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Top 5 things to do in Ballarat with your furry friend

Visit Ballarat

23 Feb 2021

Filed underMade of Ballarat

If you’re looking for a fetching day out with your four-legged friend, look no further.

There’s a wealth of dog-friendly parks, lakes, cellar doors and cafes just waiting to be explored across the Ballarat region.

1. Enjoy breakfast outdoors at Drive Café 
Start the day nice an early with coffee and breakfast at Drive Cafe. This old servo has been transformed into a vibrant, modern cafe with the perfect outdoor space to relax and chat with your friends (and pooch). 

With local bread and bagels on the menu, you’re in for a delicious treat. We highly recommend the smoked salmon bagel or chocolate waffles.

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The large outdoor dinning area at Drive makes this central cafe a popular spot for dog owners.

2. Wander our national parks 
If hitting the hiking trials is more your thing, then grab some water and hike up the picturesque Mount Buninyong, wander through 100-year-old trees along the La Gerche Forest Walk in Creswick or discover the beauty of the Mount Cole peaks along the 17km Beeripmo Walk. 

Remember to keep your dog on a lead while you’re exploring these national parks. 

3. Soak up the sun with a cold craft beer at Hop Temple 
Dogs of all shapes and sizes are welcome at Hop Temple. Take a seat in Hop Lane and enjoy the sun while you take some time to decide which of the 220 craft beer and ciders to have. 

Come during December and you and your dog will have a change to get a photo with Santa! With Christmas carols and a snow machine operating in the background, it’s the best place to enjoy the festive season with your pooch. 

4. Take a stroll around Lake Wendouree  or Victoria Park
Pass away the afternoon at the picture-perfect Lake Wendouree
Take a leisurely stroll along the lake’s 6km track while taking in the stunning views. There’s one thing we love about Lake Wendouree, and that is that no matter the time of year, you’re guaranteed an Insta-worthy shot. 
Go at your own pace, you’ll find plenty of places to take a break along the way. 
Across the road from the Ballarat Botanical Gardens you’ll find Pipers by the Lake nestled amongst century-old trees. Grab a coffee and something to eat whilst taking in the beauty of the lake’s foreshore. Your furry friends will be well looked after with puppuccinos and plenty of doggy biscuits to choose from (in summer time, you will often also see dog-friendly ice cream on the menu).  You might even spot a swan or two while you wait! 

Or choose to walk among 100-year-old at Victoria Park. This 5km track is popular with dog owners, who you’ll often see stop at the off-leash dog park to let their furry friends take a swim.

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The off-leash dog park at Victoria Park is one of the city’s most popular stops for dog owners.

5. Stay the night in dog-friendly accommodation 
The BIG4 Ballarat Windmill Holiday Park is super pet-friendly, with an exclusive doggy zone, one securely fenced dog-friendly cabin and four dedicated, dog-friendly, powered caravan and camping sites.  

If you’d prefer to stay in luxurious, boutique accommodation in the heart of the city, then you’re going to want to book a night with your furry buddy at Lascelles Terraces. The fully renovated 1920’s bungalow, The Californian, is another popular option.


The City of Ballarat acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of the land we live and work on, the Wadawurrung and Dja Dja Wurrung People, and recognises their continuing connection to the land and waterways. We pay our respects to their Elders past, present and emerging and extend this to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander People.