best dog friendly beaches in florida

The 12 Best Dog Friendly Beaches in Florida (2024) 

Written By: Michelina Da Fonte
Pawsome Photo Courtesy of:


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Why Choose Florida for Your Dog Friendly Beach Adventure?

Aaah, the Sunshine State — the perfect place to pack up your pup for a quick weekend getaway or an extended snowbird stay. With year-round walking-weather and dog friendly beaches dotted along the coastlines, Florida is a top destination for those looking to travel with their dog in tow.

From the serene shores of the Panhandle to the bustling boardwalks of Palm Beach, there is a beach for every puppy and their human to fall head over paws for. Here are seven dog friendly beaches throughout Florida to add to your itinerary, along with some picks and tips for making your trip to the Sunshine State a tail-wagging-time.

Top Dog Friendly Beaches in Florida

jet set pets fort de soto baech florida dog friendly beaches article

1. Fort De Soto Dog Beach and Paw Playground - St. Pete Beach, FL

Situated on Florida’s west coast in Pinellas County, Fort De Soto boasts one of Florida’s most popular dog friendly beaches and for very good reason! Consisting of acres upon acres of green, naturally diverse ecosystem and over three miles of white sandy beach, this county park includes 300 yards of shoreline exclusively reserved for dogs to enjoy leash-free. (However, please note that owners must carry a leash at all times, even in off-leash areas.) Also, canoes, kayaks, and stand-up paddle boards are available to rent, all of which are dog friendly. Next to the beach, you’ll discover the dog friendly Paw Playground, with three grassy acres of fenced-in room to romp, with separate areas both large and small dogs to run free. Here, you’ll find water fountains to help quench your dog’s thirst, and hoses to help cool and rinse the sand from their paws. While the park is free to enter, the parking fee is $5. 

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Pet friendly restaurant: Paradise Grille, Pass-a-Grille Beach

Although there’s nothing fancy about this place, the sunsets will stun you and your beloved pup. Dine outdoors with your dog on the restaurant’s casual and lively waterfront patio as you enjoy live music and people-watching. 

Pet friendly hotel: The Don CeSar Hotel, St. Pete Beach 

You and your pooch may never want to leave this iconic, swanky “Pink Palace” resort hotel! Here, pups are welcome to stay in a first-floor room for an additional $75 per night and enjoy the Floridian charm that this hotel is so known for. 

clearwater beach florida dog friendly beaches article jet set pets

2. Clearwater North Beach - Clearwater, FL

Although Clearwater Beach is not dog friendly, leashed dogs are invited to enjoy a stroll on the peaceful Clearwater North Beach — a short drive north before you hit a residential neighborhood. The white sand, clear waters, and quiet and serene setting land it on our list of beaches to visit with your pup. While there is no dedicated parking lot, metered street parking is typically not hard to find. It’s important to note that there are no public bathrooms or wash stations at this beach, and don’t forget to bring your own baggies to clean up after your pup after a stroll at this quintessential Gulf of Mexico beach. 

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Pet friendly restaurant: Sand Bar at Opal Sands, Clearwater

On the Opal Sand Resort’s property you’ll find a dog friendly, outdoor tiki bar that serves all-day upscale cuisine and welcomes your pup to join you. Enjoy happy hour and beautiful sunsets with your favorite friend in tow. 

Pet friendly hotel: Opal Sands Resort, Clearwater

Pups staying at this luxurious hotel will enjoy “Opal Paws,” the hotel’s premier puppy program that welcomes your doggy like no other. Upon check-in, your pup will receive a gift bag containing doggy dental treats and waste bags. In the room, your furry companion will enjoy their own plush dog bed, dog mat, and food and water bowls. Dogs weighing 30 lbs. or less are invited to stay at this hotel for $100 per night.

jet set pets dog friendly beaches article honeymoon island beach

 Photo courtesy of @acutienamedstewie

3. Honeymoon Island State Park Pet Beach -Dunedin, FL

Not far north of Clearwater, Honeymoon Island State Park has its own dedicated dog beach at the southern tip of the island complete with a dog washing station and baggies for cleanup. The island also features a 3-mile nature trail that is dog friendly as well. Dogs must be leashed at all times on both. The entrance fee is $4 for a single-occupant vehicle, $8 per vehicle with up to 8 people, and $2 per pedestrian or cyclist. 

