8 Dog-Friendly Things To Do In Windsor & Beyond
Whether you’ve lived in Windsor-Essex your whole life or you’re just passing through on your way to Pelee Island, adding a dog into the mix can make it harder to find things to do in Windsor and the rest of the region. Have no fear – an awesome list is here.
These are the 8 best things to do in Windsor, Essex County and Pelee Island when travelling with your dog:
1. Do a 5k.
Well, sort of… The Windsor Sculpture Garden is a five-kilometre-long open-air art gallery boasting works from more than 30 sculptors from around the world. With unbeatable views of the Ambassador Bridge and the Detroit River, your dog will love the long walk as much as you’ll love taking in the many interesting pieces.
The Windsor Sculpture Garden – where exercise and art never looked so good. (Photo credit: Andrea Traynor, Mommy Gearest)
2. Celebrate patio season.
Lap up every last drop of good weather with your dog in tow by choosing restaurants that have dog-friendly patios. There’s the Bull & Barrel Urban Saloon and Whamburg in Windsor, or The Goose Kitchen + Bar (formerly Jack’s Gastropub) in Kingsville, to name only a few.
3. Take a day trip to Amherstburg.
Start first thing at Fort Malden National Historic Site, where you can do a self-guided tour of the grounds and even certain buildings with your dog; then head through the fort’s south gate and grab a mid-morning coffee at Caffeine & Co. while your pup enjoys being doted on by staff who will fetch a dog bowl as soon as you claim your table on the patio.
CAPTION: Stop by Caffeine & Co. when you’re in Historic Amherstburg and everyone can enjoy a drink. (Photo credit: Andrea Traynor, Mommy Gearest)
Continue exploring Historic Amherstburg at dog-friendly shops like Pink Pisces and White Woods Home; River Bookshop’s exterior has a fantastic mural that’s just begging for an impromptu photo sesh with your pooch. Once your shopping fix is satisfied, drive to a late lunch at the Amherstburg location of Armando’s – both its dog-friendly patio and delicious garlic bread knots are calling.
4. Have some coffee talk.
5. Get your sugar fix.
Make that your Sugarrito fix – with The Parlour Ice Cream Co.’s popular ice-cream-and-cotton-candy burrito fusion masterpiece. But maybe stick with a tiny bite of vanilla ice cream for your dog. The benches out front are the perfect spot to chill together.
6. Ride the Pelee Island Ferry.
The ferry is fabulous for dog owners! Your dog can roam most of the boat with you or lie down outside in the sun by your side and snooze most of his way through the 1.5-hour ride from mainland Canada to Pelee Island. There’s even a designated dog zone at the ferry’s stern that’s fully shaded and has several buckets of drinking water available.
CAPTION: Even if the weather isn’t perfect, there’s a spot for your dog to relax on the Pelee Island Ferry. (Photo credit: Andrea Traynor, Mommy Gearest)
7. Visit Canada’s southernmost inhabited island.
You’ve already taken the ferry, so you should definitely spend a day or three on Pelee Island. It’s so ultra dog-friendly that even one of its most popular tours (of Vin Villa) welcomes dogs. You can do a lot, or a lot of nothing. That’s the beauty of Pelee Island. Come for the winery – stay for the sunset at Stone House 1891. Go off in search of the Pelee Island Lighthouse, visit The Sanctuary or make your way to the most-southern tip of Canada by following the path at Fish Point Provincial Nature Reserve. And do it all with your dog.
CAPTION: Dogs are welcome everywhere on the Vin Villa tour except the 150-year-old wine cellar. (Photo credit: Andrea Traynor, Mommy Gearest)
8. Find dog-friendly lodging.
On the mainland, the Hampton Inn & Suites by Hilton Windsor is a central, affordable option for accommodations that will put you in easy reach of all the things to do in Windsor and Essex County (see its pet policy here). If you want to stay awhile on Pelee Island (and you should!), The Wandering Dog Inn has one dog-friendly suite – the pet policy is here – that’s got a king bed in one room, two doubles in another and even a kitchenette. There’s a fire pit, loads of grass and a peacefulness that will help even the most stressed-out dog owners totally reset.
Original Blog Post By Andrea Traynor, founder of Mommy Gearest
If you just can’t get enough of these dog-friendly road trip ideas, check out Mommy Gearest’s substantial itinerary to continue exploring Ontario’s Southwest with your dog: Ontario drives.