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Wildlife Retreat at Taronga: A luxe eco-experience in the heart of Sydney that brings you closer to nature

Check into a lush sanctuary where your stay will contribute essential funding towards caring for Taronga’s animals. 

Have you ever felt the urge to reconnect with nature and take some time out for yourself but been lacking the time to journey too far? Taronga Zoo’s latest offering, Wildlife Retreat at Taronga may be just what you are after. 

A wild city setting

Located in the beautiful harbourside suburb of Mosman, a short distance from the Sydney CBD, lies an eco-sanctuary, waiting to be discovered. Despite the fact that the retreat is located in one of Australia’s busiest cities, the moment you enter you feel worlds away. Surrounded by the natural beauty of the bushland, visitors are able to disconnect from their busy lives, recharge and reconnect with mother nature. 

Credit: Taronga Wildlife Retreat

The retreat offers a completely unique and immersive experience for animal enthusiasts. Guided tours are offered throughout the stay, visiting purpose-built habitats for unique Australian species. Along with these insider experiences, in house guests also receive complimentary access to the zoo so you can wander to your hearts content. 

Apart from the close proximity to wildlife and carefully curated accommodation offerings the retreat also demonstrates harmonious integration with its Indigenous roots. Taronga is owned and operated by the Taronga Conservation Society, a not for profit, conservation based organisation. The Society proudly acknowledges the Cammeraigal people as customary owners of the land upon which Taronga resides. This respect filters through in many aspects of the Retreat’s offerings and can be seen in the utilisation of native bush ingredients, the inclusion of traditional art work and the acknowledgement of the Cammeragail people at the start of tours. All of these elements came about through communication with Indigenous custodians and the authenticity is evident.

Consistent with respect and understanding for the traditional owners of the land, the retreat has been designed with environmental sustainability at its forefront. This can be seen throughout its green initiatives which were designed to reduce the building’s overall carbon footprint. Taronga’s mission is to secure a shared future for wildlife and people. Therefore, guests can feel satisfied knowing that their stay will contribute valuable funding towards a worthwhile cause with minimal environmental impact. 

Credit: Taronga Wildlife Retreat

Green practices 

When highlighting the green initiatives in place it is important to mention that the lodge itself was designed to be no higher than the existing tree line and landscape. Therefore, the entire premise of the retreat is to work with nature and not compete against it. This can be seen in the roof mounted solar photovoltaic systems which provide a clean energy source. The choice of cross-laminated timber due to its lower environmental footprint and increased thermal performance. The ingenuity of incorporating an onsite water treatment plant that is

utilised for flushing toilets and irrigation. Also in the choice of LED lighting and energy efficient appliances to reduce electricity consumption. To put it in simple terms every effort was made from a design and functionality perspective to save energy and reduce the environmental footprint where possible. 

Culinary delights 

When it comes to food, the onsite restaurant, Me-gal doesn’t skimp on quality and the same care and consideration for sustainability is reflected in their menu. Me-gal, which translates to “tears” in the Cammeraigal language, serves culinary delights which are locally sourced, changed on a seasonal basis and inclusive of native ingredients. Think Fraser island spanner crab, local NSW beef fillet or MSC certified scallops, just to name a few choices! The restaurant is open exclusively to guests and stays include a two-course dinner and buffet breakfast. 

Credit: Taronga Wildlife Retreat

Room with a view

After a full day of exploring guests have a choice of laying their head down in one of five designer lodges with viewing options including animal, bush, harbour or treetop. All rooms include a king bed, an open plan ensuite with shower and sustainable amenities absent of single use plastics. 

All aspects of the Wildlife Retreat at Taronga feel effortlessly luxurious. The commitment to sustainability and indigenous respect is clearly embedded through out the entire experience. This results in a unique five star stay for guests that doesn’t compromise the earth. 

Where?

Website: http://www.taronga.org.au/sydney-zoo/wildlife-retreat

Address: Bradleys Head Rd, Mosman, NSW 2088

Angelica-Hazel Toutounji
Angelica-Hazel is a nutritionist & freelance writer that loves eating her way around the globe, one healthy cafe at a time. When she is not planning her next sustainable getaway you can find her either in the kitchen creating wholesome meals for her family or going on nature walks.