The Best 3 Dog Friendly Beaches in Sussex & 2022 Restrictions

Fancy taking your pets down to the East Sussex coast? Maybe your heart’s in West Sussex, instead. Regardless, there are plenty of great dog friendly beaches in Sussex that are well worth exploring – you just need to know where to look for them!

In this beach guide, we will take you through sandy straits and pebbled walks where you and your four-legged companions can take some much needed time out down the Sussex sands. There are tons of beaches across the county region that will welcome dogs all year round.

Before you go, however, make sure to take a look at Sussex pet friendly cottages, too! While hunting down friendly beaches for you and your pup, it makes perfect sense to make a real holiday of it. Keep reading for the full lowdown on Sussex’s best pet beaches.

When are dogs allowed on beaches in Sussex

Dog friendly beaches near Sussex welcome pets all year round, but it makes sense to check for any dog ban zones that may be in place. Some of the best beaches have dog restrictions during high season simply because it’s important to keep the sand dunes looking their best! Don’t worry, however, as the beaches we list for you below all have zones or non-restricted times for dog walks. We’ve listed the information you need to know – now, why not take a look at the best dog walks in Sussex elsewhere, too?

The Best Beaches in Sussex for Dogs

Cooden Beach

This lovely stretch of sea and sand is perfect for kitesurfing and windsurfing, making it the perfect dog-friendly beach for active people. It’s also an absolute favourite for dog walkers of all ages, as dogs are allowed on this beach year-round.

If you are planning a nice walk down Cooden Beach, do bring your trainers or boots as opposed to sandals, as the sand is made of little stones that could become uncomfortable to walk on in the wrong shoes. As you’ll explore more dog friendly beaches, you’ll start to know what to expect!

Your dog will love it regardless, however – and the views are beautiful! Cooden Beach is a nice, quiet area for you and your dog to get back to nature while enjoying the sea views. Come spend an afternoon walking along with the pebbles and watching the sunset over the ocean on this peaceful stretch. You could even make a nice weekend of it and spend the night at the nearby campsite with your four-legged partner. 

Do keep in mind that there is no lifeguard patrol in place here – so be careful!

  • Seasonal Restrictions: No 
  • Lifeguards: No
  • Address: Cooden Beach, Brexhill-on-sea, East Sussex TN39 3DJ
  • Facilities Near By: Car park, golf club nearby, nearby campsite, litter bins

Felpham Beach

For one of the best all-around dog friendly beaches in West Sussex, Felpham Beach is certain to tick lots of boxes. This shingle beach is perfect for dog owners and is yet another beach on the map that welcomes dogs year-round.

This dog friendly beach in Sussex is also a common favourite for families as there’s pretty much something for everyone. It is near the West Sussex seaside resort of Bognor Regis, where you can hire beach huts while you watch the world go by.

The kids can spend the afternoon at Felpham Sailing Club, which is based on the beach – and explore activities like canoeing, sailing, windsurfing and more – whilst you and your dog get to sunbathe. Do take the time to check out the many rock pools along the coastline here, too.

When it’s time for lunch, dinner, or a nice drink by the seaside, you can always go up the promenade that backs onto the beach and find yourself a nice little cafe. This is a well-connected dog friendly beach that doesn’t suffer from any dog restrictions.

  • Seasonal Restrictions: No 
  • Lifeguards: No
  • Address: Bognor Regis Promenade, Bognor Regis, West Sussex PO22 7EF
  • Facilities Near By: Restaurants/cafes nearby, promenade, toilets, bins, slipway, children’s play area, parking

Cuckmere Haven Beach

If you are planning on spending the day on a lovely stretch of East Sussex sand, then Cuckmere Haven beach might be one of the best picks for you and your pet.

This beautiful beach is situated alongside impressive cliffs, giving you the chance to experience the seaside from varying views and angles. The area is very popular with dog walkers, as the change in terrain between the beach and the cliffs offers diverse vantage points from miles around.

This lovely pebble beach is a fairly quiet area where you and your dog can take some time away from crowds to enjoy the coastal scenery.

There’s no dog ban here – dogs are allowed on this beach year-round but do pay attention to the signs around the seafront, as there are certain areas where control is necessary and you will need to put your dog on a lead. This is to protect you and your dogs as much as it is to protect the beach!

Next to the beach, you can grab a nice drink and a meal at one of the local cafes and restaurants. There are also stacks of shopping nearby, making this one of the best-connected dog friendly beaches in West Sussex.

  • Seasonal Restrictions: No 
  • Lifeguards:  No
  • Address: Cuckmere Haven Beach, Seaford, BN25 4AR, West Sussex
  • Facilities Near By: Restaurants/cafes nearby, toilets, shops nearby, car parking

East Head Beach

For wildlife spotting, this part of our beach guide is certain to interest you! As well as being one of the best-looking dog friendly beaches on our list, it’s replete with all kinds of fauna – it’s heaven for birdwatchers, but be sure to keep your dog on a lead!

There are lots of critters and creatures to spot around here, including seals that laze around at low tide, flopping around on the mudflats to their hearts’ content. Close to Chichester, this West Sussex dog friendly beach is ideal for photo opportunities, and best of all, there’s no dog ban in place.

This beach welcomes dogs year-round – great news for anyone left disappointed by dog restrictions elsewhere. You may also be interested in knowing that this sandy, shingle beach is a Site of Specific Scientific Interest as well as a Ramsar Site (a wetland of international importance).

