Much sought dog-friendly beaches in Victoria

Much sought dog-friendly beaches in Victoria

Much sought dog-friendly beaches in Victoria

A trip to the dog beach is a surefire way to get puppy tails wagging. Our four-legged companions can enjoy the beach in Victoria, although many places restrict or prevent them from doing so during the summer. 

Don’t bark up the wrong, eh, beach whether you’re going on vacation or looking for a nearby beach to enjoy with your pets. It’s a coastal thing all year long at these stunning beaches.

Do you want to spend the day with your bestie? Take your four-legged companions on a walk around Victoria.

Much sought dog-friendly beaches in Victoria

Take a road trip and take in the scenery from a ferry, catch a wave, chase a waterfall, or stretch your legs in a state park. Work that makes you thirsty? 

Explore wine country on a dog-friendly tour or spend an afternoon in a beer garden with your best buddy.

If you have an entire weekend to spare, spend it camping beneath the stars in pet-friendly parks or going all out at a pawsome holiday getaway.

Did you know that Melbourne has fantastic dog-friendly beaches where they may run free? 

A frolic near or in water is generally beneficial to your dog’s health and well-being, and it is a welcome break from a walk around the block.

Here are the greatest dog beaches in Melbourne where your best buddy can get some off-leash exercise, play, and socialisation, all of which are beneficial to your dog’s health and happiness.

Things to remember when walking your dog

  1. It is an offence not to take sufficient bags with you and pick them up after your dog.
  2. Dispose of dog poo in the public bins provided or at home. It is an offence to put waste in another resident’s bin.
  3. Always walk your dog on a leash, unless in a designated off-leash area.
  4. You can only walk up to four dogs at once.
  5. Dogs are prohibited entry to some parks and reserves, check signage before entry.
  6. Make sure your dog is wearing its Council registration tag.
Much sought dog-friendly beaches in Victoria

Your responsibilities in off-leash areas

  • Dogs must be on a chain, cord or leash if the dog is within 20 metres of:
    • a children’s play equipment area
    • an area where a public meeting is being held
    • a permanently designated barbeque and picnic area
    • an on-leash signed lake or pond
    • an area where an organised sporting event is taking place.
  • Dogs must be on leashes in all car parks.
  • It is still your responsibility to take bags and pick them up after your dog.
  • Owners must have effective control of their dogs at all times. You must be able to recall your dog promptly and place it back on a leash if the need arises( Source)



Mentone Dog Beach

located further down the Bay Trail, is one of Melbourne’s most popular dog-friendly beaches. It’s open 24 hours a day, and there are garbage and water taps outside the Mentone Life Saving Club.

Dogs Are Welcome: Dogs are permitted off-lead at all times at Mentone Beach between Charman Road and Plummer Road

Dogs are permitted off-lead and on-lead at various times of the year at other beaches – see the two maps below
Dogs are prohibited at all times from Mordialloc Beach between High Street ad Mordialloc Creek 

The western section of the beach (between Charman Road and Plummer Road) is a 24-hour dog-free zone on the sand but not on the path.

The following rules apply to the rest of the beach:

Summer Dog Regulations for the Foreshore (1 November – 31 March)
Dogs are allowed off-leash on sand only between daybreak and 10 a.m.
Dogs are not permitted on the sand between 10 a.m. and 7:30 p.m.
Between 7:30 p.m. and daybreak, dogs must be kept on a leash on the sand.

Winter Dog Regulations on the Foreshore (1 April – 31 October)
It is an on-leash area between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m.
At all other times of the day, it is a sand-only off-leash area.

Sandridge Dog Beach

Sandridge Dog Beach in Port Melbourne is number two. This Melbourne dog beach is easily accessible, with plenty of free parking, the fantastic Maritime Cove playground, and BBQ spots. It provides views of the Port Melbourne pier, where huge ships dock.

1 April to 31 October – Dogs allowed on sand area.

1 November to 31 March – Dogs allowed on sand between the rock groyne opposite Barak Road and the rock groyne opposite Cumberland Road. Dogs cannot go on sand anywhere else on Sandridge Beach.

Port Melbourne Dog Beach

Port Melbourne Dog Beach is located in Port Melbourne.
The Port Melbourne dog beach is located between the Station and Lagoon piers.

1 April to 31 October – Dogs allowed on sand area.

1 November to 31 March – Dogs allowed on sand between Port Melbourne Yacht Club and Lagoon Pier. Dogs cannot go on sand anywhere else on Port Melbourne Beach

The southern part is an off-leash zone all year, while the northern half is open to off-leash dogs from April 1 to October 31. The beach is a short distance from Bay Street’s shops and cafes.

