Bush Magic

Let’s get one thing straight – Goongerah is a tiny town. Like, sixty locals and counting kind of tiny. It doesn’t have a cafe and you won’t find a supermarket; in fact, you’ll be hard pressed to get any phone reception. But getting off the grid – that’s where the fun starts, right? At least it did for us, anyway.

You see, what Goongerah lacks in coffee, it makes up for with its 60,000 year old forest, sparkling Brodribb River and long weekends at the Tin Chalet. Tucked beneath the mighty Snowy River National Park (about five hours drive from Melbourne), the Tin Chalet is an organic oasis run by conservationist, and major eco-inspiration, Jill Redwood. If you can imagine a self-sustaining, Aussie utopia – then you’re pretty close.

For the first 48 hours, we didn’t step foot off the farm. We played cards on the cosy front porch with Bonnie (the Clydesdale horse) for company; drank whisky and cooked steak on the open fire outside; napped by the river, eating fresh prawns bought straight off the boat in Lakes Entrance; and picked (and ate) mulberries until our tongues turned red.

On our third day, we explored Errinundra National Park – just a 20 minute drive from the Tin Chalet – and hiked the ancient old growth forest, where the trees tower above you like skyscrapers. If you’re looking for a good dose of perspective, you’ll find it here.

You’ll also find it talking to Jill, who is a generous and super knowledgeable host. The way she describes the change of season, her love for the land, her complete independence – had us imagining our own utopia, maybe with a mulberry tree or two in the backyard. And definitely no wifi.

Things We Did

  • River
  • Sunset
  • Food & Drink
  • Forest
  • Scenic Drive
Swimming the Brodribb River
If you fancy a swim, all you have to do is jump the back fence. We packed a picnic of prawns and spritzes, and kicked back on the bank for a few hours of birdsong and sunshine. Colour us refreshed!...
Picnic in the paddock
BYO camp cooker for the perfect golden hour picnic. It's guaranteed sunset magic, minus the crowds....
Chef's special on the fire
The Tin Chalet comes with all the cooking gear you need – including an outdoor fire. So why not make the most of the outdoors and bring the kitchen outside?...
Exploring Errinundra's Old Growth Forest
Errinundra National Park is just a 20-minute drive up the road from Goongerah and is home to a forest of trees that tower above you like skyscrapers and are over 60,000 years old. If you’re looking for a good dose of perspective, you’ll find it here....
The winding road to Goongerah
The 90-minute drive from Orbost to Goongerah winds between lush ferns and tall Manna gums. It also depicts just how easily a bushfire can ravage a region. This forest is still regenerating – you can see blackened trunks starting to sprout new green life – and it's both alien and magical all at once....

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