Photo courtesy of Emirates Wolgan Valley Resort and Spa
Emirates Wolgan Valley Resort and Spa, Australia
The ultimate wilderness escape for those who like a bit of pampering, this conservation-conscious resort takes up just 2 percent of a 4,000-acre nature reserve in the Blue Mountains. Indoor-outdoor pools and fireplaces are standard in all 40 of the stand-alone suites, which include binoculars for viewing wildlife.
Charles Darwin visited Wolgan Valley in 1836. On sunset tours, in-house guides help spot the wallaby and wombat species that fascinated the naturalist. Spa treatments use native ingredients such as wattle seed and eucalyptus.
From $1,502, all-inclusive. 61/(0) 2-6350-1800. This appeared in the June/July 2013 issue. . wolganvalley.com
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Emirates Wolgan Valley Resort & Spa
Set on a 7,000-acre reserve between Wollemi National Park and the Gardens of Stone National Park, Emirates Wolgan Valley Resort and Spa is a luxury ecolodge backed by the dramatic canyons of the Blue Mountains World Heritage area. Roughly a two-and-a-half-hour drive from Sydney, the resort consists of 40 stand-alone suites and two homesteads built from traditional timber and sandstone under steel roofing. Most materials were sourced within a 60-mile radius; the fence posts were found on the property, and fallen eucalyptus trees were milled into unique furniture pieces that make up the Wolgan Valley Furniture Collection. Environmental initiatives extend to rainwater collection, water recycling, solar panels for water heating, and the use of traditional windmills instead of electrical pumps. The resort was also built by local tradesmen and decorated with iron lamps and furnishings, artworks, and porcelain jugs created by artisans from the area. Aside from its setting, the most intriguing aspect of the property is an original farmhouse, built around 1832, that hosted Charles Darwin in 1836. Today, the homestead functions as a museum that highlights the Aboriginal, settler, and agricultural history of the valley. A fruit orchard and edible garden supplies the kitchen with organic herbs, vegetables, fruits, and nuts.
A comprehensive program of activities was designed to take advantage of the inspiring Wolgan Valley region, which offers peaks to climb, glowworms to ogle, and many memorable food and wine experiences.
A taste of the outback in the Blue Mountains, with all the five-star comforts
This was one of the most beautiful places I have ever been. Biking with Kangaroos and Wallabees, plus fine food and wine. It's only a 3-hour drive from Sydney. But it feels like the end of the earth -- spectacular views everywhere you turn. Private sanctuary.
Located in the midst of a 4,000-acre nature preserve, Emirates Wolgan Valley Resort and Spa offers a guided after-dark safari in one of the resort’s safari-like luxury four-wheel-drive vehicles to see the local wildlife (kangaroos and wallaroos galore!) coming out to feed. It was truly amazing to see these gorgeous creatures all come out at dusk.