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“better than the Amazon.”

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Melville Island Lodge
Reviewed 13 August 2014

This little island adventure has more wild life, bird life and fishing than the Amazon. The scenery is unspoilt. The accommodation is basic but very comfortable and clean. Mick, the chef can cook Barra and Jacks many different ways and to perfection every time. Mark Bomm, our guide had excellent knowledge and was accommodating with whatever we wanted to do. It is remote but a treasure. We took our Mum with us as it was in their bucket list before Dad dies and she loves fishing. Mum (75) was the ringer of the boat catching the largest Barra. Unfortunately Mum came down with a wog and only had one day fishing. Marcia and Juliana made sure she was comfortable and gave her medication to help. They could not do enough for her. Goose Creek had the most beautiful scenery, unsurpassed. You are in the boat from dawn till 4.50-5pm. Take the advise of the clothing and hat required because the boats are designed for easy fishing. The guides at the lodge are happy to share their best photo's and go pro footage. These guys are good at their job. If you enjoy fishing and nature, I would recommend a couple of days to see this part of the world before the Amazon. closeup and personal. Liz and Bevan.

  • Stayed: August 2014, travelled with family
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Thank Liz M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Nigel B, General Manager at Melville Island Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 20 August 2014

Liz, thanks firstly for taking the time to write about your experience at Melville lodge. I agree with what you say, the fishing is good but there is more to the Tiwi Islands than just great fishing. The bird and wild life seen in a pristine environment is hard to beat.
Your mum caught the biggest barra. How many times do we hear that. My mum is 83 and when she comes up to the Tiwi Islands she puts a lot of anglers to shame with her fish. How do they do it??
Liz, I'm very glad you enjoyed your trip and hope to see you again one day.

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14 - 20 of 21 reviews

Reviewed 8 July 2014

I recently celebrated my 50th Wedding anniversary and I gave my bride of 50 years a pink argyle diamond ring .My girl then asked me would I like a fishing trip .Fishing has been my 3rd love .Wife ,daughters ,fishing .So I said yes please and I arranged to come to Melville first and Bathurst second .I spoke to a fishing mate of mine on a Thursday and on Friday afternoon over a beer and red he gave me a cheque to cover the cost ,as long as I did the organising .Well that part was easy .Once I got into contact with Nigel Baxter of TIWI Island Adventures it was just a matter of a few emails and phone calls .We flew Qantas and Air Frontier to Darwin and then Melville by light plane .We arrived about 1630 hrs ,sorry I'm long term ARMY bloke and we used the 24 hour clock .We were met by Steve at the Airport!!!!! who was to be our fishing guide for the next 5 days .I have to explain here that I choose TIWI Island Adventures because they offer guides who will do everything for their angling guests .I'm 77 years young but I'm vision impaired and can't see close up .Hence baiting hooks or tying knots or putting on lures is impossible for me .Well Steve was fantastic .He looked after me extremely well .If I cast into the trees he cheerfully would untangle me .I must say I got better as time went on .I changed to a spinning reel and could put a lure where he told me to .Just to cover the whole 5 days with each fish would turn this into a book .We caught lots of fish of all different species .The second day we went out a long long way out into blue water .Once we got to our spot the weather turned nasty and we had to turn around .The boat was just not built for these conditions and the pounding of the ride came through the pole of the seat and caused a lot of grief to my spine .So I asked Steve to drop me off at the Lodge whilst he took my mate to more protected waters .Marcia and Juliana looked after me .I took some painkillers and had a rest .All of this turned to my advantage because once the pain had subsided and ZI got up to have some nourishment ,again Marcia was there .She offered to take me to The Arts Cultural Centre and Museum .It was fascinating .I met quite a few of the artists and finished up buying a painting and other items .I must say here that ,after having been to Bathurst as well ,the distances to fishing spots on Melville are much greater hen Bathurst however GOOSE CREEK is unsurpassed .The wild life is fantastic ,the fishing out of this world and on a good day the lilies of all different colours are like paintings .Wonderful GOOSE CREEK .All in all Bill and I had a had a terrific time .Some particular milestones were reached but the 1 meter Barra alluded us by 16 centimeters .We left Melville on Saturday afternoon to fly to Bathurst .Every one but every one at Melville
were there to enhance our fishing experience .Thank you all .OLD FRED

Room Tip: This is a Fishing LOdge and the accommodation is great .
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  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled with friends
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1  Thank mekida2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Nigel B, General Manager at Melville Island Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 12 September 2014

Hi Fred, thanks for taking the time to write your comments on both Melville Lodge and Bathurst Lodge. You're only a young spritely chap at 77 Fred. Our oldest client is 91 years old.
We're really glad you enjoyed yourself mate. You've put a lot of detail in your review, thanks for that.
Goose Creek is a beautiful place Fred, as you've described and just one of 5 river systems Melville Lodge has to choose from.
Looking forward to the day we see you again Fred.

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Reviewed 2 July 2014

We were two elderly couples (all in mid 70s) visiting the Lodge on a fishing trip. The ladies first concern was the toilet arrangements and secondly how they would cope in a predominantly male environment. They were chuffed. The staff ensured that everything was made comfortable for them and it was appreciated. The areas we visited, were beautiful and unique and the fishing was outstanding. The après fish was also particularly enjoyable especially the exciting culinary feats of the young chef. Special mention to the managers, Marcie and Gary, who couldn't do enough for us. Despite some adverse weather, we had a very memorable adventure. We will return.