Dogs on beaches at Port Melbourne:

Dogs are permitted off-lead and on-lead at various times of the year on the beaches – see the map below
Dogs are prohibited at all times from Sandridge Beach west of Todd Road (Perce White Reserve).

Official sources for dog restrictions:

City of Port Phillip

When bringing your dog to the beach, refer to signs at beach entry points and consult the official sources for the latest information.

Changes to dog restrictions may be made at any time by local authorities.

Check out Dog-friendly accommodations in Port Melbourne

St. Kilda Dog Beach, St. Kilda

St Kilda has three dog-friendly beaches: West Beach, St Kilda Harbour, and St Kilda Beach shoreline at St Kilda Marina.

1 April to 31 October – Dogs allowed on sand area.

1 November to 31 March – Dogs allowed on sand along Pier Road to the drainage channel at the north-west end of Pier Rd and between Brooks Jetty and the northern end of the car park at St Kilda Marina. Dogs cannot go on sand anywhere else on St Kilda Beach.

If you visit West Beach in the fall and winter, you can extend your vacation to Middle Park Beach, where dogs are allowed off-leash at all times from April 1 to October 31. Dogs are allowed off-leash on Middle Park Beach between 7.30 p.m. and 10 a.m. from November 1 to March 31.

The cosmopolitan St Kilda Beach is home to a number of notable attractions. Summer sporting and music events, kiteboarding, cafes and restaurants, nightlife, and a multi-use promenade give something to everyone.

Much sought dog-friendly beaches in Victoria

There are picnic, grilling, and play areas in nearby reserves, as well as trails for bicycling, walking, and rollerblading.

Foreshore development has altered St Kilda Beach. The main beach is now 650 metres long.

The beach is bordered to the south by the St Kilda Marina, with Brooks Jetty also spanning the southern end, and the St Kilda Pier and breakwater forming the northern boundary.

The beach has widened at both ends as a result of these buildings. Although the beach is backed by the popular Esplanade, parking is restricted.

Because parking and services are restricted, this beach is used more by St Kilda residents than by visitors.

Elwood Dog Beach (Elwood) 

Walking routes, bike lanes, coastal vegetation, BBQ sites, a lifesaving club, sailing and angling clubs, sea scouts, and restaurants and kiosks are all available on the Elwood foreshore.

1 April to 31 October – Dogs allowed on sand area.

1 November to 31 March – Dogs allowed on sand from 5.30 am to 9.30 am between the rock groyne south of Point Ormond and the beach access ramp 35 metres south-east of Normandy Road. Dogs cannot go on sand anywhere else on Elwood Beach.

Swimming, sailing, and boating are all popular activities on the sandy bay beach. There are numerous foreshore reserves with grilling, picnic, and play areas. A walking and cycling route, as well as boat ramps, are close.

The beach is 1300 metres long, stretching from the Head Street diversion drain to a groyne on Point Ormond.

Elwood Beach is a popular pet-friendly beach for dogs that are off-leash. Dogs can be off-leash 24 hours a day, seven days a week from April 1 to October 31.

Dogs are only allowed on the northern end of the beach, near Point Ormond, from 1 November to 31 March, and they can be off-leash from 5.30–9.30 am every day. From November to March, dogs are not permitted at all times on the southern end of the beach.

Elwood Beach features two dog-friendly zones, each with its own set of rules.

Dogs are allowed off-leash between the rock groyne south of Point Ormond and the beach access ramp 35 metres southeast of Normandy Road between 5.30 a.m. and 9.30 a.m. from 1 November to 31 March. Dogs are allowed to be off-leash at all times from the 1st of April and the 31st of October.

Dogs are prohibited at all times on the remainder of the beach (to the south) from 1 November to 31 March and are permitted off-leash at all times between 1 April and 31 October.

Brighton Dog Beach:

Brighton Dog Beach is also known as Sandown Street Beach since it is accessible from Sandown Street or Bay Street Brighton.

From 1 April to 31 October, dogs are permitted to be off-leash at all times, however, from November to March, dogs are permitted to be off-leash only after 7:30 p.m. and before 10 a.m.

The marina and city views will be appreciated by owners. If you have children, they will enjoy sliding over the sand dunes with your dog!

