Carawirry Forest Escape, NSW
Does a secluded weekend escape to the country staying in eco-luxe wilderness cabins, surrounded by 250 acres of forest sound like your dream getaway?
Carawirry Forest Escape is located in regional New South Wales and is the ultimate eco-luxe destination for those wanting to escape to the country and do as much or as little as you like.
Owners Heather & John have created the ultimate escape amongst the trees, and they’re passionate about helping curate their guests’ stays to ensure they leave the natural wilds of Carawirry refreshed, relaxed and rejuvenated, before returning to the concrete wilds of the big city. All cabins have been rebuilt and renovated with a signature touch of modern country luxury, and each cabin offers something a little unique to accommodate the needs of any discerning city dweller.
If a more pampered well-being focused stay is more your style then The Treehouse could be the cabin for you. Imagine gently moving that office-bound body with your own private restorative yoga session, followed by a relaxing soak in your own private bath house overlooking the forest. A luxurious in house massage and beauty treatment will be the perfect way to truly relax and unwind and finish your day of pampering. Your afternoon can be spent on the wraparound deck softly swaying on the seated hammocks with a secluded outlook over the trees whilst you enjoy snacking on your Artisan Grazing Box filled with organic and locally sourced cheeses, meats, dips & crackers.
Gum Leaf Cabin is the perfect place to escape to if your idea of rest and relaxation involves tapping into your inner adventurer and immersing yourself in the beauty of nature. Wander through the forest and explore the variety of hikes and waterfalls for a truly unique experience. In the warmer months, a dip in the natural pools is the perfect way to cool off before finding a spot on the rocks for your very own alfresco picnic by the creek. Your day of activity will be perfectly balanced with an afternoon and evening of relaxation back at the Gum Leaf Cabin. After a day of hiking, you can soak your weary bones in the outdoor bath, or if you prefer to bathe indoors you can let the double rainfall shower wash the day away, before spending the evening enjoying the delicious contents of your S’mores dessert box by the fire pit, or snuggling up inside by the fireplace with a hot chocolate and a good book before sinking into bed for a restful nights slumber.
Or, perhaps you and your crew are looking for a luxurious, modern country space big enough to spread out, catch up and reconnect? If that sounds like what you’re after, then Tathra House is the place to stay. Kick back and relax spending your days by the plunge pool looking out to the forest and spending your nights around the handcrafted long table, feasting and laughing, before winding down by the fireplace or sprawled out on the lounge enjoying good conversation and good company with a glass (or two) of Tamburlaine organic wine. In the morning wake up, and make yourself a cup of coffee and head on out to the firepit with your Brekkie Camp Pack ready to cook up a breakfast feast to feed the crew. With five bedrooms, and two bathrooms, Tathra House has more than enough space to accommodate large groups. The king beds in each of the rooms can be split into 10 single beds, with the additional option of hiring out The Humpy – a small yet spacious open plan rustic cabin with its own creature comforts of a king bed, kitchen and bathroom located a short 20 steps from Tathra House.
The magic of Carawirry Forest Escape doesn’t just start and end at luxurious accommodation offerings. The history of Carawirry is, in of itself, quite remarkable.
Supplying construction timber to BHP steelworks, Carawirry was originally a timber mill from 1909 – 1972 before John & Vicki Lloyd became the owners in 1975, and undertook a passion project of epic proportions – to restore Carawirry’s natural habitat after over 60 years of logging. John & Vicki built a home on the property and wanted to share their patch of paradise with guests and so they created walking tracks and built log cabins to accommodate those wanting to experience the beauty of Carawirry. From 2017 onwards, John & Heather Watkins became the owners of Carawarriry, and proudly and purposefully carry on the vision that John & Vicki Lloyd had for eco-tourism in the Dungog region.
Where possible, Heather ensures Australian and/or local suppliers with aligning values are used to stock the cabins at Carawirry Forest Escape. You’ll find Salus spa products in the bathrooms which have been created with Australian grown and made ingredients. These products are proudly made in Australia and are 100% free from synthetic nasties. The range is packaged in recycled or reusable packaging and their bottles are made from recycled and recyclable plastics. B-Corp certified Who Gives A Crap is the toilet paper of choice for guests at Carawirry. Plastic free and made from sustainable materials, Who Gives A Crap send 50% of their profits to help build toilets and improve sanitation in the developing world. Melbourne based Pod Co Coffee is the Australian brand responsible for your morning cup of coffee up at Carawirry Forest Escape. The Pod Co Coffee pods you’ll find in each of the cabins are made from plant based bio-plastics, and are fully biodegradable and compostable breaking down within 90 days.
It’s not just the suppliers that are involved with helping to reduce Carawirry’s environmental footprint. When he’s not maintaining Carawirry, John also operates his own sustainable timber business. Having the talent and skill to work timber meant that sustainable building practices were front of mind when renovating each of the cabins that guests now enjoy. The original cabin located where Tathra House now proudly sits required a knock-down rebuild, and timber from the original cabin was repurposed and reused throughout Tathra House with stunning results. The timber interior wall is a breathtaking design element and is a lovely nod to the original cabin. Sawn and rough timber from the property were also used on all cabin renovations in Carawirry, with no hardwood timber being outsourced at all.
Wildlife is also a big part of the Carawirry experience, and it’s not uncommon to find a friendly furry or feathered face around the cabins. Skip the wallaby will at times greet you on arrival, and Poss will be your resident site supervisor surveying the deck for crumbs to clean up, whilst Kook just loves to have a laugh with you. Native birds abound in the trees, with their sound making a beautiful soundtrack for your stay. About two and a half years ago, Heather and John also stocked their dams with 1000 Silver Perch – a local native to the estuary systems in the area. They also added 300 yabbies to the dam about 12 months ago.
Heather & John’s dedication to Carawirry’s future both from an eco-tourism, operational and environmental perspective, is testament to their dedication to uphold the values, legacy and vision of John & Vicki Lloyd.
Staying true to their roots, Heather and John are creating their own legacy within this magical place, and it’s hard not to be inspired by their effervescent can-do attitude, their dedication to raising their young family, their innate country hospitality to their guests, their passion for contributing to eco-tourism within the Dungog Shire community, and their steadfast vision for the future of Carawirry Forest Escape.
To book your next getaway, or if you’d like to find out more, you can head to their website over at Carawirry Forest Escape.
If you’d like to see more behind the scenes, you can join me over on Instagram or, if you’d like to work with me, please get in touch via the contact page.
Until next time,
Founder, Lens & Muse