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2995 N Peninsula Dr
New Smyrna Beach, FL, US 32169
(386) 423-3300
[email protected]
Smyrna Dunes Park Overview
Hours: Open daily, sunrise to sunset.
Cost: $5 per vehicle or $1 per person for vehicles with more than 8 passengers.
Dogs are welcome to join you on-leash at this lovely inlet which also includes showers, bathrooms, and loads of parking. This park has five ecosystems represented within it, elevated boardwalks, picnic pavilions, nature trails, an observation tower, and more.
Coming from out of town? Get a discounted rate on pet friendly hotels in New Smyrna Beach, or call 877-411-FIDO to speak with one of our pet travel experts!
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Average Rating:
Smyrna Dunes Park in New Smyrna Beach, FL, US has an average rating of 4.1 based on 27 member reviews.
Review
Rating
Great place
Lori in Cocoa
My husband and I visited with our Border Collie on a Saturday arriving about 3pm. Not crowded at all. Maybe it was earlier in the day (?). It is true that no dogs are allowed on boardwalk after 10am up to 1 hour before sunset-NO big deal! There are trails alongside the boardwalk and they are NOT gravel. Plus the dogs probably enjoy the trails better than a boardwalk anyways. It is compacted beach sand and much of it has grass. You could easily ride a bike on it. There were some dogs not on leashes but most people were very careful to keep their pets with them. We had no issues. This area is clean and beautiful. We will definitely come back. Plenty of wildlife to enjoy too.
 
Great Stop on the way to Boca
Jeff in Simpsonville, SC
We stopped here with our Lab mixes on the way to Boca Raton. The fee is now $5.00, but well worth it. You'll get a ticket to place on your dashboard. Use it for parking and access to the beach, dunes, picnic areas, showers, dog wash and the inlet area. We chose to walk to the inlet, where there's almost no wave action. The dogs loved wading and then swimming. Be sure to bring a water dish and some fresh water! There were several people who didn't leash their dogs, and got a good growling-at from our yellow lab/pit mix, who has some fear aggression. PLEASE make sure you have a long lead for your pooch. The ticket (remember the $5.00 ticket?) also lets you drive down a few blocks and drive on the beach. Not a "dog" activity per se, but was definitely worth it just to say we did it.
 
Best Day Ever!!!
Kelly in Alabaster, Alabama
Today me and my Siberian husky Wolfy went to this beach because of all the great rating on this website. It was the best day ever! We stayed over 6 hours and had a blast. The scenery was beautiful, it was much bigger than I anticipated, and all of the people there were so friendly. We made several new friends today, both furry and human:) It is a long walk to get there but it's totally worth it. I just wish there was some sort of water set up by the beach for the dogs to drink out of. We will be more prepared when we go back this weekend. This really was the most fun I have ever had with Wolfy and we can't wait to go back.
 
Terrific Dog Beach
Jacqueline in Orlando
This was our first time bringing our dog to the beach, and it was a great experience! The beach was not crowded for a weekend, they have an ice cream boat that come to you, and depending on who is there, you can let your dog(s) off the leash. I find if you are with a bunch of responsible dog owners, it's no problem letting your dog off leash to play. The only downside is that there is about a half mile walk to the beach from the parking lot, and of course another half mile to walk back. The good news is that there is dog showers, bathrooms, and poopie bag stations. We will definitely return!
 
the greatest day ever with my lab and golden retriever
kate king in Ruth in Orlando,FL
the beach was wonderful amazing my two dogs dixie and winn was so happy!!!the beach was very beutiful and my dogs enjoyed the beach too.my family will go there again sometime. i give this 5 bones out of 5 bones!!!
 
Awesome Dog Park
Heather in Cocoa, FL
My husband and I just went to visit the park today, and we were really impressed. It's a beautiful beach, and we have plans to spend the day there tomorrow. I would highly recommend it to other dog lovers who want to share the beach with their furry friends.
 
