Water Gums Retreat
Secluded riverfront getaway
Watergums Retreat is a modern, four-bedroom mudbrick and cedar self-contained cottage perched on the edge of the beautiful Barrington River just 15 minutes from Gloucester. With two separate bathrooms, a two-person spa, big covered deck and fully equipped kitchen, Watergums is the perfect secluded escape for couples and families. It also offers ideal small group accommodation and can sleep 9 people in comfort. Ramble around the 40 acre property, which fronts 320m of river and includes two billabongs, one connected to the river, which are havens for platypus, fish and waterhens. See wildlife in its natural setting, enjoy a barbecue on the deck, swim, paddle or snorkel in the river in summer or sip a red wine beside the blazing fire in the cooler months
From Gloucester take the road to Barrington, travel through the village, across the old wooden bridge and take the first left (Barrington West Rd). Travel about 8km (if you reach a river crossing you have gone 50m too far) then turn right onto the Manchester Rd. Water Gums is just over 4km along on the left hand side. Watch for the sign on the gate.
Tariff is $150 a weekend night for a couple, with extra adults $40 a night each. Children $20 a night each unless otherwise arranged. Lower rates midweek and weekly. Minimum tariffs apply for long weekends and school holiday periods.
Barrington Tops Accommodation - Visit Dungog and Gloucester: Water Gums Retreat - Enjoy your visit.
About Water Gums
Enjoying Water Gums
Water Gums is a 16ha (40 acre) property, most of which lies on the upper side of the Manchester Road, at the base of Prince Charlie Mountain. (Many early settlers in the Barrington area came from the Isle of Skye, off Scotland, and they brought a number of place names with them).
The property enjoys a 320m frontage to the Barrington River and among its most appealing features are a pair of billabongs. The biggest, just below the house, is connected to the river by a natural inlet.
The house was built using locally made mudbricks and much of the timber used in framing and fitting out the house was felled and milled on the property using a portable mill. The kitchen and bathroom benches and the staircase are of broad-leafed apple timber. Most of the architraves are of grey box. Each piece of moulding-out timber was shaped by hand, leaving the natural shape of the original log wherever possible. The effect is striking.
The river and main billabong are magnets for wildlife of many kinds. Mammals seen at the property include bats, possums, wallabies, echidna, water-rats and platypus. The platypus are very commonly encountered, particularly in the early morning and around dusk, although it is not remarkable to see them at any time of the day or night.
From late September the fireflies are a notable feature. (The timing of their appearance is seasonal, of course.)
The river is home to many kinds of fish. Types vary according to the time of year, but freshwater mullet, herrings, eels, catfish and many smaller species such as gudgeons are common. We like to encourage the fish and generally do not try to catch or harrass them.
As well as fish, the river hosts many other interesting creatures including tortoises, large mussels, water snails, small shrimp-like crustaceans and numerous insect larvae.
Water Gums is visited by a bewildering variety of birds. Water birds include moorhens, ducks, cranes, herons, bitterns, kingfishers and cormorants. Forest birds include brush turkeys, bower birds, bell-miners (you will hear many of them), pigeons, owls, pheasant coucals and quail. Parrots include black cockatoos, rosellas and king parrots. Small birds include finches, wrens, swallows, thrushes, flycatchers and honeyeaters - though this list is not exhaustive.
Although subject to some clearing and grazing over the years Water Gums has much of its river-bank vegetation intact. The most common trees are the water gums from which the property takes its name, sandpaper figs, bottlebrushes, red ash, white cedar, casuarinas and kurrajongs.
In the warmer months the river is a wonderful place to swim and snorkel. There is deep water suitable for serious swimming a few hundred metres downstream.
Upstream from the house there are a number of spots suitable for snorkelling and simply splashing around in water that ranges from ankle to chest deep for most adults.
The property has many beautiful and secluded picnic spots to enjoy.
Bruce and Lydia Quirey, Cooks Hill, NSW.
"Crisp mornings, warm sunlight on the verandah and the river having a chuckle. Too nice for words."
D and V, Newcastle.
"Fantastic hideaway, great fire, comfy beds, perfect spa. We'll be back."
Kim and Ross Allen, Westleigh, Sydney
"When we come here we want to stay longer; there always seems to be more relaxing that needs to be done! We saw two platypus and a number of turtles."
Gerry Gnany, Glenfield, Sydney.
"Thank God for the internet, otherwise we would never have found this haven. What a fantastic, romantic place for lovers."
Geoff and Daphne, Rankin Park, NSW.
"Fireflies like fairies in the glen! Yellow-tailed black cockatoos, the satin bowerbird and his mate, wallabies as well. It's nature's wonderland."
Roger and Janet, Milton Keynes, UK.
"A place of firsts:- first platypus, first firefly, first spiny anteater, first win at Scrabble. A lovely place."
Jenny and Les Saggus, Narabeen.
"What a fantastic place! Just amazed by this house - the beautiful furniture, layout etc. Very cosy and comfortable."
Tony and Julie Nelson, Grays Point, NSW.
"No! No! We don't want to leave! We'll be back, that's a promise."
Nikki and Mark, Empire Bay, NSW.
"Wow, incredible. You have created a magical paradise."
Christopher Sammut, Hinchinbrook, NSW.
"What an Australian paradise!"
Andrew Young, Bathurst, NSW.
"Lovely. Could have spent another couple of weeks just going through the bookcases."
Angie, Penrith, NSW.
"What a wonderful place to spend a romantic weekend with the one you love. Thankyou."
Cindy and Tony, Newcastle, NSW.
"Fantastic!! Wonderful. Bellbirds, whipbirds etc. We felt particularly close to nature - love the house!! The solitude and tranquility are so precious. Thankyou so much."
Shane, Catherine, Rachel and Joanne, Dural.
"Thankyou so much for providing such a beautiful and affordable hideaway. This place was perfect."
Darren, Alison and Samuel, Newcastle NSW.
"So pretty! After just 10 minutes Darren wanted to live here and Samuel thinks it's his favourite place in the world (even better than his Nintendo!!).
Jack and Diane, Alfords Point, NSW.
"Many wonders are forever captured in my heart. I feel I have wandered into a picture book. What delight to scurry up the tree trunk and nestle among the leaves while the river sings her lullaby. The best sleep I've had in years."