Much sought dog-friendly beaches in Victoria

Dogs on beaches at Brighton:

  1. Dogs are permitted off-lead at all times between Bay Street and Sandown Street
  2. Dogs are permitted off-lead and on-lead at various times of the year at other beaches


Altona Dog Beach, Altona

This is one of the awesome dog beaches in Melbourne! Altona Dog Beach has broad tidal flats that are ideal for frolicking dogs that like the shallow water and long stretches of beach.

There are city views and nice locals waiting to converse with their owners. Bins, dog bags, taps, and a water bowl are available at the entry.

The beach at Altona is relatively shallow, thus the tide goes out a long way (check tides via the link above). 

This is an off-leash location, and many people bring their dogs here at low tide to socialise and play. 

You may also take in the great sky and the expansive views of the city, Williamstown, and Port Phillip Bay. The beach is located between the Altona Sports Club and the Seaholme train station. 

It is also accessible via the Bay Trail West shared route. The mouth of Kororoit Creek and the world’s most southerly mangroves are nearby. 

The walk is on the seashore with several streams and puddles, so either gumboots or bare feet are recommended. There is interesting fossicking amid the rocks, as well as the ruins of an earlier shipwreck. 

The Cheetham marshes, located nearby to the south, attract a huge number of birds during the spring and summer, including visitors from Siberia.

Please keep in mind that the dog beach is restricted during the summer months, and there are on-leash zones within the precinct that must be followed. 

Please exercise proper pet management and follow any on-lead notice that is posted. Also, keep in mind the neighbouring unique conservation areas, which are home to distinctive mangroves and hundreds of migratory birds. 

GREAT OCEAN ROAD: Our Recommended Dog-Friendly Beaches

Aireys Inlet

Dogs on beaches at Aireys Inlet: Dogs are permitted off-lead at all times along a section of beach west of Split Point Lighthouse. 

Dogs are permitted off-lead at all times along the beach west of Fairhaven Surf Life Saving Club. Dogs are permitted off-lead d.ring certain times of the year at other beaches – see the map below. Dogs are prohibited at all times from the beach surrounding Split Point Lighthouse.


Anglesea dog-friendly beaches

Dogs on beaches at Anglesea:

Dogs are permitted off-lead at all times along the beach west of Point Road knight
Dogs are permitted off-lead during certain times of the year at other beaches.
Dogs are prohibited at all times from Point Roadknight.

Apollo Bay

Apollo Bay dog-friendly beaches

Dogs on beaches at Apollo Bay:

Dogs are prohibited on the main beach between Marriners Lookout Road and Apollo Bay Harbour from 9am to 7 pm between 24th December and 30th April.

At all other times and at all other beaches in town, dogs are permitted under owner control

Dogs on beaches at Marengo:

Dogs are prohibited on Marengo Beach between Ocean Park Drive and the entrance to Marengo Holiday Park from 9am to 7pm between 24th December and 30th April
At all other times and at all other beaches in town, dogs are permitted under owner control

Dogs on beaches at Skenes Creek:

Dogs are prohibited at the main beach on both sides of the mouth of Skenes Creek (between the two rocky outcrops) from 9 am to 7pm between 24th December and 30th April
At all other times and at all other beaches in town, dogs are permitted under owner control

Geelong: Dog-Friendly Beaches

Our recommendations for dog-friendly beaches in the area are:

Barwon Heads, Black Rock and 13th Beach

Off-leash – Dogs off-leash if under effective control and supervision, year-round.

On-leash – Area A conditional in the presence of horses, off-leash all other times. Area E: 75 metres on either side of the beach access point, the off-leash remainder of the zone.

Prohibited – Year-round.

Seasonal 1 – On leash 7:00 pm to 9:00 am, prohibited 9:00 am to 7:00 pm (1 December to 30 April). Off-leash all hours (1 May to 30 November).

Seasonal 2 – Prohibited (1 December to 30 April). On leash 1 May to 30 November)

Whites Beach in Torquay  

(Do Not forget to check the signs or council website for seasonal limitations). 

White Beach includes an ageing playground with shelter, seating and picnic tables. Other features include BBQ, drink fountain and public toilets nearby.

Eastern Beach in Geelong  

Eastern Beach in Geelong is the perfect spot for a stroll with your pooch. Magnificent Eastern Beach, located on the eastern end of the Geelong Waterfront, is a popular location for both locals and out-of-town visitors.

It’s known as the “people’s playground,” and it’s one of Victoria’s best beaches for families. There are BBQ and picnic areas, a children’s playground, and large expanses of green turf ideal for a game of cricket.

There’s a lovely art deco Pavillion with restrooms, change rooms, and showers, as well as a lovely new cafe and shop.

