August 5, 2021

Stays around SA: Regional relaxation

Whether you need a romantic couple’s retreat or a fun family excursion, reconnect with loved ones and rejuvenate at the same time with one of these idyllic regional SA stays.

Barossa Pavilions, Lyndoch


Barossa Pavilions, Lyndoch

Owned and managed by the Knight family, Barossa Pavilions offer six separate dwellings perched on rolling hills with wall-to-wall east-facing windows capturing views of the North Para River, a nearby vineyard and the Barossa Ranges. The pavilions guarantee a secluded couple’s escape with modern open-plan layouts, stunning outlooks from every room and private balconies, in addition to his-and-her spa baths to soak in after a day exploring local wineries. The self-contained pavilions include a kitchen, lounge, bedroom and bathroom. “Barossa Pavilions is the perfect destination for a romantic getaway, home base for that long holiday or simply a space to relax, isolated from the troubles of the world,” says James Knight.


Abode, Mount Gambier

“I’ve heard so many beautiful stories and been told of the memories made from the guests who have stayed in our accommodation, be it young or old, couples or families. I love bringing people together in one place; a home,” says Zoe Wighton, who operates Abode – a luxury vacation home in the centre of Mount Gambier. Although Abode can be configured as a five-bedroom house for a whole family, it is also a perfect base for couples looking to explore the South East. Zoe and her partner Brett Menzies completely stripped and renovated the home to create a purpose-built modern accommodation offering unlike anything else in the area.


CABN, McLaren Vale

Star-gazing by night and waking up to the warble of magpies by day; a weekend away doesn’t get much better than this. CABN, the mini self-contained eco houses across McLaren Vale, couple style and sustainability. The off-grid accommodation options include Mila, just eight minutes from the middle of McLaren Vale, overlooking the vineyard at Gemtree Wines. Chloe is surrounded by scrub, with lots of animal-spotting, bush walks and bird-watching to keep you busy.


Tanonga Luxury Eco Lodges, Port Lincoln

Disconnect, switch off and be absorbed by 96 hectares of natural bushland in Charlton Gully near Port Lincoln at Tanonga Luxury Eco Lodges. Experience native bush and walking trails, wildlife and valley views before retreating to your private luxury lodge, where the fireplace will be ready to light. Source local produce and seafood to prepare yourself in the fully-equipped kitchens or choose a catering package paired with local wines. There are two lodges to choose from – the Ridge and the Valley – each with their own outlook, complete privacy and total luxury, built with limestone walls, large north-facing windows and a minimal ecological footprint.


The Louise, Barossa Valley

The Louise’s Emma Welling says a luxury culinary retreat in the heart of wine country is the perfect way for couples to disconnect, reconnect, and unwind together. At The Louise Barossa, guests can expect absolute luxury, private spaces and breathtaking vineyard views that create a backdrop for the ultimate romantic getaway. Relax in the sauna, soak in your private spa tub, enjoy a drink toasting the sunset or even book a private yoga or meditation class. Then, indulge in an intimate dinner at Appellation restaurant. The Louise team can design the perfect itinerary to help couples sip, smell, and taste their way around the region from private vineyard safaris to perfume-making classes and more.



Mt Bera, Gumeracha

Stay on the grounds of premium Hills wine producer Mt Bera in the Vineyard Cottage BnB, a restored four-bedroom stone farmhouse located in a peaceful rural setting among vineyards. Vineyard Cottage BnB is ideal for extended families getting together in the one location, and also for family groups involved in weddings in the region. The location is perfect to explore the Adelaide Hills, Barossa and Eden Valley wine regions and just 30 minutes from Adelaide. Gorge Wildlife Park is only a few minutes’ drive away and there are many local bushwalks with a multitude of wineries and cafes to choose from.


Kangaroo Island Star Beach House, Kangaroo Island

Although it’s just a 12-minute drive from the Penneshaw ferry terminal, Kangaroo Island Star Beach House offers a secluded stay away from the crowds on the doorstep of a two-kilometre stretch of white sandy beach. Sleeping four adults and four children, the beach house is nestled amongst tranquil surroundings with 180-degree ocean views from the outdoor decking and just 30 steps from a pristine swimming beach that offers safety and protection for family activities. Enjoy connecting with nature, be it gazing at the starry night skies or the abundance of birds, pelicans, kangaroos and wallabies. A gas barbecue, kayaks, boogie boards and beach gear are included in your stay to make the most of the beachside getaway.


