One Dog-Friendly Day In Leavenworth

So if all you’ve got is one dog-friendly day to spend in Leavenworth, here are some of our must-sees!

February 29th, 2020

Leavenworth! The Bavarian-style village of the Pacific Northwest. Probably our only winter trip this year, so we had to make it count.

Yuna was in a cone a lot this winter, dealing with some mast cell lumps on her head. She is also dealing with some minor arthritis, so we’ve been forced to limit our outdoor activity.

But this is our second winter in the Pacific Northwest, and we couldn’t let another go by without a visit to Leavenworth.

Our trip wasn’t long–just shy of 24 hours. We began our trip from Seattle Saturday afternoon, and was back by Sunday evening.

Still, we got to see a couple of the sights and sounds… and even took a little beginner-friendly hike.

A dog on a snowy hike, taking a moment to look back at her owner.

So if all you’ve got is one dog-friendly day to spend in Leavenworth, here are some of our must-sees!

The Drive

Let’s start with the drive. It doesn’t matter if you’re coming from Seattle, Vancouver, or Spokane: you’re going to find yourself on Highway 2.

And since Highway 2 runs straight through Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest and the Cascade Mountains, you will most likely lose data during your drive.

The good news is, this shouldn’t be a big problem because the main road of Leavenworth is Highway 2! So if you just keep driving, you won’t miss it. Also, Leavenworth itself has strong LTE wireless connection.

Expect icy conditions on the road if you’re visiting in the winter. Take extra caution if the weather gets harsh and foggy.

If you’re not experienced driving in such conditions, expect a longer drive than your GPS predicts.

Be sure to take rest stops along the way for your dog, preferably before you get deep into the mountains. If you’re driving from downtown Seattle, Gold Bar is a nice halfway point for a quick break.

We started our own drive at around 3:30 PM on Saturday, intending to check-in at the hotel around dinner time. We would recommend starting your drive earlier than that. Night time snow conditions can be harder to maneuver.

Hotel/Lodging

We stayed at the Fairbridge Inn & Suites, a nice little dog-friendly establishment. Check-in is after 4PM; we arrived around 6:30.

Fairbridge is one of the first few inns when entering Leavenworth from the west side. It’s but a short walk away from the main village area.

Though Fairbridge wasn’t in the heart and center of Leavenworth, this was still a great location.

Since you’re traveling with a dog, they’d appreciate this inn because it’s close to the beautiful public parks of Leavenworth. More on those later.

Should you choose to live closer to the main village, Obertal Inn is a popular choice for dog owners.

There are also plenty of specific dog friendly HomeAway and Airbnb listings, if you’re looking for more of a larger cabin-style stay!

For us, after arriving at Fairbridge, Yuna got to eat dinner first. Then, it was time for hooman to go hunting for food.

Food & Drink

There’s no shortage of German brats and beer here–that’s the Leavenworth way. Now how can we bring our dog along as well?

The closest dog-friendly restaurant from Fairbridge was a Bavarian Grill called Munchen Haus. Yuna’s snoot must have picked up those savory smells from blocks away.

A dog squeezing in between two benches, looking up at her owner with a cute face.

Munchen Haus is “dog-friendly as long as they are friendly.” They had covered outdoor seating in a beer garden with many heaters installed all around so it was never cold. Moreover, some tables had a nice ambient fireplace set up in the middle.

A dog sitting in front of a fireplace, looking dazed and confused.
This fire confusing...

I had a German sausage (The Big BOB Bratwurst), a Bavarian pretzel with Beecher’s Cheese dip (omg), and their “Dirtyface” Amber craft beer from the tap.

A classic German Leavenworth meal, consisting of German brats, a pretzel with cheese dip, and beer.
Yikes. Delicious.

Yum. I gave Yuna a couple licks of the Beecher’s Cheese dip and she went nuts.

I definitely went overboard here… the initial plan was to spread my hunger out to different restaurants. That didn’t go so well…

I had put multiple other restaurants on my radar as well: DoghausIcicle Brewing Company, and Leavenworth Sausage Garten. All claimed to be dog-friendly and I would have loved to visit, but I only have one stomach…

Munchen Haus was great, and we will definitely need to try out the other spots next time!

Shops, Sights & Sounds

After dinner, Yuna and I walked around the village to take in the evening sights and sounds.

Christmas lights were still hanging on trees and buildings. It was already February, but the holiday vibes here were still going strong.

A dog posing in front of some festive Christmas lights in Leavenworth, Washington.

We made our way around the village and tried to see what souvenir shops were available. Unfortunately, most shops weren’t that dog friendly. It was also pretty late (around 9PM), and many shops were closing for the day.

One dog-friendly store was the Leavenworth Shirt Company. They sold mostly Leavenworth and PNW-themed apparel, but they also had a vast selection of other souvenirs–I picked up some refrigerator magnets here.

