Ahh…to be a dog in the Bay Area – all the mountains to run, all the off-leash beaches, all the whole-grain organic chow, and absolutely no mortgage. We should all be so lucky. But being human does have its benefits too. After all, we get to spend our weekends at the beach with our dogs. And there’s really nothing better than watching a happy dog, off-leash and romping in the waves. So here’s our tribute to the glorious Bay Area beaches and the dogs who love them: The top four dog-friendly beaches coming up. Drum roll, please.
With a nod to history and a view of the Golden Gate, Baker Beach feels like a thinking dog’s beach. Smaller, cleaner and much more private than Ocean Beach, it’s the ultimate spot for dogs and their people to take in the majesty of the City by the Bay. Pad around the old canons (still fired on occasion), join in conversation with other upbeat dog people, even strip down if that’s your thing. Just follow the signs for designated off-clothes or off-leash areas and you’ll keep the rangers happy.
Located at Lincoln Blvd and Bowley Street, between the neighborhood of Sea Cliff and the Golden Gate Bridge.
A paradise for dogs, tourists, locals, everybody, the Marina’s Crissy Field never disappoints. Positively teeming with young, beautiful people and their dogs, it’s an open party for splashing, surfing, Frisbee, and long afternoon walks to the most photographed bridge in the world. But this postcard experience is just another afternoon for your dog at Crissy Field. It really doesn’t get much better than this.
Located at Mason and Lyon Streets.
Your dog puts the “Fun” in Funston. This twelve-acre paradise is your doggie’s dream beach. Take him on a run through the dunes, over the ice plant and onto this spectacular beach. Its large, accessible parking lot (off of Skyline Boulevard) even comes equipped with water faucets and troughs for parched pups. Just remember to check him for foxtails after the dash.
Located south of Ocean Beach at Skyline Blvd/John Muir Drive.
City pups love to dash around Ocean Beach. With four miles of sand under their paws, it’s all the exercise apartment dogs could want. But, the leash laws are strict on this beautiful coastline. Stay north of Fulton to the Cliff House and south of Sloat and you’re okay off-leash for several miles. Just go when the tides won’t get in the way.
But venture out of the off-leash range and you’re headed for a $50 ticket, no warnings in these parts. That’s due in part to the environmental concerns surrounding Ocean Beach’s potentially vulnerable species, which may be threatened by off-leash dogs. So go, run wild, and have the best dog day ever, but remember those species and stick to the rules. Dogs must be on leash on Ocean Beach between Sloat Boulevard and Stairwell No. 21 (roughly at Fulton).
Located at Great Highway at Fulton.
Thank you to Chile Bean and Steve for the photo.