Blue Fin Holiday Homes, Port MacDonnell

Your shortlist of family holiday destinations should include Port MacDonnell, where Blue Fin Holiday Homes offers three beautiful beachside houses from which families can explore the Limestone Coast while being based just 20 minutes from Mount Gambier. Kim and Charlie Simpson operate the family and pet-friendly Blue Fin Holiday Homes – flexible, affordable accommodation options with plenty of room for one family or even two. Visit the local fish mongers to pick up fresh seafood, head to the surfing and swimming beaches, foreshore playground and skate park with a pump track. Of the three homes, one is located on the beachfront and two are just behind the foreshore.


Flinders Bush Retreats, Hawker

With their own family in mind, Flinders Bush Retreats’ Allen and Sharon McInnis have created an immersive farm stay with self-contained accommodation, eco-tent glamping and bush camping experiences. “We have five children and know the struggles of finding quality accommodation for families. We built our business based on what we want when we go on holidays – comfort, style and space,” says Sharon. Each accommodation unit features modern conveniences, stylish furnishings and unique views. Feed friendly farm animals, collect free-range eggs or view seasonal farm activities and shearing demos. Explore 4WD, mountain bike and bushwalking trails or enjoy a picnic in the ancient gorge before gathering around the campfire under the vibrant night sky.


Leigh Creek Outback Resort, Leigh Creek

If you want an affordable family holiday in the outback, then put Leigh Creek on your list. Leigh Creek Outback Resort is a great hub to base the family, just a short drive away from the stunning Aroona Dam where you can drop a fishing line and use the barbecue and picnic facilities. The resort offers motel rooms and self-contained cabins for families. The restaurant and cafe have a wonderful all-day menu with flavours from the bush to the sea and a generous kids’ menu and beer garden to play in while mum and dad have a drink at the bar. Leigh Creek offers breathtaking bushwalks, playgrounds and a fully fenced footy oval for the kids and pets to run around.


Ryelands Farm Stay, Tarlee

This family-run working farm offers a taste of rustic country life close to the Barossa and Clare. Stay in the self-contained three-bedroom cottage with all you need, including space to bring your four-legged family members along. Or, set up a tent, caravan or swag at the camping area next to the shearing shed with both powered and unpowered sites, which have access to a camp kitchen, bathroom and toilet. At night, gather around the bonfire or the combustion heater inside the shed, which makes for a cosy spot on wet or wintry evenings. There are also bush camping grounds dotted across the Rylands Farm Stay property.


Upalinna Station, Flinders Ranges

Upalinna Station is a family-owned and operated Merino sheep property run by Mija and Matt Reynolds, who offer campsites and shearers quarters that are ideal for family stays. Rustic but with modern comforts and completely off-grid, the shearers quarters were renovated in 2019 to accommodate families and groups looking to explore the Flinders Ranges from a central base. Located 10 kilometres from Ikara Wilpena Pound Resort, Upalinna is a perfect spot to beat the crowds while still having access to amenities. Families can explore the surrounding acreage at their leisure, enjoy a campfire by the creek and experience life on the land like the locals do. With Wilpena Creek and many natural springs dotted throughout, the property was named Upalinna after the Adnyamathanha word for “Little Water”.


Skillogalee, Clare

For parents seeking a comfortable B&B stay in the heart of Clare Valley wine country where they can also bring the kids along, Skillogalee Winery offers three different self-contained accommodation offerings to suit varying budgets. Choose from the luxury Skillogalee House, Owl Cottage, or Wren Cottage, each with a garden area and space for play, while Skillogalee will provide high chairs and porta-cots, children’s cereals and chocolates, with free wi-fi, televisions and DVD players. Enjoy the comfort of your abode within walking distance to Skillogalee restaurant which the owners’ 11-year-old grandson says has “the best kids’ menu he’s ever seen”.


This article first appeared in the June 2021 issue of SALIFE magazine.


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