Winterset is a small city near Des Moines, Iowa that’s probably most famous for being the place where actor John Wayne was born. This cozy spot also has a lot of history and culture, especially in its town square area, with fun and unique shops, wineries, and more. Despite its small population, Winterset has four vet clinics ready to care for your beloved canine. However, it doesn’t have much available for dog-friendly fun, so you should plan to travel about 30 miles outside of Winterset and closer to Des Moines to find some exciting pawportunities!
Clive, which is just under 30 miles from Winterset, has several dog-friendly hotels if you’re just planning to visit the area. You can have some outdoor fun with your pup on the Des Moines Trail, which has a parking area in Clive that you can use to hop on for a walk or run. Granite City Food & Brewery is also in Clive, giving you a casual, relaxing atmosphere to enjoy a meal and beer with your friends – human or furry!
Des Moines itself is around 36 miles from Winterset and has several restaurants that welcome paws, like Scenic Route Bakery and Mad Meatball, at outdoor tables. If you don’t mind traveling a bit for some furtastic fun, Winterset may be a pawfect spot for you and your pup.
Jordan Grove in West Des Moines is a little over 32 miles from Winterset. This neighborhood has a large, 10-acre park for dogs, known as Racoon River Dog Park, where your furry pal will surely love to play and get some exercise outdoors. The park even has separate areas to keep dogs safe. You can also visit the main Raccoon River Park with your leashed dog in some areas. This pupular park has sporting fields, playgrounds, picnic shelters, and more – a pawfect opportunity for you and your pup to get outside for a relaxing day together.
If you drive about 29.3 miles from Winterset, you’ll come to the Walnut Creek Heights neighborhood of Clive, Iowa. Here, you can hop on the Clive Greenbelt Trail if you and your dog are looking for some outdoor adventure! This part of the Rails-to-Trails Conservancy has almost eight miles of room to explore, so get ready to hike, bike, or walk your way to a fun time with your pooch. Check out Bruegger’s Bagels if you need a quick bite to eat or want to grab a coffee with your furry friend. The restaurant has some outdoor seating that welcomes dogs!
The East Village neighborhood of Des Moines is a pupular spot to find some dog-friendly eating spots near Winterset. It’s about 36.9 miles from the town, but you’ll have quite a few options here! Try South Union Bread Café for some deli favorites, from soup to sandwiches, or enjoy a plate of some yummy Mexican food at Malo, which has outdoor seating for you and your dog. This neighborhood is also the home of the Des Moines Farmers Market, an outdoor market filled with local vendors that welcomes leashed dogs to stroll and shop for some goodies with their humans.
North of Grand is a neighborhood in Des Moines that offers a few paw-friendly restaurants within a decent distance – 34.5 miles – of Winterset. This neighborhood is only minutes away from Downtown Des Moines, so you’re close to all the fun stuff that the city offers! North of Grand is known for some of its quick eateries where you can grab a sandwich or coffee in a casual environment with your pup. Palmer’s Deli & Market is a great place for a quick lunch and has some outdoor tables for furry paws. Or, try Zanzibar’s Coffee Adventure for your morning cup of joe and a yummy pastry as a pit stop on Fido’s morning walk.
A little over 28 miles from Winterset is Adventureland Drive in Altoona, Iowa. This area hosts Adventureland Park, a fun family amusement park and water park. You and your dog can have an adventure of your own here, too, on the Four Mile Creek Greenway Trail. This dog-friendly spot can make the perfect relaxing getaway for a serene walk with your favorite pup through miles of trails. If you get hungry, head to Culver’s, a casual restaurant that serves up burgers, chicken, seafood, and more. There are some outdoor tables for you and your dog to enjoy a meal together. Bone Appetit!