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“Summer Camp for Adults (and kids!)”

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O'Reilly's Rainforest Retreat, Mountain Villas and Lost World Spa
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersGold level
Reviewed 27 December 2006

Rough it during the day and live in luxury at night!

We were two people on a seven-week trip to Australia. We stayed at O'Reilly's for four nights in June, 2006. The lodge is surrounded by gorgeous Lamington National Park.

We booked the cheapest, shared-bathroom rooms in advance. Then, one week before our check-in date, I checked rates on line and was able to obtain a fantastic room for about an extra $15 / night. We had a deck with a view of the whole region.

We paid for the full meal plan (although I don't think we really needed it.) Every meal offers a buffet and dishes off the menu. There was a large variety and it varied from day-to-day. There was a bar upstairs with a smaller menu. The servers actually made an effort to learn your names and remember what you had the night before. Surpisingly, the food was quite good! We chose some type of seafood pie. Twice.

You could always find tea and coffee in the dining room and goodies were available at morning and afternoon tea. And, if you know you will be out and about at lunch time, they will make you a lunch to go!

And, you probably WILL be out and about at lunch. There are a million things to do everyday. Bird watching (even if you think you aren't interested!) 4WD tours around the property! Boomerang throwing lessons! A zip line! A giant swing! Short and long guided hikes! Campfire nights! Glowworm spotting!

A library! A fireplace! Gameboards to check out! Movies!

Some of the activities are included, many you have to pay for. We bought an "unlimited activities" pass. We didn't save any money by buying it. However, at that point, in our long trip, we were happy to arrange our daily activities without pulling out our wallet every minute. The activities staff was knowledgeble, friendly and encouraging.

And, there are 150 km of graded trails for bushwalking. Most of our hikes were unguided. We completed the 23km from Binna Burra. Just fantastic. That one-day, one-way walk was the initial impetus to go to O'Reilly's and we sure our glad we did. It was worth every penny. (Not that there are pennies in Australia!)

A final note: We don't have kids, and as teachers on vacation, we didn't really want to be around any! :-) However, O'Reilly's is very family-friendly. I even saw staff taking children out to feed the pademelons.

My only complaint is that there was no bathtub in the room; only a shower. A bath would have been nice after some of those hikes. Poor me. :-)

  • Stayed: June 2006, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank Nicole_Higgins
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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1,215 - 1,219 of 1,272 reviews

Reviewed 11 May 2006

My girlfriend and I stayed at O'Reilly’s for 4 nights and thoroughly enjoyed it. We picked one of the intermediate levels of rooms and found the accommodations to be fairly basic but adequate and well maintained. The quality of food in the dining room was excellent although quite costly. Throughout our stay the staff was always friendly, helpful and courteous.

O'Reilly’s organise guided nature walks and 4x4 bus tours of the surrounding rainforest which we enjoyed and I would absolutely recommend. Our guides on different excursions included local nature photographer, Glen Threlfo, as well as members of the O’Reilly family. All of the guides were knowledgeable and inclined to share that knowledge as well as interesting stories along the way. Glen in particular would point out things that we would not have found on our own such as the trap door spider nests on the forest floor. On the bus tours there are breaks to stretch your legs and have some fresh tea/coffee and a snack (mmm...damper with golden syrup!).

Whilst the organised tours are very good, I would suggest heading out on your own to explore the trails as there is so much beautiful scenery and birds and wildlife to enjoy. The trails range from the easy treetop walk to much more difficult options such as the full day "box forest" walk – both of which are well worth the effort. Obviously you can't always be back at the guesthouse in time for lunch so the kitchen will supply a complete picnic lunch to take with you on bush walks if you request it the prior evening.

The only negative from our point of view was the price. We were fortunate and booked at a promotional rate but the “normal” prices would be a little beyond our reach. However, there didn't appear to be any shortage of people willing to pay so I am sure O'Reilly’s is charging what the market will bear.

