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“top hit for wildlife and nature”

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Rose Gums Wilderness Retreat
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersGold level
Reviewed August 16, 2011

The Rose Gums Wildenerss Retreat belongs to one of the most fascinating hotesl I ever have been. Located in the middle of a private rainforest you have your own house in well distance from other houses. The house is very spacious and luxury equipped. The retreated is speciialised for discovering and watching wildlife in particular birds. The owners are extremely helpfull in providing tipps and establishing contact to very knowledgable guides A must on a wildlife and nature trip in north of Queensland!.

  • Stayed: July 2011, traveled with family
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1  Thank Georg W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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138 - 144 of 205 reviews

Reviewed July 13, 2011

Cosy little tree-houses set in the forest. We used these as a base and did a few walks as well as explored the surrounding area- beautiful scenery, forests, lakes, coffee plantations and cute little villages. Then at night we relaxed with a hot spa-bath and log-fire!

  • Stayed: July 2011, traveled with family
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Thank thunderino
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 12, 2011

Where do I start? Jon and Peta have created a haven for wildlife and people requesting a secluded retreat. Jon and Peta have been totally responsible for reforesting the land. The treehouses had been built with care and with the most respect to the land. You are high in the canopy of trees to best enjoy the chorus of the birds at dawn and dusk--not to mention the gorgeous sunrises.

My husband and I spent two nights at Rose Gums, as part of a package we had bought when we booked our honeymoon stay at Kewarra Beach. We had wanted a mix of beach and forest, and it was exactly what we got.

Rose Gums is a wee bit more rustic than you would expect from a "resort"--which they are not. There is plenty to do on the grounds. We hiked each day, one day for three hours in search of the platypus and then to the hidden waterfall. The trails are tricky in parts but marked well by Jon and Peta.

Our first morning we opted to plant trees with Peta and her son. We planted 16 Lilly Pillies below treehouse #5. It was wonderful to feel like we will always be part of Rose Gums.

We would like to make a special mention about the chef and restaurant at Rose Gums. The restaurant is in a specially designed treehouse and the chef is TOP notch! The one meal we had there was the best meal we had on our vacation. He truly has the magic touch. We did decide to shop in town and make dinner ourselves our second night at Rose Gums, however, If we had stayed a third night (and fourth) without question we would have dined in the restaurant again.

Last words of advice: Read the binder before heading out on trails. Spray up with insect repellant and keep your eyes open for snakes. We saw one at the end of our hike and while he had no desire to be near us, it still took us by surprise.

If you can, go into Yungaburra...What a great little town.

Overall, a wonderful retreat!

  • Stayed: April 2011, traveled as a couple
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Thank CaliforniaJenn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 13, 2011

I first visited Rose Gums in 1999 when Jon and Peta had just one guest home in this spectacular rainforest retreat. Since that time, I've returned more than a half-dozen times--not an easy task since I live in the USA.

I've never found it easy to describe Rose Gums since the experience one has there depends so very much on what one expects. There are more than a million acres of rainforest wilderness that unfolds from one's five star pole home in the treetops. In a day there can be more of a communion with the natural world than many find in a year. For those where that means something, Rose Gums is a spectacular place. I remember the new millennium where Byron Bay was regarded as Australia's focal point. I have always found Rose Gums to be in every way the spiritual retreat Jon and Peta promise in their brochure. In fact, I always felt they rather understated what they offer.

There are now more guest homes on the site (Jon is a builder by trade), but the privacy has been preserved for all guests. There is now a restaurant on site, something I found exceptionally welcome. After a fine meal, you walk back through the rainforest sounds and the stars of a warm tropical evening.

Others have covered the amenities in their reviews. To me, it is more about what this special place offers to those who call this place home, whether for a night or for some time. My longest stay was two weeks, and I could have spent far longer.

Jon and Peta, who've labored across many years to make this retreat a reality, are avid bird enthusiasts and conservationists. Each day there are King Parrots, lorikeets, and many other feathered visitors to the site. Again, I have never had the words to describe the subtleties of what one finds at Rose Gums. I really feel it is like nothing else on earth.