Wonderful people
Bruce in Ocala
Great dog park. The two staff we met were just wonderful. Thank you so much for your effort, caring and hospitality. Best regards, Bruce and Madi, the better than average German Sheppard
 
Great dog beach
Sarah in Port orange
Had a great time people r very friendly seen dolphins manatees the person in the guard shack was great very helpful I am going back for sure thanks for making your dog beach pleasant
 
It was great for both the dogs and ppl
Ruth in Orlando, FL
It was a great experience to visit the beach. Everything was clean, people was very friendly and dogs were very well socialized. I am going back again this week!! I do have to mention, on the weekends go early because in the afternoon parking is very tight but worth it!
 
PAWSOME!!!!
Lorraine in Longwood
This is a great beach for all...with lovely scenery, critters like turtles and birds, and the fishing is GREAT! My Golden Retriever even fishes! The best part is there is a dog wash area to get all the sand off before getting back in the car! Thank you for thinking of everything!
 
Great time at Smyrna Dunes Park
Todd and Lisa in Missouri
Our Scotty dog Scout had the best time walking the beach with us. We saw dolphins in the inlet and he loved the dunes. Most everyone had their dog on a leash except for one couple but we just tried to avoid them. Can't wait to go back!!
 
Lovely Inlet side, but no dogs on boardwalk?
TheHerbalist in Gotha, FL
Here's the thing, yes, the sandy walk/pathways do parallel the boardwalk(s), but they aren't direct. There need to be benches along the path on the sand for those of us who would like to sit & enjoy the "getting there" paths for a bit. (read handicap accessible doesn't always mean just ramps). Two, the inlet side, unless we missed some of it, is very tiny & restricted, & the boats coming through don't reduce wake, so we're left with even less beach & more waves which scares the little dogs. Watching the dolphins WAS spectacular however. No matter how many times the words "on leash" were posted, there were dogs roaming free everywhere. On the other hand, if you're going to have a doggy park, at least FENCE in some of it so the dogs are safe from the parking & moving cars. "Rules? Rules are for OTHER people's dogs!" Puppies are one thing, & there were quite a few unprotected from the sun, under protectively shaded or watered, under understood puppies on that beach yesterday; who's owners should have been FINED for having them on a beach without so much as a small covered or umbrella'd area to get shade/cool sand. I gave away a bottle of water for two really light colored puppies who's owners were CLUELESS to the unprotected skin of the puppies. NO shade provided for them or their tender toes & CLUELESS to the fact that their noses were turning pink & that's just AT the beach, 5 hours of development later & those hunting puppies probably were sunburnt. As for parksupervision, (except for the somewhat cynical laid back guy at the front taking tolls/collecting for the annual pass) we saw exactly ONE worker there & he was tooling around on a quad & didn't look once at our dog or the ones behind us which were off leash & he HAD to have passed the off leash giant at the doggy wash off station just before he passed us on the path leading to the split off between inlet, coastie station & beach access boardwalk. I'm sure that the beachside is nice, but if you're going to have a doggy park, then make both sides available for the dogs, not just restrict them to the inlet side. Completely banning them from the beachside boardwalk except for before 10 am & 1 hour before sunset make it super hard to pay the admittance price which should have been for both sides of the park. Also, those are the witching hours for mosquitos & bugs. Don't need those for the dogs, their paws & certainly not for the owners. Could there be some kind of protecting sealant or product put on the boardwalk rails? Not a minute on the boardwalk to the inlet & I had a palm splinter that took about 6 hours to finally pop out with help & muscle rub. And that meant that I couldn't use the rails to lean on as I walked out to the inlet side with our bags & stuff for