Lord Howe is a favourite for our readers who have been responding to the articles on social media. This paradise on earth as one of our friends of friends put it, is home to 350 of the luckiest people on the planet. We have spoken before of only 400 visitors allowed on the island at any one time, taking the maximum population to a whopping 740.
“I’ve never seen water so clear”, said one of our enthusiastic scuba diving mates. “Completely surrounded by all sorts of fish”. It wouldn’t be hard with fish filling the perfect lagoons – around 500 species and visitors hand feeding the schools every day at Ned’s Beach. “They were eating straight out of our hands, tickling you, the kids were blown away”.
Turtles are a favourite with visitors, exciting and delighting as they swim at Settlement Beach, their green backs bobbing up in the water.
Our fishing friends on facebook were crazy mad about the trips to the reefs and the Double Header Wrasse was the most talked about catch.
Golfing is becoming more and more popular with all ages and some of our grey nomad reaches had travelled to the island with their adult and teenage offspring, who are all getting into the walking game.
“Could not have played in a better spot anywhere” said our FB grandson. “The view is worth a million bucks”, another enthused and why wouldn’t they when your nine hole course overlooks the most perfect pacific island lagoon with a huge ex-volcanic mountain towering above as a backdrop. The Lord Howe Open Golf Tournament is on again in November, attracting a good crowd with over $5000 to play for. The Lord Howe Golf Club, “my local”, as one of our FB friends called it on his 5 day stay, is a friendly; “casual club with everything you could wish for; friendly locals and a cold beer. Nothing better than the 10th on Lord Howe”. For more info go to www.lordhowegolf.com.au
Lord Howe Community Markets attract the visitors, who are surprised by the fresh organic local grown produce and the variety of cool cultural craft works.
Diving and snorkelling has been an another thread “like a dream, so many tame fish swimming right up to you, just unbelievable”, and there is no shortage of locations with cavex trenches and ancient undersea volcanic formations attracting fluorescent fish of startling colours.
“Food is a dream”, “the fish was just so fresh and I didn’t realise the food was going to be of such a high standard”, were some of the feedback on FB. Our regular visitors know that Lord Howe has truly become a foodie destination, with well-known chefs moving to the island to serve up some dream dishes for a season or two. Sydney and Melbourne usually loose out and Lord Howe lucks out, as perfectly fresh island cuisine, is prepared with a new creative input, the abundance of seafood balancing modern cuisine with the fresh flavours of the sea.
Pinetrees Lodge continues its tradition of priding itself on serving first class cuisine to its fabulous clientele. Guests and casual visitors can be astounded by the gastronomic delights by famous Australian chefs who take up residence.
Their food and wine weeks and professional cooking workshops are sometimes booked months ahead.
“A place where I felt balanced and relaxed”, said an FB friend who had indulged in a wellness week programme of yoga, health cooking and organic gardening classes. The Lodge has may packages at discount prices. Action or relaxation go to www.pinetrees.com.au for more info.
“You can’t get crowds out there” our stoked grey grommet wrote “sometimes I was looking for someone else to paddle out with me”, as he spoke of his uncrowded surfing session on the many reef breaks on the island. If your are not surfing, there is always windsurfing, stand-up paddle boarding, kayaking, boat hire for fishing, kitesurfing and swimming around the lagoons!
“Such a cool place to walk around, so many birds and the scenery is magic” spouted one of our facebook trekkies. Lord Howe has many wonderful walks graded from easy to virtual climbs up a mountain. You chose the type of you can handle. ”It’s a long way to the top”, a climbing grey wrote exhausted after the 875 metre Mt Gower trek, a full day of keeping fit and the exhilaration at the top.
A lot of people prefer more leisurely pursuits and hire a bike to cycle around or a rental car on the island where the driving is island style – slow with a lot of waving hello to friendly locals. All of these and water gear for snorkelling are available for hire at Wilsons Hire Service. “Marvellous time at the LHI bowlo, played in the open and they looked after us a treat” one of the many bowlers on FB wrote of her time on Lord Howe Island. Lord Howe Bowling Club has bowls on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday with the dining room open from Saturday to Thursday and drinks on from 4.30pm every day. The Open Tournaments are on in November and February-March. “A great place to stay” said one of our FB guests of Waimarie Apartments which are only 150metres to the lagoon and surf beach. Spacious one bedroom holiday apartments at a reasonable price , fully equipped with everything you need.
Days spent sea kayaking, walking, sightseeing eating delicious food, hand feeding the fish or just sitting on a subtropical beach contemplating your navel, the effects of a stay on this island are rejuvenating.
The centrally located Hideaway on Lord Howe Island is a secluded cottage set in a sub-tropical garden, right near the beach, shops and restaurants with fully equipped kitchens, BBQ, a pool table and all other comforts. A great spot to relax.
So tell your friends and your friends of friends that paradise is only a 2 hour flight and you won’t lose any money changing currency, but you will lose all your stress when you come for a stay on Lord Howe Island.