Belfast Telegraph

Sunday 28 December 2014

Make room for a dog on holiday, says NITB

Peter Harper checks Gary Quate from NITB and his dog Jackson into the Malmaison which is one of Northern Ireland’s pet friendly hotels
Peter Harper checks Gary Quate from NITB and his dog Jackson into the Malmaison which is one of Northern Ireland’s pet friendly hotels

An estimated 43% of the UK population own a pet but planning a holiday to include your furry friend can sometimes prove difficult which is why the Northern Ireland Tourist Board (NITB) has conducted a survey of pet friendly accommodation across the country.

Over 500 NITB-certified accommodation providers (including guesthouses, B&Bs, hostels, self catering accommodation and hotels) in Northern Ireland have declared that they are pet friendly with 173 welcoming pets inside, 276 welcoming pets outside and a further 60 allowing pets to stay by prior arrangement.

NITB Destination PR Officer Nigel Tilson says that holidaymakers constantly ask about pet friendly accommodation and NITB wants to help make planning a break in Northern Ireland for pet owners as easy as possible.

“Some owners can find it stressful to leave their pets at home and it can also be very costly to find someone to look after them while they are away so that’s why we decided to conduct this pet friendly accommodation survey,” said Nigel.

“Many people view their pets as part of the family and want them to be included in the family holiday so it’s fantastic to know that there are so many options for pet owners holidaying in the region.”

“Northern Ireland is a fantastic location to take your pet on holiday with many forest parks and beaches that are all pet friendly, providing the perfect way for both you and your pet to explore the great outdoors. There are also a number of events and festivals throughout the year that welcome pets and there is even a dog friendly cafe called Paws for Tea in Newcastle, Co. Down,” he added.

There is a whole spectrum of accommodation that welcomes pets in Northern Ireland including 333 self-catering options, 123 B&Bs, 26 guesthouses, 24 hotels and 3 hostels with choices in every county as well as Belfast. There are 163 options in Co. Antrim, 124 in Co. Down, 75 in Co. Fermanagh, 71 in Co. Londonderry, 46 in Co. Tyrone, 17 in Co. Armagh and 13 in Belfast.

Hotels include Malmaison hotel in Belfast, the Hilton hotels in Belfast and Templepatrick, and the Killyhevlin Hotel in Enniskillen which provides special pet accommodation in some of its rooms.

A full list of pet friendly accommodation in Northern Ireland can be found by visiting www.discovernorthernireland.com/myni/pets.aspx or calling into your local tourist information centre.

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