Elm Cottage Pet Friendly Accommodation Review

Dog Adventures is all about including your dog in every aspect of your life, we wouldn’t dream of leaving Kate behind on our adventures if we can help it. We always try to plan our holidays to be as dog friendly as possible, so when David & Deborah from Elm Cottage invited us to stay at their pet friendly retreat in Tumut NSW it was all hands and paws in the air!

Where is Elm Cottage?

You can find Elm Cottage in Tumut, New South Wales. About halfway in between Sydney and Melbourne, the cottages are set in the foothills of the Snowy Mountains looking over the Goobarragandra River.

The region is a dog adventurer’s paradise with dog friendly hikes, mountain bike trails, paddling and water skiing on your doorstep. With the Goobarragandra river flowing literally past your front door and the Hume and Hovell Walking Track a 15 minute drive away, Elm Cottage is perfectly situated for an adventure holiday.

Kate having a ball (or should I say stick??) in the Goobarragandra River.

The Cottages

The view from the River Gum Cottage looking out over the valley.

There are four cottages you can choose to stay in, each being self-contained and located at least 60 metres apart for privacy (and so your dogs have their own space!) All the cottages feature reverse cycle air conditioning and heating, so you are covered comfort wise all year round.

Three of the cottages sit high on the hill at the north end of the property, giving you panoramic views of the valley and river, and the fourth – the aptly named River’s Edge Cottage sits at the other end of the valley closer to the river’s edge. We decided to stay in the River’s Edge Cottage as we wanted to be as close to the water as possible, and it was well worth it!

Just some of the open space available to your dog to run to their hearts content!

The River’s Edge Cottage was built in 1905 and is 18 metres from the river’s edge. It has a well equipped kitchen, bathroom with bath and separate shower, reverse cycle air conditioning and TV with Foxtel. A WiFi docking station is also provided. It can sleep up to 5 people in the main house and 2 more in the extra cabin.

The River’s Edge cottage and cabin.

Kate was in her element, she loved the yard!

The cottage also includes a fully enclosed yard for your dog, although Kate did manage to escape under a bit of fence to take herself down to the river for an explore!

Your dog is allowed inside the cottage but must keep off the furniture and carpeted areas (don’t worry this means they can still hang out with you in the living room and kitchen) but you won’t be inside for long anyway with everything Tumut and the property has to offer activity wise!

Your own private fire pit.

Fully equipped kitchen.

Comfy night’s sleep!

We found the River’s Edge Cottage super comfortable and after our long days of adventure activities it was heaven to come back and crash on the couch! We made use of the BBQ each night and cooked up a storm followed by eating on the deck overlooking the river.

With rates ranging from $230 – $320 per night dependent on which cottage you stay in and number of people, there is an accommodation option to suit you.

Adventure Activities

Which brings us to what you can do there! Sitting so close to Snowy Mountains there is ample opportunity for adventure in the area! From paddling the Goobarragandra River on your doorstep to driving about an hour away to the stunning Sugar Pine Walk in Laurel Hill, there is no shortage of activities to do.


There are plenty of opportunities to go for a bushwalk ranging from staying within the property itself to heading out to explore some more of the region. Two of the walks I particularly wanted to try were the Hume and Hovell Walking Track and the Sugar Pine Walk.

Hume and Hovell Walking Track

The Hume and Hovell Walking Track stretches over 440km between Yass and Albury covering the route of explorers Hamilton Hume and William Hovell on their expedition to Port Phillip in 1824. The entire walk takes a few weeks to complete but the track can also be accessed at various points, giving you half-day, one-day or weekend walks. One of these is the Thomas Boyd Trackhead which is located a mere 15 minute drive away from Elm Cottage.

Thomas Boyd Trackhead bridge.

The stretch between Thomas Boyd Trackhead and Cribbs Bridge crossing the Goobarragandra River is about 4km, so 8km return. This section of the track is dog friendly so if you want to take a walk in some of our historic explorers footsteps with your adventure dog then this section is a good one to do!

The walk is fairly easy but you do have to negotiate some scrub in sections so be prepared to do a tick check post walk on your dog. The walk is a return trail as Cribbs Bridge is not dog friendly as it is a wired suspension ladder bridge that a dog would not be able to cross itself. The trail is marked with these little guys so you know you’re walking in history’s footsteps when you find them!

Hume and Hovell Walking Track markers.

Sugar Pine Walk

On the recommendation of Deb, we also made the drive to Laurel Hill to find the spectacular Sugar Pine Walk. It is a short walk of only 300m in length but it was well worth the trip to Bago State Forest! The walk takes you through nearly 100 year old pines and there is no other word more fitting than magical to describe this walk. The pine needles soak up the sound and you feel like you’re in another world. What’s more your dog will be in seventh heaven with the abundance of sticks around!

Mountain Biking

Tumut State Forest is known for it’s mountain biking, and being state forest is also dog friendly! Recreational trails are made up of three sign posted loops with more than 7km of native bushland trails. These trails vary in their degree of difficulty with intermediate to advanced tracks.

As I was 6 months pregnant at the time, mountain biking for me was unfortunately out, but luckily Simon was there so Kate was still able to get some trail action! If you plan to take your dog on the trails, act responsibly as a dog can be a hazard to other riders if not trail trained. Kate must always stay behind Simon at all times if she is to stay on the tracks so as to not surprise or run into any other riders and possibly cause an accident. It was a great park and definitely one to check out!

Tired and happy after a long ride!

Paddling and Watersports

We stayed in the River’s Edge Cottage as we wanted to be as close to the water as possible. What we didn’t bet on was a little rapid on our doorstep! The Goobarragandra River flows through the Elm Cottage property and has large calm swimming holes as well as a couple of small rapids to play on! At first chance we got out the inflatable kayak, got Kate kitted up in her canine pfd and booties (so her claws didn’t puncture the boat!) and out Simon and Kate went to play in the water.

Lining up the rapid.

It was great fun to both watch and see how Kate went down the rapids! After a few goes she got pretty comfortable and wasn’t fazed at all by the rushing water. Remember to always be safe around the water, never tie your dog to a boat and never put your dog in a situation they aren’t comfortable in, you can read more of our dog safety around water tips here.

Other watersport spots in the area include the Tumut River for more kayaking and waterskiing on the nearby dams at Blowering and Talbingo.

Cruising through!

Our thoughts

We had a brilliant time staying at Elm Cottage, Deborah and David went out of their way to make us feel welcome and relaxed from the moment we arrived. Elm Cottage should not be viewed as a stopover in between Melbourne and Sydney, but as a holiday destination in itself. There is just so much to do there even with three days we still couldn’t do everything we wanted! It truly was an adventurer’s paradise and what makes it so special is how dog friendly the region is. My recommendation – listen to what Deb recommends activity wise, everything she pointed us to was brilliant and everyone knows there is nothing better than local knowledge of what is good!

Elm Cottage met every expectation and then some with their set up, hospitality and sheer location. It really is the ultimate dog adventure destination! Elm Cottage hosts a variety of events throughout the year so try to line up your stay with one of their many cooking, fishing and showcase events for some extra excitement to your stay.

You can find out more about planning your next holiday at Elm Cottage here, or follow them on Facebook, Instagram or Pinterest for more behind the scenes action from the Snowy Mountains!