This area is another absolute dog friendly favourite of ours.
We’ve been here twice on our travels so far and will, at some point, be very happy to return and explore more of dog friendly Margaret River.
About Margaret River
Margaret River is a small town in the south west of Australia, just short of 300 kms south of Perth and 9 kms inland from the Indian Ocean.
The region is phenomenally diverse with all the activities that are on offer.
The obvious ones being, wineries, craft breweries and surfing.
The area is extremely dog friendly, with lots for you to see and do with your furry friends.
Where to Stay in dog friendly Margaret River
On both our visits to the region we stayed at the award winning Big Valley Campsite.
This campsite is an easy 10 minute drive south east of Margaret River town.
It’s a working sheep farm which has diversified to accomodate travellers and holiday makers and be assured, you will be welcomed warmly by the owners and staff.
Dependant on where you set up camp, you could have some curious farmyard animals taking an interest in what’s going on.
Ash would just sit looking out the window of our caravan with her toy in her mouth watching what she thought were probably funny looking sheep!
There are 3 distinct areas where you can park yourselves whilst at the campsite.
2 areas at the entrance to the campsite and 1 to the rear called the ‘Back Paddock’.
All 3 areas are dog and pet friendly.
The ‘Back Paddock’ is just that.
A large field that has a few powered sites which acts as an overflow for the 2 main campsites.
This area is quieter than the main campsites and consequently popular with the nomadic community, especially during school holidays when the other areas are busy with families.
The campsite reception also doubles as your very own mini store which stock all your essentials, and more.
Fresh farm eggs, local meat and fish plus other local delicacies.
You need to get in quick, or put an order in for what you want as a lot of the stock goes very quickly, especially the eggs!
There are another 2 dog friendly caravan and camping parks in Margaret River if you are heading to this area;
Cafe's, Pubs & Restaurants
You really are spoilt for choice in this region and in our experience, the standard and quality of both food and service is generally very high.
Listed below are the dog friendly venues we have been to and can personally recommend as great places to eat where your pooch will be warmly greeted.
However, these are by no means our only choices of dog friendly venues. There are just so many great places that we haven’t been able to visit.
You will definitely have no problem finding somewhere suitable.
The Brewhouse, Margaret River
This is a fantastic place to pop along for the Sunday Sesh, which is exactly what we did.
Made better by the fact that one of our good friends, Julius Lutero, was the resident artist that day.
Julius regularly plays at a number of venues around Margaret River and is a very talented guitarist and singer/songwriter.
The food and service at the Brewhouse are great and the staff make you feel really welcome, with Ash receiving a lot of attention and pats.
The Brewhouse is very dog friendly with a number of outside tables that people with dogs can sit at where water bowls are also provided.
Colonial Brewing Company, Margaret River
We had a great lunch out with friends and their dog at the Colonial Brewing Company.
This place is where you want to be on a sunny afternoon, relaxing out in their beer garden.
If you have young children as well there is plenty of space for them to run wild and play.
Pizzica, Margaret River
If you like pizza, then you’re going to love Pizzica, which is an authentic Italian pizzeria and charcoal grill.
They were very happy to allow Ash onto the premises albeit at an outside table.
The only drawback being that there was not a lot of room between tables for Ash to sit or lie down, but the pizzas are amazing!
Olio Bello, Cowaramup
What a gem!
We can’t take the credit for finding this fantastic cafe/restaurant as it was some very good friends of ours that pointed us in the right direction.
Olio Bello is in Cowaramup, a 15 minute drive north from Margaret River.
Not only does it produce fantastic food, but by having it’s own olive groves, produces beautiful organic extra virgin olive oil and gourmet products.
It is set in gorgeous grounds, where you have a choice of picnicking on a rug on the grass, or sitting at one of the shaded trestle table.
We had a touch of ‘canine capers’ when we took our eyes off Ash for a second, who promptly decided that she would check out all the great smells coming from the kitchen… oops!
