The city of Busselton is located in southwest Western Australia, on the calm waters of Geographe Bay. Famous for its historic jetty, the city is an excellent destination for a beachside holiday, just 2 1/2 hours drive south of Perth. But how dog-friendly is Busselton? And what can you do when visiting Busselton with a dog?
Dog-Friendly Beaches in Busselton
A highlight of a visit to Busselton is its many beaches. Thanks to being within the waters of Geographe Bay, the waters are calm and gentle, a far cry from the surf beaches nearby in the Margaret River region. Luckily, dogs are allowed to join you on many of the beaches around Busselton.
One of the best options is to head to the beach in West Busselton. Dogs are allowed off-leash all day long along most of the beach in front of West Busselton, in between Dolphin Road and the West Beach Access Stairs.
The one exception is a stretch between the Margaret Street Beach Access Carpark and the King Street Carpark Eastern Beach Access Stairs, near the Geographe Bay Yacht Club. Along this stretch, dogs are prohibited from the beach from 9am to 5pm from 1st December to 28th February. Outside of these hours and during the rest of the year dogs are allowed off-leash on this beach, too.
In the centre of Busselton, dogs are prohibited year round from the main beach either side of the Busselton Jetty. The stretch where dogs are prohibited is between the West Beach Access Stairs, near West Street, and the extension of Brown Street.
Further east, dogs are allowed seasonally along the rest of the beach in Busselton, between the end of Brown Street and the Ford Road Carpark Beach Access Path. Dogs are prohibited from the beach from 9am to 5pm during December, January and February. But they are allowed off-leash on the beach during the rest of the day and the other months of the year.
Dogs are allowed off-leash on most of the other beaches in the surrounding area, in Geographe and Wonnerup to the east, and Broadwater and Abbey to the west. Dogs are allowed off-leash all day long, except for these areas where the same seasonal restrictions apply:
- Between Morgan Street and Guerin Street in Geographe
- The small beach inside the Port Geographe Marina
- Between Dolphin Road and Mandalay Carpark Beach Access Path in Broadwater
- Between Holgate Road and Harnett Street Carpark Beach Access Path in Broadwater
- Between Abbey Boat Ramp Eastern Beach Access Path and Buayanup Drain (adjacent to Forth Street) in Abbey
Note also that dogs are prohibited from the beach adjacent to Locke Estate, immediately west of the final section listed above. For maps, see this brochure. Alternatively, check the local signage – I found there were detailed maps at most access points.
Dog-Friendly Parks in Busselton
The default rule for dogs in the City of Busselton council area is that dogs are allowed off-leash on all grassed areas in the city’s parks and reserves. However, there are a few exceptions to this rule, which are generally signposted.
In the following reserves around Busselton, dogs are only allowed on-leash:
- Busselton Foreshore, between Marine Terrace and the beach (but not including the beach, where dogs are prohibited), Geographe Bay Road and Gale Street
- Mitchell Park in Busselton
Dogs are also required to be on-leash around active playing surfaces of reserves during organised sporting events, plus on all footpaths and shared paths. Dogs are also prohibited from playgrounds in parks and reserves.
Are Dogs Allowed on the Busselton Jetty?
Busselton is famous for its heritage-listed 1.8km long jetty. Previously used for exports from the region, these days it’s a popular tourist spot, with a train taking visitors to the Underwater Observatory at the end.
Not surprisingly, pet dogs are not allowed on the train or at the observatory. However, I was surprised to discover dogs are also not allowed to even walk along the jetty. You can only view it from the end with your dog.
Dog-Friendly Cafes in Busselton
One of the best located restaurants in Busselton is The Goose, located next to the beach in the Busselton Foreshore, near the Jetty. Recently rebuilt after a fire, the restaurant is open until late seven days a week, for all-day dining or just sunset cocktails. Dogs are welcome to join you at the alfresco tables.
There’s also plenty more dog-friendly cafes dotting the streets of Busselton and the nearby towns. Some other top options include The Urban Coffee House, Brimful of Asha, the Good Egg and the gluten-free Pepi Cafe.
Dog-Friendly Pubs in Busselton
Just behind the Foreshore Area is the Busselton Taphouse operated by the Rocky Ridge Brewing Co. This relaxed venue has plenty of outdoor tables (sheltered during the winter months), and is both dog- and family-friendly.
Open seven days until early evening (check the latest hours), choose from the 25 taps and the food menu of burgers and sides, a collaboration with Margaret River Burger Co.
Dog-Friendly Accommodation in Busselton
There’s a wide variety of dog-friendly accommodation on offer in Busselton, whether you’re looking a caravan park, pet-friendly holiday unit or even a glamping tent.
For something different, make a booking at the Busselton Villas & Glamping Village. While dogs are not permitted inside the villas, they are allowed in the glamping tents. Up to two small-medium dogs are permitted, for an additional charge of $20 per dog per night.
Choose between a two-person or four-person glamping tent, with beds, bowls and pet blankets provided for your pup. And it’s just a short walk to the nearby off-leash dog beach!
At Broadwater Resort, well-mannered and vaccinated dogs are welcome to stay in their pet-friendly units outside of the peak summer and Easter holiday periods (check the website for the exact exclusion dates).
Dogs are allowed inside, with their own bed, blanket and bowl provided. An additional fee of $35 per dog per night applies, plus a pet bond is temporarily held. Its just metres to a dog beach and dogs are welcome in the beer garden of Tonic By the Bay, the onsite dining venue.
The most pet-friendly caravan park around Busselton is BIG4 Breeze Holiday Parks – Busselton. In addition to allowing pets year round, pets are welcome in many of the cabins, as well as on powered camping sites, some with ensuites.
Pet-friendly cabins range from One Bedroom Chalets up to the luxury Bungalows that include a king bed in the master bedroom and two bathrooms. Look for the paw symbol on their website. The holiday park is only a block back from the off-leash dog beach in West Busselton and there’s a handy dog wash on site.
Other dog-friendly caravan parks around Busselton that allow pets year round, but only on sites, include the Busselton Jetty Tourist Park, Busselton Lazy Days Caravan Park and RAC Busselton Holiday Park. Some other parks allow pets seasonally, outside of peak season.
Head Next To
About the Author
Shandos Cleaver is the founder of Travelnuity: Dog-Friendly Travel. She has travelled extensively with her Miniature Dachshund, Schnitzel, including to 33 countries across Europe, every state and territory of Australia except Tasmania, and 10 of the United States. She’s passionate about providing inspiration and information to others wanting to travel with their dogs, whether close to home or internationally.