Room Tip: All the rooms seemed equal. Ours was very handy to the bar area and there was no noise problem. Ever...
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  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled with friends
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Thank Warren R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Nigel B, General Manager at Melville Island Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 12 September 2014

Hi Warren R, thanks for taking the time to post your comments.
We're really pleased you both enjoyed yourself. We've tried to make the lodge as user friendly to both sexes as we can.
Garry and Marcie work very hard to run a very tidy lodge and ensure everyone enjoys themselves.
It's a beautiful, remote part of Australia and we're glad you came to see it with us.
Look forward to seeing you in the future.

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Reviewed 29 January 2014

I love the place with all my heart. It gives me that child like excitement that's hard to find when you get to my age ha ha. The fishing is crazy good and the lodge is in a majestic location with staff that can't do enough to make the trip memorable. I am too scared to go anywhere else, as I don't think it would measure up. Already excited about fishing the run off with Wazza in March.
Obviously, I highly recommend The Tiwis.

  • Stayed: November 2013, travelled as a couple
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4  Thank Mark M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Nigel B, General Manager at Melville Island Lodge, responded to this reviewResponded 29 January 2014

Hi Mark, thanks for the kind words mate. It's always a pleasure having you with us. We're having a good wet season so fishing should be great in 2014. Look forward to seeing you in March.

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Reviewed 14 October 2013

The Five Day fishing package was fantastic. Hospitality at the lodge was perfectly suited to the location. Had a wonderful time. Make sure you also visit the art centre.
Discuss with managers before you book, as tides can play role in fishing success.
Good value for money

  • Stayed: September 2013, travelled with friends
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Thank kingsto
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 September 2013

Adventure tours can be a hit or miss experience for most, here you not find anything missing. Having just spent 3 days on the Island it is hard to know where to start the review. Our trip was a family boys fishing trip arranged by my father in law, who had been once before. Arriving by light plane from Darwin you are greeted at the small island airport by one of the guides who quickly take you to the lodge to meet your hosts, Lynn and Mick, and get settled into your room, ready for dinner and a quick lesson of casting for those new this type of fishing.

The team were friendly, helpful and encouraging, nothing was too much trouble and you got the impression they really wanted you to have a great experience from arrival to departure. Accommodation is very well maintained, clean and comfortable and all meals were included and cooked by the resident Chef. From the very first evening we were treated to a great selection of meals including locally caught Barramundi as well a variety of chicken and meat dishes prepared in various cuisine styles from Asian, Middle Eastern and Australian. Breakfasts were hearty and a good start for the day of fishing ahead.

The fishing is the reason you come here and you will not be disappointed. Our guide for the 3 days was Paul, a young very patient guy that understood fishing, had a great knowledge of the island and where to go 'hunting' as well as having a broad range of experience from elsewhere in Australia to draw on and tell the odd story about. His pleasant disposition, sense of humour and clear passion for the sport made the whole experience even more enjoyable.

The environment is totally unspoilt and the whole time we did not see another soul other than those in our party.

Over the 3 days we had the joy of catching snapper, mangrove jack, a couple of catfish, blue tuna, saratoga cod and of course plenty of barramundi amongst a few other species. All the fishing is catch and release and over the period even the first timer will be able to come home claiming a 'whopper' catch without exaggeration. Besides the fish you are sure to also experience the local wildlife including buffalo, the bird life, the odd shark sighting, maybe some turtles and dugongs as well as plenty of crocodiles.

The guides are extremely conscious of guest safety coming first so there is very little fear to be had unless you consciously do something silly.

We also managed a trip to the local Arts & Craft centre, a must, as well as an interesting experience at the local sports and social club.

The indigenous peoples of Tiwi Island were all welcoming and friendly making conversation at any opportunity.

If you want to go fishing in NT and want to experience a proper adventure that is extremely well organised, catering to both the experienced and novice this would have to be the place to do it.

We are already planning our return for next year.

Pros:
- Extremely well maintained accommodation.
- Equipment that is provided including the purpose built boats.
- Friendly and knowledgeable staff and guides.
- Food/catering.
- The rivers and estuaries in which you fish.
- The wildlife.

Cons: (well more like cautions as there are no real cons unless you are not into fishing)
- Travel arrangements need to be carefully planned.
- Bringing alcohol is prohibited, although there is well stock bar at the lodge for guests only.
- Not for the person that does not like fishing.
- Make sure you have the right clothing & accessories - hats, sunglasses comfortable boat shoes etc.

All in all a great experience.

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  • Stayed: August 2013, travelled with friends
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3  Thank RB_TheWiseTraveller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 2 April 2013

We've been 3 times ... there's a reason. It's awesome fishing, great setting, quality staff, interesting and eclectic mix of people (especially the doctors table) and the beer is cold. We take 2 fishing per boat and a guide and that works well. The only possible blight is the travel distance to get to the fishing spots and although I didn't mind, my 80 year old dad took a bit of convincing to come back to Goose Creek! The winning edge for Melville is the food quality, the chef was great and played trumpet for us to summon for feed time.Long nights were only held together by lots of libations and everybody got on well. We have fished the Top end at Top end Lodges (both price and location) and this is the best. We will be back.

  • Stayed: May 2012, travelled with friends
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2  Thank Surf_King_3130
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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Additional Information about Melville Island Lodge

Address: Milikapiti | Melville Island, 0822, Australia
Region: Australia > Northern Territory > Top End > Tiwi Islands
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beverage Selection Free Breakfast Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 4 Speciality Lodging in Tiwi Islands
Number of rooms: 12
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Melville Island Lodge is situated on the fringe of Milikapati, a small and very friendly Tiwi Islands community, which is also known as Snake Bay. Our purpose-built Fishing Lodge, which is arguably the best located and most comfortable fishing destination in Australia, is positioned high on the water’s edge with sweeping views over beautiful Snake Bay and the Timor Sea. ... more   less 

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