Fortunately for us, the brilliant staff were so dog friendly, that they turned it into a bit of a joke.
Sea Garden Cafe & Beach Bar, Prevelly
If you fancy a great brekkie then, most definitely, this is the place to go.
They also do lunch and dinner if you fancy something later in the day.
The Sea Garden Cafe and Beach Bar is in Prevelly, a 10 minute drive west to the coast from Margaret River.
Fantastic food with a fantastic sea view, plus we were allowed to have Ash inside the cafe. How good is that .
Nobody complained, or made a fuss. How refreshing.
Well done ‘The Sea Garden’.
We’ll certainly have a return visit at some point.
White Elephant Cafe, Gnarabup
This cafe is situated overlooking Gnarabup Beach and you really couldn’t ask for an any better location to grab a coffee, have some brekkie or lunch whilst watching what the Indian Ocean has to offer.
On this occasion we just grabbed a take away coffee and headed for the beach.
You can access the dog friendly part of Gnarabup Beach via Rifelebutts Reserve, just a coupe of minutes drive north from the cafe.
Clancy's Fish Pub, Dunsborough
What better way to end a day at the beach than to have some fish and chips.
If you happen to be in the Dunsborough area, then why not visit Clancy’s Fish Pub.
We did…it was brilliant!
They have a great menu with some fantastic seafood on offer as well as the usual pub favourites.
Dogs are very welcome on the outdoor terrace at the rear of the pub, which you can access via the side door.
Caves House Hotel, Yallingup
The Caves House Hotel is a 30 minute drive north along the coast from Margaret River.
This is a very popular venue for live music & if you hungry, for wood-fired pizza’s.
There is the added bonus that you can have your furry friend with you out on the deck area.
How can you visit this region without sampling a few wineries
We thought that it would be rude not to, so here are the 2 we managed to drag ourselves along to.
Xanadu, Margaret River
A mere 5 minutes drive from the heart of Margaret River will take you to this elegant winery on Boodjidup Road.
They are dog friendly, with you and your dog welcome to grab any of the outdoor seating areas whilst enjoying your wine & cheese.
We did just that and ordered some wine and a cheeseboard, which as you can see looked fantastic and was very tasty.
The winery offer the option of gluten free bread rolls which got a big thumbs up from Tarryn.
Watershed, Margaret River
Drive south on Bussel Highway from the heart of Margaret River for 5 minutes and you’ll find this excellent winery on your left.
We spent a lovely, lazy afternoon there sampling some of their very tasty food and wine.
For loads more info on our visit, you can read our Blog on Watershed Winery right here.
Dog Friendly Walks
You won’t have to go far in Margaret River to find yourself on a beautiful tree-lined walk.
Unfortunately, if you are walking with your dog you will only be able to venture a couple of km’s before you’ll have to turn round.
This is due to the heritage trail continuing into a State Park where a sign is situated prohibiting entrance with a dog.
None the less, it is a very enjoyable walk for the distance that you can do with your pooch.
If you’re up for something a bit more strenuous then you could tackle the dog friendly Geographe Path. This is 23 kms of paved walking trail which runs along the foreshore between Dunsborough and Busselton.
Keep an eye open for the dog friendly beaches along the way where you can take a break.
Dog Friendly Beaches
The closest dog friendly beach to Margaret River is at Gnarabup, which is about a 10 minute drive from Margaret River, with Gracetown coming a close second at 15 minutes drive away.
You will have to travel further north to Yallingup and Dunsborough (both 35 min drive), or south to Augusta (35 min drive) to find other fur friendly beaches.
We found the visitor information centre at Margaret River really helpful when researching places to visit with Ash.
Shire websites are also a good resource to determine where you can take your dog for a play or mooch.
It’s also a good idea to keep your eyes open for information signs at the beaches, as there are sometimes restrictions as to when and where you can put paws in the sand.