  • Stayed: March 2011, traveled on business
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3  Thank ron4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 20, 2011

Rose Gums is a cluster of custom-built, self-contained eco-lodges situated well off the beaten track in the Atherton Tableland rainforest. If you're looking for a rainforest experience, this is a good (although expensive) way to do it. The cabins are spacious, self-contained and comfortable, but not air-conditioned. The rainforest environment is totally authentic (more bugs and birds than you can ever imagine) and very relaxing.

  • Stayed: January 2011, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank cliffh
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 28, 2010

I stayed two nights at a nearby retreat (The Canopy) before staying here just one night. If I had it to do over again I would have stayed at The Canopy all three nights. Not because there was any problem with Rose Gums--I just liked The Canopy much better.

The cabins at Rose Gums were designed by an architect, but that doesn't mean they were designed well. The layout is awkward. For example, to get from the bedroom to the bathroom in my cabin, you had to walk past a staircase and then around the living room furniture and then go behind the living room furniture; in other words the design was awkward. The cabins at The Canopy were designed much better.

Then there was the view. What I saw in front of my cabin was cut over land that was regenerating. It is great that the owners are trying to regenerate the rainforest, but it wasn't much of a view. Maybe I just had a bad cabin. The river view from The Canopy was great.

Also, there was so much more wildlife at The Canopy. Partially of course because those who stay at The Canopy are given food for the wildlife. But in comparison Rose Gums seemed kind of spiritless and sad. About the only thing I saw from my porch was a brush turkey.

I did not take advantage of the extensive walking trails at Rose Gums, so maybe I would have like the place more if I had seen more of it. I wasn't feeling up to hiking the day I was there (my feet hurt!).

The woman who was in charge of the office was wonderful, very friendly and very helpful. She told me where to go to see platypus, and I did indeed see several of them. There is free access to the Internet in the office, and books and videos.

Also, my cabin was very quiet; which was good if you like almost absolute quiet. But I was used to all the bird sounds at The Canopy, and missed them. And the night was so quiet without the possum visitors! I was happy though to not hear any of my neighbors.

So while there were no problems with Rose Gums, it just paled in comparison to The Canopy, which was only about 20 minutes away. But I really have nothing bad to say about Rose Gums. (And if you stay here, check out the great restaurants and charm of Yungaburra.)

  • Stayed: September 2010, traveled solo
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2  Thank fieldsold
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 26, 2010

Many hiking trails around, computer available for use in the lobby. Nice that there was a kitchen, we enjoyed cooking a couple of our own meals after eating out for 10 days. Also, the washer and dryer was appreciated. Somewhat rustic accommodation, the netting around the bed is a good indicator of what your night will be like!
The rainforest view off the balcony was spectacular, and the sunset beautiful.
I would have to say it was not as clean as I would like, the hood over the cooktop was filthy and there were stains/drip marks on the walls in the bathroom.
If you love the outdoors and extreme privacy this is for you.

  • Stayed: October 2010, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank bgAlaska
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Rose Gums Wilderness Retreat

Address: 324 Land Road, via Lake Eacham | P.O. Box 776, Malanda, Queensland, Australia
Phone Number:
Location: Australia > Queensland > Malanda
Amenities:
Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 4 Specialty Lodging in Malanda
Price Range: $260 - $353 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — Rose Gums Wilderness Retreat 4*
Number of rooms: 9
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Enjoy a secluded rainforest retreat in the cool highlands above Cairns, all our treehouses are self-contained featuring spa baths, fireplaces and magnificent views. The 93 HA property has 9 kilometres of walking tracks and over 160 species of birds and other wildlife, including Platypus that inhabit our pristine rainforest creeks. Delight in our own in-house restaurant, LEAF, a private dining experience in the tree-tops. Your hosts Peta & Jon are very friendly and helpful and are looking forward to meeting you soon. ... more   less 
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