Cruise. {pneumonia & learning to walk without the wheelchair, not withstanding} The parking is angled parking only & tight, {although of course some people made their own parking areas where there were none} about 30 spots all told, not too far from the path or the doggy cleaning station; which seemed to be more used for the owners than the dogs. The parking right next to the dog washing station, makes it more than a little dangerous for both the people & the dogs on the washing station & waiting to use it, not to mention the free roaming dogs from those cars, which made it slightly more hazardous for little dogs being leashed & washed off there. Parking is tight, but so is the area around the Coast Guard Station. We bought an annual pass & our Cruise the Birthday Yorkie loved it on St. Patrick's day, so we'll be back, with a sturdier umbrella or one of those protective little screened beach igloos for her shade & some kind of rasied platform to put her water in so that it doesn't get full of kicked or blown sand. Our golf umbrella blowing away was highlighted by ducking dogs & neighbors chasing it into the dunes. Having to chase other people's puppies from her water dish & trying to get the people to let the dogs meet each other without so much agnst... The leash laws make it a little harder than most but HEY PEOPLE?!! its a DOGGY PARK, not a people park with dogs! Also, is there some sign that can be posted about how maybe its cute that your dog automatically paddles near water, but picking up the new dogs & wading out then dropping him/her out in the inlet & watching him/her swim back, isn't necessarily a great experience for a terrorized dog? I know what I said about people not reading signs but; Can't there be a sign showing the gradual introduction of the inlet/sea to the dogs & letting them acclimate first? All in all a great experience. Didn't like having to hold onto a sign & doggy doo doo receptical until I caught my breath & my hips reduced their screaming, or the almost immediate 1st splinter of the year, but the experience for Cruise was excellent. We introduced her slowly; 1st to the wet beach sand & then let her doggy paddle above the water twice which was MUCH better & gave her time to acclimate to the humungous water dish with waves that we had brought her to. Its a 1.3 hour drive with her in her doggy carrier to get up here. BEST TIMES to come? After 2pm until an hour before sundown which reduces the intensity of the sun. Sunrise to around 11am when the sun isn't too hot & the sand isn't nuclear for the doggy & people toes. PLEASE? Remember some kind of SHADE not just your chair shade for the dogs & a decent set of doggy dishes for their food/water, with some kind of way to raise/protect the water up so that sand isn't kicked or blown into it. Some way of keeping the water cool & plenty of water for both dog & humans. A small bottle with a spray nozzel on it filled with cool water, or maybe with crushed ice put in it before starting out. Cooling the doggy & their harness by continually spraying it & them during the stay really helped Cruise to beat the heat. HARNESS vs collar, people! Save their necks, You KNOW they're going to pull, why hurt them when they're supposed to be having a good time? Bring a light colored towel or blanket expressly for the dog to hop in & out of right next to yours but with the shade on both the blanket & the sand which should encourage the dog to dig down into the cooler sand. Watch & repeatedly clean their feet with or without water & dry them. There are a lot of things that can get into them that you might not see right away that can cause problems when they get their feet wet & then romp back into the dry sand/dune areas. Bring some food with you for both of you. We brought chicken. Dogs can get low sugar attacks & you might think that they're just getting tired. Making sure that they have a snack & plenty of cool water & some kind of sunscreen is just as important for your dog as it is for your kids. Nice park. Needs some changes. Definitely going back. Remember that Spring Break means more cars, more people & more idiots with puppies. Other than that? SHADE, WATER & Harness. Long leader leash
 
