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“Menu limited, Carriages very noisy but campsite good” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Undara Experience

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Undara Experience
3.0 of 5 Lodge   |   Savannah Way, Undara Volcanic National Park, Queensland 4870, Australia   |  
Hotel amenities
Tolga
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“Menu limited, Carriages very noisy but campsite good”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 7, 2011

2nd time at Undara having previously stayed on the camp grounds and thoroughly enjoyed it. This time we decided to try the carriages but regretted it almost instantly. The 'cabins' are fine in themselves if a bit basic but it is borderline outback so that's to be expected. The problem is the noise from passing neighbours and even worse if like us you are in the cabins next to the toilet the noise from the toilet and shower. Ok we might have struck unlucky and picked the night everybody with weak bladders was staying but nevertheless it makes sleeping extremely difficult.

The Menu is very limited and not very imaginative and the portion sizes whilst what they should be may disappoint those expecting quantity for their money.

Overall I would have to say the standard has dropped in the last 3 years even taking into account the rosy and bias memories of the first trip.

Would I recommend - probably yes for those not familiar with the area, but unless you can afford to hire out an entire carriage I would advise going for the tents or caravan park.

Room Tip: Avoid the carriages (unless you have the money to hire an entire carriage) if you want peace and qui...
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  • Stayed July 2011, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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176 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    55
    77
    27
    12
    5
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47
86
5
Business
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (48)
Date | Rating
  • Danish first
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Swedish first
  • Any
English first
Sydney, Australia
Senior Contributor
41 reviews 41 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
26 helpful votes 26 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 2, 2011

The drive from Cairns was easy and lots to see along the way. Undara landscape is awe inspiring. Lava tube tours fabulous. Tour guides helpful and knowledgable. Sunset tour well worth the effort. Rail carriage accommodation is good for a few nights and the bathrooms plentiful and very clean. Bush breakfast is a real treat served in a great bush setting. Restaurant food is plain at best and delivered by staff who don't smile much and seem bored. This is the big negative in an otherwise very well worthwhile family experience. Three stars, would have been four point five if there was a better meal option. Great break from the usual palm tree and reef holiday...!

  • Stayed June 2011, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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Boston
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 1, 2011

We stayed in the tent and it was clean and bug free. The camping facilities were spotless, and I couldn't believe how clean the bathrooms/showers were.

At night we went to the campfire to listen to Ross Rogers sing folk songs - overall a lovely experience!

  • Stayed June 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Coffs Harbour, Australia
Top Contributor
84 reviews 84 reviews
63 hotel reviews
Reviews in 50 cities Reviews in 50 cities
79 helpful votes 79 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 13, 2011

We stayed in a railway carriage double room with ensuite which was basic but more than adequate. Most of the room do not have ensuite so we booked ahead to make sure we did. The railway carriage rooms seemed to feel in keeping with the outback experience albeit a pretty comfy outback experience.
The bar and restaurant were good with more railway carriages combining with a design that brings the outdoors inside extending the outbqck feel. The food was fine and the staff were friendly.
My only gripe is the same as other reviewers have noted and that is the cost of the tours. Our two hour tour cost about $47 per person which I think is pretty steep, particularly given that the only way to see the tubes is on an organized tour. I guess the operators can justify the price and you are hardly going to visit Undara and not take a tour, just seems a bit steep that's all.
Overall though I thoroughly enjoyed my stay and would recommend it to friends.

Room Tip: Do the Kalkani Crater rim walk on your way out.
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  • Stayed May 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
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Brisbane
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 26, 2011

We had a wonderful time at Undara Lava Tubes, they are such an amazing natural phenomenon. The tour guide explained the fascinating geological history and how the caves were formed. We also walked up to a nearby crater of an extinct volcano (no, sorry, they've had to change it to dormant as they now say no one can be certain they will never erupt again even if it has been 100's of 1000's of years ago!). The view from up there does stimulate the imagination. It evoked visions in my head of dinosaurs roaming through the area millenia ago. Wonderful.
We stayed in the converted Qld Rail cars. It was charming. The doubles with ensuite were booked out so we slept in two singles. It was cozy and comfortable and the toilets were very close by just at the end of the cars.
The only complaint is that our food was awful. There's no where else to eat (unless your camping and cooking your own meals). The steaks were thin and tough the veges undercooked and the desserts most unremarkable. They really need to pick up their game. But the setting was nice.

  • Stayed April 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
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Cairns, Australia
Top Contributor
59 reviews 59 reviews
19 hotel reviews
Reviews in 29 cities Reviews in 29 cities
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 4, 2011

I recently stayed at Undara Campground for the long weekend (1st May) and absolutely loved it. They did after 10 years increase their campsite prices (was $10) to $20 it’s absolutely worth it. They offer 20% off everything (campsite, icecream, drinks) if you are a local which I very much appreciated. The campsites are large and have lots of trees for shade. Every site has it’s own camp fire area and there’s lots of wood all around to collect. The staff is very friendly and the restaurant area is cozy and has all day free water and coffee / tea.

There are a lot of walks one can do. I personally love the “Rosella” walk. It say’s it takes 6 hours but one can easy do it in 3-4 hours. Just watch out this time of the year there is this very spiky grass that can get in your shoe and spike you.

Now you can also use the wireless internet all day for $15.
I’ve never done any of the tours but heard the lava tubes are very nice.

I have been there many times and camped every time and love it. The annual Opera in the Outback (September/October) is not an event to be missed!

Love it!

Room Tip: Mention you are a local.
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  • Stayed May 2011, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Invermere, BC
Senior Contributor
46 reviews 46 reviews
27 hotel reviews
Reviews in 29 cities Reviews in 29 cities
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 18, 2011

Undara is completely different than any other experience my husband and I have had in our many international travels. There is a variety of accommodation - the most up-scale being antique railway sleeper cars that have been converted to rooms. Ours had an ensuite - included the original fold-up sink. The room was basic but comfortable bed, adequate bathroom. It was just a step above camping! But great fun - this is an outdoor/eco experience after all!

Our package included the sunset tour into the park to enjoy wine and cheese and watch the sun go down over the plain below the ridge we'd climbed. We continued to a lava tube as it was getting dark and thousands of micro bats flew past on their way to forage - even saw a snake hanging by the entrance waiting to catch a bat for dinner!

The tour the next day visited 3 lava tubes - 2 were flooded from the recent rains and we could swim in one - neat experience. The guides for both tours were great - lots of explanation and stories. Kanagaroos, wallabies and wallaroos were everywhere.

Meals were a great part of the experience - breakfast cooked over a campfire, good dinner in the open-air dining area surrounded by more railway cars. This is not a 5-star resort, but it's an opportunity to get a taste of the outback, visit the world's longerst lava tubes, and experience a very special place.

  • Stayed January 2011, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Undara Experience

Address: Savannah Way, Undara Volcanic National Park, Queensland 4870, Australia
Location: Australia > Queensland > Undara Volcanic National Park
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 1 Specialty Lodging in Undara Volcanic National Park
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:3 star — Undara Experience 3*
Number of rooms: 45
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Undara is a place where you can explore natural geological wonders, enjoy the comforts and hospitality of a unique outback setting and where the local wildlife are as abundant as they are at home in their surroundings. In short, Undara needs to be experienced! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Undara Experience Australia/Undara Volcanic National Park, Queensland

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