Frequently Asked Questions

Most of our guests generally have the same concerns. You can find answers to all of our most frequently asked questions below.

If you still have any questions, our Reservations Team can be contacted here.

Bookings

IS THE RETREAT OPEN FOR BOOKINGS AND HOW DO I BOOK AN INCLUSIVE PACKAGE?

Yes the Retreat is open for bookings.  You can book online by clicking on ‘Check Availability’  or email our Reservations team at [email protected].

ARE YOU OPEN ALL YEAR AROUND?

The Retreat is closed for the wet season every year from 20th December to 31st March

WHERE ARE YOU LOCATED?

Tiwi Island Retreat is located at Port Hurd, on the western side of Bathurst Island, Northern Territory, Australia.

HOW MUCH DOES IT COST TO STAY AT THE RETREAT?

Our pricing is based on the number of guests travelling and the room type selected. Please click here for pricing.

HOW MANY NIGHTS CAN I STAY?

We offer minimum 2-night packages. Our packages are designed for 2-nights to 4-nights stay, however you may stay longer if you wish.

WHAT ARE THE INCLUSIONS IN THE PACKAGE PRICING?

Our package pricing includes;

  • Menu designed by award winning chef; all meals included
  • Beautifully appointed accommodation
  • Ocean to plate and locally sourced produce
  • Daily sunset canapes and cocktails
  • Alcohol – beer, wine and select spirits
  • Tiwi Island Retreat welcome pack
  • Beach buggy ride and bonfire with canapes
  • Beach fishing
  • Tiwi Island visitor and fishing permits
  • Estuary boat adventure
  • Boat transfers between Port Hurd airstrip and the Retreat

Please note – return transfers from Darwin and additional activities are excluded. To view your transfer options, please click here.

ARE BOTH LUXURY GLAMPING TENTS IDENTICAL?

Both tents have a built-in plunge pool at the front deck. Both tents also have the same bedding configuration 1 x king bed and 1 x bunk bed (with double bottom and single top), including a private ensuite.

WHO ARE THE PACKAGES TARGETED TO?

We welcome absolutely everyone. Whether you are a family, a couple, a group of friends or a corporate group, we have suitable accommodation options and packages to cater for everyone. For group bookings please contact our Reservations Team at [email protected].

IS THERE AN AGE LIMIT?

There is no age limit. Please note we do not have child minding facilities so parents and guardians must always maintain suitable supervision of their children at all times.

WHAT ARE YOUR PAYMENT TERMS FOR THE RETREAT PACKAGES?

Bookings with 7 rooms or less;

  • 30% deposit at time of booking – non refundable
  • Full payment 60 days prior to arrival
  • Full payment if booking is made within 60 days of arrival

Corporate/large bookings – 8 rooms or more;

  • 30% deposit at time of booking – non refundable
  • Further 20% deposit 90 days out
  • Full payment 60 days prior to arrival
  • Full payment if booking is made within 60 days of arrival
DO I NEED A PERMIT?

Any permits you require are already covered in your package.

STAY

ARE ALL RETREAT ROOMS AIRCONDITIONED?

All Ocean and Village Rooms are airconditioned. Both Luxury Glamping Tents are not airconditioned but are equipped with fans. They are designed with mesh screens on either side to not only immerse you in the wilderness, but to also maximise the natural sea breeze.

CAN I SWIM IN THE OCEAN?

Despite the water looking clear and inviting, unfortunately you cannot swim in the ocean. Saltwater crocodiles are very common in the waters surrounding the Retreat.

Box jelly fish are also common in the waters from the start of October through to end of May each year.

We have an impressive 12 metre beachfront pool at the Retreat that is the perfect place for a swim.

WILL I BE ABLE TO SEE ANY WILDLIFE AT THE RETREAT?

Yes. Whether you are relaxing on the Retreat deck or walking along 5 Mile beach, you have the chance to spot some incredible wildlife including; crocodiles, manta rays, dolphins, turtles, dingos and a variety of birds which are found on the island.

WHAT MONTH IS THE BEST TIME TO TRAVEL?

Any time of year is good to travel to Tiwi Island Retreat! Our rooms are air-conditioned and the sea breeze from Timor Sea keeps things cool all year around. However, the Retreat is closed over the wet season every year from 20th December to 31st March.

WHEN IS THE BEST TIME TO STAY AT THE RETREAT FOR FISHING?

Here’s everything you need to know about fishing in the Top End.

Run Off: Wet Season – January to mid-March

The wet season’s monsoonal rains bring the landscape to life. At this time of year, barra are sometimes on the bite in the tidal rivers, even if they are flooded, though hooking a barra can take quite a bit of hunting around before you locate a patch of feeding fish.

