I climb over a large boulder and stop to catch my breath, fixing my gaze on the beach below.
The sun is sinking towards the horizon, bathing the Indian Ocean in a surreal golden glow. The stunning rock formations we have climbed over are ablaze in a burnt orange hue.
The sunset is as spectacular as the solitude. I feel calm in these natural surroundings as I sip sparkling wine while watching the day’s last light.
I’m visiting the recently re-opened Eco Beach Wilderness Resort, 130 kilometres south-west of Broome, surrounded by pristine bush and pastoral land. Travel 660 kilometres straight out over the ocean and you reach the Indonesian border.
The retreat offers a luxury experience in the wilderness, with a wet-edge pool and health retreat. Jack’s Bar & Restaurant dishes up a menu of international cuisine.
This far away from the city, the resort is an eco friendly getaway. They use bathroom cosmetics made from natural products and cleaning products from biodegradable materials; waste water is recycled and used to water the landscaped grounds.
Accommodation is provided in 25 cyclone-proof Eco Villas, some with dramatic ocean views, and 30 demountable safari-style Eco Tents. The Eco Tents were designed specially for Eco Beach Resort and have been sold all over the world including to the Abu Dhabi royal family.
The Eco Villas are solar powered, generating 3kw of power from the sun. Excess power generated by the solar panels is diverted into the retreat’s grid.
Each villa is equipped with an energy monitoring system that enables guests to manage energy consumption. The entire retreat is about 50% solar powered and stores energy in batteries so that the generators can be turned off at night.
More than one kilometre of elevated boardwalks criss-cross the resort for minimal impact to the surroundings. And all the floors are made from an eco-friendly composite wood decking made from recycled polypropylene plastics and wood bi-products.
Back at Jack’s Bar & Restaurant, the staff are waiting eagerly for a call from a guest who is about to make the resort’s first marriage proposal. The two-way radio squawks – the answer is yes – and the staff member heads off with a bottle of champagne for the happy couple.
The next morning, at dawn, after a yoga session, my batteries are fully charged. Indigenous land owners offer tours that show guests their traditional way of life, whcih includes fishing, hunting and bush-tracking culture of the Yawuru people. The cliffs, caves and bush are abundant with wildlife: kangaroos, wallabies, goannas, and many types of birds.
The didgeridoo is not part of their culture. Instead they have song lines, a musical map for songs and dances that enable them to travel from one area to the next.
Qantas, Virgin Blue and Skywest fly from Perth to Broome. For bookings see Eco Beach Wilderness Retreat, tel: 9193 8015.
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