Sighthounds at the Seaside – Visiting North Berwick With Dogs


North Berwick is another jewel in the Scottish seaside’s crown. Visiting North Berwick should be top of the list for anyone travelling with dogs, since pups are allowed to enjoy practically everything this town has to offer!

We enjoyed a day out on the coast last July. Keep reading to find out what we got up to and get some tips for your own adventure.

Getting to North Berwick

Transport links to North Berwick are excellent. From Glasgow, we made one change at Edinburgh Waverley, with the journey taking just an hour and a half in total.

It’s important not to make the mistake of mixing up North Berwick with Berwick-upon-Tweed. The two towns are entirely unrelated and lie around 40 miles apart, on opposite sides of the Scottish-English border.

The train station is a few minutes walk out of the town centre. This is a pleasant wander and you’ll notice lots of beautifully maintained cottages and gardens on your walk into town.

Enjoying the Town

This East Lothian town is one of Scotland’s best-loved holiday villages. Close proximity to Edinburgh made it a popular destination in Victorian days and it still pulls in the crowds today.

North Berwick West Bay (credit: Kim Traynor)

Today, the town is commonly visited by people from around Scotland, along with overseas tourists. Chase loved walking on the beachfront and received lots of attention from children.

The town centre is extremely pleasant, with a range of independent shops and cafes, many of which were dog-friendly. We did find, however, that lots of businesses were cash-only, and cash machines were few and far between.

Things to Do

The town is best known for its beautiful beaches. There are several miles of sandy shores to explore around the town. You can take a walk while enjoying views over the water to a set of small islands.

Despite the fact we were visiting during the on-season, things weren’t too busy. We had space to enjoy walking and exploring the beach.

Chase enjoys the view from the beach

The harbour area is home to the Scottish Seabird Centre. Well-behaved dogs are allowed in all areas of the museum. We only visited the museum lobby and gift shop, but it seemed like a great attraction for those interested in local wildlife.

The Seabird Centre offers boat trips for those looking to get a closer look at the local wildlife. Dogs are permitted on the journey at the discretion of the skipper. You can get out on the waves and enjoy a closer look at the vast range of seabirds.

Lunchtime in North Berwick

North Berwick has a range of dog-friendly cafes for visitors to enjoy. Most can be found in the town centre area.

After a little searching, we found a café closer to the water. It was located in the attic of the Harbour Trust offices. Interestingly, this café doesn’t appear to be listed online!

They had a simple menu, but the food was cheap and the paninis and coffees we had were excellent. The café was relatively quiet, with only one other group there and they also had a dog. Luckily, the dining area was large enough that we were able to keep our distance.

On the Way Out

Instead of taking the train straight home, we opted for the scenic route. We boarded the 124 bus, run by East Coast Buses. This is a beautiful coastal route that runs straight through to Edinburgh. On the way, it passes through beautiful towns and villages including Dirleton, with its castle. You’ll also go through Musselburgh, which has the River Esk running through the centre.

Views from the bus on the way out of North Berwick

Most of the buses on this route are double-deckers and if you sit upstairs you’ll get the best views.

A Fine Day Out

North Berwick is an amazing destination for travellers with dogs. This is an ideal spot for those who don’t want to leave their dogs unattended, as four-legged friends can enjoy practically everything the town has to offer.

Whether you’re visiting for the day or staying a little longer, we strongly recommend North Berwick.


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