a treetop romance

Apr 5, 2012

Images courtesy of Paperbark Camp

Romance in the treetops
This year my husband and I celebrated our seven year wedding anniversary at the The Gunyah - a unique dining experience set amongst the trees at the heart of the luxury and boutique Paperbark Camp. Located in Huskisson on the NSW South Coast, and nearby Jervis Bay you couldn't find a more relaxed and remote dining location. After weeks of rain (who could forget the crazy rain we have had this summer!) driving on the long and muddy driveway into Paperbark Camp did not dampen our spirits, in fact the rain provided some much needed tranquility as we arrived at our beautiful destination, nestled high amongst the native Australian eucalyptus and paperbark trees. 

The Gunyah (Aboriginal for meeting place/place of shelter) features regularly in regional food guides, priding itself on using the freshest local and seasonal produce, with a European influence. The freshly baked warm crusty bread, standout local seafood, and desserts to die for, this meal will be hard to forget! We started with scallops and prawns with green tea pearls and roast squid consomme cooked to perfection, and my 'partner in crime' raved about the Currarong kingfish, calamari and pea veloute. The grand finale of iced chocolate mousse with salted caramel, crushed honeycomb and vanilla bean ice-cream is in the lead for dessert of the year! The sweet sound of rain and Kookaburras saying goodnight provided a lovely backdrop while we enjoyed our dinner snuggled up with our very own balcony blankets and candles - a truly perfect setting. 

We didn't stay overnight, but I highly recommend that you extend the romance for the entire weekend and book one of the luxury safari tents for your very own 'glamping' experience. The bush tents, inspired by the owner's many trips to Botswana in Africa, are fitted out with all of the luxuries you would need for a special weekend - crisp cotton linen, hardwood flooring and wrap around verandas. The deluxe tents even have baths! Retreating to your private canvas hideaway to be lulled to sleep by the bush sounds will be  just what you will need after a busy day exploring the local area. I cannot wait to go back and test the deluxe tents out myself! 

What I love about this place (apart from a place for fine dining on my beloved south coast) is that the founding family and their adult children continue to run this wonderful and welcoming eco-retreat, and have truly followed their dream to create their very own version of the African camp experience in the Australian bush. It most definitely is a "treehouse for possums and foodies".  Whether it's Winter romance of red wine and candlelight, or a Summer soiree soaking in the sun and swimming in the crystal blue waters of Jervis Bay, Paperbark Camp and The Gunyah restaurant should be at the top of your weekend wish list. 

EAT: You can dine in The Gunyah whether you are staying at the camp or not. Bookings are essential. 

STAY: indulge in luxury 'glamping' in the Paperbark Camp's safari tents. Perfect if you want to get 'back to nature' but don't want to go without the 'five star' extras.

LOVE: Jervis Bay is one of the most beautiful places on the South Coast or any coast for that matter! We are so spoilt with our beaches, the water so clear and perfect for dolphin spotting, snorkeling, swimming, surfing and exploring on foot. The lovely little town of Huskisson is rather stylish and great for homewares - Few and Far is a fav of mine, and the new sister store Indigo Love looks great too. Stock up at Licketty Lick lolly shop and famous Husky Bakery for a coffee and pastry snail. Nearby Hyam's Beach boasts some of the whitest sands in the world.

*I was a guest of The Gunyah Restuarant.

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