- Style Safari glamour
- Setting Croc-flocked floodplains
Situated in Australia’s Top End, in a wildlife-teeming area that’s home to the southern hemisphere’s highest concentration of saltwater crocodiles, Bamurru Plains is an upmarket safari lodge with real style. Based around a central timber-and-bamboo lodge, bungalows have an exhilarating back-to-nature vibe that fits perfectly with all the outdoor eating and beast-chasing excursions that goes on each day.
Need to know
- Rooms Nine stand-alone bungalows.
- Rates Double rooms from $1448.05 (AU$1,591), excluding tax at 10 per cent.
- More details Rates include two-course lunch, selected beverages and daily guided activities.
- Facilities Outdoor pool, library. In rooms: king-size beds, organic cotton bedlinen, ensuite with high-pressure shower, deck, air-conditioning (in three of the bungalows, for AU$100 extra per night; request it when you book).
- Poolside The inviting infinity pool sits behind the main pavilion. It is flanked by two covered areas, which come with plenty of cushion-strewn banquette seating and a big wicker basket filled with towels.
- Check–out 11am, but flexible upon request. Check-in, 2pm.
Children Bamurru welcomes kids aged eight and over, and is planning special family programmes for the school holidays. Rates for a child aged 16 and under, sharing with two adults are AU$470 a night; or AU$837 a child sharing their own room.
- Hotel closed Bamurru Plains is closed 1 Nov 2013–28 April 2014 and 1 Nov 2014–1 May 2015.
- Also There’s a two-night minimum stay at Bamurru. Pets are not allowed – unless, maybe, as crocodile bait.
In the know
- Our favourite rooms We love West 4, the bungalow that’s furthest from the main lodge, for its secluded position and great views of the wetlands. Set on a timber platform, it’s lined with ‘outlook’, a mesh fabric that allows you to keep an eye on passing wildlife even though nobody on the outside can see in, and it comes with comfy beds with bush-style canvas bedspreads. Extra ‘swag’ beds can be provided for a third adult or kids sharing your room (a fun update on traditional bushmen’s bedding rolls). If you must have air-conditioning, then bungalows West 1 and 2 or East 1 are the ones to book.
- Packing tips A hat and high-factor suncream are absolute essentials – it gets very hot out here. Also, bring a camera with a powerful zoom lens to get those professional-standard wildlife shots.
- Also Don’t even think about going out to eat – the nearest place selling food is a garage-cum-burger shack around an hour-and-a-half away by car.
Food and drink at Bamurru Plains
- Hotel restaurant Dining at Bamurru is a relaxed and convivial communal affair, and guests bump elbows around three solid-timber tables in front of an open kitchen that dishes up robust country-style dishes such as wild barramundi with home-made tomato relish or warm emu salad with a pepper-and-strawberry dressing. Lunch is from 12.30pm; dinner after sundowner drinks and canapés at about 7pm.
- Dress code Sun-smart safari threads: perhaps omitting any crocodile-skin accessories.
- Top table It’s all very egalitarian around the shared tables at Bamurru, but you could have a private meal in your bungalow if you wish. You’d miss out on all those ‘who saw the biggest crocodile?’ conversations, though.
- Last orders Lunch is served from around 12.30pm, while dinner starts about 7pm – after sundowner drinks and canapés.
- Room service While it doesn’t really exist at Bamurru, staff will do their best to deal with guests’ requests between breakfast and dinner.
- Hotel bar Guests can help themselves to drinks at any time in the central timber-and-iron lodge, where couches abound, but the early starts tend to keep a lid on late-night revelry.