Favourited 8 times
We are a couple of artists and teachers who are well travelled, enjoy good company, and find fun in what we do. Our comfortable mud-brick dwelling is set on 40-acres of natural bush habitat amongst stunning granite rock outcrops, big night skies, kangaroos and abundant bird life on the traditional Indigenous sovereign lands of the Djab Wurrung people. This land backs onto the Black Range Scenic Reserve of the Northern Grampians in Western Victoria, 3 hours west of Melbourne. We are changing our substantial vegetable garden and orchard to be more efficient with permaculture principles, and would love help. In August-November each year we need help to clear fallen timber to reduce the summer risk of fire. We often have small building and repair projects going (currently landscaping a small camp ground), and regularly have visiting artists staying with us, and sometimes small groups doing arts projects with us.
Workaway couples or two friends travelling together works best to stay with us, but single travellers are welcome too, and sometimes we have two solo travellers at the same time. You need to be physically fit and keen to get your hands and clothes dirty!
We are 5-7km away from the two nearest towns (Stawell and Great Western), and 25mins drive from The Grampians National Park / Geriwerd. Staying with us will suit people looking for time outdoors in nature, interested in sustainable approaches to living, and pursuing your own creative stuff. This isn't the place if you are looking to party, but it is a great place to learn! September to December and April-May are glorious seasons either side of a hot summer, with warm but comfortable temperatures ranging 20-34C during the day.
Help with Eco project
Staying with us is an opportunity to learn about caring for and conserving a remarkable area of Australian bush and wildlife, growing and cooking food, and how you might pursue a uniquely creative life in comparison to how we are doing it. We love to exchange ways to cook with guests. You can join in Mick's baking sourdough bread, and Amaara's Sri Lankan cooking. Mick is a keen bushwalker / overnight hiker, (hikers are welcome!) and is happy to share what he knows. He is an artist and designer, who can share with you his know-how in making things. As a choreographer and writer, Amaara can share tools for getting to your most creative side. Depending on weather and time available, we might be able to take you walking into the Black Range and the Grampians / Geriwerd, or for a little kayaking.
We are keen travellers and enjoy learning about the lives, cultures and pursuits of our guests. We welcome you into our family life and community. We'd also love to learn from people with permaculture knowledge and experience, and agricultural or land management experience.
We would like help with our vegetable garden and orchard, with clearing fallen wood before the fire season, with small building and eco projects (like landscaping a small tent camp ground), and with land maintenance task (like weeding, mowing, wire fencing). From time to time we have a group of artist visitors working together, and you might be invited to help out and join in. We share helping out with cooking and cleaning up.
There are a three accommodation options dependent on who else is staying with us the time of your visit, and what you would most prefer. If you prefer the outdoors and more independence, you can pitch your tent or use one of ours. A large upstairs mezzanine room in the main house provides your own big space for sleeping (plenty of mattress options) and hanging out. A front light filled room in the main house with queen bed is the deluxe option (often taken by a visiting artist) that includes a desk under a window that writers like. We have plenty of bedding and sleeping bags.
We provide breakfast, a help-yourself lunch, and dinner. We like to cook and share an evening meal together, like a family. We eat a mainly plant based diet, and much of it comes from the garden.
We are in the Wimmera area, 3 hours / 220 kms west of Melbourne at the edge of Gariwerd / Grampians National Park. From Melbourne, you can train to Ararat and then bus to Great Western, for $30. We can pick you up from Great Western, and sometimes from Ararat.
We have bikes you can use to ride the 7kms into Great Western or Stawell. Great Western is wine growing region. Stawell is a larger town with most facilities, shops, community classes and pool. Halls Gap – the town centre for Geriwerd / the Grampians National Park - is 25mins drive away, and features the Brambuck Cultural Centre which provides a fantastic introduction to Indigenous culture in this region. By arrangement you can occasionally use our vehicle for the cost of fuel.
The land we live on is protected by a nature conservation covenant. This commits those who live and stay on the land to conserve and care for the land’s ecological significance, for the habitat it provides native plants and wildlife, for its bushland trees and rock formations, watercourses and marshes. We share this with wallabies and kangaroos, much birdlife, possums and bats, the antechinus tiny marsupial that will eat almost anything, echidnas, the endangered Powerful Owl, amongst many others. Yellow Box and Red Gum Eucalyptus and Black Wattle Acacia trees predominate amongst grasses and sedges, interspersed with lilies and orchids. Invasive species that we are obliged to manage include rabbits, deer and foxes, and various weeds. We are asking ourselves as visitors to leave this land improved as an ecosystem providing habitats to a rich diversity of species along with humans.
From the back door of our mud brick home there is much land to walk out into and explore! You will be helping us develop ways to work and live that blur the interactions of land, art, ecology and community.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Maximum 4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week