A walled children’s pool with a delightful fountain in the centre is nearby and ideal for the little ones.

Mornington Peninsula

Our recommendations for dog-friendly beaches in the area are:

Hawker Beach, Mt Martha

Access via the fire track opposite Helena St.

A very small leash-free beach. Nice sand of about 150 meters. Dogs love it. A bit of a steep walk so not friendly to the elderly or impaired (people, not dogs). Clear clean water. 

Very family-friendly.

A very good spot to bring the canine member of the family. So, from the entrance opposite Helena Street, you walk a short trail to the beach. On the right side is a brick sea wall and on left is a beach for dogs to run around.

If you keep walking left you will come to a number of bathing boxes and further on are toilets and off-street parking.

TIP: park down Helena Street. A trail through bush to the right takes you to further points of interest

Tassells Cove, Safety Beach

Between Martha Cove entrance and Bruce Road, Safety Beach.

It’s the perfect walk for you and your animal friend if you’re looking for a quick adventure. 

Check! A leash-free dog beach is available. Views that are breathtaking – tick! Check! Happy dog and happy human!

Tassells Cove is a popular leash-free beach. This stretch of beach is always filled with friendly locals and their energetic dogs, no matter what time of the year it is. 

Have fun watching your dogs play in the clear water, dig holes in the sand, and run around like mad.

Remember to watch your step as you make your way along the bottom of the cliff. 

Climbing between and over rocks, exploring little caves (my sticky beak dog loves this!) and viewing the lovely rock pools filled with all types of brightly coloured seaweed and fish are all part of this journey.

In order to reach the cliff edge, you must first entice your dog away from the water and get them back on its lead. Not to worry, the views of Safety Beach and Dromana will make all your concerns disappear.

Visit one of the viewing platforms along the way to take in the gorgeous environment as you walk down a primitive dirt path that is intertwined with little bridges.

Tassells Cove Dog Beach, Martha Cove and the Safety Beach Lifesaving Club should all be visible from this vantage point.

Fosters Beach, Mornington

A 3km stretch of rock coast between Craigie Beach and Linley Point is dominated by 20-30m-tall bluffs and foreshore reserves. Beaches are separated from each other by a busy main road, and there is minimal off-street parking.

West-facing Fosters Beach is a rather narrow and steep beach in Mornington. It is shaped like an arc. Be careful as the cliffs are sharp and unstable.

High tide brings deep water close to the shore, and breaking waves bring rips. The main beach area is rocky and unsuitable for swimming or water sports.

As a dog-friendly beach, Foster’s Beach is leash-free 24/7 throughout the year. 

Local authorities may, however, amend dog restrictions at any time, so always check the signage at beach entry points.

a steep slope from a little parking lot outside #633 Esplanade leads down to the Fossil Beach walking pathway. As you approach Fosters Beach after 100 metres, the route splits and heads north (also known as the Fossil Beach Leash Free area). Fossil Beach, which is also isolated, can be reached by continuing down the track.

Access via walking track opposite house number 630 The Esplanade

Royal Bay Beach, Mornington

Royal Beach in Mornington is a 190-metre-long west-facing pebble and sand pocket beach south of Schnapper Point. It is nestled between two red sandstone bluffs that are 10 to 20 metres high, and is surrounded by grassy hills and the Esplanade. During clear days, Melbourne’s skyline can be seen to the north.

As the beach is named after the adjacent Royal Hotel, it may be reached via steps and a sloped walkway. However, at low tide, a rock and reef flat dominates the beach, with deep water located barely beyond the rocks.

This is a dog-friendly beach that is open all year round and is hidden away from the other Mornington Beaches to the side. While it isn’t a large beach, it offers a variety of things for dogs to explore, including rock pools, grassland/scrub, and cliff-sides.

The Esplanade’s clifftop parking is limited. Mornington Park (with more parking) is only 150 metres away, and the major shopping hub of Mornington is also within walking distance.

South Beach, Somers

Dogs on Somers Beach:

Dogs are allowed off-lead at South Beach between “100 steps” and 200 metres eastward.

Dogs are forbidden on South Beach between South Beach Road and “100 Steps” from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. during daylight saving time, but are permitted off-lead at all other times.

Dogs are restricted on all other beaches from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. during daylight saving time, but are permitted on a leash at all other times.

On South Beach, there is a long set of wooden steps known as “100 steps.” The parking park is located on Miramar Road, opposite Belvedere Road, at the top of the steps.

