Pet-Friendly Beaches in Portugal

By Ivan PetrenkoMay 27, 2024 17:00 PMNews
Man playing with the dogs on the beach
Man playing with the dogs on the beach. Source: Photo by Ian Badenhorst on Unsplash

As summer approaches, beachgoers are planning their seaside escapes, and pet owners are thrilled to know that some Portuguese beaches welcome their furry friends. While most beaches don't allow dogs, a select few have opened their sandy shores to pets, albeit with some regulations.

When the warm weather arrives, many people look forward to a beach day. However, dog owners often face the dilemma of leaving their pets behind since most beaches prohibit animals. Fortunately, several beaches in Portugal now allow pets under specific conditions to ensure the safety and hygiene of all visitors.

According to Portuguese law, pet-friendly beaches must guarantee the hygiene, health, well-being, and safety of animals. The Consumer Protection (DECO) organization states that dogs must have a microchip and be properly registered. Owners are also advised to carry the Companion Animal Identification Document (DIAC) or Companion Animal Passport (PAC) and to bring bags for waste collection.

Here is a list of some of Portugal's pet-friendly beaches:

Praia do Porto da Areia Norte - Peniche: Opened in August 2016, this was the first beach in Portugal to allow dogs. It offers waste bag dispensers and guidelines for pet owners.

Praia do Coral - Viana do Castelo: This calm beach, sheltered by jetties, has allowed pets since June 2017.

Praia Suave Mar - Esposende: Opened in July 2018, this beach is part of a municipal plan to promote animal welfare, featuring easy access, waste bag dispensers, and drinking fountains.

Praia da Ramalha Sul - Esposende: Also opened in July 2018, this beach provides waste bag dispensers and dog drinking fountains.

Praia das Amoreiras - Torres Vedras: Designated as pet-friendly in 2021, it has water fountains, waste bag dispensers, and colorful dog kennels.

Praia dos Pescadores - Oeiras: Since June 2020, this beach has offered drinking fountains, waste bag dispensers, and a designated area for dogs.

Praia das Furnas (Rio) – Vila Nova de Milfontes: Located in the Alentejo region, this beach is the only pet-friendly option below Greater Lisbon and is open for trial use.

Praia do Brito – Vila Nova de Gaia: Designated as pet-friendly in 2022, it features fun obstacles for dogs to enjoy.

Despite these pet-friendly options, regulations still apply. DECO advises checking beach signage, as dogs are generally not allowed on concessioned beaches during the bathing season. However, non-licensed beaches can be visited by dogs year-round unless otherwise indicated by city council signage.

In public spaces, dogs must wear a collar or harness, and for potentially dangerous breeds, these requirements are cumulative. Dogs must be leashed, muzzled if not on a leash, and accompanied by their owner. With these guidelines in mind, pet owners can enjoy a beach day with their canine companions.

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