Located in the breathtakingly beautiful Pacific Northwest near majestic mountains and emerald forests, Washington State offers a bounty of dog-friendly beaches. These beaches are situated along the Pacific Ocean, as well as in Puget Sound and on Lake Washington. Nearby most pet-friendly Washington vacation rentals are plentiful opportunities for you and your dog to enjoy swimming, water sports, hiking, and outdoor recreation. Take a look at the top dog-friendly beaches in Washington.

North Head Lighthouse
Source: Flickr/Troy Smith

1. Magnuson Park, Seattle

Magnuson Park, located in the Sand Point neighborhood in northeast Seattle along the shore of Lake Washington, has the largest off-leash area in the city. Almost nine acres of fully fenced land includes walking trails, a spacious flat play area, a water station, and a special section for small and shy dogs. The beach has special gates to provide access to the water where your dog can wade or swim. Other park facilities include dispensers with plastic bags to clean up after your pet and a hose to rinse off your dog. Be sure to bring a leash, because leashes are required until you get to the off-leash area.

When your dog has had enough of running and swimming at the beach at Magnuson Park, head for Norm’s Eatery and Ale House in nearby Fremont District. This friendly restaurant welcomes dogs on leashes and even has a special menu for dogs. Also just a few minutes away is the University District Shopping Center, a dog-friendly mall with shopping, entertainment, and dining venues.

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2. Fort Ebey State Park, Oak Harbor

Oak Harbor is the main city on Whidbey Island, the largest island in Washington, which lies north of Seattle in Puget Sound. Fort Ebey State Park is just southwest of Oak Harbor on the island’s western shoreline. The park’s 645 acres include two miles of spectacularly beautiful saltwater beach where dogs are allowed on leashes. The inland portion of the park has 28 miles of hiking trails through wooded areas and along sea bluffs to explore with your canine companion. Gun emplacements and underground rooms dug into the bluffs demonstrate how the area was used for coastal defenses during World War II. Other park facilities include picnic tables, picnic shelters, barbecue pits, and fishing areas.

Another awesome dog-friendly hiking park near Oak Harbor is Deception Pass State Park, located north of town just before the Deception Pass Bridge. The park has 38 miles of lovely trails, but dogs are not allowed on the swimming beaches. Frasers Gourmet Hideaway in Oak Harbor is a pet-friendly restaurant that serves delicious steak and seafood.

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3. Fay Bainbridge State Park, Bainbridge Island

A comfortable ferry ride takes you west across Elliot Bay in Puget Sound from Seattle to the city of Bainbridge Island, located on the eastern shore of its namesake island. Fay Bainbridge State Park is on the northeastern corner of the island less than 10 miles from vacation rentals in town. Dogs on leashes are allowed on the saltwater beaches of this lovely park with magnificent views of Mount Baker and Mount Rainer in the distance. The park has picnic tables and restrooms.

Dogs are also welcome on the grounds of Bainbridge Vineyards about halfway between Fay Bainbridge State Park and the city, where you can taste some elegant local wines. Bainbridge Thai Cuisine in Bainbridge Island has a pleasant outdoor patio where you can dine in the company of your dog.

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4. Ocean Shores Beach, Ocean Shores

The city of Ocean Shores lies on the coastline of the Pacific Ocean in western Washington State. The city faces a six-mile stretch of wide flat sandy beach. At the end of Taurus Boulevard in town is a Dog Beach where canine friends can run leash-free provided you keep them under control. On the rest of the six-mile expanse, take your dog with you on a leash while you enjoy activities such as beachcombing, kite flying, clamming, and surf fishing.

Just north of Ocean Shores is Ocean City State Park, which has 170 acres of shoreline, dunes, and trails through shore pine for you and your dog to explore. When you’re hungry, Ocean Beach Roaster and Bistro welcomes dogs on its spacious outdoor patio.

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5. Cape Disappointment State Park, Ilwaco

The city of Ilwaco is at the southern end of Long Beach Peninsula in the southwestern corner of Washington State. Cape Disappointment State Park is at the southern side of the city and has 27 miles of beaches on the Pacific Ocean shoreline to the west and the Columbia River to the east. Dogs are allowed on the beaches as long as they are on leashes. The park also has seven miles of dog-friendly hiking trails through old-growth forest and saltwater marshes. Don’t miss visits to the Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center, the North Head Lighthouse, and the Cape Disappointment Lighthouse.

You and your canine companion can also explore over eight miles of sandy beach and beachfront trails along the magnificent Long Beach Peninsula. The Discovery Trail follows the path of Lewis and Clark and includes fascinating sculptures and interpretive displays. When you are outside of city limits, the leash law is not generally enforced, so you can allow your well-behaved dog to run free along the beach.

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