A vacation guide from The Inn at Lewes for exploring some of the best that Southern Delaware has to offer for you and your dog
Planning to bring your dog along with you on your trip? South Delaware is pet-friendly, meaning, you can bring your furry friend along on your coastal beach retreat. And let’s face it – there is no better way to spend your vacation than with your dog!
Contrary to popular notion, Southern Delaware has plenty of things to keep you and your furry friend entertained. Imagine taking early morning walks on the beach with your furry best friend in tow, enjoying a beautiful SoDel sunrise and taking in the salty ocean air. Or, imagine taking a hike in one of DE State Parks with your dog, enjoying nature — sounds great, doesn’t it?
Before the FOMO sets in, we have compiled a list of dog-friendly activities to do and places to visit in Southern Delaware, just for you. This vacation guide is the ultimate list you’ll need to plan a relaxed and enjoyable trip with your best buddy. Whether you want to have fun in the sun, or grab a bite to eat, or enjoy the great outdoors, this handy guide will help you decide what to do with your pet in South Delaware. Please remember, most of these places require your dog to be leashed (no more than 6ft.), the only exception being designated off-leash areas, and pick up after their messes, so be sure to call ahead of time to confirm their pet policies once and plan your day accordingly. Most of these places are nearly an hour’s drive away (at their farthest) from your dog-friendly stay at The Inn at Lewes, which makes it convenient and easy to get there.
Now that we’re done with the things to keep in mind, let’s check out dog-friendly activities and places. Ready? Let’s begin!
Pawsome Outdoor Adventures
“Don’t just bring me here to lay, I want to go out with you and play” — said a dog, probably.
Southern Delaware has no shortage of pet-friendly places you can go and be one with nature. And there’s nothing more your dog would love, than to spend time with you outdoors doing fun activities! There are many state parks and nature trails in South Delaware that allow leashed dogs to enjoy nature with their human friends (read guidelines for DE State Parks here, or a detailed guide here). Most dog parks, on the other hand, allow dogs to run and play leash-free (call and check to confirm pet policy).
Pet-Friendly Outdoor Spots:
Delaware State Parks: Cape Henlopen State Park (Lewes), Delaware Seashore State Park (Rehoboth Beach), Trap Pond State Park (Laurel), Killens Pond State Park (Felton), Holts Landing State Park (Dagsboro)
Nature Trails: Gordons Pond Trail (Lewes), Junction and Breakwater Trail (Lewes & Rehoboth), Tidbury Creek County Park (Dover)
Nature Preserves: Prime Hook National Wildlife Refuge, James Farm Ecological Preserve (Ocean View), Fork Branch Nature Preserve (Dover), Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge (Smyrna)
Dog Parks: Lewes Dog Park, Millford Dog Park, Brecknock County Park, Millsboro Dog Park, Milton Dog Park
Horseback Riding: Avalon Farm (Milton), Wandering Woods Farm (Laurel)
If hiking outdoors is not an option, don’t worry, because there are still plenty of things to do with your dog! South Delaware has several pet-friendly eateries, wineries, breweries, and shops where you won’t have to leave your dog with a pet sitter or in your room, and can bring them along with you. Tip: Do call ahead and confirm pet policies for these spots before you plan to go there.
Pet-Friendly Eateries & Shops:
Restaurants: Matt’s Fish Camp, Dogfish Head Brewings & Eats, Purple Parrot, Grotto Pizza, Fish On, Lori’s Cafe, Crabby Dick’s, Bluecoast, Surf Bagel, The Green Turtle, Zogg’s Raw Bar & Grill, Rigby’s Rehoboth, Green Man Juice Bar & Bistro, Cilantro Cocina de México, The Point Coffee House and Bake Shoppe, Fins Ale House and Raw Bar (Rehoboth Beach), Irish Eyes, Striper Bites, Kindle, The Wheelhouse, Kaisy’s Delights, Arena’s, Grain on the Rocks, Half Full, Pig and Publican (Lewes) Bethany Blues BBQ, Summer Salts Beach Grill, Armand’s Pizza by the Sea, Off the Hook, Baja Beach House Grill (Bethany Beach), Woody’s, Rusty Rudder (Dewey Beach)
Breweries: Revelation Craft Brewing Company, Thompson Island Brewing Company (Rehoboth Beach), Yappy Hour at Crooked Hammock Brewery, Big Oyster Brewry, Nassau Valley Vineyards (Lewes), Dewey Beer Company (Dewey Beach), Dogfish Head Brewery (Milton), Mispillion River Brewing (Milford)
Shops: P.U.P.S., The Doggie Boutique (Lewes), Browseabout Books, Tanger Outlets Rehoboth Beach (Rehoboth Beach)
Take the road less traveled — literally! South Delaware is never short on things you can enjoy with your pet, and these off-beat ideas will surely be a delight to enjoy with your dog. If you and your pup love car rides, then South Delaware offers some really beautiful, scenic drives to go along. You can also explore pet-friendly historical sites, or enjoy some quality outdoor music with your furry friend. South Delaware also has several pet-friendly farmers markets in the area where you and your pup can browse the stalls and enjoy some fresh local produce, or you can enjoy a quality movie night with your best friend by your side.
