Build your own experience
At Retreat South we’re all about creating respites crafted to individual needs and interests. If none of our out of the box experiences quite do it for you, then we are more than happy to work with you to create something especially for you.
So, if you would like to just relax and get away from your every day we can do that. Or if you would like to get out and about we can arrange activities that keep you interested across the whole experience. Also, don’t forget that it is not just about the activities that we do we also care about the meals we provide, if you have special dietary requirements that’s not a problem.
The length of stay is also something we can tailor to meet your needs, 3 or 14 nights, we’ll be delighted to have you as our guest for as long as you wish.
Lastly, respites with activates at Retreat South are all 1 on 1 experiences or choose to travel with others. If you have friends who are NDIS participants as will, we can organise a friends respite. Whatever your interests, we have them covered.
South West Victorian Adventures
Seeking all those that love to explore country Victoria come and experience all that Port Fairy and surrounding area has to offer.
Port Fairy is one of Victoria’s most popular regional locations to visit. Just try to get a park in the town centre on a weekday or weekend. Each guest will enjoy their own private suite, all suites having their own en-suite bathrooms and private courtyard.
During this experience guests will be treated to all that Daylesford has to offer. Daylesford is a relaxed setting so don’t expect high octane, it’ll be more of a relaxing and restorative trip.
The experience includes the following, dependant on the time of year and our guests’ needs and interests. Please note there are no out-of-pocket expenses.
3 nights accommodation at one of Daylesford’s most premium properties, our guests will certainly experience a sprinkle of luxury.
Port Fairy Folk Music Festival 13th of March 2023
Australia’s world famous Port Fairy Folk Festival is a major event presenting international and national artists in a four day festival of music, arts and culture.
Port Fairy Folk Festival was established in 1977 by Jamie McKew and members of the Geelong Folk Music Club. In 39 whirlwind years Jamie produced 40 outstanding festivals that put Port Fairy up front and centre on the world stage of folk music. This festival is now a part of the DNA of this wonderful township and reinforces its rich cultural traditions as well celebrating new and innovative music and art.
For information of this year’s line-up and ticket sales visit the website: To Read More
Upcoming Dates: Friday 10th of March 2023, Saturday 11th of March 2023, Sunday 12th of March 2023, Monday 13th of March 2023
Orford Vintage Rally
1 Dicks Road, Orford, VIC, 3284
Set in a lovely old bush sports ground. The Orford Vintage Rally returns Bigger and Better January 2023. Come and see vintage trucks, cars, stationary engines, tractor pull, blade shearing, Blacksmithing and lots of other old collectables and displays. Hot and cold food and drinks available. This event is run under The Australian Heritage Association’s guidelines (No insurance No start) By the Southern Vintage Engine & Tractor pull Association. (SVE
Saturday 21st of January 2023
Sunday 22nd of January 2023
South West Sheepdog Club Trans Tasman Sheepdog Trial
The South West Sheepdog Club, based in south west Victoria, is one of the few clubs that hold a Trans Tasman Sheepdog Trial. This is a very different event to the regular three sheep trials that visitors might have seen previously.
The Trans Tasman course consists of four obstacles – a gate, a Maltese cross, a ramp and a pen. Australian rules apply as far as the gate, followed by a New Zealand drive through the Maltese cross and over the ramp, then back into an Australian carry to the pen. In the New Zealand sections competitors are allowed to assist their dog more than in the Australian section, thus showing their stockmanship skills.
The course is run with three fresh sheep for each competitor and the course completed in 15 minutes. Competitors start with 100 points which are deducted throughout the competition for imperfect work.
Sheep Dog Trials are a unique heritage sport where three species—sheep, dog and human—endeavour to work together to complete a course of three obstacles in fifteen minutes.
Sheep dog trials have been part of the Australian pastoral history with the first trials held in the world in Australia in the early 1870’s.
Address: 121 Hamilton-Port Fairy Road, Port Fairy, VIC, 3284
Upcoming Dates: Thursday 15th of September 2022, Friday 16th of September 2022, Saturday 17th of September 2022, Sunday 18th of September 2022
Flagstaff Hill Maritime Village
Flagstaff Hill is a state heritage listed site overlooking the beautiful Lady Bay. Today you can explore the site and gain a glimpse into our regions maritime heritage.
