Serenely positioned across from the Maclaey river, as you round the bend towards Salt Resort, it is revealed to be a much needed sanctuary from the demands of daily life.
Sweet, pristine, white cabins dotted down the road appear as though they are familiar friends welcoming you to unwind and forget everything except your presence here in Southwest Rocks.
Before even entering through the modern yet ornate security gate, I get a sense that when our stay is over I'll be reluctant to leave.
With a watering hole in the middle of the property sundowners are on the cards and as you converse with friends or family either at the pub or on your own cabin deck you can almost be certain the sunset will continue to stop conversation as it deepens and glows. The colour-soaked sky kisses the sparkling water below where silhouettes of fishing boats complete natures canvas, well worth the interruption.
For a clean freak with discerning interior design taste I found the inside of the cabins to be a relief, styled with the warmth of a coastal apartment they are spot on for the destination and spot-less so I could enjoy settling in.
Manicured front gardens become a spectacle when four roos varying in size appear before us, one so large and strong (aka boxing kangaroo) we acknowledge the moment to be as "true blue" as they come.
With two inviting pools on site and a domestic travel destination I’m keen to discover, this trip will not only be fun filled but after long days shooting television the simple, paired back Salt Resort luxury will be restorative.
If you’ve not tried fishing before this is the way to do it. Right across the road from your accommodation Matty from South West Rocks Estuary Charters will have you catching bait fish on your first attempt, he’ll hook a few worms to help you catch your first fish with ease and show you the magic of the Maclaey River in her shimmering glory. Fish and birds are in abundance and you’ll leave your life behind for the morning to relax among nature and potentially discover you have some skills with a rod.
A boat ride back, skip and a jump and you can be up to the former prison for hardened criminals Trial Bay Jail learning her interesting past and taking photos amongst the spectacular granite backdrop.
Checking the acoustics of the cells (“Hello...hello, HELLOOO!...hellooo!”) and taking a selfie behind bars is a must, topped off with a look out over Horseshoe Bay and the location of the prisoner built break wall. I can only imagine how spectacular the jail is at night when prison tours take place along with the occasional wedding reception and art inspired event.
Having been to South West Rocks and the Maclaey Valley Coast before, I was surprised how much I enjoyed it a second time. With the addition of the new Salt Resort coupled with a perfect day on the water catching dinner and exploring the history of Trial Bay Jail, the recipe came together to really hit the spot.
Aside from being momentarily locked up for the sake of a few fun shots, I was recooped, recharged and ready to head back to reality with a refreshed sense of positivity thanks to a region that has more than meets the eye.