great walk
Victoria in Willsboro NY
It now costs $10 to get into the park, BUT, if you are going to be in the area for any length of time then you can buy a pass for $20. This gets you unlimited visits to this and the Lighthouse park. There are a lot of jellyfish on the beach. However, according to a local lady we met - the brown ones can't hurt the dogs once they are dead - just watch out for ones with tentacles. The walk to the inlet is fairly short but that is where the bulk of the jelly fish are. If you take the longer trail to the main beach it has much less jelly fish. There is no shade so make sure to bring your dog some drinking water. The dogs are supposed to stay leashed at all times. For the most part people comply with this. Since digs are not allowed on the beach in any of the surrounding areas, this is your best bet for combining an ocean visit with a great walk.
 
Great
Marilyn in Harpswell, Maine
Not sure what Paul in Orlando was talking about in 2012. Signs CLEARLY state dogs not allowed on boardwalk after 10am. Info available also says dogs not allowed on ocean side, only the Indian River/Inlet side. If you're on a sand dune, I would definitely think I'm going to get sand/pebbles in my shoes....DUH!!!! GREAT place for dogs. We met very respectful dog owners, had a blast tossing sticks in the water, saw dolphins, fish jumping, plenty of potty bags available. The dog wash area was an awesome bonus, as my dog likes to "towel" off in the sand. If you're going to be in the area for any length of time the annual pass is well-worth the money ($30/residents; $50 non-residents), otherwise $5/day.
 
huge, calm stretch on the inlet
Sharon in Orlando
VERY IMPORTANT: some maps get this park's location wrong. Smyrna Dunes is on the south (New Smyrna side) of Ponce Inlet. There's a dog area on the north (lighthouse) side, but it's very broken up and rocky. Smyrna Dunes is much better. We've been here several times and the only reason I couldn't give it a full 5 bones is because we've also been to Fort De Soto Park on the Gulf Coast which simply can't be beat. I love Smyrna Dunes, though, because of the huge stretch of quiet, calm water along the inlet. It's usually very quiet. Even once when it was so busy the parking lot was full and we had to wait for cars to come out...once we got to the beach it wasn't crowded at all. Dogs do have to be leased BUT they don't specify a length. Many people have leashes 30-40 feet long so they can throw toys and let their dogs swim freely. Bonus: on the weekends there's often an "ice cream boat" that passes up and down selling treats! As other reviewers have noted, dogs are not allowed on the raised boardwalks after 10 AM. Use the gravel/shell paths and keep your dog on them - lots of briars and stickers in the vegetation. It is a bit of a walk from the parking lot and dogs are mostly restricted to the inlet side as opposed to the ocean front itself. We have seen a little utility cart make the rounds occasionally and make sure people had their pets leashed and were cleaning up after them.
 
dog lover
Lisa in Orlando
This is a beautiful park that I enjoy with my dogs as often as I can. It's easy to let them swim on leash when you have a 20 ft cotton leash from walmart. String 2 of them together and you have 40 feet of leash! Take some bug spray for the times when bugs are out (avoid being there at dusk, bugs seem worst then) bring fresh water and a portable bowl for your dog so he won't get the saltwater squirts (I take a backpack) towels and a water toy that floats. Yes, occasionally there will be a clueless dog owner whose dog is running around off leash, but usually you can avoid them. Most people and dogs are great. We doglovers are blessed to have access to this park! I love it!
 
It was a nice place
Emily in Orlando
I took my Golden Retriever there for the first time the other weekend (pretty sure it was the first time he has ever swam). We were the only people there which was a little disappointing, but it did mean we had the run of the entire beach!! Everything was nice, the only problem we had was the water was shut off. The people in the guard shack told us that the only thing not working was the bathrooms, but when we went to hose off our dog it turned out that the dog was area was out too which would have been nice to know from the start. It is an hour and a half drive to get there so I won't be a frequant visitor, but will definitely go again. I'll just make sure I specfically ask if the dog wash station is working.
 
Nice place to take your dog
Marci in Leesburg
I visited this park today (Labor Day). Granted, it's a holiday, but I have to disagree about the "loads of parking". I got to the park at 11:30 am and had to wait in line for 30 minutes before I was able to park. Their lot was full so every car in line had to wait for someone to leave before they could go in. Once inside, though, the park is very nice. It's quite a walk to get to the beach, but it's a nice walk through the dunes. There were lots of dogs and all of them were on a leash - it was a nice place to take my dog. I'll go back, but not on a holiday.
 
Great fun for our Great Danes
Tonya in Port Orange
Our two dogs can not wait for the next trip to New Smyrna Dunes Park! They learned to swim there, but I have to agree with another dog owner who said it's difficult to let them fetch on leash. We always make sure to grab the leash when they swim back toward us. If everyone was more responsible this wouldn't be an issue. Still, we LOOOVE this place and will be back soon. P.S. the dog wash station was a terrific idea!
 
Loved the Dog Beach
Gerianne Lane in Eustis
Great place to bring dogs, it was our first visit. All dog owners should be more responsible I thought and keep the dogs on leash and clean up after there pets. I didn't appreciate an owner who's dog crapped in the water and never bothered to clean it up and let dog stay off leash. We had to move further down the beach. If you have a dog be more responsible.
 
