With winter well and truly upon us, it’s time to embrace the crisp fresh air and venture to destinations that shine in the cooler months. Pamper yourself at a day spa, indulge in a hearty meal, and sample some delicious wine throughout the plethora of fine vineyards this vast county has to offer. Head out on an invigorating walk and enjoy the countryside, or simply relax with your feet up in front of a warm, cozy fire with a glass of wine in hand and enjoy the serenity. We’ve compiled a list of our favourite luxury hotels, resorts, and lodges to soften the winter chill. So rug up and get ready for your ultimate Winter Escape.
Situated just outside of Maryvale in national parklands 1100 metres above sea level, visitors to Spicer’s Peak Lodge will find themselves nestled in acres of idyllic bushlands and scenic vistas in an all-inclusive winter getaway. Holidaymakers can choose a private lodge perched on the hillside which features a fireplace and outdoor area with a jacuzzi boasting views of the surrounding mountains and valleys. Alternatively, visitors can stay at ground level on the sweeping plains of the valley which also include a private balcony and fireplace.
The lodge offers complimentary stargazing and a number of tours exploring the local area. Hikes, scenic helicopter flights, rugged 4WD tours and wildlife spotting safaris are all on offer. At the end of the day relax with canapes by the campfire. Notable locations nearby include the Gleneden Family Farm, Mt Mitchell, Bare Rock and Mt Cordeaux.
New South Wales:
Between the Woolomi and Garden of Stone National Parks in the Blue Mountains region, the secluded Wolgan Valley is dotted with luxurious villas surrounded by scenic landscapes. Guests can dry off after a dip in their private heated pool by the hearth of a crackling fireplace as they experience the serenity of their own winter paradise.
Visitors are spoiled for choice for activities, with 4×4 tours, horse riding, safaris, and mountain biking, or explore the valley on foot with a guided tour or wildlife spotting safari. Nearby is the glow worm tunnel, a truly magical place to visit. If you are travelling from Sydney a stop at the famous Three Sisters lookout will be in order. Just down the road, the Leura Bakery has some of the best pies around and would make a wonderful lunch destination for your journey to Wolgan Valley.
This boutique five-star retreat located in the Hunter Valley region comprises of just 12 luxury suites each with its own fireplace. Boasting the serene Spa Anise, this is the perfect place to rest and rejuvenate
Take a wine tour of the hunter valley and visit the Hunter Valley Cheese Factory for something to pair it with. Visit the Hunter Valley Gardens for a stroll or view the valley from above on a hot air balloon tour.
Secluded, luxury in the breathtaking Blue Mountains. This all-inclusive retreat delivers a peaceful & intimate escape with gourmet meals & beverages complete with an ambient fireplace.
Spicers Sangoma Retreat is the perfect place to unwind with a relaxing yoga or meditation class or try your hand at a wine and watercolour painting lesson! For the more adventurous thrill seekers, rock climbing, canyoning or abseiling are on offer or an exhilarating hike or rainforest walk through the breathtaking mountains.
The much acclaimed exclusive beach safari camp Sal Salis, showcases fifteen eco-lux wilderness tents. Set on a deserted stretch of beach in the Cape Range National Park near Exmouth on the fringe of the Ningaloo Reef.
Spend your days relaxing in your hammock or kayaking, paddle boarding or wading in the warm waters of the Indian Ocean. For the more adventurous, head out for a swim with the majestic Whale Sharks or magnificent Humpback Whales. Sal Salis will see you get back to nature as you fall asleep to the sound of crashing waves under a starlit sky.
Empire Retreat is an adults-only retreat in the heart of the Margaret River Wine region designed for pure relaxation. Several different accommodation options boast luxurious finishes and the perfect environment to relax and rejuvenate.
Guests can pamper themselves at the on-site spa, and visit the Empire Winery, as well as exploring further to taste the spoils of the popular wine region. Venture to the coast for some whale watching or to visit the Cape Leeuwin and Cape Naturaliste lighthouses. The nearby cave system is also a spectacle that should be explored, with a system of over 100 caves that display impressive limestone formations of stalactites and stalagmites.
A romantic, private escape with baroque architecture and intricate, romantic interior design, 20 minutes from the Adelaide CBD. With lodgings boasting the most extravagant attention to detail and offering much privacy, it is the perfect couples escape. The castle houses several unique rooms where a variety of meals and private dining experiences can be enjoyed. The Manor chefs will prepare a picnic for you to enjoy in the castle’s magnificent grounds, allowing you to admire the impressive exterior of the manor itself.
Nearby, visitors can explore the Adelaide botanic gardens, or take a day trip to the popular tourist spot Port Adelaide. Absorb some culture at the Art Gallery of South Australia or spot some cute creatures at either the Adelaide zoo or Cleland Wildlife Park.
Cushioned among the vineyards in South Australia’s McLaren Vale, this unique accommodation offers a choice of four elegantly appointed self-contained guest houses including studios, 1 – and 2 – bedroom apartments.
All guest houses have stunning views and private decks overlooking the vineyard with fireplaces and sleek elegant interiors, the perfect setting for a winter escape!
The iconic Cradle Mountain Lodge, nestled on the edge of Cradle Mountain Lake, is a 2-hour scenic drive from Launceston. It is perched among the rugged Tasmanian wilderness which contrasts nicely with the luxurious furnishings of the lodge. The accommodation melds with the landscape such that visits from local wildlife are not uncommon. Guests will feel welcomed by the stylish contemporary furnishings, with rooms featuring private hot tubs, fireplaces and scenic outlooks.
Explore the local area on one of the many hikes including the famous Dove Lake and Crater Lake. Take a wildlife tour, fish, or explore by canoe. To spot some of the infamous Tasmanian devils, visit Devils @ Cradle.
Winner of many awards, the Saffire Freycinet is Australia’s premier luxury lodge. A coastal sanctuary sheltered in Coles Bay providing an authentic connection to the stunning Freycinet National Park and Wineglass Bay in Tasmania. Distinct in its design and superior service, Saffire features 20 private suites, a luxury day spa, an unforgettable culinary offering the perfect resort getaway.
Be sure to enjoy the multitude of activities and unique experiences on offer (most of them complimentary) from sampling your own oysters direct from the shallow waters of the marine park to kayaking, bird watching, hiking or cruising the magnificent Wineglass Bay.
Australia Capital Territory:
African Inspired Luxury Suites in the heart of the Canberra Zoo and Aquarium. See the Giraffes, Big Cats, Lemurs or sea life from your room, depending on the chosen lodgings, and enjoy opportunities to feed and interact with the wildlife. Some rooms feature large windows into the shark tanks, while others have giraffes towering over your balcony.
Take a tour of the zoo, dine in the Rainforest Cave, or venture out to explore Australia’s capital. Here you can see the royal Australian mint, the War Memorial, Parliament House, and for views high above the city, ascend the Telstra tower, overlooking the city from the top of a mountain.
Photo credit to: Spicers Retreats Group, Great Walks of Australia, Tourism Australia, Paul Fleming, Emelie Ristevski, Laura Helle, Charles Hill, Kelly Slater, Virgin Australia, Thorngrove Manor, One & Only Wolgan Valley, Sam Noonan and Jamala Wildlife Lodge, Saffire Freycinet, Cradle Mountain Lodge, The Vineyard Retreat, Tourism Tasmania, WA Tourism, Empire Retreat.