The most unique stays in NSW’s New England region

There’s a lot to love about the New England region of northern NSW, from its wineries to its charming villages. You’ll want to linger, and we have the perfect cache of accommodation for every taste and budget.

Destination NSW

Destination NSW

Feb 2024 -
min read

For an off-grid experience: Mirumiru Bubbletent 

Switch off, relax, revive, repeat. That’s your daily mantra when you check in to these high country bubbletents. Located on a private farm on the outskirts of Tenterfield, the off-grid glamping tents have just enough space for a couple. But if you’re travelling with kids, never fear – little explorers can sleep in a ‘tiny bubble tent’ suspended from gum trees, replete with ‘glam swags’ for a fun night’s sleep. Enjoy sundowners on your deck, soak in the outdoor tub, toast marshmallows over the campfire, then enjoy a dazzling night’s sleep under a blanket of stars – each tent is completely transparent.  

Couple enjoying breakfast on the deck at Mirumiru Bubbletent, Tenterfield

Mirumiru Bubbletent, Tenterfield - Credit: Life Unhurried

For a slice of rural life: Cheyenne Wilderness Retreat

Set across 730 hectares on the edge of the Macley Gorge near Walcha, this working cattle estate offers a true farmstay experience – one that is hands-on and interactive. There are three self-contained cottages that can accommodate families and large groups, as well as a shared fire pit where you can toast marshmallows and tell stories into the night. During the day, help feed the chooks, collect eggs, milk cows, or go hiking in the adjoining Oxley Wild Rivers National Park, a magical pocket of the New England region. 

 Scenic view from Cheyenne Wilderness Retreat, Walcha

Cheyenne Wilderness Retreat, Walcha - Credit: Cheyenne Wilderness Retreat

For history writ large: Old Council Chambers 

Built in 1884, the Old Council Chambers is one of Tenterfield’s most prominent historic buildings. And now you, too, can experience this heritage when you check in to the namesake boutique hotel. The exclusive property features just two suites, replete with a kitchen, log fireplace and seriously luxe bathrooms. While the design is high style, the renovation was carefully curated to retain original period finishings including exposed brick walls and polished hardwood floors. There’s plenty to keep you entertained during the day, from wineries and twee cafes to abundant national parks – your hosts will happily put together an itinerary for you.  

For a touch of luxury: Carpe Diem Guesthouse

Nestled atop the Great Dividing Range, Carpe Diem Guesthouse is a private retreat for up to eight people. In keeping with the architecture of Tenterfield, the property is a union of bullnose verandahs with white lace cast iron details, rich red brick walls and broad windows, all surrounded by manicured gardens. Inside, look forward to beautifully draped curtains, vintage-style fixtures and fittings, a pool room and a fireplace to cosy up beside. Breakfast is included in your stay, and picnic and barbecue hampers can be arranged on request.  

Guesthouse garden and dam at Carpe Diem Guesthouse, Tenterfield

Carpe Diem Guesthouse, Tenterfield - Credit: Carpe Diem Guesthouse

For nature on your doorstep: Dangars Gorge campground 

When you want to feel the full force of nature, pitch your tent at Dangars Gorge campground. This is the ultimate bush base for experiencing the rugged beauty of this World Heritage-listed falls country – you’ll be camping beside one of the most impressive waterfalls in the state, on the edge of the Great Escarpment on the western side of Oxley Wild Rivers National Park. Once you’ve set up camp, check out the scenic waterfall lookout, a spectacular sight after heavy rain as water cascades over a 120-metre-drop shrouding everything in mist and creating beautiful rainbows. There are a range of hikes to tackle as well, including the McDirtys walking track, and when the sun goes down, get set for some seriously dazzling stargazing. 

Dangar Falls lookout and walking tracks, Oxley Wild Rivers National Park

Dangar Falls lookout and walking track, Dangars Gorge - Credit: Barbara Webster/DCCEEW

For a manor house-style stay: Blair Athol Homestead 

Step back in time to 1904 when you arrive at this grand manor house, filled with history and charm in the form of antique furniture, ornate pressed metal ceilings, open fireplaces and broad patios. There are six bedrooms that you can book on a bed-and-breakfast basis or as the whole house – each is beautifully furnished in period style, but with every modern amenity you need. Other on-site facilities include a day spa inspired by Roman bathing traditions, replete with a mineral-rich pool and infra-red sauna. Explore the formal gardens, which date to the 1870s, before heading into nearby Inverell for a meal.   

