The Best Stays for Your Post-Lockdown Plans

Browsing Airbnb and the like to find stays that remind us that better days are ahead? It’s tough work, but someone’s gotta do it.

Regional travel is almost within reach, and you best believe every man and his dog is going to be revving to get the hell outta their LGA, so start planning ahead with these stays all up and down the east side Australia.

Never Never Cabin, Bellingen, NSW

An open plan cabin with views of the Never Never forest ranges, and just a 500 metre walk down to the river. Woodfire for cold nights and a 500 metre walk down to the river for hot days. Plus it’s only a 10-minute drive into town, so you don’t have to forgo a cold one at the Brewery—but with a verandah like that, you probably will anyway.

The Little Black Shack, Mackerel Beach, NSW

An old fisherman’s shack that’s been transformed into private eco-retreat right on the Pittwater. Can personally vouch for this one, it’s incredible: private path straight down into the water, wood-fired pizza oven, and views from every inch of the house. The ferry ride across from Palm Beach will get you in holiday mode before you even arrive.

Hadley’s Orient Hotel, Hobart, TAS

Most people will probably tell you to stay at the MACq 01 up the road, which is great, but this place has proper old school charm. The heritage-listed Hadley’s Orient is two centuries old and in that time has played host to politicians, celebrities, convicts and world-famous performers—walls could talk kind of thing. Make sure you grab a drink at their hotel bar too and if you time it right, there will be someone there tinkering on the grand piano.

Eltham Hotel, Eltham, NSW

The number one spot to stay in Byron’s hinterland. Nothing better than a lovingly restored pub that pays respect to its rich heritage, and does so in style. Grab a snitty and watch some live music downstairs before stumbling upstairs to rest your head.

Daylesford Longhouse, Macedon Ranges, VIC

An architecturally designed, shed-style home that includes a boutique farm and garden kitchen. One of the most interesting stays on this list—where else can you book that’s got butterflies, birds and expansive green areas on the inside?

Shackpalace, Noosa, QLD

So tasteful it hurts. It could also be located in the middle of nowhere for all I care, because that view over the hills, the open-air shower, and raw timber means I probably wouldn’t be leaving this zen den till they’re kicking me out.

The Log Box, Mornington Peninsula, VIC

Once a disused milking shed, the cabin has been given transformed into an open plan studio that’s got everything you could possibly need. Raw cypress beams, distressed concrete floors, cosy wood heater, and just a quick drive to the beach.

Three Capes Cabin, Taranna, TAS

Set amongst native gum and banksia, the Three Capes Cabin overlooks little Norfolk Bay on Tassie’s East Coast. Bathtub on the deck, back deck with BBQ, fire pit… I could go on but I’ll let you look at the photos. This is nice nice.

The Sunseeker, Byron Bay, NSW

80’s brick has never looked sexier. The Northern River’s refurbished retro gem is relatively new, but it’s quickly becoming a Byron favourite. With touches that celebrate local carpenters, painters, designers, and sculptors, a location tucked just out of the main town hustle and bustle, and a poolside spot perfect for a late afternoon cocktail, it’s the perfect weekender for post-lockdown plans.

Maggie Studio, Magnetic Island, QLD

A simple yet tasteful stay on a tropical island where you’ll be spending most of your time outdoors anyway. The perfect place to return roasted to a crisp after a full day in the sun, followed by an outdoor shower and a cold bev on the deck.

Gawthorne’s Hut, Buckaroo, NSW

I’ve loved this small and sustainable off-grid cabin since I first saw it on Never Too Small’s YouTube channel. The large windows and doors capture the views of the Mudgee valley, and every inch of the place has been designed to maximise space and your interaction with nature. If the photos don’t sell you, then check out Never Too Small’s guide to the Gawthorne Hut here. 

Joints in Byron, Byron Bay, NSW

You’ll find Joints in Byron on Bangalow Road, a collection of four European-inspired residences. Natural skylights, impeccably styled interiors, private outdoor deck… it’s the perfect chilled oasis to retreat to when the crowds become too much (which is often).


Little Red Barn, Doona, QLD

Do it for the plunge pool. The rest of the converted barn-slash-house is epic too though, and because it fits seven, it’s the perfect spot to book on behalf of your non-committal friends and then have them repeatedly praise you for organising such a great holiday. Idiots.

The Pod, Lewisham, TAS

Floor to ceiling glass, thoughtful touches that incorporate local materials and artisans, and great views out onto the bay. It ain’t big, but who cares when it looks this good.

Treehouse, Tarzali, QLD

Set in 100 acres of ancient rainforest located on the Cairns Highlands, this eco rainforest resort is for anyone who wants to get smack bang in the middle of some wildlife without having to actually make friends with it. It also sleeps six people, so call up your mates who hate camping and be the bearer of good news.

Pine Forest Cabin, Glenquarry, NSW

Another tiny house. Arrest me.

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