Lord Howe Island

Sep 9th, 2008, 02:36 PM
  #1  
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Lord Howe Island

We are planning a visit to Lord Howe Island in February '09 and would be interested to hear from anyone who has been there recently.
We are staying at Somerset.
prue is offline  
Sep 9th, 2008, 03:28 PM
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The poster furrytiles wrote a terrific description of her tip in 2007. Put her name in the search box and you'll find it.
oliverandharry is offline  
Sep 9th, 2008, 05:54 PM
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Yes, thank you I have read her wonderful report which contains SO much information - just wondered if anyone had been since then.
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Sep 10th, 2008, 12:16 AM
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Hi prue, so cool you're reading my LHI trip report as we've just returned from Norfolk and passed your accommodation resort there many times - remembering your visit!

From memory, Peteralan visited LHI after us, in late in 2007, and also stayed at Somerset, so hopefully he'll see this thread and answer any questions you might have.

Cheers,
Jackie
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Sep 10th, 2008, 02:22 PM
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Hi Jackie - having just read the start of your Norfolk trip I can only say there is no doubt you two have more than usual starts to your journeys!!
I am looking forward to reading all about your time in NI and am sure you would have enjoyed it as much as we did.
We are also now looking forward to Lord Howe and will be taking your TR with us as a guide.
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Sep 10th, 2008, 02:26 PM
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Forgot to say that we too got totally lost one day driving a short distance from A to B - and in broad daylight with the map to hand!
prue is offline  
Sep 10th, 2008, 04:03 PM
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Prue, we loved it all – and whilst we were circling Port Stephens for the 10th time, we also talked about our aborted start to LHI last year, wondering if we were island jinxed? Actually, it was that experience which made me put fully comprehensive travel insurance on top of my ‘to do’ list. And when we heard the bang and felt the vibrations, my first involuntary thought was “thank the gods we are fully insured”

Knowing you got lost in daylight with a map to hand makes me wish I had modified The Look

Honoured that through my LHI TR I will 'revisit' as your proxy guide.
FurryTiles is offline  
Mar 4th, 2009, 12:43 PM
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We have recently returned from our magical stay at Lord Howe Island and the following is just a few thoughts for anyone thinking of visiting.
Firstly, it is the most beautiful place with absolutely pristine water and amazing coral which we thought was far more outstanding than any we had seen on the Barrier Reef.
Because of the small population and the restricted number of visitors allowed everything is very well run and we could not fault any of the restaurants we visited or tours we took.
We stayed at Somerset Apartments which were slightly 'tired' looking but very clean and perfectly comfortable. The units had a good sized bedroom with tiny bathroom and a sitting area with second bed and tiny television and then a good sized kitchenette. The only downside we could find was the balconies are only separated by a lattice like partition which we did not like but anyone else may not have worried at all. However, they were very well located with just a short walk to the nearest shops, lagoon etc and slightly further to Neds Beach. We walked everywhere we needed to go and found this very easy - and necessary with all the good food we were enjoying!
We can highly recommend a trip to Lord Howe.
We ate out each night and visited Pandandus (twice), Beachcomber, the Bowling Club, Palm Sugar, and Arajilla (which was our only disappointment) we also had lunch on several occasions at Coral Cafe and Humpty Micks. All the meals were beautifully presented and delicious, however, you are obviously paying city rates because of the location.
We booked ahead as there is a free phone located in the shopping area for this purpose, and for booking tours etc.
We took a tour each day and used Lord Howe Enviromental Tours, Marine Adventures, Whitfields and Ramblin Ronnie.
Every tour was professionally organised and full of interesting and intriguing information. We saw many beautiful fish, enormous turtles, numbers of birds and much flora and fauna.
We used Thompsons Store for our supplies and as you would expect found things to be expensive. We had no trouble with cash as 99% of places took Eftpos and/or Visa Cards.
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Mar 5th, 2009, 03:29 AM
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Yes, LHI is the kind of place you would not mind going back to again and again, just so peaceful, easy paced and beautiful.

I stayed in about the cheapest lot of apartments there were a few years back, tucked away in a beautiful garden setting, a garden unit we had and just an easy walk through a bit of a giant fig tree forest to the beach out the back where fish were fed and a large enough open area to fly a kite.

Even though the units were as I say on the cheaper side, they were clean and comfy and you could not have asked for a better location.
Knowing that prices would likely be a little more than mainland, we packed some breakfast cereal and nibbles and then buying some meat, had a couple of BBQs and were able to keep costs down a bit, and even though prices are a bit dearer, that can be offset by not needing to hire vehicles [ bicycle hire not too expensive] , no nightlife other than eating out to chew up money and plenty of DIY walks and other activities, we were more than content to not needing to take any tours.

Even got a little bit of fuselage metal of the plane that crashed there in WW2.
Makes me think that it would have been a great trip to do many yaers earlier when the way there was in Flying Boats.
Bushranger is offline  
Mar 5th, 2009, 04:52 PM
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Hi Prue, glad you had such a magical time on Lord Howe – it is indeed unique and I doubt much has changed between our visit in May 07 and yours in Feb 09!

Usually when we plan our trips, we’re always eager to try a new destination – but our Lord Howe experience was so memorable that it’s one of the very few places we’re eager to revisit. It’s almost like a rebirth of the soul!