The Maritime Village is both a living historical village that displays the life of a 19th century port and town, and holder of Victoria’s largest maritime shipwreck collection, it occupies a beautiful site, tumbling down the bluff towards Lady Bay. You can explore the village area that has over 40 buildings and vessels spread over 10 hectares. Explore at your own pace or take the fun (and educational) Sea Chest Challenge Trail. All kids receive a bag of nibbles for the farm animals that they will discover as they explore. Read More
Warrnambool Art Gallery
With more than 5,000 artworks ranging from European Salon and Colonial Paintings of the 1800s and Indigenous artefacts, to the Melbourne Modernists of the 1940s and an expanding catalogue of contemporary works, the Warrnambool Art Gallery has facilitated rich experiences for audiences, both through its Collection and through an inspired program of exhibitions and events in and beyond the Gallery.
The Warrnambool Art Gallery began in 1886 when retired police officer Joseph Archibald opened its doors in a building behind the mechanics institute in Liebig street. The Gallery began with an eclectic mix of artworks and museum curios.
Opening Hours Monday – Friday: 10am – 5pm Saturday – Sunday: 10am – 3pm Public Holidays: 10am – 3pm Entry is Free Read More
Victoria’s Southern Right Whale Nursery June to September
Almost every year between June and September, female Southern Right whales return to the waters of Warrnambool’s Logans Beach to calve. The whales often swim within a hundred metres off the shore. They can be viewed from a specially constructed platform in the sand dunes or from the beach.
For updates on whale sightings, drop into the Visitor Information Centre.
Location: Logans Beach Road, off Hopkins Point Road, Warrnambool
Open: Access all times.
Information: Warrnambool Visitor Information Centre (03) 5559 4620
A natural oasis almost in the heart of the town, Griffiths Island supports a number of native animals including a small mob of swamp wallabies. It is also the site of one of Australia’s most accessible breeding colonies of short tailed shearwaters or mutton-birds.
Griffiths Island with its colony of shearwater seabirds, winding pathways and the spectacular lighthouse at the eastern tip, it is a great place to explore.
The Island supports a number of native animals including a small mob of swamp wallabies. It is also the site of one of Australia’s most accessible breeding colonies of short tailed shearwaters or mutton-birds.
A short walk along the causeway from Martin’s Point gets you onto the island. Dogs are not allowed on the island and visitors are urged to stick to the walking tracks, which wind through the low lying scrub. Nesting birds, including the shearwater’s that migrate from the northern hemisphere each year, create burrows for their young hidden in the sand and it’s important these nests aren’t disturbed by wandering sightseers. Read more
Port Fairy Farmers’ Market
Railway Place, Bank Street
The monthly farmers market is held on the 3rd Saturday of the month and highlights produce from local farmers including fruit, vegetables, flowers and honey in season, plants, baking, eggs and much more.
Fruit, vegetables, flowers and honey in season
Native, exotic and succulent plants, preserves, wine, cheese Cakes, eggs, fudge and more…
Budj Bim World Heritage site
History of aquaculture
Located in south-west Victoria, Budj Bim is the only Australian World Heritage site listed exclusively for its Aboriginal cultural values. The Budj Bim Cultural Landscape shows the world’s earliest living example of aquaculture with a history of kooyang (eel) farming dating back over 6,000 years.
Local Gunditjmara people used volcanic rock created by the Budj Bim lava flow to construct fish traps, weirs and ponds to manage the water flows from nearby Lake Condah in order to trap eels. The existence of these eel traps dispels the myth that Aboriginal people were primarily nomadic, living in resource-constrained environments.
The Gunditjmara people also crafted long eel baskets, made of river reeds and spear grass to regulate and trap the eels according to weight and size. Baskets were used to carry the eels, which sustained the lives of Gunditjmara for generations. Read more
Tower Hill Wildlife Reserve
Tower Hill Wildlife Reserve is part of an Aboriginal cultural landscape. Parks Victoria respects the deep and continuing connection that Traditional Owners have to these lands and waters, and we recognise their ongoing role in caring for Country.
Tower Hill is home to some of Australia’s best loved wildlife. Emus, kangaroos, koalas, swans, ducks and blue wrens all live inside this magnificent dormant volcano near the Great Ocean Road. Walk across wetlands, craters and bushland and learn how the park was exploited by early settlers before being restored by volunteers.
Tower Hill Wildlife Reserve sits in a large volcanic crater. It is one of Victoria’s most fascinating and significant geological formations. Volcanic cone-shaped hills rise from the lakes. It’s a short detour from the Great Ocean Road and offers ample walking opportunities for people of all abilities – from easy boardwalks to scenic climbs.