Car Rides: Coastal Highway, Delaware Bayshore Byway
Historical Sites: Zwaanendael Museum, Fort Miles Historical Area in Cape Henlopen State Park (Lewes), Air Mobility Command Museum (Dover)
Outdoor Music Venues: Bottle & Cork (Dewey Beach), Freeman Stage at Bayside (Selbyville)
Farmers Markets: Rehoboth Beach Farmers Market, Milton Farmers Market
Events: Bark on the Boards Dog Walk, Sea Witch Pet Parade (both in October in Rehoboth Beach), Springtime for Greyhounds in April, Dewey’s Golden Jubilee in Spring & Fall, and Greyhounds Reach the Beach in October (Dewey Beach)
Movie Theaters: Clayton Theatre (Dagsboro), Milton Theatre (Milton)
If you and your pup enjoy water activities, then South Delaware has much to offer. Many boat tour companies allow pets, plus we’re sure your pup will love enjoying the sights while feeling the wind in their fur. If both of you are relaxed and the laid-back type, consider going on a sunset cruise—you can both enjoy a beautiful sunset while cruising on the water. Or, if you’re up to an adventure, you can also try kayaking or paddle boarding with your dog—it’s a thrilling experience!
Pet-Friendly Water Activities:
Boat Tours: Cape May-Lewes Ferry, Cape Water Tours and Taxi (Lewes), Pirate Adventures of the Chesapeake
Kayak / Paddle Board Rentals: Coastal Kayak (Fenwick Island), Delmarva Board Sport Adventures (Bethany Beach)
Fishing Charters: Katydid Fishing Fleet, Fisherman’s Wharf (Lewes)
No trip to Southern Delaware is complete without a beach! Part of the Atlantic Coast, South Delaware has several pet-friendly beaches that let you bring your pup and let them have fun in the sun, sand, and the ocean. Nothing compares to hours of digging in the sand, splashing about in the waves, or catching their favorite ball or frisbee at the beach. While the beaches are a great place to be with your pup, every beach has a different pet policy for pets on the beach, so remember to check and abide by the laws before taking your pet there. Pet parents should note that pets swimming and sunbathing at beaches is off-limits between May 1 to September 30 as per DE State Law.
Lewes Beach, Broadkill Beach, Cape Henlopen State Park Beach (Lewes), Rehoboth Beach, Bethany Beach, Dewey Beach, South Bethany Beach, Delaware Seashore State Park Beach, Fenwick Island Beach
After a long day of activities and enjoyment with your furry friend, you need a cozy, comfortable place to rest. That’s where The Inn at Lewes comes in. Located at Coastal Highway, southbound Route 1, we are a pet-friendly motel and provide a comfortable stay in the charming town of Lewes, Delaware. With our 9 apartment-style studio suites that come with a fully furnished bedroom, a fully equipped kitchenette, a bathroom stocked with all the essentials, a living room with a queen sofa bed, a flatscreen TV, free Wi-Fi, and free parking on premises, you and your dog are guaranteed a comfortable and restful stay. Each studio suite can comfortably house up to 2 dogs (max 70lbs.), so you can bring your dog along with you on your vacation (read our pet policy here).
With these ideas, you and your pet should have plenty of things to keep you entertained during your stay in Southern Delaware. Remember to always check pet policies before heading out anywhere and follow the regulations to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience for everyone involved.
Happy paw-cation to you! 🐾