If the smell of salt air, crash of ocean waves, or the slow whooshing sound of water lapping on the shore are things that help you relax while on a getaway, you’re welcome. Scroll down for a list of our favourite Slow Stays with water views where you can spend your next holiday all at sea. Or river. Or dam!
LITTLE BLACK SHACK
Great Mackerel Beach, NSW
This fisherman’s shack built in the 1930s – with ocean in front and national park behind – has been reimagined in every sense of the word. An 18-month undertaking of recycling and repurposing has resulted in the whimsical Little Black Shack that stands by the seaside today. Transport your soul to a simpler time on the shore of Great Mackerel Beach in NSW – the journey on the water ferry across from Palm Beach is all part of the romance.
HIDEOUT SOUTHERN HIGHLANDS
Moss Vale, NSW
Inspired by Scandinavian simplicity, Hideout Southern Highlands leans peacefully over the serene dam central to this 140-acre property. Only 1.5 hours’ drive from Sydney, you’ll feel as though you are in the middle of nowhere in this misty setting. This architecturally designed cabin is the perfect place to feel the calm of the countryside, sit by the outdoor fire pit and drink in the private water views.
AGNES WATER BEACH HOLIDAYS – LUXURY BEACHFRONT BUNGALOW
Agnes Water, QLD
Wake up to the sound of gently lapping waves and walk off your balcony right onto the sand at this beachfront bungalow at Agnes Water Beach Holidays in central Queensland. With the Great Barrier Reef literally on your doorstep, enjoy snorkelling, swimming and diving, as well as rainforest and bushwalking trails abundant in the area. Basically, you can live your best tropical island holiday without needing to leave the mainland.
CAMP ISLAND LODGE
Once in a lifetime, everyone should experience sleeping on their own private island. Camp Island Lodge is on the northern-most island in the beautiful Whitsundays group on the Great Barrier Reef. Sleeping up to eight guests, the four ensuite villas are built in traditional Queenslander cottage style and look directly over the aqua blue reef. There is also a Main Lodge which encompasses a kitchen, dining, living and TV area and spacious covered verandahs.
Deep Creek, SA
A refuge on the coastline of South Australia’s Fleurieu Peninsula, Naiko Retreat will allow you to disconnect from the everyday. Sleeping six guests with full breakfast provisions, the modern design includes floor-to-ceiling double-glazed windows that allow views of the wild Tasman Sea pour in. The remoteness of this property means no distraction – just you, your loved ones and the sound of waves to wake up to.
Murray Bridge, SA
A shipping container converted into a tiny home is not a new concept, however this gorgeous snuggle pod has been floated and moored permanently on the banks of the Murray River in South Australia making it a unique waterfront Slow Stay. Built romantically for two, The Cube has everything you need including breakfast supplies, coffee machine, kayak and even an esky on the deck.
Bruny Island, TAS
Only 30 minutes from Hobart (and then 20 minutes on the ferry) Bruny Boathouse will have you feeling like you could be in a remote part of Scandinavia. Anchors, oars and endless water views will make you feel all at sea but you can also sit up on the deck and watch the yachts glide past, fish from the jetty, swim at the child-friendly beach and collect shells from the shore.
Lettes Bay, TAS
This whimsical property in Strahan has been lovingly renovated to reflect a less modern era, a slower lifestyle and a yearning for respite from the busyness that engulfs us all. Just as the name Captains Rest implies, this is a place to seek solitude with huge antique windows that look out onto the lake and private jetty. Sit by the fire as rain teems down, or sink deeply into the restored clawfoot bath.
King Island, TAS
Kittawa Lodge ticks all the boxes of luxury redefined by isolation and sustainability; two private one-bedroom lodges tucked into 96-acre property on King Island (off the North-West coast of Tasmania) with only the local red necked wallabies, wild peacocks, and sea eagles for company. Enjoy panoramic views of the untouched rugged coastal landscape while you soak in the tub in this off-grid retreat surrounded by pristine wilderness.
Coles Bay, TAS
Picnic Island at Freycinet National Park is home to five luxurious architecturally-designed cabins that overlook Tasmania’s stunning east coast. The lodge is set on its own private island and located just around the corner from one of the top beaches in the world, Wineglass Bay. Available for group getaways, or couples stays, you will be consumed by the natural beauty of the surrounds. Dolphins and seals regularly visit and whales also frequent the offshore landscape.
WHALE SONG SHACK
Reconnect with mother nature at this little cabin built in the 1980’s by a local fisherman. Situated right by the sea in Falmouth on the east coast of Tasmania, watch Pacific gulls swoop down by the waterline while the roar of the wild sea fills the salt air. Whale Song Shack is a sanctuary of peace and calm and is perfectly suited for a couples’ getaway.
Like what you see? Find more slow and sustainable accommodation in our Slow Stays directory.