5 Great Pet-Friendly Destinations Across North AmericaBy Jay Gentile
Aside from perhaps travel delays, there are few aspects of hitting the road that are less appealing than having to endure that look on your pet’s face as you’re getting ready to walk out the door on a trip. But if you’ve had the foresight to book your stay at a pet-friendly destination, those sad goodbyes can be a thing of the past.
From dog spa treatments and dog-themed happy hours to room service pet menus and dog-sitting services, here are five of the most pet-friendly destinations in North America.
Shouldn’t dogs enjoy a day at the beach? In Kaanapali, Hawaii, the answer is a happy bark in the affirmative. While your pet must be vaccinated in accordance with Hawaii’s quarantine laws before entering the state, once here, your pet is allowed to roam alongside you at most locations along the gorgeous three-mile stretch of beachfront that forms the resort community of Kaanapali.
Set amid rugged black cliffs and lush garden terrain in prime sunset positioning on Maui’s western shore, this place is the definition of Hawaiian chill. Oh, and did we mention the average year-round high temperature here fluctuates a whole five degrees, between 77 and 82? Yeah, we thought you might like that.
And the next time you’re kicking back in a beachfront cabana on the sandy shores of Kaanapali Beach outside The Westin Maui Resort & Spa, Ka’anapali, your dog is free to chill right there beside you. (Not sure if your pet will be a fan of doing the beach lawn yoga with you, but to each their own.)
Dogs are allowed throughout the property, with the exception of food and beverage service and pool areas.
Ranking number one on a list of America’s most dog-friendly cities, Scottsdale is a delight for pet owners of all stripes. You can get a “pupcake” (cupcake for dogs) at the Scottsdale location of Sprinkles. Plus, there are more than a dozen dog parks in the Phoenix area, including the three-acre Chaparral Dog Park in Scottsdale.
The JW Marriott Scottsdale Camelback Inn Resort & Spa is anything but your typical hotel. With unique pueblo-style, pet-friendly accommodations nestled at the base of Camelback Mountain in the affluent Paradise Valley, this five-star resort treats your “fur kids” with all the love and attention they deserve, including allowing you to chill with your dog around most spaces of the hotel (besides the pool or restaurant back patio) and walk your pup around the lovely courtyard space.
Beaver Creek, Colorado
While everyone has heard of the world-famous ski resort of Vail, its sister resort, Beaver Creek, is a lesser-known oasis located just 20 minutes to the west. Famous for its luxurious aesthetic, immaculately groomed trails and family-friendly spirit, Beaver Creek may be smaller than Vail, but that also means smaller crowds.
The charming Western-style town of Avon, located about two miles north of Beaver Creek, is the gateway to the resort, while Beaver Creek Village offers everything you would ever need at the base of the ski mountain (including fresh-baked cookies at 3 p.m.).
In both locations, you’ll discover plenty of pet-friendly restaurants, like the upscale Vin 48 and Beaver Creek Chophouse, as well as vast outdoor spaces (dogs are permitted on open summer trails in Beaver Creek) to explore with your four-legged friend in tow.
And if you love dogs, you’ll love The Ritz-Carlton Bachelor Gulch. Set amid the mountains of the Beaver Creek ski area, this five-star resort is the perfect place to pamper your pooch with all-star amenities that include a room service pet menu, a dog spa treatment with massage and light bath, dog-friendly hiking opportunities with the on-staff naturalist, staff handing out doggie treats, and plenty of dogs hanging out in the common areas eager to meet new friends.
Victoria, British Columbia
British Columbia’s adorable capital city may be Canada’s best-kept secret. While most visitors flock to nearby Vancouver, the endlessly delightful city of Victoria sits in Canada’s southwest corner at the tip of Vancouver Island, bringing with it an entirely unique vibe.
Packed with historic Victorian architecture that helps the city cultivate more of a British-aristocracy vibe, Victoria (nicknamed “The Garden City”) is an outdoor-lover’s paradise. This means a wide array of options for pet-friendly activities, from exploring the city’s many gardens (Butchart Gardens being the most famous), parks such as Goldstream Provincial Park, and beaches like the breathtaking Sandcut Beach. Or hop on the ferry to gaze at the scenic waterfront with your pet on board (in designated pet areas.)
After a long day exploring Victoria, it’s time for you to relax in comfort … with your pet. The Westin Bear Mountain Golf Resort & Spa, Victoria has you and your pup covered with gorgeous pet-friendly rooms on the ground floor complete with fluffy dog beds for canines (upon request) and absurdly comfortable Westin beds for humans.
When you’re feeling more active, grab your pooch and hit the nature trails just behind the resort, which is set amid lush golf greens framed by Vancouver Island’s rugged mountains.
They sure do love their animals in Aspen. Long known as one of America’s most pet-friendly resort destinations, the famously upscale ski community takes a more down-home approach when it comes to traveling with your pet.
Looking for a scenic mountain hike? Grab your pooch and hit the Rio Grande Trail, the world-famous Maroon Bells wilderness or the popular Bernese Boulevard dog trail around Aspen Golf Course. Later in the day, relax with your pet at a dog-friendly restaurant like Meat & Cheese, where your four-legged friend is bound to meet a few new friends. Dogs can even ride on the ski gondola in designated cars.
Nestled at the base of Aspen Mountain and located within an easy stroll of historic downtown Aspen, The St. Regis Aspen Resort features its own hotel dog (a playful Bernese mountain dog named Kitty), a monthly Bark’n’Brews “pawty” on the patio that raises money for Lucky Day Animal Rescue of Colorado, and pet-friendly rooms equipped with dog beds and dog bowls.
Need to head out of the hotel for a bit without your pet? No worries. The hotel even offers dog-sitting and dog-walking services for an additional fee.