The charming hamlet of Carmel-by-the-Sea has everything a couple on a romantic escape could need or want, including a place for their pups. Carmel, California is a walking town so park, clip on a leash and discover dog friendly Carmel.
Things to do in dog friendly Carmel
After you settle in to your romantic accommodations, head out with your pooch to taste wines at the many tasting rooms that dot the village. You will see indicators that Carmel is for foodies, wine aficionados and dog owners.
There is no shortage of first-rate restaurants and dog bowls in front of every storefront. And as for those stores, Carmel shopping is sure to offer everything your heart desires.
Carmel-by-the-Sea wine tasting
Bubbles make for a romantic weekend and some of the finest Methode Champenoise can be found right downtown at Caraccioli Cellars where they also make Pinot Noir and Burgundian-style Chardonnay from the fog-laden Santa Lucia Highlands. Fruit forward throughout their range of wines, the lively tasting room stays open until 10 PM on Friday and Saturday evenings for a sip before dinner or a come in after for a bubbly finish to the evening. Many nights there is live music, too.
At the outdoor shopping mall of Carmel Plaza, find Wrath Wines, conveniently and deliciously located next to the renowned Cheese Shop Carmel. (Which is one of the greatest places in America to experience cheese.)
Named after the Led Zeppelin song “Going to California” Wrath is irreverent and exploratory and winemaker Sabine Rodems produces site-driven wines from both the family-owned Wrath property as well as many long-time growers in the Santa Lucia Highlands.
Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc and Syrah are the mainstays of this Carmel winery. But owner Michael Thomas is an archaeologist with two dig sites in Italy. And now Wrath is one of the few producers of Falanghina with its bright crisp acidity and a cluster that looks like an enormous penis! So if a shape of a grape bunch is a turn on for you, this might be your new aphrodisiac.
Carmel Wine Walk
These are just two of the thirteen tasting rooms on the Carmel Wine Walk. The Wine Walk, which bills itself as a dog-friendly experience, sells passports that allows for up to four tastings per winery and will get you waived corkage at participating local restaurants.
Check out Silvestri, owned by composer Alan Silvestri and taste through their wines produced on their 11-acre vineyard while watching clips from movies he has scored.
There are so many more Carmel, California wineries to explore. The Carmel Wine Walk website offers a map to help you plan out your route.
Romantic Restaurants in Carmel
While strolling the streets can give you plenty of bonding time with fido, a romantic dinner might be what your love life is looking for. Luckily, romantic restaurants abound in Carmel. So bid your baby farewell at the hotel and take your partner out for some couples time.
The best Carmel restaurants catering to romance are hard to choose. Romance-worthy options abound in this charming corner of the world with its oyster bars, fresh seafood and an array of Italian and Mediterranean eateries.
Start with oysters at either A.W. Shucks or Flaherty’s then move to one of the Italian favorites like Da Giovanni, Casanova or Little Napoli. Anton and Michel inspires with its creativity and is a local favorite for romantic occasions.
By the way, ALL of the restaurants listed above are dog-friendly, in case you can’t bear to leave your other special someone behind. Just be sure to mention your pet when making your dining reservation.
Finding a romantic, dog friendly hotel in Carmel-by-the-Sea
Carmel doesn’t disappoint with romantic inns and bed and breakfast charmers. In fact, nearly every hotel serves some kind of breakfast and they all have rooms set aside for our four-legged loves.
It’s not hard at all to find dog friendly hotels in Carmel!
Most places have a nominal $25 pet charge and some even have special treats for dogs. For a spectacular view and reasonable rates, try Hofsas House, a family-owned hotel with history and a number of suites with fireplaces and kitchenettes. Amazing pastries in the morning and the Hog’s Breath Inn with its killer Bloody Marys and outdoor fireplaces is a short block away.
Carmel-by-the-Sea bed and breakfasts that allow pets
Many who visit this charming town think there is no option for lodging that beat’s Carmel bed and breakfasts. The area offers nearly too many to count and several offer the potential for romance, as well as a place for your pooch. These include:
- Four Sisters Coachman Inn (Allows pets for a nominal, nightly charge. Check for size restrictions.)
- Carmel Green Lantern Inn (Dog-friendly rooms are limited, so check at the time of reservation.)
- Lamp Lighter Inn (Allows big dogs.)
- Monte Verde Inn (Allows 2+ pets, including big dogs.)
Bring Fido is an excellent, additional resource for finding pet-friendly hotels in Carmel.
A luxury dog friendly hotel in Carmel
If Relais and Chateaux is more your style – and budget – L’Auberge Carmel offers every luxury just a few blocks from the beach. Cookies and milk appear in your room upon check-in and a sumptuous breakfast at their award-winning restaurant, Aubergine, is simply a teaser for the multi-course feast each evening.
Dog friendly beach Carmel
An interesting fact about Carmel-by-the-Sea is that there are no street lights making it quite dark, mysterious and even romantic at night, but each morning the beach comes alive with dogs and their owners.
Based at the end of Ocean Drive and completely open to all dogs, Carmel Beach encapsulates the total joy of complete doggie freedom. They frolic in the surf, chase Frisbees, their owners and each other. The beach is untamed and ringed by Monterey Pines and driftwood. Don’t forget Carmel Beach and its natural romance when visiting Carmel-by-the-Sea with or without a dog.
This article was most recently updated in March 2021.
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