Sick of chasing your tail at home? If you’re thinking about or already planning a weekend getaway, why not bring your furry family member with you! Dogs love a good adventure, so it’d be a shame to leave Rover with a pet-sitter while you explore our beautiful province. Here are some great ideas for dog-loving destinations, mini road trips and staycations within a short drive of the lower mainland.
Before you go
- Ensure your dog’s identification (tattoo or microchip) is up to date and registered so that you can easily re-connect if they get lost.
- Bring extra water, food, travel bowls and any medications. It’s also a good idea to pack a copy of your dog’s key medical records in case you need to use an emergency vet along the way.
- Be prepared with a Pet First Aid Kit from our pet-loving friends at the BC SPCA, including their easy-to-carry Pocket Kit for walks and hikes.
- Travel with the peace of mind that your furry friend is protected against the unexpected with BCAA Pet Insurance partner, Pets Plus Us.
- Call ahead. It’s always good to double check the pet policy at your destination to avoid surprises or disappointment.
And now you’re ready to hit the road! Great dog-friendly destinations include:
Whistler has many gorgeous pet-friendly parks, trails, hotels and other accommodations. A few local favourites include:
Spring cross-country skiing at Whistler Olympic Park
- Whistler Olympic Park - In the snowy months, you’ll find 40 kilometres of dog-friendly ski and snowshoe trails, in the Sea to Sky Corridor’s largest off-leash area. Come spring and summer, you can explore three different hiking routes, or play nine holes of disc golf (just make sure Fido doesn’t chomp through your disc).
- Meadow Park - Dogs are allowed off-leash at Meadow Park before 10 am and after 8 pm.
- Rainbow Park - Rainbow Park allows off-leash dogs before 10 am and after 8 pm. Better yet, there’s a ‘Barking Bay beach area for dogs, plus there’s a gated off-leash area, available 24/7. Want to bike there? You can bike or rollerblade with your pet along the paved Valley Trail. There’s even secure bike (and gear) parking at Rainbow Park starting June 18 on Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays and statutory holidays.
Bowen Island, BC
Sandy Beach is a rocky beach with some sandy areas, and public access is off of Senator Road. Dogs are welcome to enjoy Sandy Beach, year-round except for July and August. They must be on leash and, of course, cleaned up after.
A happy pup on Bowen Island
West & North Vancouver
West Vancouver, BC
This marine adventure is a unique pet-friendly Airbnb Experience. You’ll meet your host Doug in Ambleside, then head to the ocean to get a lesson on baiting and setting your crab traps. The experience lasts six hours and can accommodate up to 4 humans aged 12 and up (parents may also bring children under 2 years of age). Human guests must have a B.C. Tidal waters fishing license. Rates start at $60 per human.
Capilano Suspension Bridge Park
North Vancouver, BC
The Capilano Suspension Bridge is an epic suspension bridge, high above the Capilano River, north of Vancouver. The bridge is 140 metres long and a stunning 70 metres above the river. Leashed dogs (and cats) are allowed to cross the bridge but aren’t allowed in the gift shop (which is totally fair).
Lynn Canyon (and Bowen Island) hiking and photography
North Vancouver and Bowen Island, BC
These are two really-cool, pet-friendly experiences in Lynn Canyon (North Vancouver) or across the ferry on Bowen Island. If you have a short time in Vancouver and want to explore the city (or take the 20-minute ferry to Bowen Island), this tour is the way to go. Leashed pets can join you on this adventure around Vancouver and surrounding sights. The North Vancouver experience lasts 9 hours (Bowen Island is 6 hours) and can accommodate up to 6 humans aged 10 and up. You and your pooch must be able to walk short distances. Rates start at $63 per person.
Book your North Vancouver experience
Book your Bowen Island experience
‘Doga’ aka dog-friendly yoga
Outdoor yoga in Stanley Park
Explore Outdoor Yoga in Stanley Park is a pet-friendly Airbnb Experience hosted by Mia. The experience starts with a stroll through Stanley Park to one of your host's favourite, secluded places among the trees to practice yoga. Mia says, “Dogs are always welcome to feel the benefits of yoga, too.” The experience lasts 1 hour and can accommodate up to 10 humans aged 15 and up. Rates start at $20 per person.
Instagram Downtown Tour
Does your dog like long walks and smizing for the camera? Then this tour is for you (and your pooch)! You’ll both have fun making stylish photos for your Instagram feed (your dog has its own Instagram, too, right?). You’ll both learn how to take great photos with intriguing street art, historical architecture, and epic west coast views. Your host will snap photos for you and give you both tips on photo composition, lighting, and editing. The experience lasts 1.5 hours and can accommodate up to 5 humans aged 18 and up. Rates start at $48 per person (dogs say “Cheese” for free).
Pitt Lake & Port Moody
Paddle your pup to a waterfall
Pitt Lake, BC
Widgeon Falls is a popular day-hike, with a fun twist: you’ll need to paddle to reach the trailhead. This one’s for the more experienced pet parents (canoes can be wobbly so this isn’t recommended for furry first-timers!).
Rest your barking dogs at this great local patio
Port Moody, BC
After a day enjoying the trails, beaches, and beauty of Vancouver’s surrounding nature, head to the dog-friendly patio at The Parkside Brewery in Port Moody (just ensure you and your pup have a designated driver!).
There you go! Our perfect pet-friendly ideas for a mini road trip, weekend getaway or staycation. You can also trust BCAA's Pet Insurance partner, Pets Plus Us, to offer expert advice and best-in-class protection, and BCAA Members automatically save 12%. Learn more about BCAA Pet Insurance in partnership with Pets Plus Us and get an online quote today.