When experiencing this glorious county, you’d be silly not to share one of the dog-friendly boat trips in Northumberland. There are a variety of providers to pick from, and we explain what each one offers, so you can decide which is best suited for your needs.
Dog-Friendly Boat Tours in Northumberland
Serenity Farne Island Boat Tours
Serenity Farm Island Boat Tours is another large company enjoying boat tours all year around the farne islands, considered one of Britain’s most stunning wildlife habitats. Again, they offer a variety of trips close to pet friendly accommodation in Northumberland, including photography trips, whale watching, and landings.
Serenity boats have four well-equipped catamaran vessels with toilets available, and all serenities have full commentary as you tour around the Farne islands learning about the area’s wildlife, geography and history.
The tours themselves are run by a small family with a team of friendly staff who offer visitors the best sailing experience. They’re licensed to land on the National Trust islands and provide a great hour-and-a-half sail around them when the grey seals and newborn pups are born. In the winter, you’re bound to see various animals, including, if you’re lucky, a Mink Whale, a Bridled Tern, a Manx Shearwater, a Blue Throat, and a Razorbill, to name a few.
Billy Shiel’s Boat Trips
Billy Shields boat trips are one of the most popular and famous on the Northumberland Coast. They offer a variety of cruises and trips, including a puffin seabird cruise, staple landing trip, sunset cruises, grey seal trip, dive charters, private charter and a birdwatch cruise.
Their boat fleet consists of eight ranging in size, all offering different perspectives when out on the sea. The boat tours will help you explore the 15 to 20 islands depending on the state of the tide. Between April and July, about 23 seabird colonies nest here in their natural habitat, including around 43,000 pairs of puffins. You may be lucky enough to see a colony of grey or Atlantic seals with, on average, 2000 pups born on the islands yearly.
Your dogs are welcome on the trips as long as they’re on a lead and well-behaved. The main boat fleet is stationed at Seahouses Harbor, and pay and display parking is available near the beach and in the village.
Golden Gate Boat Trips
Golden Gate trips sail from the 1st of April until the 31st of October. Some of the trips they include involve exploring Longtone Island, which is famous for its lighthouse and is currently the only boat allowed to land on the island. If you’re after a more extended tour that lasts approximately two and a half to three hours, then book it for the farm bird sanctuary, which leaves the harbour at 1230 daily. This will offer a brilliant tour of the islands to see the seabird and grey seal colony.
They also offer an all-day excursion, which is approximately five and a half to six hours, perfect for photographers, local history enthusiasts, and ornithologists who want to observe the birds in more detail. It usually involves landing on two islands, Staple and Inner Farne, although it can also be adapted to land on Longstone.
Dogs are welcome on board the boats and are allowed on Longstone, the only farne island they are allowed on, but they must be kept on leads at all times. They’re not permitted in Long Stone Lighthouse, however.
Berwick Boat Trips
Berwick boat trips off various trips, including the chain bridge trip, which takes you from Berwick-Upon-Tweed past the Northumberland countryside. As you sail under the lower bridges before coming to the chain bridge, which is approximately 200 years old, this trip lasts around two hours.
They also have an estuary trip, which sails out of the river tweed and out into the North Sea. You’ll see a range of wildlife and some seals and dolphins if you’re lucky. There’s also a sea trip which offers you a different perspective of Berwick Upon Tweed as you look at it from a distance and admire the panoramic views of the Northumberland coastline. You will also see a range of seabirds and hopefully some larger animals.
The coastal cruise to St Abbs is one of the longer cruises lasting approximately three and a half hours. You will call at the Needle’s Eye Kittywake Colony just past the cliffs between Berwick and Burnmouth before heading north towards the Berkshire coast with brilliant views of Coldingham sands. This is an ideal trip for those who love stunning scenery and keen photographers. The boat is called the Border Belle, accommodates up to 60 passengers, and is licensed by the Maritime and Coast Guard Agency.
Puffin Cruises Around The Farne Islands
Dave Gray has been operating his puffing cruises out of Ambu Harbor for many years, offering sailing trips around Coquet Island with stunning views of the wildlife and scenery. The seabird Paradise has 40,000 nesting seabirds at any time in the summer months, and you may be fortunate enough to see Roseate Terns, Sandwich Tern, Kittiewakes and Eider ducks.
There are two boats, one being the G Fisher and the other being a restored lifeboat. You can expect the tours to last between an hour and a couple of hours, with the friendly staff giving you commentary on what you can expect to see, and you are more than welcome to ask any questions whilst out on tour.
St Cuthberts Boat Tours
This tour company operates two fishing boats, St Cuthbert II, which was built in 1983 and is 39ft in length and has a capacity of 73 passengers and two crew members. The second boat is St Cuthbert III, built in 1989 and again is 39ft in length. It can accommodate 80 passengers with two crew and has two liferafts.
There is a selection of boat trips, the first being to Inner Farne, the largest of the islands, measuring around 10 acres in size. During the breeding season, it’s home to Arctic Terns, Guillemots and Common Terns. The second trip is to Staple Island, the main bird sanctuary and an excellent sport for wildlife photographers.
How much is it to go to the Farne Islands?
It all depends on what providers you use, but adult tickets usually cost between £12-15 for the boat trip and for children £7-10. Small children will typically go free, depending on their age.
Where do boats go from to the farne islands?
The boats to farne islands depart from Seahouses harbour daily.
We hope you enjoyed this list of boat tours and trips off the coast. You can have peace of mind as your canine companion won’t have to stay at home and is welcome on board each vessel from the companies mentioned above. You’ll experience stunning views and hopefully see brilliant wildlife on Holy Island, Rocky Island and Longstone Island. You can also read our guide to dog-friendly historic castles in Northumberland, which also provide memorable days out for the whole family or see pet-friendly national parks in Northumberland which have miles of countryside walks to try.
Liane is a devoted mum and dog lover, passionate about exploring the UK with her family. Writing for DogFriendlyGetaways, she offers insights into the best pet-inclusive holiday spots, drawing from her joyful family adventures.