From fancy hotels to roadside motels, caravans, glamping tents, beach shacks and even tiny houses, there’s a massive variety of accommodation styles available to Australian holiday-makers.
But one kind of accommodation has seen an unexpected rise in popularity this year — the chalet.
While 2020 has been a particularly unusual year for travel, data from Booking.com has revealed a new trend among those who have been able to get away, with chalets emerging as the top accommodation choice.
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The small, wooden houses are often associated with snow-capped European alps but there are plenty of amazing chalets all over Australia.
Here are some of the best out there.
MARGARET RIVER BUNGALOWS, WA
Margaret River Bungalows. Picture: Booking.comSource:Supplied
Nestled in Western Australia’s Margaret River region, these picturesque bungalows are particularly good for a romantic couple’s getaway.
Each 4.5 star chalet has a kitchen with an oven, seating and dining area, as well as a private bathroom and Wi-Fi throughout.
They’re also in a prime location, close to the beaches, craft breweries and wineries of the spectacular Margaret River.
Busselton Pier at nearby Busselton.Source:Alamy
There’s plenty to explore nearby, including the cities of Busselton and Dunsborough, which are around 40km away.
In Busselton, discover seaside cafes, alfresco restaurants, art galleries and craft breweries. The hub of the area is the famous 1.8km Busselton Jetty. Over in Dunsborough, enjoy wine bars and boutique shops as you soak up the tranquillity of lovely Geographe Bay.
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CELESTINE RETREAT, WA
Celestine Retreat. Picture: Booking.comSource:Supplied
Just 10 minutes from the West Australian coastal town of Denmark, these deluxe chalets are surrounded by lush gardens and offer stunning panoramic views over the Southern Ocean, Wilson Inlet and the nearby valleys.
Each self-contained chalet features a two-person spa bath, balcony and free Wi-Fi, as well as a fully equipped kitchen, dining setting, lounge and barbecue facilities.
Denmark, on the south coast Highway of Western Australia. Picture: Neal Pritchard PhotographySource:Supplied
There’s plenty to do in town while you’re there, from the local bush maze, Denmark Dinosaur World, or for something a little more action-packed, Denmark Thrills Adventure Park.
For something to eat and drink, check out Denmark Berry Farm, Dark Side Chocolates and Bartholomews Meadery, which sells varietal honeys, honey ice cream and good old fashioned mead.
THE POLISH PLACE, QLD
The Polish Place. Picture: Booking.comSource:Supplied
The Polish Place offers self-contained chalets, set on the escarpment of Tamborine Mountain with 180 degree views facing The Great Dividing Range.
Each of these European-style mountain chalets includes fully equipped kitchen and laundry facilities, dining area, private balcony, “cathedral ceiling” and a loft-style bedroom.
Gallery Walk at Tambourine Mountain. Picture Mike BatterhamSource:News Corp Australia
It’s the perfect retreat from all the action to be enjoyed at Tambourine Mountain, from glow worm tours, hang-gliding, treetop walks, zip line rides across the rainforest canyon, and even fossicking for thundereggs.
Visitors to Tambourine Mountain should also visit the local breweries and wineries, explore the Botanic Gardens, call into the local bookshops and galleries, and hunt for locally made treasures on Gallery Walk.
PENCIL CREEK COTTAGES, QLD
Pencil Creek Cottages. Picture: Booking.comSource:Supplied
In the small hinterland village of Mapleton on the Sunshine Coast, Pencil Creek Cottages offers a charming stay that’s particularly great for active travellers who can make the most of the nearby hiking trails, golf course and cycling tracks.
Each unit has a patio, fully equipped kitchen with microwave, fireplace, seating area, spa bath and private bathroom, along with airconditioning and free Wi-Fi.
Teri Irwin at Australia Zoo. Picture: NCA NewsWire/Tertius PickardSource:News Corp Australia
It’s the perfect base from which to explore the lush and scenic Sunshine Coast hinterland. Local highlights include the spectacular Kondalilla Falls, the world-famous Australia Zoo, the Glass House Mountains, the iconic Big Pineapple and the Ginger Factory at Yandina, which was famously visited by Prince Charles and Princess Diana on their 1983 Royal Tour.
BELLINGEN KOOMPARTOO RETREAT, NSW
Bellingen Koompartoo Retreat. Picture: Booking.comSource:Supplied
They are fully equipped with a bedroom, kitchen with microwave, flat-screen TV, seating area and bathroom with a shower.
Never Never Creek at Bellingen.Source:Supplied
The chalets are less than a kilometre from the quaint and artsy town of Bellingen. Must-visit spots include the Old Butter Factory, which is a small shopping village filled with cafes and shops selling local wares such as homewares and furniture, artwork, timber products, leather goods and gifts.
For a taste of nature, explore the World Heritage-listed rainforest at Dorrigo National Park, stroll along the iconic boardwalk at the nearby Urunga Lagoon, take a dip in Bellingen’s Never Never River, or discover the stunning 30-metre falls at Dangar Falls.
BIRCHES LUXURY SPA CHALETS, VIC
Birches Luxury Spa Chalets. Picture: Booking.comSource:Supplied
Mount Beauty in the shadow of Mount Bogong, Victoria.Source:News Limited
Birches Estate is less than a 10-minute drive from shops and restaurants at Mount Beauty. Mount Beauty is home to farms, wineries and breweries and is an adventurer’s playground, offering scenic hikes, fishing and snow sports in winter. It is also one of Australia’s top mountain biking destinations.
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