Join a tour run by experienced local guides to discover how Tower Hill was transformed from a desolate wasteland to the park you see today – and the dedicated volunteers who made it happen. Visit the Tower Hill Visitor Centre, designed by celebrated Australian architect Robin Boyd. Read More
Codrington Wind Farm Tours
Australia’s largest wind power station is located just 20 minutes from Port Fairy. Enjoy a tour in the comfort of a minibus, with professional commentary on the history of the sheep and cattle farm, the development of the wind farm as well as technical information about the amazing wind turbines. Read More
Port Fairy leisurely walk
A leisurely walk in one of Victoria’s earliest settlements enables you to look, touch, feel and experience the history of Port Fairy. Many original historic buildings are still standing and it’s all here for you to enjoy. Visit our history centre and then just walk the afternoon away through Port Fairy’s heritage, stopping to admire lovely cottages and cottage gardens. Feel the experience of Victoria’s early settlers as you stroll through yesteryear.
Koroit leisurely walk
Koroit is a small historic town 18km northeast from Port Fairy. Enjoy a leisurely stroll through the beautiful Koroit gardens or wander down town through historic buildings. A small town with beautiful history. The Koroit music festival is held each year in April and provides a great variety of music for all to enjoy. The town’s Heritage Trail highlights many of Koroit`s beautiful old buildings. It is walkable and drivable and features 30 places of interest. Brochures are available at businesses throughout Koroit Read More
The Bay of Whales Gallery
The Bay of Whales Gallery is proud to present some of the very best realist animal and bird paintings in Australia by Brett Jarrett. A master of his chosen medium, Brett Jarrett is passionate about sharing his life experiences as a naturalist and skill as an artist. Brett’s paintings have been selected four times for the prestigious Society of Animal Artists annual exhibition and national tour of the United States. His paintings are displayed in numerous privates collections internationally.
Approaching the peak of his career, Brett’s paintings express a powerful sense of realism and accuracy with strong artistic elements of how we see and enjoy two dimensional fine art. The driving force behind his work is a life-long fascination of animal anatomy, behaviour and beauty, allowing him to communicate a story or moment in time to the viewer. Bay of Whales Gallery, open Thurs – Sun, 10am – 4pm Bay of Whales Coffee Shop, open Sat & Sun 10am – 4pm Read More
Visit Mott’s Cottage
Mott’s Cottage nestles in the historic town of Port Fairy and is one of the oldest buildings in the district.
Constructed in three stages, the oldest section dates from 1850 or earlier and was built for local stonemason John Hooper.
Unusually for a cottage of this type it even acquired a second story but only acquired its name in the twentieth century from Sarah Jane Mott, who owned it between 1918 and 1944. Across its long history, it was used as a bakery and now survives to offer a glimpse into how the earliest European settlers into Victoria lived.
Port Fairy to Warrnambool Rail Trail
Covering 37 kilometres of scenic rural landscape, the rail trail passes through farmland in Port Fairy, Koroit, Illowa and Warrnambool and is designed to showcase the rural scenery of the region.
The rail trail will pass through Koroit at the old Railway Station. The Station’s main building has been undergoing restoration the past few years. The Goods Shed restoration are yet to begin.
We can arrange for electric bikes with a staff member by arrangement to ride the trail. Read More
Koroit Agricultural and Pastoral Show Date: 12th November 2022
Port Fairy Agricultural and Pastoral Show Date: 5th November 2022
Tyrendarra Agricultural Show Date: 11th February 2023
Come along and enjoy the spectacle, excitement and fun of the local Agricultural Show, it features a pet competition, cattle, horses, sheep, poultry, a Car Show and Shine, vintage tractor and motor display, craft, cooking and vegetable competition plus a whole lot more..
Retreat South is committed to embracing diversity and eliminating all forms of discrimination in the provision of health services. Retreat South welcomes all people irrespective of ethnicity, lifestyle choice, faith, sexual orientation and gender identity.
Seeking people looking for an experience to connect in an inclusive environment and enjoy what this experience has to offer.
Craft and Art lovers
Seeking all creative folk come and join and the many local artists and galleries for an experience about creativity.
Seeking all lovers of our furry friends, Whether you have a pet or not this experience is for guests that want to share their experience with Tug and his big brother Chico, we are happy for our guests to bring their dogs along with them if they are trained and well behaved. All our properties are pet friendly, but as like our human guests, we ask that our furry guests look after our properties and ensure they are nice to others. We will always conduct a pet assessment prior to the experience to ensure that all guests, including other pooches, have a great time. Pet Lovers Experience is kind of like dog heaven. Dog lovers only on this experience and guests will choose whether they want to join the respite.
Acknowledgements Traditional Custodians
Retreat South acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the land throughout Australia and their living connection to the lands and waters. We are standing on Peek Whurrong country. We pay our respect to their elders past, present and emerging and extend that respect to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders.