The Bellarine Peninsula is a wonderful location for holidaying with your dog. There is a great range of dog-friendly things to see and do.
Sarah and Zumi visited Portarlington, on the Bellarine Peninsula, Victoria. It is approximately 1 hour and 40 minutes drive from Melbourne. We have made a list of the best pet-friendly accommodation, dog-friendly beaches, and where to eat out.
Pet-friendly accommodation Portarlington
Kista by Sea, Portarlington
Sarah and Zumi stayed at Kista by Sea. It is excellent dog-friendly accommodation that sleeps 8 people and 2 dogs. It is just 100 metres from the beach. Dogs are allowed inside and the yard is fenced. Zumi’s favourite spot was on the fully enclosed balcony watching the world go by.
Willis Place, Portarlington
Starting at $120 per night, Willis Place is dog-friendly, people-friendly, and budget-friendly. The house sleeps 7 people and 2 dogs, is fully fenced and dogs are allowed inside.
Pet-friendly accommodation Bellarine Peninsula
Cliff’s Cottage, Queenscliffe
Cliff’s Cottage is superbly located close to the beach, park, and town. It sleeps 6 people and 3 dogs, is fully fenced and dogs are allowed inside. Starting at $205 per night.
Corsair Cottage, Point Lonsdale
This is a simple house in a great spot for a dog-friendly holiday. It sleeps 6 people and 2 dogs, is fully fenced and dogs are allowed inside, starting at $175 per night. Enjoy Corsair Cottage and its proximity to the beach and town.
Bells by the Beach Dog-Friendly Holiday House, Ocean Grove
The owners of Bells by the Beach are dog lovers, making this a wonderful place to holiday with your dog. The house sleeps 6 people, 4 dogs, is fully fenced and dogs are allowed inside. Prices start at $230 per night. When holidaying with your dog, you will be made to feel welcome.
There is plenty to do when holidaying with your dog on the Bellarine Peninsula. Choose from a long walk on the beach to a coffee at a local cafe.
Across from Kista by Sea in Portarlington is The Esplanade. It is a beautiful walk into Portarlington main town and the beach is off-lead and on-lead at various times of the year. At Point Richards, near the pier, it is off-lead all year round. On the Esplanade it is off-lead from 1 March to 23 December. On-lead all other times. For up to date information, check the Bellarine Bayside website.
Other dog-friendly beaches on the Bellarine Peninsula are:
- Indented Head Esplanade: off-lead between 1 March – 23 December
- St Leonards Esplanade excluding Bellarine Bayside Camp Ground: off-lead between 1 March – 23 December
- Narrows Beach, Queenscliffe between Roddick Grove and Fraser Street: off-lead all year round. More info >
- Dogs are prohibited from entering fenced sand dunes or coastal vegetation areas. At certain times of the year, there are texting animals. Be aware of local signage.
- Barwon Heads to Ocean Grove Loop: This is an easy low impact walk with ocean views all the way
- Bellarine Rail Trail: A more challenging walk along the old rail trail between Drysdale and Queenscliffe. The total trail is 35 km.
- Esplanade from Portarlington to Point Lonsdale: Around 31 km along the coastline. A relatively flat and easy walk.
Eating and Drinking Bellarine Peninsula
On holiday with your dog, there is plenty of eating and drinking spots that welcome dogs. Here are some of our favourites:
- Edina Waterfront Cafe: The cafe overlooks the pier and has outdoor seating plus a verandah overlooking the water. Fully licensed and open for breakfast and lunch.
- Portarlington Bakehouse: A real winner with the kids. Great freshly baked bread, pies, and treats. You can eat out front, or have your lunch in the garden outback. The meat pies are excellent!
- Scotchmans Hill Winery: This is one of the Bellarine’s oldest vineyards. The Bistro serves meals in the huge outdoor dog-friendly eating area. On a sunny day enjoy a meal and a glass of Scotchmans Hill Chardonnay.
- St Leonards Hotel: This is the main pub in St Leonards. The large beer garden is dog-friendly. It overlooks the bay and St Leonards pier.
- The Golden Flake Fish and Chips: Purchase your Fish and Chips in the park and watch the sunset.
- Yard 58: Cafe and nursery to enjoy a coffee and browse the plants. The garden seating is the perfect spot for you and your dog.
- Shelter Shed: Open for lunch and dinner to enjoy great food and wine. The dog-friendly courtyard is lovely on sunny days.
- Nelly’s at the Pier: A dog-friendly licensed cafe surrounded by parkland open for breakfast and lunch.
For more adventure, you can take the Searoad Ferry to Sorrento. You can travel on the ferry with your dog. They can be in any outdoor area.
- Cheeky Cow Cafe: There is a big verandah out the front that welcomes dogs. The cafe is located across from the off-lead beach.
- Dunes: Dunes Restaurant serves modern Australian food, overlooking the foreshore and beach. Dogs are welcome in the outdoor dining area.
Dog-friendly Bellarine Peninsula
The best things about holidaying with your dog on the Bellarine Peninsula are:
- Dog-friendly beach options all year round
- Plenty of walks to choose from
- Beautiful views of the bay no matter where you are
- Dog-friendly accommodation options
- Great eating and drinking options to suit all budgets
Have you had a holiday with your dog on the Bellarine Peninsula? Tell us all about it in the comments below.