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Donnelly River Village

A special little place in the forest. A historic mill town nestled deep in the heart of Australia’s South West karri forests, it’s the perfect place for a unique escape from the hustles and hassles of modern life amongst the bird and animal life of the South West.

Details

Description

Donnelly River Village is an old mill town established by the Bunnings Brothers in 1948. When it closed in 1978, it became a popular holiday destination and many of our guests have been holidaying in Donnelly for the past 30 years.

Most famous for its friendly wildlife that roams the village, Donnelly provides a rare and delightful experience for international visitors and locals alike, handing feeding kangaroos, emus and ring-necked parrots as they congregate at the general store and around the cottages. At night, lay apples along the verandah to attract possums and if you are quiet, you may even see a quokka. Kookaburras and magpies abound and every evening just on dusk, black cockatoos return to their roosts in the central park area.

In the centre of the village is the school, which now houses two bunk rooms, a kitchen and bathroom, a games room and an exceptional museum that tells the history of the village. Running behind the school and through the centre of the park is the very popular Flying Fox and is available for hire.

The Village butchers’ shop is now a TV room which has satellite TV and a DVD player. Part of the Donnelly tradition is the daily 5 pm screening of a movie for the kids during holidays and every Saturday evening. There is also an open pool table to enjoy.

But wait, there’s more – Donnelly has an oval, basketball, tennis and volleyball court and sports equipment can be borrowed from the store. There are also bikes available for use.

In Summer, kids can enjoy the swimming lake set a few 100m from the village. There are kayaks to play with and a sandy beach offers a graduated and safe entry into the lake. In Winter, the focus of your stay may well be the outside fire pits located behind most of the cottages. Toasting marshmallows, singing with a lone guitar or watching the night sky and the nocturnal visitors are all great ways to destress and unwind.

Donnelly is the intersection for the Bibbulmun and the Munda Biddi and as such, offers well-graded walking and cycling trails out from the village. Transportation can be organised to take you out along the track and you can walk back at your leisure over hours or days.

The Village hub is the general store which sells supplies to guests and track users alike. Well stocked with groceries and the ubiquitous lollies, the store is warm and welcoming and houses a very fine café which serves excellent coffee and homemade cakes, soups, stews and more to satisfy the peckish visitor. The Donnelly carrot cake is a local favourite drawing a regular crowd from surrounding towns and the lasagne is the talk of the walkers as they make their way to this oasis in the forest.

ACCOMMODATION OPTIONS

Donnelly River Village has 35 houses of various sizes available for short term accommodation. Each is individually owned within a group of 100 people who banded together to purchase the village in 2009. Hence, each cottage is a reflection of its owners’ interest and taste. Some people have their favourites, returning year after year to the same one whilst others are steadily working their way through the offering. Whatever the choice, each cottage is heated by a wood fire (firewood supplied) and some have a functioning Metters stove. All kitchens have a stove/oven and microwave and are well equipped with utensils and crockery. Each has a front verandah which is a lovely place to enjoy a morning coffee or an evening BBQ.

There is a selection of two, three and four-bedroom cottages but larger groups can also be accommodated in the Loco Shed (sleeps 24 – 28) or the Old Boarding House (sleeps 14).

Walkers and cyclists have a choice of self-contained motel style units, bunk rooms or track shelters with the use of a kitchen and a well-earned shower. Donnelly River Village is a popular wedding and special occasion venue. Its Workers Club set slightly up the hill from the Old Boarding House is a perfect location for a dinner or party and can be hired for daytime or evening events. Donnelly River also welcomes school and other community groups as well as corporate activities.

Location

Cnr Sears & Andrews Rds, Donnelly River WA 6258

Directions

Donnelly River Village is quite literally in the centre of the karri forest.

Located a short drive from Bridgetown, Nannup and Manjimup and approximately an hour’s drive of the Margaret River Wine Region and beautiful Busselton, the village is a great base from which to explore Australia’s South West.

The local area is renowned for good food, fabulous wine and amazing festivals. There is something happening most weekends including local farmers markets where you can purchase fresh produce straight from the paddock. That’s if you can drag yourself away from the village.

Donnelly River Village is the halfway point for the Bibbulmun and Munda Biddi tracks and provides safe haven and an opportunity to restock for walkers and cyclists alike in a variety of low cost and free accommodation options.

Donnelly is a perfect getaway for families and couples.

Contact us for some great specials including our mid-week deal - ‘Stay for 4, pay for 3’ and our weekly special ‘Stay for 7, pay for 6’

Enjoy the simple pleasures!

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Reviews

It's always great to know what others think. So here's some comments from those with experience here.

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Guest Ratings

Rated by 3 guests
 
Michelle C
Lovely Weekend.
We spent the weekend as a group here in August, 17 people all up and 11 were kids. Not a bored kid all weekend. This place is lovely. The houses are old but spacious and clean. The kids all hand fed and played with the animals all weekend, rode their push bikes, went on adventures and night time possum spotting. Gorgeous little fire pits for marshmallows out the back of each house, lovely wood fire in the homes with wood and fire lighters ready to go. Was a truly lovely escape from reality for the weekend with no tv or phone reception. Will be back ❤️

Natasha Cooper
Wonderful place!! We took a step back in time, de plugged ourselves from technology and reality to experience the beautiful views and wildlife. What a family friendly place! Can’t recommend enough! Thanks guys we loved it!

Brodie McGlinn
What a fabulous place! My boyfriend has wanted to take me here since we started dating (5.5 years ago) and we finally made it down and I'm so glad we did.

There is something so comforting about this place, being surrounded by nature (so many animals), no phone service or internet, the fireplace. I just love it! I'm already planning on heading back with friends a month later. Highly recommend if you love nature and the simple things in life

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Phone: 9772 1244
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