6 Amazing Dog Friendly Walking Tracks Near Melbourne

Dog Walking Trails Near Melbourne


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Dog Friendly Walking Tracks Near Melbourne

Melburnians and their dogs love getting out and about on the weekend, especially when the weather blesses us with sun and blue skies!

We’ve found a great way to enjoy the outdoors is to explore one of the many dog friendly walking tracks near Melbourne. (There are plenty more than you may initially think).

Here we cover 6 great dog friendly walking tracks near Melbourne.

Some of these tracks are located right by the city center suitable even for an afternoon walk during the week. Others are bush walk tracks further afield which make for a great dog friendly day trip.

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A note on walking track difficulty ratings

Easy dog walking tracks are generally suitable for dogs of all sizes from small to large. Moderate or Difficult tracks may be too challenging for smaller or older dogs. Use these ratings only as a rough guide and don’t let us tell you what your dog can or can’t do!

Yarra Bend Track

  • Distance: 8km | 2hrs
  • Difficulty: Easy

We start with the easiest to reach and most popular dog walking trail in Melbourne. Yarra Bend is an expansive park located between Richmond and Fairfield in the heart of Melbourne.

While there are many routes to choose from, one of the favourites is the 4km (one way) walk from Studley Park Boathouse to Fairfield Boathouse.

While close to the CBD, you can totally forget you are in the city once walking through the busy along the Yarra River listening to the calls of the birds.

Dogs can easily jump in the river for a swim, a popular activity on hot summer days. As there can be snakes by the water it is best to use one of the few cleared picnic areas along the trail as an entry point to the river.

Andrews Track

  • Distance: 6km | 1.5hrs
  • Difficulty: Moderate

The dog friendly Andrews Track is located a stone’s through from Yarra Bend, but far less known.

The walking trail here is much narrower, steeper in sections, and generally less even. This more of a bush walking track as opposed to your typical suburban walking track. However, since it is quite well developed the Andrews Track is suitable for all dogs large and small.

The 3km forested walk (one way) starts across the river from IKEA Abbotsford and takes you along the high side of the Yarra River until you reach Dights Falls in the north. From here you can either turn around and return via the same track. or connect with the Yarra Trail via Studley Park Boathouse.

This Andrews dog walking track is quite inconspicuous. You may well have seen it many times from across the river, perhaps even while driving through Richmond, and never realised it was there!

You Yangs

  • Distance: 4.1km | 2hrs
  • Difficulty: Moderate

Getting further out of town, the You Yangs Regional Park is located about 60km southwest of Melbourne, heading towards Geelong.

The East West Trail at the You Yangs bush walk has some steep sections and plenty of stairs. While it is quite straightforward for medium to large dogs, it may be too challenging for many smaller or older dogs.

We recommend walking this trail clockwise. This gets the steep climbing out of the way early and allows you to enjoy the panoramic views of Melbourne towards the end of your walk (there are a couple of great spots to sit down and relax here with your dog).

There is no drinking water, poop bags, or other amenities along the bush walk. During the summer this hike can be very hot as it is quite exposed to the sun, so come prepared with plenty of water for you and your dog!

Mathias Track

  • Distance: 7km | 2hrs
  • Difficult: Easy

The Mathias Track is one of the most picturesque dog walking trails near Melbourne. Located just near the old Olinda Golf course, it is an easy 50km drive northeast of the CBD.

The trail is wide, well graded, and easy to walk making it suitable for all dog breeds large and small. However, it is worth noting the trail can get quite slippery after decent rainfall, particularly towards the Falls Road end.

The most popular route is to walk the 3.5km from Falls Road to Silvan Road or vice versa, and return the opposite way. There are some other trails and roads in the area which can be used to form a loop though you won’t find the surroundings quite as peaceful.

If your dog still has energy to burn after the walk, then you may also find the off leash dog park at the Old Olinda Golf Course quite useful. (You may also love these top fully fenced dog parks in Melbourne).

Trentham Falls Trail

It’s not too often you get to walk with your dog to a waterfall in Australia! Thankfully we have the Trentham Falls dog friendly trail just near Daylesford, about 90km northwest of Melbourne.

Apart from a steep section of stairs the waterfall lookout end, the rest of the bush walk is fairly even and easy to walk.

Dogs must remain on leash and while we recommend coming prepared with water, dogs can also drink from the running stream at the end of the trail by the picnic area.

Access to the waterhole at the base of the waterfall for swimming is not longer permitted. This part of the trail was closed in 2015 due to being unstable, although some adventurous people and their dogs may still find a way down.

Domino Trail

  • Distance: 13km | 4hrs
  • Difficulty: Easy

If you are looking for a longer dog friendly walking trail, then the Domino Trail following the old railway line from Daylesford to Carlsruhe is your answer!

A 6.5km (one way) walk takes you through the scenic Wombat State Forest, the habitat of the endangered Powerful Owl. Along the way you will pass the old bridge, see historic rail sleepers still in their original place, and eventually end up as the small town of Lyonville.

There is no drinking water, poop bags, or other amenities along the trail. During the summer this hike can be very hot as it is quite exposed to the sun, so come prepared with plenty of water for you and your dog!

If you need to stop for a refresher halfway, then the Radio Springs Hotel in Lyonville comes in quite handy.

What is your favourite dog walking track near Melbourne? Let us know in the comments section below.

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