Whoahoo! Dogtrotting.net – the magazine-style blog for globetrotting dog lovers – is one year old!
On January 5, 2015, I started writing about dog festivals, fun, and adventures, while carting my schnoodle Victor around with me, camera in one hand and leash (sometimes) in another. I started the blog as a complement to www.horsetrotting.net (about travel and trail riding) with the intention of introducing readers to dogs I’ve met during my travels.
Along the journey, Victor became my star travel companion and he’s been busy.
Here are my Seven Favourite Dog Adventures of 2015 – categorized, of course, because what would a blog be without order?
BEST DOG HIKE
Ancaster Village Waterfall Walk, Hamilton, Ontario
Start near the Ancaster Old Mill in the small town of Ancaster (now part of Hamilton, Ontario, west of Toronto) and follow the hard-packed gravel trails from the parking lot on Old Dundas Road through the forest to Canterbury Falls (about one hour walk) … or beyond if you want to see even more falls, streams and walking bridges. This is one of the best in a series of trails in a city trying to rebrand itself as the ‘City of Waterfalls.’
BEST DOG REGION
Door County, Wisconsin, USA
In a county known for outdoor activities including hiking, riding,
kayaking, and fish boils, there are a surprising number of semi-indoor dog-friendly opportunities. Take your dog with you on a fireboat tour of the bay or to dinner at the Harbour Fish Restaurant with its own pup menu. Hike along the beach at Whitefish Dune State Park, or even take Spot to an outdoor play at Northern Sky Theatre’s amphitheater in Fish Creek, Wisconsin. As long as Fido’s quiet during the show, he’s welcome.
BEST DOG FESTIVAL
Summer Woofstock, Toronto, Ontario
Woofstock is promoted as North America’s largest dog festival, so need I say more? Held outside at Woodbine Beach Park, there are vendors, freebies, demonstrations, contests and doggie play areas. Plus, it’s free (in the summer).
BEST DOG BEACH
Port Burwell Provincial Park, Port Burwell, Ontario
Port Burwell park and campsite in a small Ontario Town of the same name is home to a lakeside dog-friendly beach that makes it clear off leash is OK on half the dog beach (enter at Parking Lot One) full of frolicking wet Fido fun. Find a stick and send it sailing into the most turbulent of the Great Lakes and watch your dog (if he’s a Lab) sail after it.
BEST DOG-FRIENDLY SHOPPING
The Mall at Partridge Creek, Clinton, Michigan
Mimicking a village square where people get together in a park-like environment to do more than shop (but really mostly to shop) this outdoor mall is dog friendly so much so, there’s dog stations along the path between stores and many shops allow dogs inside. Look for window stickers.
BEST DOG WATER ADVENTURE
Houseboating through the Thousand Islands between Canada & the U.S.
Houseboating – essentially RVing on the water – through scenic waters of the 1000 Islands while stopping to exercise the dogs on various islands that are part of Canada’s National Parks system is one of the best adventures I’ve done so far with dogs, even if one fell (temporarily) over-board. The best. I stand by this claim.
BEST DOG-FRIENDLY RESORT
Deerhurst Resort, Huntsville, Ontario
Predominately a summer resort in the heart of the province’s cottage country, Deerhurst is all about family outdoor activities like hiking, tennis, water sports, and swimming. But in the winter skiing, skating and dog sledding dominate the fun, at a reduced rate. Best of all – family includes dogs. Bring up to two per room, any size.
That’s one year down. Hopefully, there’s a lot more dog fun to come. I can’t wait to find out what makes the list next year. If you have any ideas, please let me know.
What dog-friendly places do you recommend?