Fresh country air, sprawling hillsides, bloody good wine and 14 of your closest friends. Here, unique country houses perfect for group getaways.
Skylark Homestead, Huon Valley, Tas
Where: 34 kilometres south-west of Hobart
What we like: This 1860s Skylark Homestead has been beautifully restored for modern living, yet the original stained glass windows and doors, original fireplaces and mantels pay homage to its 19th century roots. Set in the heart of Huon Valley, the property is quiet and tranquil, surrounded by mountains, waterways for swimming, valleys and local wildlife. For those who want to get out and about, it’s also not far from local wineries, the popular township of Cygnet.
Don’t miss: Tahune Forest AirWalk – a suspended bridge above Tahune Forest Reserve with breathtaking views of the forest canopy and the Huon and Picton rivers below. Zipline and segway tours are also available. tahuneairwalk. com.au
Who for: City escapists, lovers of country-chic, nature enthusiasts, families
The details: Sleeps up to eight people in four rooms. From $225 per night based on two guests, minimum two-night stay. 0418 342 511
Brockley Estate, Buckland, Tas
Where: 84 kilometres north-east of Hobart in Buckland
What we like: Live out your country manor fantasies in this 1840s estate set on a huge 10,000 acres of privately owned land. Still a working sheep and cattle farm, it is a truly beautiful landscape for a leisurely walk, with original convict-built retaining walls and culverts still standing today. The character-filled colonial house has a charming sandstone exterior, wraparound porch and rooms furnished with original antiques, furniture, hardwood floors, woodwork and fireplaces. There is a drawing room and library, a cellar stocked with a selection of local wines, bathrooms with foot-claw baths and black-and-white-check floors. There is even an original servants’ quarters, hidden away up a very steep staircase. You could be forgiven for thinking you’d stepped back in time.
Don’t miss: Maria Island National Park (parks.tas.gov.au) is only a 20-minute ferry ride away, and boasts historic ruins, cliffs, mountains, and wildlife. And, to explore the estate by horseback, Wholly Horses is located only a short drive away. (0428 650 6880)
Who for: History buffs, antique lovers
The details: Sleeps up to 10 people; five bedrooms and four bathrooms. From $672 per night based on two guests, including breakfast. brockleyestate.com.au