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Pet friendly restaurant: The Living Room on Main, Dunedin

Get dressed up and bring your pup to this upscale yet inviting restaurant for lunch or dinner while you dine at one of the outdoor tables. The eclectic, world-inspired menu for humans has a nice range of items, and don’t forget to ask about their doggie menu while you’re there. 

Pet friendly hotel: Best Western Dunedin Plus Yacht Harbor Inn, Dunedin

Located in the heart of downtown Dunedin, this pet friendly hotel invites your doggy, 80 lbs. and under, to stay for an additional $30 per day. Best of all, there’s a dog friendly park just across the street from the hotel. 

dog friendly beaches jet set pets article bro hard beach

Photo courtesy of @photopup

4. Brohard Beach and Paw Park - Venice, FL

When you find yourself and your pup in Sarasota County, and the urge to visit the beach hits, Brohard Beach & Paw Park is the place. It’s the only beach in the area that’s dog friendly. Here, you’ll find two fully-fenced dog parks, one for small dogs and another for larger breeds, and an off-leash beach, meaning your pup can run to their heart’s desire and go for a leisurely swim, in safe and shallow waters, too! Paw Park features drinking fountains, washing stations, and doggie waste bags. It’s free to enter and on-site parking is conveniently available.

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Pet friendly restaurant: Old Salty Dog, Venice Island

Not only can humans dine at this friendly Venice eatery, but your pup can also enjoy a meal! Ask about their doggy menu for items made specifically for canines. And if your pup is lucky, she may even land a spot on the Dog Blog.

Pet friendly hotel: Casey Key Resorts – Beachfront, Nokomis

Minutes from Brohard Beach you’ll discover Casey Key and the Casey Key Beachfront Resort, an ideal spot to stay with your fur baby. This quaint, Cape Cod-style hotel is pet friendly with a $50 fee per night.  

jet set pets dog friendly beaches jupiter beach

Photo courtesy of @floridacorgis

5. Jupiter Off-Leash Dog Beach - Jupiter, FL

Spend all day at this off-leash dog beach where you’ll discover 2.5 miles of open Atlantic shoreline where you and your pup can go from sand to sea from sunrise to sunset. Here, in addition to the beach, you’ll find picnic areas, walking trails, and a fishing pier. Beach pavilions are available for rent to offer your dog a shady spot to relax. Beach access is free, parking is available, and Friends of Jupiter Beach provides free doggie clean-up bags. A pup rinsing station is available as well.

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Pet friendly restaurant: PapiChulo Tacos, Jupiter

Tacos and a lively beach bar with your pup. What more could you want? Poochy can hang with you while you kick back on the casual, outdoor patio. Keep an eye out for the occasional “Yappy Hour” events, too. 

Pet friendly hotel: Jupiter Beach Resort & Spa, Jupiter

This upscale resort and spa is swanky and dog friendly so your fur-baby can come along on your Jupiter vacation, too. The fee is $100 per night per dog, with a maximum of two dogs per room and when outside the room, dogs must be leashed at all times.

dog friendly beaches article jet set pets panama city beach

Photo courtesy of @ehulsey.rn

6. Dog Beach at Pier Park Panama City Beach - Panama City Beach, FL

If you find yourself in the northwestern part of the Sunshine State, head to the Dog Beach at Pier Park in Panama City Beach. This breathtaking 400-foot stretch of white sugar sand beach is pet friendly with seasonably warm waters that are relatively calm, making it an easy swim for your furry, leashed friend. You’ll find a rinsing station on the boardwalk to hose down your pup post-swim and free parking across the street.

