Escape route: Lord Howe Island
QANTAS flies direct to Lord Howe Island from Sydney and Brisbane (Saturdays only).
But brace yourself for longhaul prices because of limited seat availability and weather dependant cancellations.
It pays to invest in travel insurance. qantas.com
Everything – from the freshly ground coffee right down to the hand soap – at Waimarie Apartments comes with a story and the personal touch of the owner, fifth-generation Lord Howe Islander Sharon van Gelderen. From $320 per night. waimarielordhoweisland.com.au
Go all-inclusive at Arajilla Retreat near Old Settlement Beach. As a fellow diner tells me, it’s “like being on a cruise ship but on land; everyone is so friendly”.
Leave time for an ayurvedic massage in the spa. Rooms from $750 per person a night. arajilla.com.au
Anthony from Marine Adventures’ 3.5-hour glass-bottom boat tour to North Bay includes turtle spotting in the North Passage, snorkelling, guided seabird walk, and a walk to the top of Mt Eliza for $70 per person. marineadventures.com.au Islander Cruises
Peter from Islander Cruises has lived on Lord Howe for 24 years but to some locals, he’s still “from Sydney”.
Join his snorkelling tour to the lagoon’s southern sanctuary zone ($60pp) or try a guided Aquascooter tour (varying prices for shore, lagoon and offshore tours). islandercruises.com.au Summit Expeditions
Jack Shick, from Sea to Summit Expeditions, offers twiceweekly guided walks to the top of Mt Gower for $100 per person. lordhoweislandtours.net
PERFECT: View south over the stunningly beautiful Lord Howe Island from Malabar lookout.