As states begin to cautiously relax their travel restrictions we can start to plan ways to responsibly enjoy travelling again.
Social distancing is the new normal for Australians – and the world. But as the freedom to travel our own state – or interstate, depending on each state’s border closures – returns to us we find ourselves craving wide-open spaces, coastal road trips and the safety of secluded getaways.
Whether you want to embrace a solo escape, one shared with your significant other or with your immediate family, jumping in the car, filling up your #emptyesky on the way and spending the weekend in one of these uniquely wonderful properties will be good for your soul.
Leave your troubles on the shore and spend the night in a private floating villa on the Northern Beaches of Sydney.
Select a hearty drop from the wine cellar, fire up the BBQ for dinner and watch as the evening light disappears from the comfort of your private deck. Listening to the soothing sounds of the lake gently lapping at the sides of the villa and the soft crackling of the indoor fireplace as you enjoy your meal.
Once the sun is up it’s time to embrace a day of activities on the water. Make use of the stand-up paddle boards, take the self-drive tender out with the provided fishing gear or allow the team behind Lilypad to organise a boat for a picnic on nearby Portuguese Beach.
If you book the overnight package, you’ll find a tasting platter and champagne on arrival, prepared by The Boathouse Palm Beach. The renowned restaurant will also provide dinner and breakfast during your stay.
Soak your worries away in the luxurious giant bathtub at Belisi. Perfectly positioned in front of floor to ceiling glass windows, so you’ll be able to take in all the rural serenity of the horses grazing in the paddocks below with a wine in hand and the calming scent of lavender bath salts in the air.
The luxury cottage is built from recycled shipping containers – a fact you’d be hard pressed to notice – and comfortably sleeps up to six guests. Enjoy the homemade muesli or cook up the delicious farm fresh eggs (both included in your stay) in the fully-stocked kitchen for breakfast. Pre-order a dinner basket and make use of Belisi’s personal pantry service for an assortment of local produce ready for you upon arrival.
There are a number of onsite activities available to book, including horse riding, trail rides, wellbeing programs, equine therapy, yoga, art classes and indigenous culture. You can also make use of the farm’s walking track and visit the chook house to collect eggs.
Spread out and enjoy the space of this restored 1920s Queenslander in Boomerang Beach on the Mid North Coast of NSW.
The oversized wraparound verandah is shaded by wattle trees and is the perfect place to sit at dawn and watch the sun rise. You’ll find table tennis and bicycles in the garage to use to explore the coast.
This coastal gem sleeps up to 9 guests with 4 bedrooms, 5 beds and 2.5 bathrooms and is stocked with all the necessities to make this a home away from home.
Get above it all in your own magical treehouse.
Set among 600 acres of private wilderness in the Blue Mountains, this secluded accommodation will give you the back-to-nature experience we all need right now. Rise early to sweeping views of the Blue Mountains World Heritage listed rainforest and Bowen’s Creek Gorge. It’s the perfect couples or solo retreat (note it is available to book for adults only).
Spend your evenings soaking in the spa, stargazing, cooking meals in the kitchenette or warming yourself by the fire. The floor to ceiling windows will give you unhindered access to the breathtaking beauty of the landscape below. During the day you can explore Wollemi National Park’s walking trails and maze of canyons and cliff top views. Go canoeing in Dunns Swamp, or mountain biking on the Fire Trails off Putty Road on the Culoul Range Trail or the Grassy Hill Trail.
Jump on board ‘Myra’, the old timber ferry at Palm Beach, and cross the Pittwater River to Mackerel Beach for a much-needed breather.
You’ll find the Little Black Shack, an idyllic fisherman cottage made from timber and sandstone, at the end of a short walking track from the beach. Alternatively, if the tide is low, you can walk across the rocks.
Take full advantage of the secluded beachside location by swimming, snorkelling, fishing off the rocks or hire a boat from Palm Beach to explore the nearby coves and bays.
The two bedroom “shack” is a homebody’s paradise: rows upon rows of books, TV and DVD player, a fully-stocked kitchen with espresso machine, an indoor fireplace to cosy up alongside and the outdoor space has a brick oven for some alfresco cooking – and a rainshower to wash away the sand from a day well-spent at the beach.
Byron Bay can always be relied upon to provide chilled-out vibes when you need it most. Add to that the luxury of a weekend spent in Magnolia House and social distancing sounds a little more bearable.
This perfectly styled monochrome haven sleeps 8 and is situated a block away from Clarkes Beach and five minutes’ walk to town. Enjoy the sun in the private yard, go for a swim in the pool or spa if the weather permits, or cook a meal in the fully equipped gourmet kitchen, throw a couple of logs on the fire, cosy up to your companion and make use of the media room complete with 70 inch TV and wireless sonos music system. Make sure you take the time to soak in the claw foot bath tub before the end of your stay.
Admiring the expansive star-filled night sky through the glass walls from the comfort of your bed inside JR’s EcoHut in Gundagai will make you forget about the rest of the world.
Set on a 7000 acre working farm, the solar-powered hut is nestled high on a hill above the Murrumbidgee River overlooking Kimo Valley. It is a luxurious off-grid glamping experience that will allow you to completely unwind surrounded by nature on the deck or by the indoor fireplace.
Breakfast is included in your stay – you’ll find it in the outdoor fridge box ready to cook on the barbeque in the morning. A dinner basket full of ingredients and locally-sourced produce can also be delivered to your door for cooking under the stars in the evening.