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Pet friendly restaurant: FINNS Island Style Grub & FINNS Barista Bar, South Thomas

FINNS loves pups and welcomes them to hang with their owners at their multiple locations. Kick off your day with pup in tow as you sip on coffee and smoothies at the Barista Bar, or bring your furry friend for lunch for tacos, burritos, and more at Island Style Grub.  

Pet friendly hotel: Hyatt Place Panama City Beach/Beachfront

This hotel welcomes dogs 50 lbs. and under to stay the night with their humans starting at an additional $125/night at the hotel’s beachfront location. Best of all, this hotel is moments from the dog friendly beach.

jet set pets dog friendly beaches article key west dog beach

Photo courtesy of @____445____

7. Dog Beach - Key West, FL

While visiting the southernmost tip of the state (and nation!) be sure to bring your furry friend to Dog Beach, a tiny but enjoyable secluded section of beach where dogs are welcome to play off leash. Be sure to watch for rocks while here. 

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Pet friendly restaurant: The Afterdeck at Louie’s Backyard, Key West

It’s impossible to visit Key West’s Dog Beach and not head to Louie’s afterwards. This popular pet friendly, ocean-front Victorian home-turned-restaurant gladly welcomes pups and their owners at their outdoor deck tables. 

Pet friendly hotel: Sunset Key Cottages, Key West

Part of the Opal Collection, the Sunset Key Cottages welcome dogs 30 lbs. or less for an additional $100 per night, two pups max per cottage. These private cottages will have you feeling at home instantly while you soak in lush gardens and blue seas on an exclusive 27-acre private island just off Key West. 

jet set pets dog friendly beaches blog new smyrna beach

Photo courtesy of @biteyandreckless

8. Smyrna Dunes Park - Smyrna Beach, FL

If you want a mix of it all, Smyrna Dunes Park is your place for pup! Shallow, calm waters (on the inlet shore) welcome leashed dogs, in addition to a 73-acre park with dog friendly nature trails and an elevated boardwalk that permits pups until 10 a.m. You’ll pay a $10 fee to enter the park, or if you plan to visit often, opt for the $20 annual pass. 

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Pet friendly restaurant: Yellow Dog Eats, New Smyrna Beach

Pup-themed, this casual vegetarian and vegan-friendly kitchen and bar serves classic BBQ, salads, sandwiches, and more. It’s open daily from 11 a.m. and LOVES dogs!

Pet friendly hotel: Black Dolphin Inn, New Smyrna Beach

Once a private grand home, the historic Black Dolphin Inn has been sophisticatedly restored into an inviting hotel that features mid-century modern interiors, courtyards, a dock, a nearby beach, and best of all, four-legged friends are welcome in designated first floor units which include the Courtyard View Units and one of the Bay View Suites (certain restrictions apply). The charming inn requires advance notice if you plan to bring your pooch and an additional fee of $50 will be added to your account.

jet set pets dog friendly beaches friendly beaches post bonita beach

Photo courtesy of @veronicavallarino

9. Bonita Beach Dog Park (aka Lee County Dog Beach) in Bonita Springs, Fort Myers Beach

If your fur baby is hoping to spot a dolphin while splashing around then this is the beach for them! With crystal clear waters, plentiful sandbars, and a nice secluded area where they can play and swim off leash, your pup will be thrilled with this sandy beach that’s located at the edge of Lovers Key State Park. Here pet owners can enjoy the convenience of doggy waste bags and a wash station.  

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Pet friendly restaurant: Tommy Bahama Marlin Bar & Store, Coconut Point

A spacious pup friendly patio with a walk-up bar and a retail store in the same location? Sounds like the place to be! Bring your good boy or girl along with you to yappy… we mean, happy hour daily from 4 – 6 p.m.

