Exploring Kangaloon | A Weekend Getaway Guide
I have an unexplainable affinity with the Southern Highlands and I always have since I was a kid. There is always something that allures me back, somewhere unknown to explore, a new dish to devour, and adventures yearning to be explored.
The numerous amount of times I’ve driven past the manicured high hedges of Kangaloon, each time sparking a sense of curiosity of what grand estates are sheltered behind them, only ever getting a glimpse of a chimney or even the odd private helicopter landing on the lawn.
I made it my mission to discover the life behind the hedges, and with a little help with an Airbnb booking, I was in. Come along for the adventure as I stay in a forest retreat, walk among waterfalls and explore some of the best spots to see in the Kangaloon/Robertson region.
Where to stay
Immerse yourself among the Southern Highland wilderness at Rainforest Escape at The Yards, Kangaloon via Airbnb. This property transports you straight to the page of your favourite fairy tale, with 4 little huts nestled among towering dark trees, coming to life at dusk as the fairy lights light the paths and rooftops.
I had a chat with Jeanette, the charismatic owner of this stunning property about what made her create a the rainforest escape. After originally building it for themselves, family and friends, the requests to stay started to flood in, she started to share the tranquil getaway with others. She says:
" It gives us so much pleasure to witness the joy that the rainforest and country experience brings to those that visit. It is a combination of the unique setting, seclusion, peace and country views that everyone cherishes"
The first hut is a kitchen with the lot featuring a stove top, a microwave and all the basic utensils and supplies you need. There’s a small table and chairs for dining, and a range of cookbooks to spark that cooking imagination.
Moving on to the bathroom hut, soak away your troubles in the solid bathtub which has stood the test of time. An over the bath attachment is also available if this is more your style.
Conveniently located directly opposite the bathroom hut is the main bedroom, housing an extra plush double bed which overlooks the valley. The toilet is located in a separate hut next to the bedroom.
Head down the tree-tunnelled driveway to find the lofty entertainment hut with a little porch looking out over the property, a television with a DVD player, and board games inside.
For details on to book and more about the listing check it out here.
Jeanette's local recommendations of place to see and do include exploring the nearby villages of Exeter, Berrima, Burrawang and Bundanoon. She also suggests fossicking through the second hand stores at Dirty Jane's in Bowral and to get out and there and see the nearby waterfalls, which it leads us to....
Where to Explore
Just over twenty minutes drive from Kangaloon, Belmore Falls is located in the scenic Morton National Park, Wildes Meadow. The short and easy walk from the car park offers spectacular views of the falls, and if you follow the road around to the creek you can view the falls from the platform above.
Carrington Falls and Budderoo National Park
There is plenty to see and do in the nearby Budderoo National Park with walks and tracks for all skill levels and ages. The popular Carrington Falls track is great for all and is one you will definitely need to pack the camera for.
The picnic area is well maintained with tables and toilets available.
During the warmer months make tracks to Nellie's Glen, a sheltered watering hole that is popular with tourists and locals alike. It is also located within the national park.
One of the most popular and iconic natural hot spots within the Southern Highlands, Fitzroy Falls is a well-loved stopover spot for road trippers.
Come preapred and pack some loose change for the cash only parking meters in the carpark before heading off on a fern ladden adventure to the falls.
The information centre is a great resource of maps and information on the area, and it's worth having a chat to the staff about what tracks are open on the day.
Pack your own lunch and enjoy one of the many picnic spots or head to the cafe for light meals, coffee and drinks.
Where to eat
Over the past few years, the Southern Highlands has experienced a transformation of its dining scene. The region is an attractive destination offering of a variety of cuisines catering to a range of culinary inclinations.
The recently opened cafe/restaurant encapsulates the rustic roots of Southern Highland hospitality. Famous for their baked goods and farm fresh produce, Moonacres brings continues to wow diners with their wholesome dishes. Dine in for a treat of breakfast or grab some coffees on the go, with take away options available.
Bistro Officina- Bowral
Located within the historic ivy-clad Berida Hotel, this is where you can experience an exciting menu of fire-to-fork dishes crafted with local and foraged ingredients. Blending the best of modern and traditional European styles, the ever-changing menu is worth visiting for. The wine list is crafted with care, featuring an impressive range of local drops.
Burrawang General Store- Burrawang
Open for breakfast and lunch, this is one of the Southern Highland's most iconic dining destinations, especially during Pie Time ( the regions annual pie trail festival held every June). This is the place to visit for family-friendly, laid back home-style food with finesse. Take the time to take a look at the classic vintage signs and collectables that decorate the store throughout.
Artemis Winery- Mittagong
No trip to the Southern Highlands is complete without a visit to a winery or brewery and at Artemis Wines in Mittagong, you can do both! Featuring a range of award-winning wines, their famous BEE Mead and recently launched Honey Baijiu. Woodfire pizzas are available on Sunday's and tasting boards of local produce are available to purchase, best enjoyed on the winery lawn in the sun.
Kangaroo Valley Pie Shop
As the famous sign out the front suggests " World's Best Pies" these guys know a thing or two when it comes to perfecting the art of the pie. Inventive and generous flavour combinations encrusted with flakey gold pastry are up there as some of the best.
I hope you have enjoyed my whirlwind trip of some of my favourite activities and places to visit within the Southern Highlands. Take a weekend off and get out there and explore it!