Bluewater fishing is totally dependent on the weather conditions during the wet season. However, in between monsoons, conditions can improve and anglers have the opportunity to catch quality fish offshore, especially reef fish such as golden snapper, black jewfish, tricky snapper, cod, coral trout and red emperor.

However, during this period the Retreat is closed for information on improved weather conditions and epic fishing!

Run off: March to April
Supposedly the best season for barramundi fishing around the mouths of creeks and on the rivers in the Top End region. The barra are still up on the plains or in the channels start to move out before water levels get too low, and their exit points into the main river are the creek mouths.

The run-off is very popular with locals, who have often been biding their time over the wet to get into some serious barra action. Thousands of interstate anglers also descend on the Top End during the run-off. Depending on the extent of the wet season on different river floodplains, the run-off is usually over by the end of April.

March and April are great months for bluewater fishing across the Top End. With the strong northerly winds of the wet season finished, and the easterlies of the dry season yet to start, calm seas often prevail.

Build Up: Dry Season – May to September
Clear blue skies, south-easterly breezes, and sensational sunsets mean great bluewater and tidal river fishing. Longtail tuna, cobia, queenfish and giant and golden trevally commonly travel side-by-side as they work the bait schools. For the dedicated fisherman, this time of year presents the opportunity to land a host of exciting species.

Reef fishing for quality table fish also heats up during the dry season. Popular species like the golden snapper, tricky snapper, black jewfish, coral trout, and red emperor are readily caught on both inshore and offshore reefs.

Build up: October to December
The pre-monsoonal ‘build-up’ can produce the best fishing of all the seasons in the Top End and in Darwin. The barramundi breeding season begins in around October each year, which brings big female breeders and the smaller mature male fish to congregate around river mouths and estuaries to spawn.

For the blue water angler, offshore conditions are generally the calmest of the year between October and December, so it’s often possible to travel longer distances in large trailer boats, targeting the Top End’s abundant sport and reef fish species. These calm, windless conditions are also perfect for fly fishing.

IS THERE INTERNET OR RECEPTION ON THE ISLAND?

Tiwi Island Retreat is the perfect place for a digital detox – we do not have wifi or mobile phone reception. We do however have a landline which is available for you to use upon request during your stay.

WHAT DO I NEED TO BRING?

Just yourselves and your best island attire – light breathable clothing. Think long sleeve linen shirts, loose long pants, swimwear, thongs/sandals. You won’t need more than one pair of shoes as you will probably spend most of the time barefoot.

We supply in your accommodation all linen, bath, pool towels and toiletries (shampoo, conditioner and soap). We also provide sunscreen and insect repellent.

HOW MUCH LUGGAGE CAN I BRING?

You are limited to 12kgs of luggage per person. Luggage is to be in a soft bag for transport. Oversize or excessive baggage can be stored at Air Frontier during your stay.

ARRIVALS & DEPARTURES

HOW DO I GET THERE?

Tiwi Island Retreat is located in Port Hurd, Bathurst Island. There are several ways to get to us;

  1. Either jump on a quick scenic flight from Darwin to Port Hurd, where you are only a 15-minute boat ride away from the Retreat, or;
  2. Take it slow and travel over the Beagle Gulf with SeaLink ferry, where you will being your island getaway and immerse yourself in the Wurrumiyanga Cultural Tour – one of the oldest and most artistically diverse art centres in Australia (view SeaLink’s Terms & Conditions here).
  3. The quickest way to get to the Retreat is by flying to Port Hurd airstrip by light aircraft. It’s a 30-minute scenic flight over Beagle Gulf with breathtaking coastal views. We recommend our airline provider Air Frontier (view Air Frontier’s Terms & Conditions here).
  4. A more cost effective but slower option is to travel over to the islands with SeaLink ferry which takes 2.5 hours from Darwin to Wurrumiyanga. When arriving in Wurrumiyanga, you have the option to join SeaLink’s popular Tiwi Islands art and culture day tour, or jump on an adventure with our guide who will drive your through a dirt road to Port Hurd, where our boat will transfer you to the Retreat. From the moment you step on the ferry in Darwin until you check-in to the Retreat, the whole journey last about 4 hours (view SeaLink’s Terms & Conditions here).

If you wish to arrive in style, other options include arriving via Paspaley Mallard (flying boat) or via helicopter. Please contact our Reservations Team at [email protected] for a quote.

If you wish to drive your own boat or fly your own aircraft to Port Hurd, please let our Reservations Team know via email at [email protected].