The beach is owned by the National Trust, making it a local nature reserve. This space also offers a nice walk among the sandy dunes that back along the beach, where you can take a stroll with your pup towards a local cafe, for a bowl of water and a cup of tea.

This is one of the best Sussex dog friendly beaches for sheer beauty – it’s absolutely stunning!

  • Seasonal Restrictions: No 
  • Lifeguards: No
  • Address: East Head Beach, West Sussex, PO20 8AU
  • Facilities Near By: Restaurants/cafes, shops, toilets, car park ( about 15 minutes away)

Newhaven West Quay Beach

Back in East Sussex, you can also choose to walk along Newhaven West Quay Beach with your dogs at any point during the year. Many dog lovers make the trip here for the fact that dog exercise is completely unrestricted.

This brilliant pebble beach is situated on the western side of the port and offers some sandy areas when the water level is low. Along the stretches of cliffs, you will be able to visit Newhaven Fort, which was used during both World Wars and is now a great place to take the entire family for a day out and a nice cup of tea! 

It is a great area for all sorts of activities including kayaking, snorkelling, swimming and windsurfing. You can even use the handy slipway to get away and into the sea! Your dog will love this beautiful seafront and you can spend the day walking around and exploring interesting history and heritage. Being quite close to the town, you are never far away from a nice restaurant and/or cafe, as well as local shops. 

  • Seasonal Restrictions: No 
  • Lifeguards: No
  • Address: Newhaven West Quay Beach, East Sussex,BN9 9HD
  • Facilities Near By: Restaurants/cafes, car park, bins, slipway

Southwick Beach

Southwick Beach is our final pick of West Sussex dog friendly beaches, but there’s a fair deal more where this came from.

This shingle beach welcomes dogs year-round and even has dog bins available, which owners everywhere will appreciate. Although it is mostly pebble and shingle, at low tide you will be able to walk barefoot along the sand. It is situated just to the east of Shoreham Harbour, where the River Adur meets the sea. The beach has been divided into different parts thanks to wooden groynes. 

Just behind the beach, you will be able to enjoy tea and a cake in the promenade cafe. The area is very popular for fishing, windsurfing, canoeing, swimming and – naturally – dog walking.

With absolutely no dog restrictions, Southwick Beach is a great place to take your pup for a nice afternoon along the coast. Take the time to enjoy the scenery and the various activities that you and your four-legged companion can enjoy together. Check other pet friendly days out in Sussex close by on the map, too.

  • Seasonal Restrictions: No 
  • Lifeguards: No
  • Address: Southwick Beach, Portslade, Southwick, Brighton, West Sussex BN41 1WD, UK
  • Facilities Near By: Restaurants/cafes, toilets, bins, nearby car park

Normans Bay

The beach at Normans Bay is a genuine highlight in the heart of the east of Sussex. This lovely shingle beach is great for a quiet day out in nature where you and your pooch can explore unimpeded.

Dogs are welcome year-round on this beach, great news for anyone tired of areas with dog restrictions. If you happen to come during low tide, then you’ll be able to enjoy the best of the soft sands underfoot.

Normans Bay backs onto a campsite nearby, meaning there are plenty of holidaymaking opportunities here. Moreover, should you just want to take a nice swim with your dog, you’ll be able to take advantage of fantastic water quality throughout the year.

Normans Bay offers a blissful dog walk or two with the backing of some great holiday facilities close by – ideal for anyone who really wants to make a break of it down in the heart of Sussex. As with all destinations on our list, make sure you respect the coast and pick up anything your dog leaves on the beach!

  • Seasonal Restrictions: No 
  • Lifeguards: No
  • Address: Normans Bay, Near Pevensey Bay, East Sussex BN24 6PR
  • Facilities Near By: Campsite, toilet, car parking

East Sussex or West Sussex?

There are dog friendly beaches across both East and West Sussex, meaning you’re very likely to be spoilt for choice.

The Sussex coast is certainly the place to be when it comes to sea views and seaside town scenes – it really does have its place on England’s family fun map. However, both East and West are growing more accommodating to dogs, and as you can see from the list above, there are very few blocks or bans in place. However, it does pay to keep your eyes peeled for any zones or signs that suggest you need to pop the lead on for a little while.

While dog friendly beaches in West Sussex really are something special, the dog friendly beaches out east are just as delightful. Our recommendation would be to perhaps find somewhere central and to explore as much as possible in your holiday time.

Last Word

East Sussex, West Sussex, anywhere you go – this is a county that’s ripe for dog lovers to explore. There are pet friendly pubs in Sussex we highly recommend you check out, too.

We hope you’ve found our beach guide useful – from East to West Sussex, there really are more than a few dog friendly beaches where you and your dogs are going to enjoy trailing around across the seasons. Of course, do take our guide as a starting point – as there are scores of dog friendly beaches in West Sussex and elsewhere that are ready for you to traverse and uncover for yourself.

Unsure of the best holiday destination for you and your dogs? From Climping Beach and Lancing Beach to Middleton on Sea, there’s just far too much to cover in one simple guide. We highly recommend you and your pooch take a tour of dog friendly beaches in West Sussex and elsewhere and really make a break of it.

Ever trailed around the South Downs before? What about taking your furry friend down towards the River Arun, or the Shoreham By Sea Beach? Far be it for us to dictate your holiday – that’s not part of our operation – but do use this beach guide to hunt down an East beach or West beach to kickstart that perfect dog friendly holiday.