Dog Beaches in Chicago, Illinois

6 Best Dog Beaches in Chicago:

  1. Montrose Harbor Dog Beach
  2. Belmont Harbor Dog Beach
  3. Evanston Dog Beach
  4. Gillson Dog Beach
  5. Foster Avenue Dog Beach
  6. Sunrise Park and Beach

Are dogs allowed on Chicago beaches? Yes, dogs are allowed on Chicago beaches! There are even some that are specifically designated as dog-friendly. So whether you’re looking for a place to take your four-legged friend to play fetch, go for a swim, or just enjoy a sunset walk, here are six of the best dog beaches in Chicago.

Montrose Harbor Dog Beach

Address: Montrose and Simonds Drive, Chicago, IL 60640

Montrose Dog Beach dog friendly
Montrose Dog Beach. Photo from (IG) @whompingwillowthecorgi

The Montrose Dog Beach is Chicago’s first legal off-leash beach. This dog beach is on the Northwest corner of Montrose Beach (the point closest to the city). Pet owners rave about this dog beach. 

Handicap accessible ramp or the old entrance to the beach is to the right (south) of the boat launch at the end of the path, and down the rock wall, and there is a ramp at the boat launch. The Dog Beach is accessible at any time during regular Chicago Park District hours, from sun-up till 9 P.M. The most popular hours for Dog Beach visitors are in the morning.

A fee of $5 is required for all dogs visiting the dog beach, but DFA tags are necessary for everyone, which costs nothing.

Belmont Harbor Dog Beach

Address: N Lakeshore Dr. & Lakeshore Dr, Chicago, IL 60657

Belmont Harbor Dog Beach
Belmont Harbor Dog Beach. Photo from (IG) @lisaad

Belmont Harbor Dog Beach is a fantastic location to take your dog for a swim and have some fun. This beach may be smaller than Montrose, but it provides plenty of room for your dog to run about and explore. 

Because of its size, Belmont Harbor Dog Beach can get congested, especially on weekends. On Sundays, parking costs $10, but the beach is free to enter. If your dog loves swimming, it’s important to keep a close eye as boats often come close to this area. 

Additionally, Belmont Harbor Dog Beach does not have a cleanup area, so be sure to bring some towels along to lay down in your car for the drive home. 

Belmont Harbor Dog Beach 2
Belmont Harbor Dog Beach. Photo from (IG) @atlas_pomsky

Belmont Harbor’s popular dog beach is a great place for your furry friend to enjoy the water and take in the beautiful view of boats in the harbor. As with all dog-friendly areas in Chicago, your pup must wear a DFA tag, which can be obtained from any vet for $5. 

Evanston Dog Beach

Address: 1631 Sheridan Road, Evanston, IL, 60202

Evanston Dog Beach
Evanston Dog Beach. Photo from (IG) @walkieswithecho

Between Clark Street Beach and the Church Street Boat Ramp, Evanston Dog Beach is located. The Winnetka Park District operates an off-leash dog beach at Centennial Park. This is a lovely dog-friendly beach, but make sure your companion doesn’t wand on the rocks. Dogs are permitted on this beach, however they must be on a leash at all times.

This off leash dog beach is limited to members only. To acquire a pass, which costs $60 for residents and $120 for non-residents (prices drop on August 1), you must present immunization papers as well as your pet’s license. On the City of Evanston’s website, more information can be found about how to obtain a pass for your furry friend.

Evanston Dog Beach is a great place to bring your dog to play and socialize with other dogs. The beach is also a beautiful place to relax and enjoy the scenery. There are plenty of rocks for your dog to explore and numerous places to get fresh water.

Gillson Dog Beach

Address: 800 Gillson Park Drive, Wilmette, IL 60091

Gillson Beach dog friendly
Gillson Beach. Photo from (IG) @david__ash_

Gillson Dog Beach is a popular destination for pet owners who are looking for an off-leash dog beach. The beach is located at the south end of Gillson Park in Wilmette, Illinois, and dogs are required to have a tag to enter. Tags can be purchased at Wilmette Village Hall for $25 for residents and $150 for non-residents. 

The hours of operation for the dog beach are specific and vary depending on the time of year: 

  • From May 27 to June 11, the beach is open from 6am to 10:30pm. 
  • From June 12 to August 11, the beach is open Monday through Friday from 6am to 10am and 3:30pm to 10:30pm, and on Saturday and Sunday from 6am to 9:30pm.
  • From August 12, 2017 to June 10, 2018, the beach is open from 6am to 10:30pm.

Foster Avenue Dog Beach

Address: 5200 North Lake Shore Drive, Chicago, IL 60640

Foster Avenue Dog Beach
Foster Avenue Dog Beach. Photo from (IG) @hello_im_herbert

Fostert Avenue is a tiny Chicago dog beach, ideal for keeping an eye on your pet. This dog-friendly beach gets jam-packed with people in the afternoons, and early mornings are often less crowded. There’s even a DIY Dog Wash nearby just in case your dog gets dirty.

Sunrise Park and Beach

Address: 455 Sunrise Drive, Lake Bluff, IL 60044

 Sunrise Park and Beach dog friendly
Sunrise Park and Beach. Photo from (IG) 

Okay, it’s not Chicago, but it’s a fantastic dog beach that isn’t too far away. To get to this peaceful dog beach, you’ll have to walk down a long wooden stairwell. Dogs registered in Lake Bluff are free to use the dog beach, while non-residents must purchase a $65 pass for themselves and a $35 pass for their dog.

This lovely beach is the perfect place to take your pup for a swim, go for a walk, or just relax in the sun. Make sure to bring water and cleanup bags, as there are no amenities at this beach.

We’ll keep you posted as more and more beaches start to allow your furry friend. As the list grows, we will continue updating this blog post with all of them:

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FAQ

Are Dogs Allowed in North Beach Chicago?

No dogs on the beach. There are no dogs allowed on the beach in North beach Chicago. This is because the beach is for humans only and dogs are not allowed. If you bring a dog to the beach, you will be asked to leave.

Can Dogs swim in Lake Michigan Chicago?

When visiting Chicago’s dog-friendly beaches, dogs are allowed to swim in Lake Michigan. Only Belmont Harbor Beach and Montrose Beach are the only Chicago beaches that allow dogs to swim in the lake lawfully.

Watch this space for more information about when your furry friend can enjoy the beach again:

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Conclusion

In Chicago during the summer, dog owners have many questions about beach vacations with their pets. For example: “Which beaches in Chicago allow dogs?”, or “Are dogs allowed on Illinois beaches?”, or “Are dogs allowed on the lake in Chicago?”. 

In our article, we looked at all the dog-friendly beaches in Chicago and are ready to answer those questions.In our article, we looked at all the dog-friendly beaches in Chicago and are ready to give a definitive answer to these questions.

There are few beaches in Chicago that allow dogs. If you’re looking for a place to take your dog swimming in Lake Michigan, Belmont Harbor Beach and Montrose Beach are the only two beaches in Chicago where dogs are allowed to swim lawfully. 

Montrose Dog Beach is one of the best at the dog beach in Chicago. This beach has plenty of space and amenities for your dog to enjoy and is in a great location. So head on down to Montrose Dog Beach today and enjoy a day out with your furry friend!

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