Flinders Beach

The Flinders Beach region is just a picturesque drive away from the calm village of Flinders. 

There is a leash-free area for dogs, bathing from the beach at mid to high tide, and a popular pier that draws a lot of fishermen. Dodds Creek (400 metres long) and Kennon Cove are two sheltered beaches on either side of Flinders Point (1.2 kilometres long).

The Flinders Beach and pier area is a popular snorkelling and scuba diving site known for its weedy sea dragons, fish and octopus and a wreck at the end of the pier. 

The rockpools appear when the tide is out, so check the tide times before you go.

A grilling area and playground are located near the parking park south of the pier. Kennon Cove has the best access and picnic areas. The leash-free dog beach is located north of Dodds Creek; limits are posted on signposts.

A Long Sandy beach between Dodds Creek and Manton Creek

Hastings Foreshore Reserve, Hastings

Access via Marine Parade, between Hodgins Road and Cool Store Road

Hastings is a Mornington Peninsula neighbourhood on the beautiful Western Port Bay. 

This tour incorporates all of the nicest parts (and the best vistas!) of this sleepy town. 

Fitness enthusiasts will like the free fitness stations, dogs will enjoy the large leash-free area, nature lovers will appreciate the flora and wildlife, and everyone will appreciate the vistas!

This circular walk takes you along a variety of accessible surfaces (rustic dirt trails and the boardwalk), both with scenic views of Western Port Bay. 

Hastings has increased in prominence in recent years, as seen by the combination of modern and historical characteristics. 

This walk is suitable for those looking for an hour-long stroll or can be extended into a day trip by including various facilities along the way such as BBQ sites, an indoor heated pool, tennis courts, basketball courts, and a beachfront café!

Enjoy stopping by and trying out each of the workout stations (like my partner and I did), which all come with instructions on how to use the equipment. 

If you’re really into technology, there’s even a free app you can download to get more tips and video demonstrations.

After you’ve worked up an appetite, take a stroll around Hastings Pier, which is a favourite site for fishing as well as feeding the many pelicans you’ll see here on good days (thus the name “Pelican Park”). 

If you become hungry, there’s a terrific café called Pelikan Societe near the beginning of the pier with both indoor and outdoor undercover seating, a delicious menu, incredibly nice staff members, and beautiful views of the pier, boats, and the bay!

Before you go, don’t forget to check out the spectacular Pelican Park Playground, which is a favourite of both kids and adults, and if you’re feeling really daring, this playground is directly next to a modern skate park.

If all of the investigating on this stroll hasn’t exhausted you, there’s always Hastings High Street, which is home to a plethora of unique stores, complexes, and cafes. Enjoy!

Notes: The oval is the only leash-free area; the walkways are all on-leash. Also, please keep in mind that this leash-free area is not enclosed, so you must maintain control of your dog(s) at all times.
– Please refrain from bringing your children or pets into the salt marsh or mangroves since this disrupts the ecology and bird life.

South Gippsland

Our recommendations for dog-friendly beaches in the area are:


Beach area from Wave Street to Ozone Street

Inverloch beaches with dogs:

Dogs are allowed off-leash on the Anderson Inlet beach between Grandview Grove and Cuttriss Street at all times.

Other beaches allow dogs off-leash and on-leash at different periods of the year.

Dogs are not permitted on the Anderson Inlet beach between the eastern boundary of BIG4 Inverloch Holiday Park and Screw Creek at any time.


Beach area below the Kilcunda Foreshore Caravan Park, around 150 metres west towards the rocks.

Dogs on Kilcunda beaches:

On all beaches, dogs must be kept on a leash at all times.
At the western end of the main beach, there is an off-leash area.

Ventnor Beach, Phillip Island

The area between Graydens Road and Ventnor Beach Road.

Peaceful dog-friendly beach

The only dog-friendly beach on the island that seems to be a hidden gem. Great rock pools with lots of sea animals around.

This is a lovely beach for young kids to play at. The sea is relatively calm. Plenty of sand to stretch out on. Quieter than Cowes front beach.

Easy parking and great beach access. Very small waves are good for young kids to play in. Lots of flies in January – it hard to ignore them

For more information about
Pet-Friendly Beaches in Australia-wide
Look into our other articles below

Much sought dog-friendly beaches in Victoria

About the Author: Dog Behavioural Consultant

Jennifer W loves Pets! She is an animal lover. She loves caring for and sharing her knowledge of all kinds of pets.

Her Love for pets made her Join the pet paws hub Team, to share knowledge with the world.

Jennifer WDog Behavioural Consultant

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