Off-grid huts, retreats and cabins in NSW

The best way to get offline? Escape to the country. No Wi-Fi and no phone service; these secluded rural retreats take you off the grid and into a more relaxing, rejuvenating holiday.

Destination NSW

Destination NSW

Jan 2023 -
min read

Sleep in one of Unyoked’s tiny cabins in the wilderness

When you have to fill out a questionnaire to find the ‘right’ kind of nature to suit you, you know this is going to be a one-of-a-kind getaway. Unyoked’s tiny solar-powered cabins built for two are dotted in secret spots across the state and have been designed with the scientific benefits of escaping to nature in mind. With a small hike to get to some of the cabins, it’s an expedition before you even arrive. But it will be worth the journey, with a luxurious bed, premium bedding, cooking equipment, bush walks and, depending on the cabin, yoga mats and a mini book library to keep you occupied.

Switch off: Make the most out of your off-grid trip and choose a cabin without reception – Sufjan or Roscoe in Gloucester Tops or Heike in the Lower Hunter.

Group of friends enjoying the outdoors, Unyoked

Group of friends enjoying the outdoors, Unyoked - Credit: @emily_marie

Have a glamping adventure at Myall River Camp

Just an hour’s drive from Newcastle, and sitting between a river and beach near the Myall Lakes National Park, Myall River Camp is a secluded nature retreat where you can do as much – fishing, cycling, bushwalking and boating – or as little as you want. Choose a spacious canvas and timber-clad safari-style glamping tent with its own verandah and four-poster bed, or book into one of their sustainably built tiny houses, complete with en suite bathrooms, outdoor firepits and stylish interiors with vintage furniture.

Switch off:  The surrounding waters give you the ultimate digital detox. Swim, kayak or paddleboard in the Myall River (the tea tree oil in the water from nearby trees is said to rejuvenate skin and hair), look out for the river’s resident dolphins or go birdwatching in the mangroves.

Koala Glamping Tent at dusk, Myall River Camp

Myall River Camp, Hawks Nest - Credit: Sue Stubbs

Go offline at regenerative farm Kestrel Nest EcoHut in the Snowy Valleys

Nestled in rolling farmland just a short drive from Tumut, Kestrel Nest EcoHut is the perfect escape for families wanting a screen-free stay. Created with recycled tin and timber by husband-and-wife team David and Louise, the hut features a deluxe queen bed, a bunk bed for the kids, and either lamb-dotted farmland or rugged wilderness in every direction. Relax in the outdoor bath on the wraparound verandah, stargaze in the hammock, toast marshmallows in the fire pit, go birdwatching on the protected bush trails, and take a dip in the picturesque creek.

Switch off: David and Louise can organise a tour to connect you deeper with the land that surrounds you. Book into the Farming With Habitat Tour to understand life on a sustainable farm, or try the Bird Watching Tour and try to spot the 141 species that have been sighted in the area.

The outdoor bath at Kestrel Nest EcoHut, Tumut

The outdoor bath at Kestrel Nest EcoHut, Tumut - Credit: Kestrel Nest EcoHut

Cosy up in your own private igloo at Hideaway Domes

While you won’t be surrounded by snow in this igloo, the stunning solar-powered Hideaway Domes surround guests in a different but equally breathtaking scene: 1000 acres of native bushland tucked away on a working beef and sheep farm in Mudgee. Your dome has all the comforts of a deluxe cabin – queen bed, linen, indoor fireplace, kitchenette and en suite – and the transparent bay window and roof windows allow you to stargaze right from your bed. Go for hikes in the day and at dusk, settle by the firepit and spot the wedge-tailed eagles, kangaroos and echidnas coming out to play.

Switch off: Arrange a visit to the nearby Mudgee Observatory to learn more about the celestial sea above you.

Hideaway Domes, Mudgee

Hideaway Domes, Mudgee

Step back in time at the Seal Rocks Lighthouse Cottages

Built in 1875, under the beams of Sugarloaf Point Lighthouse, Seal Rocks Lighthouse Cottages are a trio of sweet heritage bungalows that offer uninterrupted ocean views. Walk down to the ironically sandy beaches, or venture further afield exploring the walking tracks and secluded beaches of Myall Lakes National Park. Besides whales, keep an eye out for pods of dolphins, eagles and if you’re lucky, maybe a seal. Each cottage has room for between six and eight guests, plus plenty of living space and gardens, so a whole family or group of friends can relax and unwind while still having their own space.

Switch off: Connect to the spiritual side of the land and visit the Dark Point Aboriginal Place also in Myall Lakes National Park, where nuras, or clan groups, within the Worimi People would gather for ceremonies and feasts.

Scenic view of Seal Rocks Lighthouse Cottages, Seal Rocks

Seal Rocks Lighthouse Cottages, Seal Rocks - Credit: Seal Rocks Lighthouse Cottages

Go wild at Tanja Lagoon Camp

Tanja Lagoon Camp's eco-luxe accommodation is on the edge of a wild coastal lagoon just a short drive from Tathra on the sparkly Sapphire Coast. The safari-style tents sleep two and feature fully equipped kitchens, en suites and minimal separation from the sights and sounds of the natural environment. Or bring the family and nestle into one of the spacious, light-filled eco-cabins. Use of the camp’s kayaks and canoes is included so you can spend your days paddling around the lagoon’s island and beaches or just peacefully float around like the local pelicans and swans.

Switch off: Forget your phone and pack your binoculars. Not only will you spot an array of native mammals, reptiles and birds, if the season is right you’ll spy humpback whales as they migrate along the coast.

Find a galaxy far, far away at Dark Sky Eco Resort

Located right on the doorstep of the Warrumbungles, renowned for its clear night skies and epic stargazing, Dark Sky Eco Resort is a fully off-grid lodge on a private emu farm near Coonabarabran. Inside the generously sized yurt-shaped lodge you’ll find everything you need to unwind, including a fireplace, hot tub, and catering options from a simple three course meal package to Tibuc Gardens Café curating a private menu plus drinks. And while Wi-Fi and Telstra phone boosters are available you won’t need to turn them on as the 184-acre property is yours to explore by foot or golf cart, and you even have your own private observatory to use at night.

Switch off: Join the guided emu safari to meet 90 of these big birds or take a tour to the Siding Spring Observatory to see the planets through an 11-inch telescope.

Aerial view of Dark Sky Eco Park, Coonabarabran

Dark Sky Eco Park, Coonabarabran - Credit: Dark Sky Eco Park

A stylish escape among an alpine landscape at Mill Cabin

Just a 15-minute drive from Jindabyne, cosy Mill Cabin in the Snowy Mountains looks like a quaint old stockman’s hut from the outside, but inside it has all the little luxuries of a lovingly curated modern home – toiletries by Hunter Lab, Cultivar robes and bed linen, a well-appointed kitchen and a bookshelf stuffed to the brim with books and board games so you won’t notice the absence of TV or Wi-Fi. A stay here is as much about getting cosy and slowing down as it is about exploring the undisturbed remote area. With views out to snow-capped Mount Perisher, you’re close to ski fields, hiking trails and natural swim spots on the Thredbo river and Lake Jindabyne.

Switch off: Explore the mountain landscape by foot and embark on the Snowies Alpine Walk, which follows the breathtaking Snowy River Valley from Guthega to Charlotte Pass.

View of Mill Cabin, Jindabyne

Mill Cabin, Jindabyne


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