Adventures in South West WA (with a dog)

on Food, Travel  

So we went on this trip to Denmark and Albany in June last year, and this post has been sitting in my drafts pretty much since then. Seemed a shame to waste it, so here it is, better late than never!

This time I wanted to share some of the great dog-friendly places we visited, in case you’re thinking of taking your pup to South West WA.

Stay

Unless you’re camping, AirBnB is usually the safest bet for finding pet-friendly accommodation. Our one this time also had a lovely fireplace, perfect for the chilly winter weather.

However, what it didn’t have was a good place to leave our dog alone in a secure yard for a bit whilst going to non dog friendly places, like nice restaurants or national parks. Jasper is usually pretty happy to nap if we leave him to his own devices, especially after a good walk, so this is something we try to look for in dog friendly accommodation now.

Eats & Drinks

As usual, most places with outdoor seating are cool with well-behaved dogs sitting with you and have a water bowl available. It’s not ideal when the weather is crap, but we were lucky to get some beautiful weather in between two storms!

The Williams WoolshedWilliams
There’s only so many places to stop for lunch along the 4-5 hour drive between Perth and Albany, and this seems to be a popular one. They have a large lawn outdoor area and pretty decent pies – just be aware that on a long weekend the queue to order gets pretty long!

Willoughby Park & Boston Brewing Co.Denmark
This Denmark winery/brewery has pub restaurant and a huge lawn area with picnic style seating. I didn’t try the beer, but dropped by the cellar door to see what wines would go with my prawn and chorizo pizza, going with a crisp Riesling. A whole bottle, because they said I could take the rest home with me so why not?

Three Anchors – Albany
Convenient spot for lunch after a walk on Middleton Beach, as it’s right there! The share platter has a nice bit of everything.

Oranje Tractor – Albany
I don’t usually get to do much wine tasting when travelling with Jasper, as usually cellar doors are indoors and not so keen on letting dogs inside. Oranje Tractor has a beautiful outdoor garden where you can do tastings, but they were also nice enough to let us sit inside by the fireplace and let Jasper play with their cellar dog, Merlot. The tasting flight includes natural and organic wines, paired with cheese and other local produce, some coming from their own organic orchard. It was lovely to visit somewhere smaller and less commercial, where someone sits with you for a chat about wine instead of pouring and hurrying off to the next customer. I’d love to come for one of their pizza nights if we head back that way in summer.

Limeburners – Albany
We couldn’t not visit Western Australia’s first Single Malt Whisky distillery! Each taste has a fee, but is a generous 15ml pour of excellent whisky (or gin, if that’s more your thing). We came away with a bottle to add to the collection.

Walks

Dogs aren’t allowed in national parks, which sometimes means it’s slim pickings! We found some pretty decent spots though.

Monkey Rock – Denmark
After a short but steep climb, you’re rewarded with a rock formation (which does not in any way resemble a monkey) with gorgeous views out to the coastline. Worth it!

Lights Beach – Denmark
This is the most beautiful dog-friendly beach I’ve ever visited! The sand is fine and white, the ocean relatively warm (although too choppy for swimming), and interesting rock formations to explore. It was also relatively quiet, with just a few other people with dogs around – a nice calm spot for a walk.

Middleton Beach & Ellen Cove Boardwalk Albany

This was a nice easy walk on boardwalks along the coast, although the best bits are early in the walk.

I really wanted to hike Bluff Knoll on this trip, but being in a national park it wasn’t going to be a dog-friendly expedition. Next time!

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