Melbourne’s skyline fades in your rearview mirror, leaving only a hazy memory of the breakneck pace of city life. The two hour drive to Seahorse at Wattle Bank Farm – a mushroom and citrus permaculture micro-farm – is like a trip to another realm, where the pet-friendly off-grid cabin sits, inviting a slower, nature-led rhythm. Minus WiFi and running on solar and rain water, the open-plan cabin is surrounded by the peace of Gunaikurnai country. A comfy queen bed and three bunks, with big windows and an indoor fireplace add to the whole-family cosiness with feasts and stories, followed by stargazing and marshmallows over the fire-pit. Wake to the soft whinny of Wattle Bank Farm’s 10 roaming horses before learning their meditative wisdom on a natural horsemanship lesson. Mini farmers can meander the orchard and veggie garden, picking fresh ingredients for an indoor or outdoor cook up. If outsourcing is your style, passionate owners Pete and Beatrice can fill hungry mouths with their famous oyster mushrooms and curated hampers filled with South Gippsland’s best. Then, swing in the hammock under the majesty of a towering gum, as kids giggle over the tyre swing and elusive ponies. Writing workshops, horse riding and trail rides round out the reasons to stay in. But, just a short canter away (six minutes by car) Victoria’s beautiful south-east coastline is waiting with surf and swim beaches near Inverloch, or try Cape Paterson Bay Beach’s ocean pool for a soak.
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