Experts in Australia, New Zealand & South Pacific

The best 'I'm a Celeb' bush experiences in Australia

Posted 15 November 2017
ITV’s 'I’m a Celebrity... Get Me Out of Here!' has returned to our screens. So in honour of the show we’ve picked our favourite I’m a Celeb-themed experiences and stays so you too can have an authentic (yet more comfortable) taste of jungle life.

On the show, mildly memorable faces head to the Australian rainforest to camp in the tropical heat and compete in ‘Bushtucker Trials’, which involve such pleasantries as eating animal appendages and being buried neck-high in squirming critters.

Why do they put themselves through it? Who knows. But after a few days in, we’re almost certain that these floundering famous folk would much prefer some of our alternative suggestions.

Instead of ‘Jungle Camp’ stay at…

Silky Oaks – Daintree Rainforest, Queensland

Healing Waters Spa

From the moment you arrive, your tropical surrounds will fill you with an overwhelming sense of calm.

Set on the banks of the Mossman River in Daintree Rainforest, Silky Oaks Lodge offers luxurious treehouses that seamlessly blend into the rainforest canopy and overlook an idyllic lagoon.

This is the Daintree’s ultimate rainforest resort and the lodge’s award-winning Healing Waters Spa is the place to go for unparalleled relaxation. Using ancient natural therapies inspired by the rainforest, it’s a spa experience like no other. Plus, there’s no need for the soothing nature music – you’re in the middle of the rainforest after all.

Paperbark Camp – Jervis Bay, New South Wales

Paperbark Camp tent

Australia’s first luxury tented camp, Paperbark Camp puts you right in the heart of nature. This isn’t your average campsite, in their own words: “think camping for grownups”.

The tents themselves are raised above ground with comfy recliners on the front deck. But most importantly, all accommodation is fully insect screened and provides the luxuries you would expect in a five-star hotel – high-quality linen, organic soaps and lotions, gowns, the lot.

Jervis Bay, where this camp is located, offers a huge range of wildlife encounters. As well as the stars of the show, bottlenose dolphins and humpback whales, you can see Australian fur seals and fairy penguins along this stretch of the New South Wales coast. Enjoy activities such as dolphin cruises, bush walks and canoeing, or simply relax on the deck of your peaceful bush hideaway.

Palazzo Versace – Gold Coast, Queensland

Palazzo Versace Hotel on the Gold Coast

If you’ve wondered which fancy hotel the celebrities stay at after their jungle ‘ordeal’, it’s the Palazzo Versace on the Gold Coast.

This fully fashion-branded hotel includes, as you might expect, Italian furnishings, a spectacular waterfront setting and award-winning restaurants. It’s the perfect place to begin and end a stay Down Under – even if you don’t have to eat grubs in the middle of it.

Not far from the hotel, you’ll find Surfers Paradise. The bustling beach scene here is the perfect tonic if you’re returning from the rainforest and in need of some civilisation in the way of fine dining and designer shops. What’s more, it’s the ideal opportunity for a classic Aussie experience: a surf lesson!

Instead of ‘Bushtucker Trials’ try a… 

Walkabout Cultural Tour – Cairns, Queensland

Aboriginal cultural show

Spend the afternoon with a local Kuku Yalanji Aboriginal tour guide along the coastal habitats to learn about how the indigenous people use the environment, such as the different forest foods they eat and natural medicines they create.

Sample some bush tucker for yourself, collect shellfish and try traditional Aboriginal hunting practices – you might even catch a mud crab with a spear! There’s also a visit to the rainforest where you can complete the adventure by cooling off in a freshwater stream.

Springbrook Rainforest with Eco Safaris

Lamington National Park lookout

Travel away from the hustle and bustle of the Gold Coast deep into the rainforest on a luxury small group 4WD tour. Walk under waterfalls and swim in dazzling rock pools in Springbrook National Park, one of the hidden jewels of Queensland - and home to the I'm a Celeb camp. Head to Canyon Lookout and take in views out to the coast at Byron Bay on this unique day tour.

Overall, we hope you’re now convinced that even if you’re not quite recognisable enough to be invited to the jungle, you can still have a real Aussie bush experience without being stuck in a campsite eating boiled rice.

In fact, you can enjoy your rainforest adventure in more of a celeb style than they can. So why delay that rainforest spa getaway? And you never know, go now and you may even bump into Ant and Dec on the Gold Coast too.