A French traveler and artist currently exploring Australia. I enjoy bushwalking, discovering the local culture and arts.
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Published July 19th 2014
When bush meets beachside
Picture yourself having a drink in the shade of a wooden verandah a late afternoon. All around, tiny birds chirp and swoop between the branches of majestic gum trees, on a small headland jutting out into the crashing waves. The surf breaking on Dee beach is 50 meters to your right and Flatrock beach is hardly any further to your left. You are in North Bendalong, about 20 kilometers south of Jervis Bay, between Sydney and Canberra. The wood-and-corrugated-iron bungalows surrounding you are the beautifully simple Allawah Beachside Cabins.
The sunset view from our cabin was stunning - photo by author
When we arrive in the afternoon of a bright, early July day, Bendalong is deserted, save for some kangaroos and wallabies hopping in the streets, along deserted expensive and expansive summer houses. A simple phone call on the previous day to Dany, the owner, was all it took to ensure that our cabin would be ready by the time we arrived. As the site is deserted on this late autumn weekday, we are lucky to get the pick of the site: a spacious cabin with room enough to accommodate 8 people, a full kitchen, large lounge, two bathrooms and a large verandah facing the waves.
The lounge room of the cabin, leading to the verandah - photo by author
We have a look around and meet with Rod, the caretaker who lives in a converted caravan overlooking Flatrock Beach. He came here from around Braidwood, an hour and a half down south, one day and never left the site he calls "Paradise". It's hard not to believe him with the golden light playing on the trees and the silence broken only by the crash of the waves.
The view on the headland where the cabins are located, from the nearby Flatrock beach
After a short stroll on the nearby beach, we meet with Dany, who takes us around the site. He's been living in the area for more than 30 years and been slowly restoring the site for 15, turning fishing hut from the 1940s into comfortable cabins. He kindly shows us around Koori midden sites, tells us about the monument to the 1870 wreck further up the coast and provides a wealth of information about the site history, nearby hikes and other things to do.
The cabins are within walking distance of gorgeous stretches of beach - photo by author
We stayed two nights at Allawah Beachside Cabins and had a great time. The beauty of the site and the simple, rough comfort of the cabins work together to provide a down-to-earth retreat. The site was really quiet on our stay, but the outdoor fire pits and barbecues promise great meetings and conversations during the high season.
All the cabins have simple cooking facilities with fridge, electric cook-top, microwave, cutlery and crockery. Some cabins have bathrooms, most share amenities block (caravan park style). Linen is not provided, you must bring your own pillows, sheets, blankets and towels. Parking is available for boats and trailers. Pets are not allowed.