Thanks so much for reporting back.
FurryTiles is offline  
Mar 5th, 2009, 08:22 PM
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Hi - I was hoping you would see my report as I was able to get so much help from this Board - we really did love LHI and will certainly plan on going back one day soon.
It was so nice that it was just as I imagined and we were not disappointed in any part of the week. We met many people who were visiting for the umpteenth time which was a good advertisment.
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Mar 10th, 2009, 01:24 AM
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Hi prue and Furry Tiles! Sorry this is so belated. I was in fact in Italy for 2 months at the time you posted. Glad it worked out well for you. I just wanted to add that we were concerned about the same thing with Somerset at the time we booked. There are some apartments at the back ,up the top which are more private and had their own kitchens. In those places there is a proper wall between the apartments not lattice. That is the reason we opted for one of those and we were so glad we did. We did actually get quite friendly with the people next door but we could sit out the front in complete privacy. They were set in amongst lovely trees and shrubs.More expensive but definitely worth it!
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Mar 10th, 2009, 09:04 PM
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Peteralan, That is very interesting about Somerset - I was cross with myself that I did not investigate some of the other rooms as quite possibly we could have moved. It wasn't a disaster but just an inconvenience and I could see where the remarks about 'smokers' in some earlier posts I read had come from.
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Mar 10th, 2009, 10:40 PM
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Hi Peteralan – wow, two months in Italy! You’re excused without Penalty Points (as Gpanda imposes on the Asia board) ... good to see you back and hope you had an amazing stay in la Italia!

Ok, now on to asking for more details .... we have a family reunion coming up in May/June with overseas offspring arriving for an Oz-home-sick visit, and we’ve been thinking Lord Howe would be the most amazing place for a week of family reunion and ‘rebirthing’ of the soul for all of us.

Six adults – so I’ve been looking at the Mary Challis cottages on Lagoon Road and thinking of booking both. But now you mention these two ‘separate’ villas at Somerset (where we walked past so many times during our ’07 visit) and would love some more details on configuration etc., and how private it was.

None of the offspring have been to Lord Howe but listened to the oldies rhapsodise and flash the photo album at any opportunity the past two years, so we thought it would be something really special as a re-bonding of family ties as well as rejuvenating from the jaded world in economical crisis for all of us, by submerging ourselves in the incredibly beauty and back-to-basics of this unique island.

Thanks in advance!
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Mar 11th, 2009, 08:03 PM
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I think the Mary Challis Cottages would be perfect for your plan - such a great position close to just about everything you would need.
The week we were there I noticed there were quite large obviously family groups - one I know was there to celebrate the Grandfather's birthday and there were several generations all having a lovely time.
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Mar 11th, 2009, 08:34 PM
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Well prue, you will just have to go back again. LOL! FurryTiles , I exaggerated a little I'm afraid. We were away for 2 months but the last two weeks were in my favourite city, Hong Kong on the way home. Not sure what the weather in April/May is like in LHI but guess it is ok. There was a row of those places up at the back area of the complex ( I may have given the impression there were only 2 ).Can't remember how many, maybe half a dozen. There was only one bedroom though so you guys would need 3.Not luxurious but we were happy there. There is a little verandah out the front and ours looked out onto plants and a barbeque area ( for anyone to use which we never used). First room was a small living/eating area. We did not cook either but it was handy having the kitchen area for breakfast.Then there was the bedroom( ours was a twin but you can get a double)and the bathroom was off the bedroom. It was private to the extent that we could not look straight at the next door people like you could at the lattice places where prue was. At the time we went those places did not have kitchens either ,although they may now. When I walked past those places when going out I used to think they were not private in that everyone could see you sitting outside. I guess that seems a bit picky.So it probably depends on whether you want separate places or do you want to share? Are the Mary Challis places bigger than 1 bedroom?
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Mar 12th, 2009, 01:14 PM
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Our units had a kitchen/eating area right at the front which had obviously been a more recent addition with the verandah.
We were lucky in that we were on the end so only had one lot of togetherness rather than two if you were in the middle.
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Mar 12th, 2009, 11:42 PM
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Just to chuck another alternative into the pot or you, that back beach is Ned's beach I remembered and the unit would have been one at http://www.lordhoweisland.info/accom...on/lorhiti.htm

Always out for a bargain, Lorhiti was the cheapest weeks package we took but you could not have asked for better.
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Mar 14th, 2009, 09:48 PM
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Hi again Prue and Peteralan, thanks so much for the extra info.

Our previous visit was in early May, and we thought the weather perfect! Slightly crispy in the evenings, but warm days for swimming and snorkelling; we love being able to hike without the risk of heat exhaustion or sweat-baths, lol.

Had researched Mary Challis cottages for our previous trip, but when I emailled was disappointed that both cottages were already booked. We passed the cottages as we walked along Lagoon Road many times, and although basic they looked charming and very private being set off the road along a little path and surrounded by lush gardens.

By co-incidence, I met the couple who had booked ‘our’ Mary Challis cottage when snorkelling at Ned’s Beach and they were very happy there – basic but very comfortable cottage and loved the great location and privacy.

The separate bedrooms have a double and single bed, so sleep three; only minor snag here is the oldies snore like chainsaws and none of the offspring want to share the same room unless supplied with earplugs, lol. But we can work around that .... a poker game where the loser wins an earplug night, perhaps?

For anyone else checking this thread, here’s the link to the Mary Challis cottages
http://www.lordhoweisland.info/accommodation/mary.htm

Bushranger, many thanks: however, we do know Lorhiti and posted a review of the property in my TR http://www.fodors.com/community/aust...-may-07.cfm?20
But don’t think it’s suitable for this special occasion. Didn’t think it was cheap, either – between $150 (low) and nearly $400 (high) pdpn (per double per night), but agree sometimes package deals deliver ‘cheaper’ accommodation as in your case.

Think it’s a double Mary for us!
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Mar 15th, 2009, 09:16 PM
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i only peered at the Cottages from the road but thought the location was excellent - specially as it will be so easy for everyone in your party to do things either together or apart being in the centre of it all! When you were last there was the free phone for local calls in existence? If not, it is a great help for booking restaurants, tours etc. It is situated just next to the Post Office.
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