  • Stayed: September 2004
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6  Thank ozla
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 27 November 2005

This is a jewel, the rooms are comfortable,, the service is very good, the food is pretty good quality, the views and walking routes are excellent. The warning is:- The walks are graded, easy and upwards which is fair enough but apart from the two short strolls the rest are good long walks and not to be taken lightly. The food package is sold as an economic option, breakfast, lunch, dinner. If you prefer a light lunch and a non massive dinner you can get a sandwich in the cafe, and a good selection of bar meals in the evening. There were a lot of older people there (I am 60 so I mean old) and the hotel organises bus trips but the real deal at O'Reillys is the mountains, the views and the walking, not too hard, but hard enough.

15  Thank johntCardiff_WalesUK
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 May 2005

We spent four days at this wonderful guest house and wish we had planned at least a week there. We were traveling with another couple and shared a two-bedroom suite (Vince) during our stay. It was delightful with views to die for! There is so much to do at O'Reilly's that you cannot possibly take it in on a short stay. The feeling there is one of being adopted into an extended family. The food was great also which is fortunate since there are absolutely no other options. Another reviewer mentioned the drive up--we were so relieved we decided not to drive ourselves! Do not underestimate the nerve required!!

The only caution I would give about O'Reilly's is in regard to their massage options. The location they have selected for the massage therapist is absolutely awful--under the deck of the swimming pool with the most dreadful atmosphere. It was hard to relax in that setting and I definitely would not book a massage there again. That said, the remainder of the experience at O'Reilly's was so positive we couldn't really get too upset about that squalid little massage room.

If you love the natural beauty of the rainforest, are willing to put up with some rain (it actually does rain in the rainforest!), and especially if you love birds, you will adore this place! We would love to go back again and hope to do so.

  • Stayed: March 2005
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9  Thank NCtourist
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 29 April 2005

We stayed for 3 nights - 2 couples each with a baby. We stayed in the two bedroom suite which was absolutely stunning with amazing views even through the mist. We had a fantastic time there even though it rained constantly from the moment we arrived until the moment we left. We were made to feel part of the family and the 'on-duty' member of the O'Reilly family made a real effort to remember our names and make a fuss of our kids. They didn't let the rain get us down and we had a truly memorable time in the rainforest, with great food and a friendly atmosphere which we will never forget

  • Stayed: November 2004
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6  Thank Haylesbayles
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about O'Reilly's Rainforest Retreat, Mountain Villas and Lost World Spa

Address: Lamington National Park Road, Canungra, Queensland 4275, Australia
Region: Australia > Queensland > Brisbane Region > Scenic Rim > Canungra
Bar / Lounge Beverage Selection Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 7 Speciality Lodging in Canungra
Price Range: $131 - $306 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4 star — O'Reilly's Rainforest Retreat, Mountain Villas and Lost World Spa 4*
Number of rooms: 114
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Explore World Heritage-listed Lamington National Park from the best and only vantage point on Green Mountain - at O’Reilly’s Rainforest Retreat - operated by passionate by third generation O’Reilly family members whose ancestors pioneered eco tourism in Australia in 1926. Choose to stay in a cosy Rainforest Retreat guest room with expansive views overlooking the western McPherson Range or one of 48 self-contained and architecturally designed modern Villas perched unobtrusively onto the sloping hillside. Get amongst the daily activities of guided bird walks, animal shows and the famed Tree Top Walk and treehouse climb to viewing platforms above. Plus, test your skills on an off road two-wheeled Segway tour through creek crossings to Morans Falls, or bliss out in the Lost World Day Spa. Dine in the casual treehouse bar on homemade pizzas or opt for the rustic dining room with a gourmet a la carte menu including matching wines from the Canungra Valley Vineyards down the road. Order a packed lunch or picnic hamper and set off to one of 500 waterfalls via 160 kilometres of nature trails. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
o`Reilly`s Rainforest Retreat, Mountain Villas And Lost World Hotel Canungra
O'Reilly's Rainforest Retreat, Mountain Villas And Lost World Spa Canungra, Queensland

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