No. 4 – Boston, Massachusetts
Coming in at No. 4 in our countdown is Boston, second only to New York City for dog-friendly destinations on the East Coast. Boston welcomes dogs at many of its most popular tourist attractions, including the Freedom Trail, which takes visitors to 16 historical sites on a walking tour that covers 250 years of America’s history. The Freedom Trail also passes through Boston Common Park, which has public gardens and leash-free areas for dogs within its 50 acres.
Does your pet like to frolic in the surf and sand? Visit Boston’s Carson Beach, where your dog can play leash-free to his heart’s content. You can also take pet-friendly ferry trips from Boston to nearby Cape Cod, Martha’s Vineyard, Nantucket or Block Island. There are also a variety of restaurants that offer dog-friendly dining, such as the Salty Dog Seafood Grill in Faneuil Market Hall.
Need a pet-friendly place to stay in Boston? Try the Hotel Marlowe on Edwin H. Land Boulevard or the Boston Harbor Hotel, neither or which has additional pet fees or weight restrictions for their four-legged guests.
No. 3 – New York, N.Y.
New York City may not seem like an ideal place for dogs, considering all the concrete and skyscrapers. But the Big Apple can be a great getaway for you and your best animal friend. For starters, dog owners in New York have access to Central Park, a pet-friendly haven in the heart of Manhattan. There are also numerous hotels in the city that cater to canines, including the Soho Grand, the Muse Hotels, the Regency, Loews and Novotel.
Getting around in New York is easy, since many taxis allow dogs. There are also a few canine taxicab services that can be called for pooch-specific transportation. You can also travel with your pooch on many of the city’s ferries, where you can see some of New York’s most iconic landmarks from the water. If you prefer to travel on foot, try one of the Big Apple’s many dog-friendly walking tours.
New York City also has plenty of pet-friendly dining establishments, such as Gavroche on West 14th Street, Zocalo on East 82nd Street or Firehouse on Columbus Avenue. But perhaps the best thing about visiting New York with your dog is that many shops and boutiques — even such upscale retailers as Tiffany’s, Bloomingdales and Saks Fifth Avenue — allow dogs.
No. 2 – Portland, Oregon
Coming in at No. 2 in our list of dog-friendly vacation destinations is Portland, Oreg., the city with the most dog parks per capita in the United States. And this doesn’t include just neighborhood dog runs, though there are plenty of those. Portland is home to some of the largest dog-friendly parks in the nation, including Forest Park, with more than 4,000 acres.
Tourists and their four-legged friends can enjoy Portland’s most popular attractions, including the Saturday Market, an outdoor market with pet-friendly shops, cafes and entertainment. They can also spend hours exploring the woods of Washington Park or take a scenic stroll along the riverfront. If you’re in the mood for a more rugged adventure, the nearby Columbia River Gorge is a great escape that offers hiking trails and scenic vistas.
Many Portland hotels cater to canines, including the Mark Spencer Hotel on 11th Avenue and the Residence Inn on River Parkway. And for the more social dog-human pairs, there are also plenty of yappy hours, pug crawls and doggie dashes offered throughout the year at a variety of Portland establishments.