We had 6 nights at the Arajilla Lodge during the recent school holidays with our two young daughters aged 9 and 13.
What a fabulous combination of an idyllic setting, incredible food, wine and unbeatable service.
From the time Rebecca met at us at the airport we were made to feel incredibly welcome and the staff, Rebecca, Kate, Harry, Chelsea and the kitchen staff could not have looked after us better. The management of Arajilla need to be congratulated on their staff selection as all were friendly, helpful and fun to be around.
The rooms were modern and well appointed, the setting idyllic which mirrored the whole island and the food, well it could only be described as superb.
Without mobile phone coverage and average wifi you are forced (if needs be) to simply enjoy life in paradise.
Every morning we vowed that we would not eat as much as the day before only to break that rule each and every day due to the quality of the food served. From absolutely fresh grilled seafood, to exquisite king fish sashimi to duck breast and wonderful desserts.
The option for lunch included BBQ packs delivered to whichever beach or lagoon location you requested included - rib eye steaks and or king fish, onions, jacket potatoes, freshly baked bread, assortment of sauces and drinks. All you had to do was light one of the numerous BBQ's with timber provided along the magnificent coast and sit back and enjoy. When finished Arajilla staff collected the packs.
Each morning the staff would asked us what the girls would like for dinner that night. The chef would cook whatever they would like. Nothing was too much trouble for the staff.
It felt as though we were staying at a friends house who was hell bent on spoiling us - and they did a great job of it.
During the day we had the choice of swimming and snorkelling in absolutely pristine clear water at the beach or in the lagoon, go on one of many bush walks, ride our bikes around the island, take a boat tour, go deep sea fishing, hire a kayak to explore the lagoon, surf at Blinky's beach or just simply relax.
At Ned's beach we fed, swam and snorkelled with hundreds of different fish and up to three reef sharks at a time. The experience of swimming with the harmless reef sharks is one we as a family will never forget. The reef at Ned's is only a few metres from the shore and easy and safe snorkelling for all ages.
On an honesty basis you can hire all the snorkelling gear required.
We took a north bay tour with Pete from Island Tours which took in the Old Gulch, North Bay, snorkelling and green turtle spotting. Pete's commentary on the abundant bird life was extremely interesting and the tour was very educational and enjoyable.
Apart from swimming and snorkelling which we did each day in 23 degrees water we rode bikes provided by Arajilla all over the island. There any many excellent walks from basic to difficult. We took the girls on the Malabar, Kim's look out and Transmission walks. Whilst challenging the girls handled each quite comfortably.
Next time we shall climb the more challenging Goat Mountain and Mount Gower walks.
By the end of our stay we realised that there are only two types of visitors to Lord Howe Island. Those that have returned numerous times and those like us who it was the first of many visits. We will undoubtedly be back and hopefully many times.
If your thinking of visiting Lord Howe Island we can highly recommend staying at Arajilla Lodge.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Renowned for its warm and friendly service and laid back ambience, Arajilla Retreat encapsulates the very essence of Lord Howe Island, offering guests a haven of tranquillity and peace. Arajilla is perfectly positioned on the northern sheltered end of the Island’s lagoon just behind Old Settlement Beach, where meandering pathways lead through native gardens to the beach, to its serene Ayurvedic Spa luxurious suites and renowned restaurant. Explore the extraordinary scenery and wildlife of World Heritage listed Lord Howe Island. Walk bush trails, climb mountains, swim, surf, snorkel, fish, cycle around the Island, play golf beneath the mountains, take it easy on a deserted beach, enjoy a massage or treatment, savour fine food and wine. And it’s all less than a two hour flight from Sydney or Brisbane. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Arajilla Retreat Hotel Lord Howe Island
- Arajilla Retreat Lord Howe Island