Doberman Pinscher on one of the dog friendly beaches in Sonoma County, California, USA
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Are you looking for some great dog friendly beaches in Sonoma County, California?

You are?

Great! Then you’ve found the perfect website for you. And your gorgeous furball, of course!

With a population of a little under half a million, Sonoma County is in Northern California.

It’s famous for the Sonoma Valley wine region. It’s also got lots of gorgeous beaches, many of which are dog-friendly.

So come on. Let’s jump in and explore some of the top beaches in Sonoma County that allow dogs!

Estimated reading time: 7 minutes

Two dogs running on the beach in sunset fog at Sea Ranch, Sonoma County, USA
Two dogs running on the beach in sunset fog at Sea Ranch, Sonoma County, USA – Photo by sterlinglanier Lanier on Unsplash

1. Portuguese Beach

  • Eureka Drive and Highway 1, Bodega Bay, CA 94923
  • Beautiful sandy beach surrounded by rocky headlands
  • Dogs are allowed at Portuguese Beach
  • You must keep your dog on a leash at all times
  • Unsafe for swimming, due to cold temperatures and strong rip currents

Portuguese Beach is located in the southern half of the beautiful Sonoma Coast State Park.

It’s just 6.5 miles north of Bodega Head and a mere 5 miles south of Blind Beach.

The main parking lot is at the south end of the beach. There’s also a pullout parking area just north along Highway 1. Take care if parking here, though, as the path down to the center of Portuguese Beach is pretty steep.

All in all, this is a beautiful dog friendly beach in Sonoma County.

Website: Portuguese Beach

2. Shell Beach

  • Shell Beach Road and Highway 1, Jenner, CA 95450
  • Great location for beachcombing and tidepooling
  • Dogs are allowed at Shell Beach
  • You must keep your dog on a leash at all times
  • Fairly quiet, remote beach

Shell Beach in Sonoma County is another fabulous beach that’s part of the Sonoma Coast State Park.

It’s a narrow, rocky beach, located just south of the Russian River and the small town of Jenner.

The path down to the beach is steep in parts, so take good care, especially in the wet. And the waves at Shell Beach can sometimes be quite large, so keep an eye on that too.

Parking At Shell Beach

You’ll find parking at the Shell Beach parking lot. It’s off Highway 1, just south of Pacific View Drive. There are also a few overflow spaces at the far end of Pacific View Drive.

If you’re looking for a quiet Sonoma County dog beach, then Shell Beach is the place to go.

Website: Shell Beach

Man walking three dogs on a dog friendly beach in Sonoma County, USA
Man walking three dogs on a dog friendly beach in Sonoma County, USA – Photo by Esra Afşar on Pexels

3. Blind Beach

  • Goat Rock Road and Highway 1, Jenner, CA 95450
  • Great location for beachcombing and fishing
  • Dogs are allowed at Blind Beach
  • You must keep your dog on a leash at all times
  • Photogenic Arch Rock is just offshore

Blind Beach is one of the best dog friendly beaches in Sonoma County.

It’s located just south of the Russian River and is a mere 10-minute drive from Jenner.

Along with the famous Arch Rock, there are lots of photogenic sea stacks in the area.

Blind Beach is a long, narrow beach that’s great for walking your dog along.

Russian River Dog Friendly Beach in Sonoma County

From the upper parking lot, there is a steep, narrow trail that takes you down to Blind Beach. There are also shoulder spaces for a few cars located outside the upper lot.

This fabulous Russian River dog friendly beach in Sonoma County is a great place to bring your pup for some fresh air and exercise!

Website: Blind Beach

4. Wright’s Beach

  • 7095 Highway 1, Bodega Bay, CA 94923
  • Great destination for day or overnight use – more than 25 ocean-front camping spots
  • Dogs are allowed at Wright’s Beach
  • You must keep your dog on a leash at all times
  • The Kortum Trail starts at Wright’s Beach

Wright’s Beach in Sonoma County is roughly halfway between Portuguese Beach to the south and Shell Beach to the north.

It’s a huge sandy beach. In fact, it’s the largest sandy beach between Bodega Bay and the Russian River.

Amenities here include a campground, picnic tables and restrooms. The campground is very popular, so if you’re heading there with your pup in the summer, you’ll need to make a reservation.

Go For A Hike With Your Pup On The Kortum Trail

If you’re after a hike with your furry friend, then the popular Kortum Trail starts at Wrights Beach and continues north to Shell Beach.

With its vast expanse of sand, Wrights Beach is one of the top Sonoma County dog friendly beaches.

Website: Wright’s Beach

Woman running with dog on a Sonoma County dog friendly beach
Woman running with dog on a Sonoma County dog friendly beach – Photo by Magdalena Smolnicka on Unsplash

5. Schoolhouse Beach

  • Viking Strand and Highway 1, Bodega Bay, CA 94923
  • Beautiful sandy beach surrounded by rocky headlands
  • Dogs are allowed at Schoolhouse Beach
  • You must keep your dog on a leash at all times
  • Unsafe for swimming, due to cold temperatures and strong rip currents

Schoolhouse Beach is one of the widest beaches along the Sonoma County coast between Bodega Bay and the Russian River.

This is a great beach to explore with your pup at pretty much any tide level.

There is a large parking lot just off Highway 1. It’s at the north end of the tiny housing community of Carmet.

Amenities here include restrooms and picnic tables. This is a popular spot for fishing and beachcombing.

The Most Scenic Beach Along The Sonoma Coast

Many locals believe that this is the most scenic beach along the Sonoma coast, with a broad, crescent beach backed by rugged coastal cliffs.

With its wide expanse of sand and gorgeous backdrop, Schoolhouse Beach is easily one of the best dog beaches in Sonoma County!

Website: Schoolhouse Beach

Conclusion About Dog Friendly Beaches in Sonoma County

There are lots of dog-friendly beaches in Sonoma County.

Whilst most of the dog beaches are on-leash, there are plenty of different options to enjoy some fresh air and exercise with your pup.

Whether you’re looking for a quiet, remote beach, like Shell Beach. Or a busier beach with a vast expanse of sand, like Wright’s Beach. Or a gorgeous beach with lots of photo opportunities, like Blind Beach.

Sonoma County has got it all!

Bring your furball to one of the fabulous Sonoma County dog beaches. You won’t be disappointed!

So what do YOU think? Which is YOUR favorite dog beach in Sonoma County? Let us know by leaving a comment – we’d love to hear from you.

Things change all the time, so if any of the information in this article is incorrect or out-of-date, please let us know – just leave us a comment below. Many thanks!

If you’ve enjoyed finding out all about the best dog friendly beaches in Sonoma County, then take a look at our comprehensive round-up of some of the best dog beaches in the US

Beautiful Golden Retriever dog walking on the beach
Beautiful Golden Retriever dog walking on the beach – Photo by Sabina Kallari on Pexels

Frequently Asked Questions About Dog Friendly Beaches in Sonoma County

Are dogs allowed on Goat Rock Beach?

No, dogs are NOT allowed on Goat Rock Beach, due to the protected status of the seals in the area. However, dogs ARE allowed on adjacent Blind Beach, which is off the south parking lot at Goat Rock.

Are dogs allowed on Shell Beach in Sonoma County?

Yes, dogs ARE allowed on Shell Beach in Sonoma County. You must keep your dog on a leash at all times whilst at the beach.

Are dogs allowed on Sonoma Coast beaches?

Yes, dogs are allowed on lots of Sonoma Coast beaches. Some of the best dog friendly beaches on the Sonoma Coast include Portuguese Beach, Blind Beach and Schoolhouse Beach.

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