It’s not surprising that great solutions often come from a problem or need, but it’s particularly lovely when many people benefit from the solution. This luxury accessible accommodation at Barwon Heads, home of one of my fave shows, Seachange, was designed out of need. Now the truly accessible accommodation is available for all to enjoy. We particularly like the fact there’s so many accessible activities at Barwon Heads, putting this firmly on our wish list for a getaway in the future. In the meantime, take a look at the what’s available.
Like us, we’re sure many of you choose an accessible holiday based on finding the right accommodation and being able to independently explore the area. Accessible Accommodation in Barwon Heads ticks both boxes.
Designed from scratch to be wheelchair friendly
Owner, Kerry Williams says: “After 4 years operating Accessible Accommodation with awesome reviews, my favourite comment is: I had no idea 100 Hitchcock was wheelchair accessible!” She explained that just because you need a little extra help getting around, it does not mean wheelchair accessible accommodation has to look clinical.
After many frustrating experiences booking a holiday, only to discover the accommodation wasn’t accessible at all, Kerry designed this home. Kerry wanted her Mum, who has MS, and any guest in the future to experience a little luxury.
Designed to accommodate 8 guests comfortably, and brilliantly located in the centre of Barwon Heads, the holiday rental is 90 minutes from Melbourne.
There’s so many activities on offer in the surrounding area, it may be difficult to choose which to do first. From wineries, the Koala Sanctuary, miles of flat paths for wheelchair cruising, small plane tours along Great Ocean Road, use of free beach wheelchairs and even surf lessons.
At Barwon Heads airport, attractions include Great Ocean Air, ride in powerful prop driven fighter aircraft, helicopter flights, skydiving and fresh seafood at JLI Seafoods.
And if you have ever wanted to feel the thrill of riding the waves on a surfboard, well now you can! Disabled Surfers Association (DSA) organise surf days, two of which are coming up this summer. Their goal is “to provide an inclusive experience for all people with any disability to experience the rush of riding a wave.” And that they do! A small army of volunteers guide and help you from start to finish to achieve your disabled surfing goal. People of all ages participate, and it’s a fun day. Beach wheelchairs are even free to loan here.
Have a look at the accessible holiday house that’s available to rent year-round.
Multiple Living Spaces:
The house is set up for extended families, with a covered outdoor dining area, massive lounge room and second living space. Wheelchair space is available under the dining table, and a gourmet chef style kitchen is fitted with most items at hip height.
Rest assured, the polished concrete flooring, firm carpets, wide walkways all make wheeling around the house easy. Almost all points are completely level, with a gentle 10 cm ramp to the outside.
The en-suite has two sinks that a wheelchair can wheel under and a shower that’s wide enough and free standing, without any bumps or lips. A fold away shower chair and toilet seat is available for guest use. Detachable grab rails were chosen as they can be used for left and right-handed users. The owners also provide two large non-slip mats. The second bathroom has a bath and shower for the enjoyment of additional guests.
The master wing is ideal for guests needing full access. A separate wing has been designed with another two bedrooms, bathroom and living space. All rooms have extra wide sliding doors, with built in cupboards at two levels. Kerry was very particular about bed comfort, and she selected the highest quality beds, ensuring a peaceful night’s sleep.
Choose from 4 types of pillows for ultimate comfort. The main and 2nd bedroom with queen bed and 3rd bedroom with two sets of bunks. The holiday house sleeps a total of 8 people
Over the last 4 years, Kerry from Accessible Accommodation has been asked every possible question and has put together a detailed FAQ, including photos to assure guests about the accessibility of the property.
Lots of little extras
Over 80 DVDs, heaps of books, games and kid’s toys and drawing easel. Super comfy bean bags designed specifically for children and teenagers. (For your little ones, a porta-cot, high chair, and potty is also provided). They have a walking frame, shower chair, toilet chair and grab rails. Picnic sets, hot water bottles, log fire and air conditioning throughout. All to ensure the kids won’t be bored if it rains, and you enjoy style and comfort as a home away from home.
Miles and Miles of Level Footpaths.
There is nothing better than being able to explore in the sunshine. Barwon Heads certainly ticks that box. So, make sure you’re ready with battery fully charged.
The paths are made up of gravel, concrete and occasionally timber boards on the jetty. Unless there has been a very windy day (and beach sand has blown across the paths), they are firm and flat.
Cruise through Tea tree bush running along the river and feel comfortable knowing the footpaths in town are level. Know that there are accessible toilets, stop for a BBQ, a coffee or let the kids play in the park.
The most popular path runs across Barwon Heads Bridge, returning to At The Heads Restaurant (scene of SeaChange) and along the jetty. Further cruising along the concrete foreshore down to the marine sanctuary at the Bluff.
Another popular path runs inland along the river through farmland and the bush.
Both paths have perfect fishing and picnic spots and Kerry shares lots of photos and a map so guests know what to expect.
Bellarine Rail Trail is another area to explore. The trail is a 32 kilometre stretch of bike path recycled from abandoned railway corridors.
Farm to Table and Wineries
The Bellarine Peninsula offers the freshest ingredients to take home to the accessible kitchen. With a range of markets to choose from, gorgeous gourmet shopping as well as homewares décor and fashion. Kerry advises that 80 per cent of the shops are wheelchair accessible and wide enough to navigate.
Accessible Accommodation blog covers some suggested foodie spots to visit. A list of great wineries are here too.
By Car: Follow the road towards Geelong, take the Geelong bypass and head to Barwon Heads. Map and directions here.
By air: It is quicker if you arrive at Avalon Airport, then follow the road towards Geelong, take the Geelong bypass and head to Barwon Heads.
Whilst the holiday house is centrally located, you will need a car to get there. We’re told once there, most guests park their car and stroll or wheel everywhere. Sounds like bliss to me!
Rates and Dates: You can check availability and pricing here. We often spot exclusive offers, like stay 2 nights and get a 3rd night for free on their Facebook and Instagram so it’s worth following along.
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