And when I mean they were dog-friendly, they really were dog-friendly! The nice family that runs the store gave Yuna some lovin’ and the kids offered her delicious treats.

In the end, her tail was wagging so hard I had to make sure she didn’t knock anything off the shelves!

In our brief survey of the village, this was definitely one of the most dog-friendly shops.

There was actually also another little shop that caught my eye–it was a pet supplies store called A Paw Above, but we were too late by the time we got there. It would have been cool to get Yuna a PNW bandana.

After an evening of food and wandering around, we decided to head back to Fairbridge and rest early. We wanted to get a head start for the next day.

Leavenworth’s Beautiful Public Parks

We woke up and immediately went out to see the beautiful snow-capped mountains in the morning light.

A dog winking in front of some beautiful snow-capped mountains.

After Yuna had her breakfast and I had my complimentary hotel breakfast, we set out to begin Yuna’s real fun day. That meant Leavenworth’s Parks.

There are three main parks in Leavenworth, all of which are just south of the main village area.

It was an absolute wonderland out there. The parks line the Wenatchee river, and this natural view paired with the snow just made for a perfect scene.

Fairbridge was closest to Enchantment Park, so that’s where we started our stroll. It featured a playground and a small skatepark. Everything was covered in snow, so we just used the place to run around.

From there, we walked northeast on a small trail onto Blackbird Island. Compared to the hustle and bustle of the village the night before, this was a much needed peaceful walk.

Yuna sniffing a sign that says "Just Passing Through!"
Just passing through......

There was a nice “snow beach” area where we stopped for some quick snaps!

We entered the last of the three parks, Waterfront Park, on a regal-looking bridge in front of a fancy inn. Yuna played her modeling role quite nicely here.

A dog posing in front of a regal-looking inn in Leavenworth.

Waterfront Park essentially just has one single riverside path. It was again very peaceful, with Wenatchee River on one side and the Leavenworth inns and buildings on the other.

There was another playground here. We definitely messed around with it.

A dog with her paws up in a playground.

These three parks made for a perfect long morning stroll–we spent upwards of an hour and a half here.

Pre-Hike Grub

We had until 11AM to check-out of our hotel, so I sent Yuna back to rest up a bit after that walk. I knew we were headed for a hiking trail immediately after, so I went off searching for some grub by myself.

I came across Pav’s, a quaint little bistro right in the heart of Leavenworth. Granted, this is the least dog-friendly part of the whole journey, but this place still deserves a shoutout.

I had put Pav’s on my list because many reviews lauded the “eclectic” menu. Apparently, they were known for their crepes and steak.

I claimed a small table and perused the menu. Ultimately, I decided to treat this meal as a big brunch and went for the steak and eggs sandwich.

It was served “open-faced” and came along with roasted caramelized onions, cheeses, and a marinara sauce with a hint of spice.

A steak and egg sandwich with marinara sauce, as well as some assorted fruit.

Overall, a very satisfying meal with great ambience and service. Fitting for my last full meal at Leavenworth.

Old Pipeline Bed Trail

After check-out, we headed for our trail.

Initially, we were headed for the Icicle Gorge Trailhead, a “gentle hike” with “low elevation gain.” It was a 4.5 mile loop trail with bridges and beautiful icy views. I felt it was the perfect level of intensity for Yuna.

However, halfway along highway 76, we hit a wall–literally! A large snow wall just effectively ended the freeway and prevented us from reaching the trailhead.

We had to make a quick change of plans… and after driving back to Leavenworth for Internet data, we found a shorter 2.4 mile roundtrip trail called Old Pipeline Bed Trail.

The trail was entirely covered in snow. The trailhead began just off the freeway, overlooking a stream and an old bridge.

A dog smacking her lips in front of a stream and old bridge.

The bridge was quite icy. I was in boots which was fine, though many people recommend spikes for this part of the walk. Note that the rest of the trail is covered in snow, but snowshoes aren’t necessary.

The bridge was also the site of some Yuna zoomies!

The trail itself is a fairly easy walk. There were areas with water puddles that are hard to get around–make sure your shoes are completely waterproof.

Yuna loved this trail as well. It was pretty empty out there so I snuck a few chances to allow her to go off-leash.

I wasn’t sure whether or not we actually reached the end of this trail. We got as far as this picture above, and didn’t know if there was a way around the rocks and tree branches. In any case, we were satisfied by the walk and headed back.

A dog tilting her head on top of some rocks at the top of a hike.

Conclusion

And that’s close to 24 hours in Leavenworth!

I would say a couple nights in Leavenworth would be ideal to experience all that Leavenworth has to offer–from all the different food and drink options in the village, to spending a morning and afternoon skiing or hiking nearby.

Anyone in the Pacific Northwest should pay Leavenworth a visit–especially in the winter. There’s enough dog-friendly activities here to spend a couple days on.

Have you visited Leavenworth with your pup? What was your favorite moment? Be sure to follow us on Instagram for more daily updates and free dog tips!