Sapphire Suite 4 poster bed at Blair Athol Homestead, Inverell

Blair Athol Homestead, Inverell - Credit: Blair Athol Homestead

For boutique style: Oxford On Otho 

In the heart of Inverell, this glam boutique hotel occupies a historic building dating back to 1886 – in fact, it was the town’s first two-storey building. Rooms are high style, with exposed brick, polished wood and plush leather, with a large focus on local artisans and designers. You don’t have to go far to enjoy a taste of the region: the on-site Welder’s Dog pours the largest selection of craft beer in town, along with tasty bar snacks and live music. And there’s also a café to get your coffee hit before you head out to explore the region in the morning.   

Front facade of Oxford on Ortho hotel, New England

Oxford on Ortho, New England - Credit: Oxford on Ortho

For a glass of wine always in hand: Petersons Armidale Guesthouse and Winery 

The historic homestead has been lovingly restored in line with traditional architecture. There are five suites, each individually designed with claw-foot tubs, spa baths, four-poster beds and lush garden views.  And when you’re not in your room, explore the region, stroll through the vineyard, or enjoy lunch and wine at The Cellar Door Restaurant on weekends, showcasing the very best produce New England has to offer.  

Scenic garden and front facade of the guesthouse at Petersons Armidale Guesthouse and Winery, Armidale

Petersons Armidale Guesthouse and Winery, Armidale - Credit: Simon Scott

For big groups: Lindsay House 

Travelling with family and friends? Look no further than Lindsay House, a historic 1917 home in Armidale that has been meticulously refurbished into a stylish regional retreat. Spread your clan out across five beautiful rooms, each with leafy views overlooking Armidale’s Central Park, and each completely individual in design. Flourishes include four-poster beds, original art, antiques and plush furnishings. There’s also a sun-filled Tea Room to meet up with your companions.  

For Art Deco architecture: Tattersalls Hotel Armidale 

Art Deco architecture at its finest, the glam Tattersalls Hotel in Armidale is a masterpiece of 1930s design. Originally established in 1854, the hotel has undergone a number of incarnations in its lifetime, but today retains the art deco flourishes of its heyday – with many modern touches. Check into slick rooms, enjoy wine by the fire, then pull up a table in the dining room – the restaurant’s menu is focused on New England produce, and you’re guaranteed a sumptuous meal.   

The historical facade of the Tattersalls Hotel in Armidale, Country NSW

Tattersalls Hotel, Armidale 

For a riverside retreat: Ben's Falls Retreat 

When you’re in this part of the world, nature rules. And Bens Falls Retreat makes the most of its location, offering rustic cabin accommodation perfectly poised along New England’s Severn River – this waterway is known for its amazing cod fishing and picturesque rock formations. There are two cabins to choose from: one houses four guests and the other (a tiny home) just two. Both are fully equipped with everything you need for a back-to-nature stay, and there is plenty of land to explore across 800 hectares. Get set to spot deer, wallabies, eagles, kingfishers, platypus and echidna, among other animals.  

Cod Cabin from the waters edge at Ben's Fall Retreat, Emmaville

Ben's Fall Retreat, Emmaville - Credit: Lu Townsend

For fine dining: Goonoo Goonoo Station 

On a working cattle station outside Tamworth, Goonoo Goonoo is an impressive refurbishment of the 19th-century heritage-listed and pastoral village – transformed into luxury accommodation. The seven private cottages have been beautifully restored and capture the history of the station while still providing guests with all the luxuries they need – heated swimming pool, tennis court, guest lounge, luxurious beds and linen. When you’re not in your room, book a table in The Glasshouse restaurant, replete with floor-to-ceiling glass windows offering incredible views over the rolling hills and the distant Liverpool Range. Savour some of Tamworth’s finest seasonal produce, where every dish takes inspiration from your surrounds. 

Garden view of Goonoo Goonoo Station, Tamworth

Goonoo Goonoo Station, Tamworth

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