A Winter Family Getaway in Dryandra

We booked a cottage at Dryandra Village cabins because:

  1. we needed a short break to get us through to our next holiday
  2. it looked like good value at $90 a night
  3. it was in an area that I hadn’t explored before and
  4. it had a fireplace- the last being a most important criteria for a winter holiday.

I called to make a booking and we ended up with a 3 bedroom cottage for $130 a night as the 1 bedroom cottage (the $90 one) was booked up. Lucky for us we landed a cabin that had an indoor toilet (which was a deliberate choice on my part).

The cabins were nice, though they were very cold. Not all of them have indoor toilets (check the website carefully when you are booking if you want one) but to tell you the truth, it was so damn cold the indoor toilet didn’t really make a difference. All of the cabins are refurbished woodcutters cottages from the 1920’s that are clean and cute but they are not well insulated and even with the fire going we could only heat up the room we were sitting in.

Despite the cold, we did enjoy our time there. The kitchen was well stocked which I thought was great and our cabin was conveniently located next door to the kids playground.

After Em made good use of the playground, we went inside to enjoy the fire and drink some wine (to warm ourselves up from the inside!).

The cabin we stayed in had three rooms and slept up to 12 people, but the rooms only had bunk beds. We took two of the single mattresses and put them on the floor in the lounge room in front of the fire and all slept together in there. Have I mentioned yet that it was cold? It was fine when the fire was going, but when we woke in the morning, it was freezing!

We rugged up and found the most family friendly walk through the woodlands so we could push the pram. The walk was lovely and by 10am the sun was shining and our toes had defrosted. The woodlands were full of wildflowers just starting to bloom, mushrooms pushing themselves up and small grey kangaroos on the edge of the paths. The walk took us about 2 hours – a bit longer than it would take most as we let our girl out of the pram, and she wasn’t easy to hurry along!

(These yellow flowers are actually Dryandras which is where it gets its name from)

After a nice warm lunch of soup and garlic bread we had a little drive around the area stopping to check out some of the campsites that were available. The campsites were really nice and each had its own fire pit. We would like to go back for a camping holiday and do some of the other walks. We would also like to return to Barna Mia (the nocturnal animal sanctuary) for a night tour to see some numbats which are native to the area. We decided against it on this trip as we were sure that our daughter would not be able to contain her excitement and a two year old yelling with glee and chasing the animals was sure to scare the critters away and annoy everyone else. As it turns out, they recommend the tour is suitable for children over five.

So, we spent the rest of the afternoon on a drive to find Tanglefoot winery that I had heard about in Wandering (oops, all the wine was gone)

There was not much of a town centre in Wandering, it was more of a main street with a hall, a park and a statue but there was a lovely field of wildflowers.

Wine in hand, we picked up another bag of wood, headed straight back to the cabin and settled in for a fun evening. We had our own little three person party, played music and danced around the lounge room. Our daughter stayed up until 10pm and was jumping and laughing with us. After a few hours of jumping and dancing, I was finally warm! It was a great little party.

The next day it was time to give the cabin a clean and head home. (They ask you to clean the cabins to try and keep the costs down). We had had a lovely weekend and will head back to Dryandra for a camping trip next time. I think that Autumn or Spring would be the best times to visit. Winter is too cold and I would be too worried about the fire risk in the summer.

You can search for cabins at Dryandra Lions Village on their website.

Make sure you book I advance for Barna Mia as it can book out in advance. There are more details on their website.

There is a self drive tour you can do through the area. Details are here.

Details of all the great walks through the woodlands can be found here.

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