Central and North Burnett Times - - ESCAPE - WORDS: CHANTAY LO­GAN


Lord Howe Is­land, New South Wales

You can leave the real world be­hind when you check in to this is­land idyll, around 600km north­east of Syd­ney. Pinetrees Lord Howe Is­land Travel gen­eral man­ager Ten­nille Schell says there is no mo­bile re­cep­tion any­where on Lord Howe Is­land, and no Wi-Fi or TVs in the lodge. “You get your news by news­pa­per, which is flown in on the plane, so avail­able in the af­ter­noon or the next day, you check the weather by wak­ing up and look­ing at the sky, and you ab­sorb spec­tac­u­lar sun­sets, sweep­ing land­scapes and glo­ri­ous un­der­wa­ter life through your eyes, not your so­cial me­dia ac­counts,” she says. Ten­nille says it’s when trav­ellers dis­con­nect from de­vices that they start to see real con­nec­tions form­ing. “What we re­ally find spe­cial is, with­out the at­tach­ment of de­vices, guests go for walks, read books and, most im­por­tantly, talk to each other,” she says. “Our boat­shed in the evenings is abuzz with guests mak­ing new friends and chat­ting about their ad­ven­tures over a glass of dry Clare Val­ley Ries­ling or the lo­cal Phas­mid Pale Ale from our hon­esty bar.”


Tarkine rain­for­est, Tas­ma­nia

On the edge of the an­cient Tarkine rain­for­est, Corinna Wilder­ness Ex­pe­ri­ence in­vites guests to un­plug and soak up the seren­ity. Con­sider this re­mote so­lar-pow­ered town­ship your spring­board into the wild. Gen­eral man­ager Matt Coxon says they of­fer a base for a range of walks, Pie­man river cruises, kayak­ing, fish­ing and bird watch­ing. “Corinna has so much to of­fer vis­i­tors keen to dis­cover our unique ecosys­tem, abun­dant fauna and flora and the breath­tak­ing sights of the Tarkine rain­for­est,” he says. “Whether you pre­fer short walks, longer hikes or other out­door ac­tiv­i­ties, there are so many op­tions – you’ll feel as though you’re discoverin­g an­other world that’s un­touched by mass tourism.” Corinna ac­com­mo­da­tion in­cludes the orig­i­nal dou­ble-bed­room Road­man’s cot­tage, the old pub, which is now a group stay guest­house with sin­gle and dou­ble rooms, and 16 one or twobed­room wilder­ness re­treats. It’s re­mote but you won’t be rough­ing it, with heat­ing, comfy beds, hot show­ers, a fridge and cook­ing fa­cil­i­ties.


Great Bar­rier Reef, Queens­land

No phone, no emails, no In­sta­gram – Queens­land’s new­est glamp­ing of­fer­ing has just enough power to charge the cam­era and chill the wine. On the pris­tine South­ern Great Bar­rier Reef, the tiny Wil­son Is­land cra­dles nine glamp­ing tents plus a cen­tral long-house serv­ing meals and an hon­esty bar. Im­merse your­self in na­ture’s show reel of healthy co­ral reefs and rain­bow fish or just dive into a good book while you soak up the sun­shine.


Port Mac­quarie, New South Wales

You know what doesn’t mix well with tech­nol­ogy? Salt­wa­ter. Let the waves wash away your trou­bles while you learn a new skill on a Soul Surf­ing re­treat. “Keep your phone on the shore and re­con­nect through up­lift­ing surf lessons, im­merse your­self in heart-led yoga, the magic of mas­sage and other spe­cial mo­ments of con­nec­tion to na­ture,” Soul Surf­ing owner Corey En­field says. “This four-day re­treat in Port Mac­quarie com­bines re­lax­ation, surf­ing, yoga and divine food to al­low you to dis­con­nect from tech­nol­ogy and re­con­nect with your mind and body in one of the most pic­turesque towns on the east coast of New South Wales.”


Bamurru Plains, North­ern Ter­ri­tory

The mo­bile re­cep­tion is non-ex­is­tent but the con­nec­tion to the en­vi­ron­ment is strong at Aus­tralia’s an­swer to an African sa­fari camp, Bamurru. Nine sa­fari bun­ga­lows are built on stilts over­look­ing flood­plains fre­quented by a myr­iad of bird and an­i­mal life. Mesh screens serve as your walls on three sides, so you can hear, see and al­most touch the wildlife and wilder­ness around you. Fall asleep to a cho­rus of frogs and let the mag­pie geese be your alarm clock as the light of dawn washes over the flood­plain.


Syd­ney, Bondi, Melbourne, Perth, Can­berra, Gold Coast, Queen­stown and Welling­ton

If re­mote isn’t re­ally your thing, you’ll be re­lieved to know it’s pos­si­ble to switch off closer to home. QT Ho­tels & Re­sorts across Aus­tralia and New Zealand of­fer a Power Down pack­age that asks guests to hand over their de­vices for at least 12 hours in ex­change for some pam­per­ing. Ho­tel staff take care of guests’ phones from 7pm to 7am while they en­joy a range of mind­ful ex­tras in­clud­ing well­ness bowls, juices, sup­ple­ments or a sneaky wine and cheese at the bar. In-room gifts, in­clud­ing Beauty Chef’s GLOW pow­der, Ad­di­tion Stu­dio’s Bath Brew, a Luv Sum pro­tein ball and lu­l­ule­mon yoga mat, sup­port dig­i­tal detox­ers through their de­vice black­out. Whether it’s your first rodeo or you’re a reg­u­lar on the recharge cir­cuit, a QT Well­ness Guru is on hand to help fend off nomo­pho­bia.

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