Last year I headed to Gippsland for what I planned as a two-night trip. I got to thinking that it was on the footstep of Mt Baw Baw, a 1500 + metre high mountain and the main one in the region, and that I should see if I could go up there for a night. So it was that I went through the Mt Baw Baw website to find affordable accommodation.
The best value for money place I could find was the ‘Wombat Cabin’. There are loads of chalets up there, very expensive and some not open outside the winter months, but the Wombat Cabin started at $179AUD for a night. The night I chose though was $220AUD (about $170USD at a guess) but I thought I would go for it. My November trip was one night in a tent, one on Mt Baw Baw in the Wombat Cabin.
THEN Covid struck at my workplace, and anyone who’d walked through the door was classified as a ‘close contact’. Today the ‘close contact’ definition is more lenient, but it still does play with people’s plans somewhat. The trip was cancelled, I spoke through the Baw Baw management, they had to ask the owner of the Cabin if they would give me a full refund, they would not. Unfortunately booking through Agoda or Booking dot com wasn’t possible for this accommodation. Instead of a refund, I was offered a chance to rebook before April 2022. I took it, it was that or nothing.
Needless to say, I thought in this environment and because it was Covid related, I think that a full refund should be mandatory. However, I am surprised that that hasn’t been the case. Hence on the two trips I’ve done recently I have made sure that the bookings were fully refundable. It’s so easy for travel plans to be affected due to Covid, I have friends in the States who were due to leave but one of them caught it. Hopefully they can still do their trip and bookings were refundable.
I tried to rebook the cabin the week after, once I was clear, but I found it fully booked that week, so again I was not happy. In the end I waited and decided by late January I should use the credit because it was starting to get close to a time when I would no longer be able to. I enquired about a Thursday in February and it was available so I booked in.
The set up on Mt Baw Baw is you check in through the information centre near the main car park. You are required to leave you car in said car park for the duration of your stay, however you can drive to your accommodation to offload your baggage etc. Which I did.
The cabin is small, but for two or three people I think you’d be okay. It has a kitchenette which is very well appointed, a microwave, toasted sandwich maker, gas stove, and of course things to cook with, plates and cutlery. The main bedroom has a good sized bed, soft but comfortable. The bathroom is a little small, just a shower, but for one person there was more than enough space. There is also a little balcony with table and chair, providing a nice view of the bush.
There are cupboards along the main entrance hall that all have heaters in them. This is for the skiiers in the winter to hang their stuff up and so it can dry out. There are heaters all around the cabin, they take quite a while to heat up. It would have been around zero degrees outside even in February over night, possibly a little colder even. There is also a TV with DVD and there is a large collection of books and DVD to keep everyone entertained at night.
There is a second bedroom. They do not provide linen for this bedroom, only the master bedroom so if you are heading to the cabin you will need your own linen if you need to use this bedroom. It has a strange bunk bed with a single on top and a double on the bottom, but I think realistically it’s only good for two people because the double didn’t look big enough for two unless it was two children. Which I think is the idea.
The shower was lovely and warm, and eventually the place heated up and I was very happy and comfortable in the cabin, so as a place to stay it gets a thumbs up, but as for the administration, I was less happy. There was a sign on the cabin that it was for sale. I think one of the issues is that if nearly all or all the accommodation in a place like Baw Baw is run through the information centre, there is going to be less competition and it can become harder to book because you have to know what to do before you do it. We are so used to aggregate booking sites nowadays that often we don’t even think to go beyond booking.com and search for what else is out there. Frustrations over the lack of refund aside, I was very happy with my stay. Oh, it’s also clean! And a short walk to the main part of the village (5 minutes max).
Value for Money: 3.5/5
TOTAL: 18/25 (72/100)
Thanks for popping by – May the Journey Never End!