Kangaroo Island at its pristine best: private beach below the retreat (restricted access through private farmland – local landowners have access), spectacular views and walks, rare bird-watching, wallabies and kangaroos visiting the house in the evenings, modern, eco-friendly accommodation.
The owners, John and Hester, have walked all over the world and consider this among the beautiful places they know, which is why they bought it. ‘Postcards: A Few of Our Favourites’ had this to say:
Many of us would like to find a holiday retreat on the edge of the world, far removed from the daily whirl...This idyllic spot can only be reached by private road through adjacent farmland, the idea that when you get here you'll be alone to enjoy stunning views of the rugged coastline, sea and sky. From the cliff-top you can see Cape Borda in the distance, the north-western tip of the island and Cape Torrens. Down below is De Mole Beach, where the De Mole River meets its end. It's a photographer's paradise - the coastal scrub ventures right to the edge of the cliffs....At Cape Forbin, you can have the beach to yourself. For most of the year the beach remains intact, except in winter when wild storms wash much of it away...
None of that has changed although the retreat itself has been significantly upgraded. It offers:
- modern, high quality accommodation for six (two bedrooms, one a large loft with partition)
- free broadband satellite and Wi-Fi internet
- landline telephone (+ 4G WiFi mobile phone)
- DVD player, Hi-Fi, satellite TV
- modern kitchen and facilities
- solar power with back-up generator (you may need to operate generator manually)
And most importantly:
- isolation and privacy (access to area restricted to local landowners) in stunning natural surroundings
- your own, usually private, safe, swimming beach later in summer
- creek below, with huge natural pool running up from the beach for 250 metres
- fishing off both the beach and rocks
- superb bushwalking and spectacular views along the highest cliffs in South Australia, with wild coastline on either side
- for birdwatchers, often from the front porch, the endangered glossy black cockatoo, the magnificent and also locally-endangered white-bellied sea eagle, osprey, wedge-tailed eagle, blue wren, scarlet robin and many others
- wallabies and kangaroos visiting in the evenings, goanna, echidna, brush-tailed possums...
A little over an hour from Kingscote airport, bordering on Cape Torrens Wilderness Reserve, it is on the far north western side of the Island towards Cape Borda. It is also a good base for visiting Admirals Arch and Remarkable Rocks in Flinders' Chase and Vivonne Bay.
In winter by the pot-bellied stove/fireplace watch the storms push in over Investigator Strait. On clear nights, isolated from city lights and overlooking the sea, you can enjoy excellent star-watching, either with binoculars or the old Russian 4.5 inch telescope provided. In summer, swim, fish, walk and enjoy the incomparable sunsets with the visiting wallabies.
(Please note: first, the De Mole river mouth is usually completely private, but not always – local landowners or their guests have access and occasionally drive past the retreat down the hillside, and there are neighbouring owners, even though they rarely come out there; second, the last 17 km of road is unsurfaced – whilst generally kept in good condition, it can be slippery after extended winter rains, even though none of our guests have ever had any difficulty in getting through even without a 4x4 (which, although not essential, we would recommend in winter); third, while there is a dishwasher, there is no washing machine or microwave given our reliance on solar power; fourth, during high electricity use and in cold, overcast conditions, you may have to manually operate a backup petrol generator – simple, illustrated instructions as to what buttons to press provided; fifth, in winter a mouse might occasionally find its way into the warmth – humane mousetrap provided; sixth, the sandy beach washes away in winter and sometimes only comes back later in summer; finally, this not the Ritz-Carlton – that is not the point of the place.)