For all transfer options and scheduled times please click here

HOW DO I BOOK THE TRANSFERS?

Booking your transfers to the Retreat is a simple process. Please click here to view all transfer options, and let our Reservations Team know which option you prefer. If you end up booking your own transfers, please don’t forget to let us know so we know where to pick you up from.

We highly recommend booking your transfers at least six weeks prior to avoid missing out.

HOW MUCH ARE THE TRANSFERS?

Please click here to view pricing.

WHAT ARE THE FLIGHT TIMES AND WHERE DO THEY DEPART?

Flights times follow a fixed schedule and are unable to be changed. Please click here to view the information.

We do not recommend having connecting interstate flights on arrival and departure days to the Retreat, unless there is ample time between connections.

WILL SOMEONE BE THERE TO PICK YOU UP?

Our Retreat is not directly accessible by car or plane; therefore, we only offer transfers from nearby airstrips.

If you are travelling with Air Frontier, our staff will meet you at the Port Hurd airstrip and drive you by boat (15-min ride) to the Retreat. Transfers to and from the airstrip to the Retreat, and vice versa, are included in your package.

If you are travelling with SeaLink ferry or Fly Tiwi charter plane, our staff will meet you at Wurrumiyanga airstrip and drive you by car (45-min drive) to Port Hurd airstrip. From Port Hurd, you will then be transferred by a 15-min boat ride to the Retreat.

Transfers to and from Wurrumiyanga airstrip and the Retreat are included in your package.

ACTIVITIES

WHAT ACTIVITES CAN I ENJOY WHILE STAYING AT THE RETREAT?

You can simply relax and enjoy the Retreats exclusive beachfront location. Without leaving the Retreats deck you can laze by the pool or bar area while reading your favourite book or if you’re feeling like it you can go for a stroll along 5-mile beach where you can see sweeping views of Port Hurd and have the chance to spot local wildlife.

You also have the option to enhance your stay by booking one or all of our additional activities such as world class fishing adventures, indigenous cultural tours, picnic buggy tours and helicopter rides to idyllic remote waterholes. To view our range of memorable experiences, click here.

HOW DO I BOOK EXTRA ACTIVITIES?

Extra activities can be booked once your all-inclusive package is confirmed. You’ll receive a confirmation email from our booking system with a list of activities you can choose from.

Due to availability, please book your extra activities prior to arriving at the Retreat to avoid missing out.

WHAT DOES THE ESTUARY BOAT ADVENTURE INVOLVE? HOW LONG IS IT FOR?

Estuary boat adventure is one of the activity inclusions. Our guide will take you for a cruise on our estuary boat through the pristine ecosystem surrounding the retreat where you can spot native birds and wildlife amongst the mangroves. Tide dependent, you may also set and or check crab pots. This tour is a group activity and runs for approximately 30 mins.

WHAT DOES THE BEACH BUGGY RIDE AND BONFIRE WITH CANAPES INVOLVE? HOW LONG IS IT FOR?

The beach bonfire is one of the activity inclusions. It’s a sunset group activity where our guides take you to a special beach location, accompanied by a bonfire and delicious canapes while watching the sun setting into the Timor Sea. The activity runs for approximately 1-1.5h.

WHAT ACTIVITIES ARE ACCESSIBLE OUTSIDE OF THE RETREAT? ARE THERE CARS TO HIRE? ARE THERE ANY COMMUNITIES WE CAN VISIT?

We offer cultural and art tours to the communities of Wurrumiyanga (Tiwi by Design) and Milakapiti (Jilamara Fine Art Experience). These tours are accessible via light aircraft, helicopter or guided driving. Mode of transport is dependent on availability.

You can explore the estuary and offshore waters surrounding the Retreat by booking guided fishing tours.

We do not offer car or boat hire.

DO YOU HIRE FISHING GEAR, OR DO WE BRING OUR OWN?

Fishing and tackle gear is included in your package so there is no need to bring your own. However, you are more than welcome to bring along your favourite lures or fishing rod, as long as it fits on the plane and is part of your 12kg luggage limit. Lost or damaged fishing gear may be required to be replaced at a cost to you.

FOOD & BEVERAGE

DO YOU CATER FOR SPECIAL DIETARY REQUIREMENTS AND / OR ALLERGIES?

We cater for all dietaries. Please let our Reservations Team know at the time of booking.

CAN I BRING ALCOHOL TO THE RETREAT?

There is no BYO alcohol permitted. Tiwi Island Retreat is a fully licensed premises with a well-stocked bar.