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Altona Dog Beach dog running

17 Best Off-Leash Dog Beaches in Melbourne

Did you know that Melbourne boasts amazing beaches for dogs where they can go off-leash? A frolic near or in water is generally good for your dog’s health and wellbeing and it makes a pleasant change from a walk around the block. 

Here are the best dog beaches in Melbourne where your best friend can enjoy exercise, play and socialisation off-lead, all of which are important for your dog’s health and happiness.

To ensure you stay comfortable and dry on long walks with your pooch, check out Merry People‘s range of stylish and practical gumboots. These are 100% waterproof ankle boots, with built in arch support, perfect for dog-walking in any weather.

Not sure if you have the time to take your dogs to these dog-friendly beaches? PetsOnMe offers dog walking and pet sitting services to help you deal with your busy schedule while making sure your fur babies get their time under the sun. Your dog walkers would probably appreciate the view and the environment as well, as they let your dogs run around in the sand. 

Best Dog Beaches Melbourne South / Bayside

1. Sandridge Dog Beach, Port Melbourne

This Melbourne dog beach is very accessible, with plenty of free parking, the excellent Maritime Cove playground and BBQ areas. It offers views across to the Port Melbourne pier where large ships dock.

Note you’ll need to pop a leash back on if you’re close to the playground and barbecues – follow the signs.

Altona Dog Beach dogs chasing through water

2. Port Melbourne Dog Beach, Port Melbourne

Port Melbourne dog beach is a strip of beach between Station Pier and Lagoon piers.

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

Altona Dog Beach Seaholme

3. St Kilda Dog Beach, St Kilda

There are actually three dog friendly beaches in St Kilda – West Beach, St Kilda Harbour and St Kilda Beach foreshore near St Kilda Marina. 

If you approach West Beach during the Autumn and Winter months you can extend your visit to Middle Park Beach, where dogs are permitted off-leash at all times from 1 April to 31 October. From 1 November to 31 March dogs on Middle Park Beach are permitted off-leash only after 7.30pm and before 10am.

There is a sensitive dune conservation area (follow the signs) part way along the beach and this section is totally out of bounds for dogs.

paper fish st kilda beach

4. Elwood Dog Beach, Elwood

Elwood Beach is a popular pet friendly beach for off-leash dogs. From 1 April to 31 October, dogs can be off-leash 24 hours a day.

From 1 November to 31 March, dogs are only allowed on the Northern end of the beach, near Point Ormond and they can be off-leash from 5.30–9.30am each day. From November to March the southern end of the beach is prohibited for dogs at all times. 

Altona Dog Beach Seaholme dogs chasing through water

5. Brighton Dog Beach, Brighton

Brighton Dog Beach is otherwise known as Sandown Street Beach as it is approached via Sandown Street or Bay Street Brighton.

Dogs are allowed off-leash at all times from 1 April to 31 October while between November to March it’s off-leash for dogs only after 7:30pm and before 10am.

Owners will enjoy the marina and city views. If you’ve got kids in tow they will enjoy tumbling down the sand dunes along with your pup! 

If you want to extend your outing clip on the leash and stroll along the scenic Bay Trail, which extends all the way from Port Melbourne to Sandringham.

Related: Brighton Beach Boxes

Altona Dog Beach

6. Mentone Dog Beach, Mentone

Further down the Bay Trail is one of the most popular dog friendly beaches Melbourne has to offer – Mentone Dog Beach.

It’s accessible 24 hours and facilities include bins and taps outside the Mentone Life Saving Club.

Related: Best bike trails in Melbourne for families

Altona Dog Beach dogs running

7. Keast Park Dog Beach, Seaford

Frankston City Council has created a dog beach at Keast Park, Seaford with 200 metres of sand for your beloved pet to run and play for as long as they want!

Dogs are allowed to freely roam within the allocated markers at Keast Park foreshore and new dog waste bins and bag dispensers have been installed at the Keast Park dog beach.

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8. Sandringham Dog Beach, Sandringham

Located at a picturesque part of the bay, the northern part of Sandringham beach is an accessible and well-serviced area, where off-leash dog restrictions apply.

During peak season from 1 November – 31 March dogs are only permitted off leash between the hours of 7.30pm and 10am. For the remainder of the year from April through to October dogs are permitted off leash at all times to run free!

mcbay SandringhamBeachParkReserve

9. Tassels Cove, Safety Beach

For an off lead dog beach adventure all year round, Tassels Cove is well worth a visit. Let your pooch run free on the beautiful stretch of beach and frolic in the clear waters with the other friendly locals.

Then make your way around the cliff walk and rockpools to enjoy the magnificent views over Saefty Beach and Dromana from the top.

10. Flinders Dog Beach, Flinders

For a beautiful, family-friendly beach a little further down the peninsula, Flinders provides a great off-leash dog beach just a few minutes from the township.

