After scaring the shit out of us with an overnight cable car stay (without giving us a toilet), and waking us up with puppies in the middle of IKEA, Airbnb have yet again allowed us to stay in a jaw-droppingly novelty place. But this time, it's only two hours from Sydney and it's a cave. A real cave, all to yourself.
A new listing in Bell, near the Blue Mountains in New South Wales, called Hatter's Hideout and Lodge, is up for rental grabs on Airbnb. The stay comes with two parts. On one hand, you're privy to a unique hand-built lodge on eight private acres of lush Blue Mountains wilderness, stocked with every last essential (kitchen, heating, internet, barbecue) and boasting panoramic views across Mount Wilson, Wollemi National Park and the World Heritage Area. On the other hand? You're the proud overseer of the 'Hat Cave' — a 20 metres high, wide and deep cave with "similar size and shape to a small shell of the Sydney Opera house (with better acoustics!)" according to the listers.
Self-described as 'an ideal bushland retreat for modern cave dwellers (troglodytes)', the cave has been developed super carefully using minimal impact construction to maintain the environment as much as possible. The 25-metre-high cave opening faces north west, and you're protected from the elements by a friendly grove of coachwood trees. The owners will provide you with campfire kindling and wood, a gas barbecue, esky, tables and chairs, solar powered lights, candles, first aid kit, cooking utensils, and rainwater on tap — basically they've thought of everything your city slicker ass would forget otherwise. You'll even get a firsthand introduction to the surrounds with a 'Bush Walk and Talk', so you know exactly what's up with your newfound bush home. All you need to do is brush up on your acoustic 'Wonderwall' and you're home and hosed.
The Hideout lodge can sleep up six people but you can fit in a bunch more if you're camping in the cave — perfect for a matey weekend getaway or hens night to forget. Obviously, it's a cave, so it's not the cheapest stay on the national park block. On weekends you're looking at $690 for two people for two nights (+ $55 extra adult per night), midweek it goes down to $495 for two people for two nights (+ $55 extra adult per night). But. Cave.
For more info or to lock in your holiday cave, head over here.