Although the coastal village of Yallingup is surrounded by National Park, the Enzo Travel Dog team still found plenty of dog friendly places to go.

Yallingup is a beautiful seaside village just south of Cape Naturaliste. It is the historic home of West Australian Surfing and a great spot for accessing the Cape to Cape Walk. We checked into the Caves Caravan Park; the dog friendly one of the two parks in town. Having already had a great lunch at Bunker’s Beach House on our way into town, the folks just had a snack for dinner. Luckily, I had my usual, little can with a side of biscuits. A dog should keep regular eating habits.

The next morning, exploring was on the agenda. Most of the village is readily accessible, via a lovely walk through the gardens of the Caves House Hotel, known locally as the Ghost Walk. Apparently, back in the day there were tales of the hotel being haunted. One of the Silverback’s surfing mates, Ken, recons these were just stories made up to scare away visiting surfers! After a few beers, they’d dare them to walk down the track in the dark, having set up people to rustle the bushes etc. However, according to the Sparrow-phone, there was a formal ‘paranormal investigation’ carried out in 2016. This reportedly indicated there were no less than three ghosts associated with the hotel. Nothing unusual on our walk, but my senses were on high alert!

Caves House Hotel, built in 1938 on the site of the original 1903 hotel, which was partly destroyed by fire.
Beautifully kept gardens surround the hotel.
Ghost Walk
Would be a bit spooky at night

The walk took us to the main surf break at Yallingup Reef. A few mature age surfers were out on longboards. Further up the beach, young guys on shortboards were surfing the shore-break. Nothing spooky going on there either, in fact it seemed an idyllic set up.

The Cape to Cape Walk had been on the agenda, but this was within the National Park and there was a big sign saying ‘No Dogs’! Dogs weren’t allowed on the main beach either. Hmm… ‘evidence of bad spirits here’ I thought.

Dogs were allowed on the beach immediately to the north. The next morning, we tested out the sand and water. It was just fine! We also discovered that Smith’s Beach, to the south was dog friendly most of the year. [not Dec or Jan]. It was a beautiful spot.

Smith's Beach, Yallingup
Smith’s Beach, Yallingup

After a bit of time watching the surfing, we strolled back, calling in at a great little bakery, Yallingup Gugelhuph for some artisan sourdough. There were lots of other-worldly things in the bakery. The folks managed to resist the cakes, but only just!

Dinner was at the Caves House Hotel. Classic modern pub food, done well. Dogs allowed in all outside eating areas; water bowls provided. There was a small night market in the hotel driveway. Apparently it’s on every Wednesday, when the pub also operates a curry and pizza hut in the beer garden. A local muso played some tunes. At one point he whistled along with his guitar. I particularly liked that! The folks passed on the curry and chose food from the main menu with some local wines. They really enjoyed their meals. Water bowl and a few table scraps for me, all in all, a good night out. I’d kept an eye on the upstairs windows all evening. Again, no ghosts present, but I was planning to sleep with one eye open, just in case.

The curry and pizza hut was doing a roaring trade


On the way out of town we stopped at Yallingup Galleries. There’s a special outside gallery with a few paintings. People tie up their dogs there, so I guess it’s for dogs to look at while the folks go inside. How dog friendly is that? I checked out the paintings and the folks nipped in to look at the other stuff.

Entrance to the Yallingup Galleries


The folks were captivated by the whole experience at Yallingup. It has a tiny surfing village feel, yet is only minutes away from all the wineries, restaurants and other attractions of the Margaret River Area. They found the whole place hauntingly beautiful. I’m not claiming to have other-worldly powers, but a vision of us living there just flashed across my mind. Now that is spooky!

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