You can explore the rockpools at low tide, so make sure you check the tide times before you go.

Close by is the barbeque and playground areas, so make a day of it with the whole family!

Mornington Beaches

11. Ricketts Point – Beaumaris

Ricketts Point, is one of the most stunning pet-friendly beaches with plenty of rock pools for little adventurers.

While it’s an off-lead dog beach, navigating the rules around dogs going on the rock formations can be a tad tricky. However, there’s plenty of space for them to run and splash, ensuring a fun day out for all.

12. Royal Beach, Mornington

Royal Beach in Mornington is a pup paradise! This dedicated off lead dog beach boasts golden sands and crystal-clear waters, creating an ideal setting for your furry friends to frolic freely. And it’s leash-free, year-round.

With the waves as their playground and a welcoming community vibe, Royal Beach promises tail-wagging joy for both dogs and their owners.

13. Tassell’s Cove, Safety Beach

Safety Beach unveils Tassell’s Cove, a hidden gem for dog lovers. This off-leash paradise boasts serene shores and shallow waters, creating a tranquil haven for your four-legged friend to frolic. 

With a friendly community vibe and endless play possibilities, Tassell’s Cove promises a delightful day of seaside adventures for both humans and their beloved canine companions.

Dog Beach

14. Hawker Beach, Mt Martha

Experience the coastal allure of Mt Martha’s Hawker Beach, an expansive 600-metre stretch of dog-friendly delight.

A harmonious blend of sand and rocks, cradled by natural cliffs, creates a picturesque setting. These cliffs serve as both a visual spectacle and a protective barrier, ensuring your dog can explore freely in a secure environment.

The serene waters offer a tranquil spot for dogs of every size and temperament to revel in play.

Off-Leash Dog Beach Melbourne West

15. Altona Dog Beach, Altona

This is my favourite Melbourne dog beach! Altona Dog Beach offers wide tidal flats that are so much fun for frolicking dogs who love the shallow water and long stretches of sand.

For their owners, there are city views and friendly locals ready for a chat.

Facilities include bins, dog bags, taps and a water bowl at the entrance. 

Related: Best beach playgrounds in Melbourne

Altona Dog Beach entrance

16. Campbell Cove Beach, Werribee

Tucked away in a rugged patch of coastline is Campbell Cove Beach. With heritage-listed boatsheds from the 1920s you will think you have stepped back in time!

The off-leash dog area provides a quiet place to have a stroll with your furry companion. Suited for lower-energy or smaller dogs, the secluded spot has no immediate amenities, but is close to Werribee South Beach and has a large carpark area down a gravel road for access.

Visit at sunset to see the myriad of colours across the fairyfloss sky!

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Campbell Cove Beach

17. Werribee South Foreshore, Werribee South

Located at the east end of the Werribee South Foreshore is a new designated off-leash area for dogs.

Packed full of amenities, there is plenty of space for all of the family (four-legged ones included) to enjoy a fun day out. Facilities include toilets, barbeques and a children’s playground.

A popular spot for picnics, fishing, and recreational water sports, the water is shallow enough for you and your pooch to wade and splash around in.

For all dog off-lead areas in Wyndham click here

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Looking for a stylish and practical pair of boots to walk your dog? Check out our review on Merry People Boots.

tips for visiting dog beaches in melbourne

  • Before heading to one of these dog-friendly beaches Melbourne-wide, familiarise yourself with local regulations regarding off-leash areas, timings, and any specific rules for the beach you plan to visit.
  • To make the most of your pet-friendly beach visit, pack essentials like water, a collapsible bowl, and waste bags for your furry friend.
  • Be mindful of potential hazards such as strong currents, sharp rocks, or marine life. Whilst at dog-friendly beaches, keep a watchful eye on your dog to ensure their safety during play.
  • Invest in a comfortable harness and leash for your dog. This ensures you can easily manage them in different situations, such as uneven or slippery surfaces at a dog beach.
  • Dog beaches are great for socializing your pet. Ensure your dog is comfortable around other dogs and monitor their interactions to prevent any potential conflicts.
  • Melbourne’s beaches are home to various wildlife. Keep a safe distance and discourage your dog from approaching or disturbing local fauna.
  • Lastly, Melbourne dog beaches offer a unique opportunity for bonding and enjoyment – make the most of it!

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Joyce Watts is a former intellectual property, IT and media lawyer turned serial entrepreneur.

As well as being the founder of TOT: HOT OR NOT she helps businesses with their SEO, email marketing & social media as BrightSmart.com.au; she owns an online bike store CycleStyle.com.au and develops and produces creative experiences for families via WheelieGoodFun.com. She used to publish another popular lifestyle and food blog called MEL: HOT OR NOT The decisive guide to Melbourne.

She lives in inner-city Melbourne with her husband, two children and seven bikes.

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