Few Victorian country towns are as famous as Beechworth. With so much culture, history and gourmet food, it’s no wonder this cute town attracts tourists from far and wide. However, it’s a little known fact that Beechworth is also one of Victoria’s most dog-friendly towns. Packed with dog-friendly cafes and walks, Beechworth is perfect for a dog-friendly weekend getaway.
Escape the 9 to 5 grind early enough to arrive in time for dinner at the Tanswells Commercial Hotel. This historic pub dishes up tasty country pub fare, local beer and regional wines at their establishment on Beechworth’s main street. Undercover trestle tables line the sidewalk so your pooch will have plenty of space to hang out and greet passersby.
After dinner, check into the secluded Woolshed Cabins. Just 5 minutes from town, Woolshed offers four self-contained rustic cabins set within 12 acres of private bushland. Dog owners will love the big fenced undercover verandahs and off leash trails around the property. Bring a dog bed so you can pup can curl up indoors for a good night’s sleep.
Rise and shine to the sound of native birds before heading into town. Satisfy those coffee and hunger cravings with the short but sweet all day breakfast menu at Peddlar. Lap up persian scrambled eggs, french toast or maybe even the Peddlar’s Pot of oven baked chilli beans, bacon, pork sausage and a poached egg.
After brunch, enjoy a stroll around the historic township with your pooch. Wander past gold era churches, traditional old shoppes and Beechworth Historic and Cultural Precinct. The precinct features the Beechworth Court House that famously held Ned Kelly’s trial as well as a range of interesting gold rush era buildings. You can also stop by the Bee Cause Garden at the Bee School and learn all about the importance of bees.
Before heading back to your cabin for a break, stock up on mouthwatering pastries for your afternoon hike at Beechworth Bakery.
Explore the undulating hills and rivers of the local region with a 5km / 2 hour walk (one-way) along Reid’s Creek. Starting by the bridge over Reids’ Creek on East Road, follow the path through dog-friendly Beechworth Historic Park to Powder Magazine. The trail meanders through the gorge past stunning bushland, the Cascades, the Reid’s Creek Goldfields and Diversion Dam. A moderate level of fitness and sturdy shoes are required to tackle the uphill ascent. Travelling with a group? Arrange a car shuffle and leave one at Powder Magazine so you don’t have to walk all the way back.
Note: Don’t be tempted to extend your walk to the Woolshed Falls. The Falls are NOT dog-friendly.
After all that walking, spoil yourself at Bridge Road Brewers with a pint or two and some scrumptious Italian style pizza. Top it off with an Apple Strudel or Tiramisu. The Brewery has lots of outdoor seating (including some undercover) but make sure to book so you don’t miss out! If you’re travelling with the family, there’s a kids menu too.
If sleeping in just isn’t your thing, head to Lake Sambell for a refreshing morning dip. Help your pup dry off by taking a walk around the beautiful reserve frequented by birds and local wildlife. Families with kids will love the adventure playground at the Sandy Beach swimming area.
After packing up and checking out of your cabins, snag one of the dog-friendly outdoor tables at the unassuming Beechworth Pantry. Don’t be fooled by their simple old school brunch menu. Inside you’ll find glass cabinets overflowing with delicious cakes, pastries, pies and salads! They also have walls lined with local produce and delicacies, perfect as gifts for friends (or yourself).
Wave goodbye to Beechworth and hit the road for Melbourne. On the way out of town you can stop for a cider at one of the outdoor tables at Amulet Vineyard surrounded by wistful mountain views. Alternatively, those with more time on their hands can head back via Milawa. Squeeze in a glass of vino in the dog-friendly outdoor seating at the Cellar Door at the Brown Brothers Milawa Vineyard (except during festivals) or if you’re still feeling hungry, enjoy house made treats and Honeybird Espresso coffee at the delightful Snow Road Produce.
Woolshed Cabins booked out? Try Belmont at Beechworth (small dogs only) or Colby Cottages (by arrangement). If you’re bringing your own tent or caravan, the Lake Sambell Caravan Park is also dog-friendly.