Gate Bridge, Fort Funston and Burton Beach and Ocean Beach are all dog-friendly.

Pet-friendly hotels are mostly high-end, expensive hotels in San Francisco downtown and tourist areas. For a real bargain, you will have to stay in the suburbs. If you want especially dog-friendly accommodations try the Palomar, Argonaut , Serrano , Sir Francis Drake, Sheraton Fisherman’s Wharf or the Hilton San Francisco. If you have an RV, the only place near town is the Candlestick RV Park near the stadium.

There are many nearby places to go for dog-friendly road trips from San Francisco. Day trips can include Napa Valley, Marin and Sonoma Counties just north of the Golden Gate Bridge. There is also Oakland, San Jose & Silicon Valley and Berkeley. For overnight trips, three hours north is Mendocino and four hours east is Lake Tahoe. Three hours south are Monterey and Carmel and two hours south is Santa Cruz.