Peppermint and Travel+Leisure explore the best Ecoescapes

The Great Ocean Ecolodge has recently had the pleasure of welcoming some great travel journalists: Leeyong Soo from Peppermint Magazine and Madeline Gressel from Travel and Leisure Southeast Asia as they escaped to some of Australia’s most exciting eco destinations.

This is what Leeyong discovered on the Great Ocean Road:

It’s easy to see why the Great Ocean Ecolodge has just been selected as one of the world’s best ecolodges by National Geographic Traveler. Located amid Victoria’s lush bushlands, beaches and rainforests, and just off the iconic Great Ocean Road and Great Ocean Walk, the Lodge is operated by Victoria’s Conservation Ecology Centre and reinvests all of its profits into wildlife protection – great news for the kangaroos and koalas you’re likely to spot on the grounds!

While the idea of staying somewhere without access to amenities such as electricity might make you have flashbacks to disastrous childhood camping holidays, you’ve got nothing to worry about here. Great Ocean Ecolodge has all bases covered, from solar power and use of pure rainwater to the food served in its Great Hall (overlooking the stunning Otway Ranges) which comes straight from the property’s kitchen gardens. Whether you’re after pampering and relaxation or something a little more invigorating, you’ll find something to keep you occupied during your stay. Enjoy massage and yoga, join local chefs as they tour the region sourcing gourmet local produce, take a Guided Dusk Walk to observe the abundant wildlife or even head out on a kayak tour and spot seals in the Bass Strait. You’ll never want to leave!

See the full article here: Peppermint Magazine – ecoescapes

Visit the Peppermint Magazine website for more great stories.

 

This was Maddie’s experience, far from home:

Every sunrise at the Great Ocean Ecolodge brings grazers to the field. Not cows, but tall, reddish brown bipeds that use their enormous feet and muscular tails to spring from lawn to lawn, munching grass.
Part luxury lodge, part social enterprise, the Great Ocean Ecolodge was founded in part to help realize this pastoral vision.
Couple Lizzie Corke and Shayne Neal bought the property in Southern Victoria nearly 10 years ago. They founded and built the Conservation Ecology Centre to research and offer sanctuary to the region’s native wildlife, including koalas, kangaroos, wallabies, potoroos (kangaroo-meets-rat), sugar gliders, and the rare and endangered tiger quoll.

The Great Ocean Ecolodge was designed to help pay for the center’s research. But now it’s thriving in its own right. Guests are drawn to the charming five-room lodge—a house, really—by the wildlife and the proximity to Australia’s Great Ocean Road, a stretch of National Heritage coastline running from Torquay to Warnambool.

Veteran and amateur trekkers tackle the 103-kilometer route, which winds along the coast through bluff and beach, heath and forest. Cape Otway is the entry point to the Great Otway National Park, a swath of eucalyptus spread across 100,000 hectares of waterfalls, lakes and fern gullies, home to a sizable koala population. Most of the Ecolodge’s four-legged guests are wounded or sick animals brought from the neighboring park for care. There are some permanent members on the property too, including two sugar gliders, one potoroo, and a community of fierce tiger quolls kept for research and breeding. There were six koala joeys when I visited. One adorably intrepid female, Henrietta, climbed right into my arms and promptly fell asleep. The lodge encourages guests to observe and interact with all the animals, though the baby koalas need space. Neal guides guests on a daily dusk walk in search of wildlife, and every meal is served in the dining room, overlooking the herds of grazing kangaroo.

Even if you’re not hiking the Great Ocean Road, there’s no shortage of things to do. The lodge will help organize spa treatments, champagne picnics, Otway culinary tours, a treetop forest walk, helicopter rides or a sunset canoe safari on Lake Elizabeth in search of the elusive platypus. Stroll the beach and search for cresting southern right whales. Or ensconce yourself in your charming, solar-powered room and watch the kangaroos hop by.

See the full article here: Travel and Leisure Southeast Asia – Outback Outreach

Visit the Travel + Leisure Southeast Asia website for even more.