Pet friendly hotel: Hyatt Regency Coconut Point Resort & Spa, Coconut Point

Here you’ll find lush natural surroundings in addition to family-friendly amenities like pools, waterslides, and more. Pups are welcome to stay at an added cost and are also invited to enjoy many of the public areas of the hotel excluding the pool decks. 

jet set pets haulover beach miami dog friendly florida beaches article

10. Haulover Beach Park - Miami Beach, FL

It’s a dog’s life at Haulover Beach Park. With an off-leash beach area (near lifeguard tower 3) and fenced grassy play areas, this is the beach to bring your fur baby. Accessible through parking lots 3 and 4, there is a $2 fee to enter the beach. Note that Haulover Beach allows pups from 8 a.m. until 3 p.m. 

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Pet friendly restaurant: Makoto, Bal Harbour Shops, Bal Harbour

Outstanding sushi on an open-air patio alongside your best furry friend? Always a yes to that! This Japanese restaurant never disappoints.

Pet friendly hotel: Ritz Carlton Bal Harbour

More than just dog friendly, the Ritz Carlton caters to your pooch. With your pup’s stay (at an additional fee), they’ll be provided with an area and activities guide that highlights everything your pup could want and more from their beach vacation. Be sure to order a special meal for your four-legged friend off the hotel’s pet menu. Ooh la la!

jet set pets st george island florida dog friendly beaches article

Photo courtesy of Unsplash

11. St. George Island Beach - St. George Island, FL

If you’re looking for a stretch of undisturbed beach, St. George Island (in its entirety) welcomes your leashed pup to explore its quiet beaches, vibrant wildlife, and incredible sunsets. Be sure to visit nearby Regatta Park while you’re there where you can rent a paddleboard with your pooch. 

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Pet friendly restaurant: Blue Parrot Ocean Front Cafe

With a glorious water view, this casual eatery invites you and your puppy to dine and sip on their outdoor deck with a fun beachy setting. The menu consists of fresh, local seafood, steaks, and more while the drink menu leans tiki and fun!

Pet friendly hotel: Water Street Hotel & Marina, Apalachicola

Just a bridge crossing away from St. George Island, this 30-suite hotel and marina welcomes your pets for an additional $45 per night. Enjoy a historic setting in a charming small town. 

jet set pets friendly beaches article walton rocks beach

Photo courtesy of @pawz4peace

12. Walton Rocks Beach and Dog Park - Jensen Beach, FL

If it’s wide open space your fur baby is after, Walton Rocks Beach and Dog Park has you covered. With 24 acres of dog park and beach along the Atlantic Ocean, your pup can run and run and run off leash to their heart’s desire! After they’re done playing, use the convenient wash station to rinse off. Enter the parking lot just after the power plant. 

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Pet friendly restaurant: Saunders Landing, Jensen Beach

Pleasant Floridan vibes await you at this casual waterfront restaurant with views of the marina and water at every turn. Your pup can hang alongside you while you dig into the excellent, eclectic menu on the outdoor patio.

Pet friendly hotel: Hutchinson Shores Resort & Spa, Jensen Beach

This resort and spa welcomes well-behaved dogs, 30 lbs. or less, for an additional $100 per night. Here, dogs are also welcome along much of the hotel’s beach as well as on the pool deck; however, they must be leashed at all times when not in their guestroom. 

Packing Essentials and Safety Tips for a Beach Day with Your Dog

No matter which beach you choose to enjoy with your furry friend, you’ll want to make sure to follow proper leash laws and clean-up rules that keep the beaches safe and enjoyable for all.

In addition to being mindful of the rules, it’s also imperative to bring a few must-have items with you to ensure a comfortable and safe beach day such as fresh, cold water, a water bowl, and a beach umbrella or tent for beaches that don’t provide shady spots.

Paw protection is also recommended for beaches that are rocky or that may have sharp shells. Beach shoes for dogs that have a non-slip sole protector are a great way to ensure their paws keep safe during your beach day.

Sandy Tails: Share Your Florida Dog Friendly Beach Experiences

Have you and your pooch enjoyed a day at a Florida beach? Tag #jetsetpets on Instagram for us to feature your photo! We can’t wait to see your tail-wagging-times.

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