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Romantic Getaways: Bowen Mountain, NSW

Joanna Hall

Just an hour from Sydney, and in the foothills of the Blue Mountains National Park, is the small township of Bowen Mountain, an ideal place to escape for couples seeking a romantic getaway. Here's our top five reasons to venture here in the seventh of our series of Ultimate Romantic Getaways NSW. 

1. Stay In A Luxury, All-Inclusive Resort  

Spicers Sangoma Retreat is the ideal couples getaway for good reasons. For one, it’s tucked away in Bowen Mountain on the the edge of the Blue Mountains, surrounded by bush and with views of the city skyline. What makes this retreat that little bit special, however, is five luxury accommodation options to choose from, coupled with an all-inclusive tariff, which means your pre-dinner cocktail or glass of bubbly, as well as some fine cuisine, included in the rate. Sangoma has only recently come under the umbrella of the luxury Spicers Retreat brand, and the property has an unmistakable African accent throughout decor-wise. The five suites consist of a unique Tent Suite, three Luxury Bush Suites, and at the top end of the scale, a two-level Chief’s Suite, which is apartment sized and boasts uninterrupted views from both levels. Other facilities to keep you relaxed and busy include a lovely pool with sun loungers to take in the view, and if you wish you can pre-book a massage which can be enjoyed at the pergola-style Spa Anise immersed in the sounds of the bush. Inside the main building there is an elegant lounge ideal for a pre-dinner drink and to mingle with other guests, and downstairs there’s a media/entertainment room with a TV, books and board games. As for food, the culinary focus is fresh, organic and seasonal produce sourced locally from farmers and producers within the area, and there’s plenty to eat; the dishes are hearty as well as fine, full of flavour and colour. 

Read our full review of Spicers Sangoma Retreat

2. Go Horse Riding 

Valley View Park is one of Sydney's best horse trail rides and not far from Spicers Sangoma Retreat if you feel like getting out and about. The property has horses and ponies to suit riders of all ages and abilities, from beginners to experienced riders, and they can provided guided horse riding with trails which pass through scene natural bushland. Horse rides range from half-an-hour to one-and-a-half hours, with the most popular being a one-hour ride costing from just $40. Valley View Park is  located at  299 Grose Vale Road, Grose Vale, via North Richmond. 

3. Go Hiking 

Bowen Mountain has a number of terrific walks if you want to work off all that fine cuisine, or work up an appetite. Several short walks are accessible on foot from Lieutenant Bowen Drive including the Eastern, Southern and Western Fire Trails, with ample parking available at the southern end of this road. Other options include Poets Rock; you can park at the southern end of Lieutenant Bowen Drive, Bowen Mountain and take the fire trail to the left for views of the Cumberland Plain and Sydney CBD. There's also the Burralow Fire Trail which leads down to Burralow Creek, a tributary of the Grose River, and the famous Crago Observatory, which is operated by the Astronomical Society of NSW, is about 200 metres along the track. Also nearby is the Gorge Walking Track; to get there you follow Bells Line of Road for seven kilometres west of Bilpin then turn left into Valley Ridge Road and proceed for two kilometres to the Waratah Native Garden Picnic Area. From the picnic area the track leads down to the cool mossy gully of a tributary of Hungerfords Creek. Koalas have been seen in the forks of eucalyptus trees along the track, listen for the mimicking cry of a lyrebird. 

4. Bilpin 

Situated on Bells Line of Road, this historic town was originally named after Archibald Bell Jr, an adventurous man who crossed the Blue Mountains at the age of nineteen way back in 1823. Among its other famous residents is the famous children's author, Hesba Brinsmead, who was raised in Bilpin and wrote several books set in the region, including the 1971 title, Longtime Passing, for which she won the Children's Book of the Year award. Bilpin Community Hall is the centre of Bilpin life, and it has a Farmer's Market on every Saturday morning between 10am and midday, as well as hosting the annual Spring Flower show and an annual quilt exhibition. During fruit picking season, you can PYO, or pick your own fruit, apples, pears oranges and more. 

5. Play A Round Of Golf 

If you fancy a round of nine, Kurrajong Hills Golf Course is within easy driving distance of Sangoma at 102 Peel Parade, Kurrajong. The course has nine holes and is a par 70, 4,824 in length, and green fees are reasonable at $18 for weekends and public holidays, and $12 midweek. Other options also within driving distance include Lynwood Country Club at 253 Pitt Town Road, Pitt Town, also Richmond Golf Club at 34 Bourke Street, Richmond.

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