There’s often a lot of head scratching when people start talking about holiday accommodation in Western Australia’s Great Southern.
Searching for Great Southern holiday accommodation
As people from the Perth metropolitan area and from farther afield start to contemplate which events they want to attend for Australia’s biggest wine and food festival --, which runs from March 8 to 25 -- they are also starting to wonder where they will stay.
While there are no major resorts in Albany and surrounds, there are plenty of places to stay, ranging from the boutique to the basic.
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And while you may struggle to find a bed over school holidays and long weekends, for the rest of the year, there’s a fair range of accommodation available.
Tuesdays to Thursdays, motels are generally busy with corporate clients.
Albany has the most beds by far, across all types of accommodation, with numerous bigger motels. But Denmark also has a good supply of accommodation – particularly self-catering chalets and holiday homes.
Mt Barker has limited accommodation, but the Porongorup region has some chalets and self-catered accommodation options, including the basic but historic group/lodge-style property , built in the early 1900s as a dairy/fruit farm and converted for accommodation in the 1990s.
You’ll find caravan parks with onsite accommodation throughout the region. Albany and Denmark have several right on the water, which are all very good quality.
While there are not really any major five-star hotels or resorts, there's a number of motels including , , , and in Albany.
The four-star Quality Suites Banksia Gardens has 51 rooms in Albany and its own licenced restaurant, BG’s Kitchen, which showcases Albany and Great Southern produce.
Rooms range from one-bedroom to a three-bedroom spa apartment.
In Denmark, the rammed earth , five minutes’ walk to the central shopping centre, offers a quiet, comfortable place to stay with rooms looking out over bushland.
There are plenty of bed-and-breakfast places to stay throughout the region, but there’s also the beautiful purpose-built luxurious in Albany, which has a lovely sense of style and all the conveniences and services you’d expect in a special hotel – in miniature.
, a short walk to Albany’s city centre, also offers luxury bed-and-breakfast in a historic 1890s house that has been home to a number of prominent citizens over the years.
Camping and caravan parks include , and .
If something unusual takes your fancy try , an authentic five-storey, 16th century replica Dutch windmill, with 10 fully self-contained Dutch-style units.
It’s also home of The Dakota, a restored C-47 aircraft, which has been converted into accommodation for two people.
, is a wellness centre retreat in the forest. It has comfortable, luxury cabins, with massages and beauty treatments available.
People looking for beachside escapes are well catered for in a range of accommodation styles.
offers luxury and the personalised service from owners Craig and Sally Pullin, who go out of their way to match the interests of their guests with appropriate tourist itinerary and restaurant suggestions.
, sheltered by the calm water of King George Sound, is located on 500m of world-class beach frontage with caravan and camping sites, chalets and cabins.
is a three-bedroom, two-bathroom detached villa with a small courtyard two minutes’ walk from the beach and about 5km from Albany.
-- within the spectacular William Bay National Park, around 30 minutes from Denmark -- offers three stylish, three-bedroom villas, all with sea views.
For a more rural retreat there’s a comfortable self-contained cottage at The cottage, which sleeps four, is set on a 600-acre farm that houses Angus beef cattle and avocado trees. Well-behaved dogs are welcome.
on the northern slopes of the Porongurup Range National Park offers a private two-bedroom chalet on five acres. It features avocado and stone fruit orchards, as well as glorious mountain views.
For a forest retreat, has 10 spacious cedar chalets on the hillside nestled in among the trees at Denmark with views across vineyards, farmland and Karri forest to the waters of Wilson Inlet.
has seven timber and stone self-contained cottages on a 330-acre property adjoining Denmark’s William Bay National Park. There’s a private walk trail to the popular Mazzoletti Beach.
If it’s a touch of luxury you are looking for, , high above the Southern Ocean, offers beauty, seclusion and serenity for up to 16 people. It has eight double bedrooms, 11 bathrooms, an indoor heated pool, spa, sauna and a glass-roofed atrium, all set on more than 500 acres of secluded bushland.
On the same property, Fisherman’s Lodge can sleep 10 and the Aviator’s Cottage can sleep four.
also offers plenty of luxurious touches and , perched high on Mount Shadforth overlooking Wilson Inlet, has 10 deluxe spa suites on what was originally farmland. It has its own purpose-built day spa.
Next to Chimes, with the same great views, is , set on 40 acres of land offers luxury spa, pet friendly, self-contained chalets and studios.
Also on Mount Shadforth, makes for an intimate romantic escape -- with four deluxe spa chalets that sleep two to four people in self-catering accommodation, all with beautiful views.
For those on a budget, has 25 airconditioned rooms with private bathroom and kitchenette, 6.5km from Albany’s city centre and a 200m walk to the beach.
waterfront villas and cottages front on to Princess Royal Harbour, 4km from the city centre. It has eight two and three-bedroom villas and cottages, which are fully self-contained and sleep up to eight people.
For chalet stays, as well as there is , midway between Albany and Denmark. Six different secluded holiday retreats in a range of styles to suit families and couples looking for peaceful, natural surroundings.
And that back-to-nature vibe is also maintained by the . Its two properties, Due South and The Yurt, are both set in among Denmark’s majestic karri trees.
Just 3km from Denmark, both quirky stone and timber properties have queen-size beds and are ideal for one or two guests.
For more information about Taste Great Southern visit . To learn more about Albany and Denmark tourism, try or