Sensational spa or natural escape? At these retreats in Tropical North Queensland you can have it both ways.
The place: Silky Oaks Lodge, Daintree Rainforest
The World Heritage-listed Daintree Rainforest is right next door but guests at Silky Oaks Lodge don’t have to go that far for a natural high, with the lodge’s rooms tucked into the verdant treescape.
Keep it natural: Start the day with a swim in the clear and croc-free river that runs through the property. A natural current pushes you across the width of the river, a sensation that will get you giggling gleefully.
Treat yourself: Head to the Healing Water Spa for the Good Vibrations facial which includes a tension-lifting shoulder massage and sound therapy to clear your chakra points.
One more thing: Tropical flavours are on the menu at the beautiful Treehouse Restaurant, with ingredients from tamarind to finger lime grown in the on-site kitchen garden.
"Set on the beachfront in one of northern Queensland’s loveliest villages, the adults-only Reef House is a laidback tropical hideaway."
The place: The Reef House, Palm Cove
Set on the beachfront in one of northern Queensland’s loveliest villages, the adults-only Reef House is a laid back tropical hideaway.
Keep it natural: Who needs a meditation app when you have the ocean? Watching the ever-changing colours and the never-ending flow of the water to and from the shore is a sure-fire stress reliever. Grab one of the Reef House’s fishing rods and spend a relaxing morning on the jetty – you may even catch your own dinner.
Treat yourself: Harness the healing power of the sea with the Sea Holistic Massage, which includes a sea-salt exfoliation and the relaxing scent of sea lavender.
One more thing: The resort’s beach butler service turns a day lazing by the pool into a luxury escape, delivering cool towels and icy sorbet to your sun lounger.
The place: Lizard Island Resort, Lizard Island
At the northern-most resort on the Great Barrier Reef, it’s all about exploring the rich marine life of one of the world’s great natural wonders.
Keep it natural: Lizard Island has some of the best snorkeling spots on the Great Barrier Reef just metres from shore, so grab a snorkel and dive in. Marvel at giant clams and eye-catching corals, swim among shoals of brightly-coloured fusiliers, or float above turtles as they graze on abundant sea grass beds.
Treat yourself: Give your feet a treat with Essentia Day Spa’s Wellness Foot Therapy, in which your feet are exfoliated, nourished and massaged to ease the built-up strain.
One more thing: On Lizard Island every season is different, so join the in-house naturalists on one of their regular walks showcasing what the island’s flora and fauna are doing that month.
"Thala Beach Nature Reserve Resort is set on a 145-acre peninsula home to numerous different environments, from beaches to mangroves to rainforest."
The place: Thala Beach Nature Reserve Resort, Port Douglas
Keep it natural: The reserve is set on a 145-acre peninsula home to numerous different environments, from beaches to mangroves to rainforest. Take a guided tour through the coconut plantation to discover the plant’s many health benefits, from helping to reduce body fat and lower cholesterol to building the immune system.
Treat yourself: Refresh yourself from top to toe with a Spiritual Journeys’ Thala Beach Rainforest Meditation Retreat. Over an entire weekend dedicated to wellbeing you can enjoy daily yoga and meditation, a cooking class with a professional chef and your eco-bungalow surrounded by native forest.
One more thing: The unpolluted skies make this a great place for stargazing, so seize the opportunity to learn more about the stars and planets at the resort’s outdoor observatory.
Image credits: Tourism and Events Queensland