Turkeys walk the property, fancy birds try to steal your croissants and villas overlook a beautiful expanse of trees and mountains. This is an everyday scene from O’Reilly’s found in Lamington National Park.
I haven’t been to a true resort in over 10 years; not since the first time I booked a vacation to a resort. While it was nice and hot and relaxing, I hated it. Now that I know a little more about the environmental and social impacts of resorts, I hate them even more. But, a new kind of trend in resort vacations is popping up: eco-resorts. O’Reilly’s isn’t a normal kind of resort with sandy beaches and hotel rooms (as no eco-resort really truly is), but is an absolute amazing place to stay. Conservation efforts, education, and respect to nature is found all throughout O’Reilly’s. Best of all, it has all of the comforts that you would want in a luxurious vacation.
The Spa. New favourite after flying for 24 hours: foot rejuvenation. I bought two for 30 minutes of relaxing foot and calf scrub and massage. While she worked out all the kinks and buffed my feet to the softest of perfection, I was treated to a beautiful view of the rainforest and mountains.
The spa has many treatments to offer, a relaxation room that overlooks the mountains and rainforest and a steam room for you to enjoy before and after your appointment(s).
The Pool. We stayed in the villas, which are nestled between trees and a little further away from the main house and rooms. Luckily, O’Reilly’s has two pools on site: one at the main house with a hot tub and another just outside of the spa.
Birds of Prey and Animal Shows. I wasn’t too sure about these shows, but everyone wanted to check them out, so I dutifully tagged along. They’re wonderful! You not only get to see amazing animals, but you also get an explanation of conservation, how every animal should be treated and respected and how we need to better treat our planet.
Zip Lining. There are lots of great tours and educational shows you can go on while at O’Reilly’s and our group chose zip lining. I may have kept my eyes closed the first time down, but opened them to trees as I whizzed past them on my second ride.
Glow Worms. A super cute experience and rare glimpse into the sounds and sights of the rainforest at night. Grab your runners for a rainforest walk at night to benches where the history and explanation of glow worms is given. It may feel like you’re not supposed to be in the rainforest at night as the forest comes alive with sounds and a terrifying feeling that a giant spider will land on your head any minute takes over. But, it was insanely cool and interesting.
Even if you don’t jump at the chance to see glow worms at night or indulge in a massage at the spa, just walking the grounds, relaxing on your balcony or jumping into a story in a reading nook and letting the birds greet you in the morning, is all you need.