A terrific place for both dogs and people
Lad Scott in New Smyrna Beach, FL
This park is on the intercoastal waterway. It is stunning. Lots of wildlife (bottlenose dolphins, rays, gorgeous birds, land tortoises and so on) abounds. The scenery is absolutely gorgeous. Many, even those without dogs choose this amazingly beautiful stretch of beach, which is about two miles of beautiful white sand, to avoid the ocean side of this stretch of land in order to eliminate the crowds, cars on the beach and the sharks (notorious along New Smyrna Beach). There are bathroom facilities, dog wash off hoses, plentiful doggy bag stations and waste receptacles, vending machines, picnic tables and other amenities. The only downer is that your dog must be leased at all times. However, this drawback is easily overcome with a 50+ foot line. It is "never" crowded along the beach. The charge is now $5/day or one can get an annual pass for only $30. We take our lab to this beach every few days. He thinks he has died and gone to heaven, as do we. You will not be disappointed with any aspect of this incredible stretch of beach and friendly people.
 
Get there early or late!
Sue in Orlando
This listing is old. Park entrance is $10 per vehicle. If you have a dog, you are restricted to a very small area on the Indian River. Dogs are restricted on the boardwalk to the ocean or Ponlet Inlet after 10AM until one hour before sunset. Looks like a nice 3 mile boardwalk encompasses the park, but you can't use most of the day.
 
disappointed
Michelle in Canada
We were disappointed. After reading all the great reviews we thought this would be a good place to go for the day. First off the cost was $10 to get in. The first route we took to the beach was quick but the beach was small and there were a ton of jelly fish plus we saw a couple sharks. We took the longer trail to another part of the beach which was a little better but still not what we expected. Lots of poop bags on the way but no water stations and not much shade.
 
beach was nice, too much traffic, limited rd access
Stacey in Ocala, FL
The 45 minutes of traffic once I got off of I95 was ridiculous. there is a one lane each way road and really slow traffic lights that caused stopped bumper to bumper traffic. Once we got to the parking lot it was full, (pretty small lot) and so had to wait- one car left, one was allowed in. Fee is $5. The beach itself is a little bit of a walk from the lot, not bad. dogs there were all on leash and getting along well. water was clean, beach was clean. There is a boat dock to the left and the boats go by quite fast pretty much all day creating large wake waves which freaked my dog out, so we were out of the water quite a bit. The dog shower (hose) is a nice touch and is at the parking lot, bathrooms were clean, soda and water machines were there, nice facilities. The traffic leaving was just as bad, another 45 mins back to 95. tack that onto the almost 2 hr ride from home- we wont be back. St. Augustine is better and no traffic nonsense.
 
nice beach for dogs
grace in camridge maryland
my complaint is how do you let a lab swim with a leash on I think the fee is ok and the beach is lovely b ut my dog wants to swim and with a leash this is difficult I read one of the review about the drunk owner can;t this have been picked up at the gate. We are careful with our dogs and they love they love the water but a leash best to go to Deland they have the best dog park of all
 
Disappointed
Paul in Orlando
My wife and I visited your park on 9/25/2012, we arrived at 10:00 AM. We were disappointed by the fact that your web site implies certain things that aren't true. Example, you show the various boardwalks but fail to mention that they are closed to pets after 10:00 AM thereby leaving guests the alternative gravel walk where your shoes fill quickly with the gravel. You show boardwalks to the ocean yet you don't tell your web site visitors that pets are not permitted on the ocean side of the park. There are no shelters or benches on the intercoastal side of the park, if it rains, it is a half mile run back to the car for car. I feel these are lies by omission, tell your web site visitors the truth before they travel a long distance. We will not return.
 
Be Careful
Ann in Merritt Island
Yesterday we drove up to N.S.B. to let our dogs play. We were first greet by a pit bull off leash. Later this dog ran after our dogs and the owner down to get the pit and told us she was in heat. Yeap you bet she had no TAG. Yeap this young dog owner was drunk off her butt. Not one time did we see anyone checking on all the dog owers to make sure everyone was going by the rules.
 
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