During a Perth heatwave in December we escaped for a short trip down south, where it was slightly less hot and far less crowded at the beach!
This was our second road trip south with both Felix and Jasper, and we’ve gotten a lot better at travelling with a dog and a baby. This time our strategy mostly involved sticking to beaches and picnics, but we still managed to squeeze in some wineries and breweries as well.
We stayed at a dog-friendly AirBnB studio in Gnarabup, which had a separate room for Felix to sleep in uninterrupted. He spent a lot of time commando crawling around, wiping the floors with his belly. Having accommodation with a cot, high chair and bath provided made packing the car so much easier, definitely something for us to keep in mind next time.
Places we went:
Gnarabup Beach – lovely quiet beach close to our accommodation, with some dog-friendly stretches, near White Elephant Cafe.
Dunsborough foreshore – I love the still, shallow waters here. Very baby (and scaredy-dog) friendly!
Cafes & Bakeries
White Elephant Cafe – an old favourite by the beach; we got our morning coffee here everyday since it was near where we were staying.
Berry Farm – another old favourite, we go for the (huge) scones and the friendly blue fairy wrens.
Margaret River Woodfired Baker – fantastic bread, hot from the oven from 3pm. Kind of a strange unassuming place in an industrial area, but the huge pile of firewood gives them away.
Margaret River Bakery – we grabbed a few things and some coffee for a picnic. Fantastic bread of course, but the extremely loaded salad I got was also somehow amazing. I would go back for that salad.
Yallingup Gugelhupf – delicious traditional cakes baked in ceramic moulds, and a convenient park to picnic in across the street (this trip was full of picnics). I want to go back to try all the other flavours.
Wineries, breweries & pubs
Stormflower Vineyard – this lovely organic winery has a cellar door that actually allows dogs inside! We had the place to ourselves when we visited, and were shown to some comfy armchairs to taste their excellent wines, whilst Felix crawled around. Definitely one to visit again.
Stella Bella Wines – another excellent winery that welcomes dogs at the cellar door! The last time we visited Jasper was a tiny puppy.
Cape Mentelle – we’d already reached our wine tasting limit by the time we got here, so just had our picnic outside whilst I wistfully admired their wine list. So I can’t comment on the wine, but as a picnic spot it was stunning (and they let you bring your tasting glasses outside if you have a dog). Definitely need to come back here for the cellar door.
Clancy’s Fish Pub – not sure how we’ve managed to have never visited the Dunsborough Clancy’s until now? The place is beautiful and huge, with a great view of the flying foxes from the ropes course next door. I had some delicious prawn tacos.
Wild Hop Brewing Co – great beer and gorgeous outdoor area. Also a big fan of popcorn as beer snacks.