A holiday, even just a few days away, is always a treasured time. It’s a chance to slow down, relax, turn off and recharge from the everyday hustle and bustle. But this doesn’t mean slumming it in a teeny beach shack or old motel room anymore. Today in Australia cottages can be beachside mansions, rural retreats with mountain vistas, winery escapes that dispel thoughts of work, and romantic hot tubs and firepits that truly spoil. Check out our list of top inspirational cottages in Australia to rent for your next escape. They’re all bookable with Culture Trip.
A three-hour drive from Sydney or two from Canberra, this once nostalgic retro motel regally oversees crystal Pacific Ocean waters and white diamond encrusted beaches from its private clifftop. Test its indulgent transformation in a Spa Retreat room with deck or bathroom jet whirlpools. The on-site day spa destresses, and the infinity pool refreshes. Eagles soar above; dolphins play below while you savour mouthwatering seafood fresh off the Ulladulla boats and stirring cocktail sunsets at Rick Stein’s restaurant or the Pool Bar.
These are among our most-loved Australia cottages. Peacefully placed on the shores of Lake Weyba, they’re attractive cedar properties with spa facilities, a 15-minute drive from Noosa on Queensland’s sunshine coast. You, the kids and the pets will soon chill out strolling the surrounding acres of natural parklands, lagoons, watching birds and grazing kangaroos. Try a pampering massage in your cottage. Hop on a mountain bike, grab a canoe to paddle the pristine lake waters or toss a rod for that fresh fish dinner, all complimentary. Order gourmet picnic packs to go.
An hour from Adelaide in the heart of South Australia’s Barossa Valley wine region, this former Royal Mail Coach horse stables has been a vineyard since 1998 and began offering holiday accommodation in 2017. The coach house and modern retreats exude romantic old-world charm, delivering vineyard and mountain views, toe-warming log fires and soul-massaging spa baths. Your stay also includes luscious local Lavender Farm toiletries, Barossa wine, Barossa Valley chocolates, plus daily farm-fresh breakfast provisions. Check out the Cobb & Co Changing Station, the original drop-off point for coach travellers and goods, now with a museum saluting the yesteryear, with a 14-seater Cobb & Co coach and a regional art gallery.
For a purely intoxicating experience, an hour’s drive from Melbourne, runaway to these 1880s hills cottages featuring verandahs, French doors and leadlight. Olinda and Mt Dandenong village shops are nearby, as are quality restaurants and walking trails. Star-gaze through the glass ceiling while soaking away your woes luxuriating in the deep spa bath. Wrapped in the plush bathrobe and slippers, sip your Yarra Valley wine by the log fire or around the tranquil courtyard firepit. Your small fur-babies are also welcome.
Want a peaceful escape, waterfalls and walking trails? Bordering the Blue Mountains National Park, these enchanting timber federation mountain-style holiday homes are the business: check-in for classic, timeless elegance an hour’s drive from Sydney, between Wentworth Falls and Leura’s boutique village shops, cafés and restaurants. Cosy up by the fireplace, laze away a few hours in your garden or drift off in the spa bath after a day among mountain horizons and plummeting waterfalls. The celebrated Three Sisters, Katoomba and Jenolan Caves are just 15 minutes away.
In Margaret River and the wine region, three hours south of Perth, you’ll find these distinctly Australian-feel cottages. Unforgettable escapes from everyday life, the eight brick-and-iron cottages pay homage to the raw surrounding natural beauty. You’ll hear local birdsong on your covered verandah and the cluck of the resident free-range chickens roaming the open lawn area (home to a central barbecue). It’s a leisurely stroll to the town’s shops, restaurants and bars. Heritage Trails through giant jarrah and karri forest away you two minutes away.
Craving a rejuvenating spell in serene nature? Book one of these four luxury boutique eco-cottages set in the secluded Kangaroo Valley. The surroundings are verdant valleys – you’d never guess you’re just two hours from Sydney or Canberra. You’re also minutes from the village. The pleasure of the place is the peace, songs of birdlife and glimpses of wombats and kangaroos. My Green Butler, your personalised digital advisor, tailors your stay by suggesting suitable activities according to the weather and your preferences. For pure relaxation, soak in the freestanding bath and submit to day spa treatments in your cottage.
On Victoria’s Shipwreck Coast three hours from Melbourne you’ll find these five eco-friendly cottages, photogenic constructions built from reclaimed timbers and poured earth: a fusion of bold, quirky creativity. Earthy tones and textures cocoon you in warmth and comfort, and each is filled with natural light. Look out over fine rural views of farmland or Port Campbell National Park views. Best of all, these are affordable havens, perfect after a day exploring the nearby Otway Fly Treetop Walk, the Twelve Apostles and Great Ocean Road or diving to shipwrecks in the stunning marine park.
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meet our Local Insider
HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN A GUIDE?
WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT YOUR JOB?
It's the personal contact, the personal experiences. I love meeting people from all over the world... I really like getting to know everyone and feeling like I'm traveling with a group of friends.
WHAT DESTINATION IS ON YOUR TRAVEL BUCKET-LIST?
I have so many places on my list, but I would really lobe to go to Africa. I consider myself an “adventure girl” and Africa feels like the ULTIMATE adventure!
Every CULTURE TRIP Small-group adventure is led by a Local Insider just like Hanna.
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Connect with like-minded people on our premium trips curated by local insiders and with care for the world
Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.
Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.
Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.
We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.