Mar 15, 2008

Wwoofing with Us

Our little piece of Paradise in the Rainforest

Our nice landscaped pond area created with the help of  Tom and Adam


We enjoy hosting Wwoofers  from all over the world. Our children love meeting and interacting with people from different countries and it's been a great way for us to get part time help on our farm.  It's also a great way for backpackers to see a side of Australian Rainforest life they would never see, challenge themselves and cut back on the cost of travelling. By Wwoofing you will not make money but as you are helping out in exchange for food, accommodation, etc you won't be spending much either. We have been hosting since 2004.

We can also offer Agricultural/Horticultural internships for International Students who would like to gain experience and English language skills...

We cant do 2nd year Visa sign offs anymore so please don't ask....nor can we offer paid work...

We just a very small/low income lifestyle farm with no employees but appreciate a bit of help and the company of occasional wwoofers who are genuinely interested in a subsistence/wholistic small acreage lifestyle...

If you are looking for 2nd year visa days you will need to look at larger scale farmers, restaurants ,construction/forestry /mining industry's..

Please read the information below and fill in the questions. We generally only respond to emails from people who indicate they've read our blog and answer the questions listed below.

We are a family of four who own and run an online tropical exotic plant nursery and grow tropical plants from all over the world. You can see some of the plants we grow and sell on our website. 

We are looking for people with a strong work ethic who can work independently , use their brains and have an interest in bettering themselves and the world around them...

You'll  find that in most Wwoofing situations that the more you put in the more you'll get back.

We would also expect that you have at least a basic level of conversational English so at least we can communicate and get to know one another...

The mighty Michael and Jan. Who knew an Ivy League Math scholar and a chef would be so good at everything?

Generally Wwoofers  can expect to work about 25 hours per week and help with dinner dishes. Generally we work 5 days and have two days off but they are not always Saturdays and Sundays and sometimes not in a row. It will often depend on the weather (we like to go fishing/boating/camping when the weather is right) and the type of work that is on. So you will need to be flexible regarding days off. Tasks can include things like potting up plants, propagating cuttings, weeding, digging and mulching. You will need to be physically fit as this is  physical work.

As to length of stay...Well ,after an initial trial period of a few days , we prefer our wwoofers to stay for 2 weeks or more to become familiar with our lifestyle and actually make a more productive contribution and be given more training and more interesting tasks and projects...obviously also the longer the stay the better the chance of experiencing more fishing/boating/camping and exploring opportunities..

    1. Baked Reef fish dinner with Marco, Elaine and Philipo.

      Some meals with the family some self serve depending on what's going on and your willingness to share the responsibility of creating and cleaning up after meals. Breakfast provided but self serve. Generally wwoofers prepare their own food on days off.  We expect you to contribute to dinner conversation and contribute to cultural exchange, both integral components of Wwoofing !We would love for you to cook a traditional meal  from your country 

 Scott has allergies to Cigarette smoke and the chemicals in insect repellants,deodorants,bug spray etc and Ann and Sean have mild Asthma

So  NO SMOKERS and  people need to  refrain from using aerosol sprays and perfumes/deodorants whilst staying with us..

We are happy to provide you with our own low allergy homemade insect repellent while you are here..

Unfortunately You will be asked to leave if you cannot adhere to this .

This is a wide brimmed hat.
We require ALL Wwoofers to have  and wear STURDY FOOTWEAR (Joggers or Workboots are best), WATER BOTTLE, a  WIDE BRIMMED HAT  (no baseball caps), WORK CLOTHES (light, loose and be prepared to get dirty), , BATTERY OPERATED TORCH/FLASHLIGHT , RAINJACKET and WATCH or other timepiece (other than a phone) also bring your own personal shampoo and shower gel. 

Our area is home to the Southern Cassowary, it's the only place in Australia you'll see them


There is a small rainforest swimming hole about 25 meters from your accommodation. Great for quick dips to cool off or wake up.

Accommodation is in a separate 2 bedroom granny flat complete with bathroom, living area, tv,  kitchenette and fully screened for insect protection. While we love having Wwoofers we also find that it's best if we have some individual space. That's why we have gone to the trouble and expense of creating a separate accommodation. If you have been living in bunkbeds 10 to a room with no privacy in hostels you will most likely find this a welcome change:) . We expect you to keep the wwoof house Clean, neat and tidy and wash your own bed linen regularly. Both our Wwoofer accommodation and house have been built by us using simple construction techniques. Both are clean, airy and comfortable but not flash (Wwoof house has electricity, wireless internet, ceiling fans, solar hot water, tv, vcr). We have a gravity feed water system, solar hot water and grow and fish for some of our food. Be prepared to harvest your own veggies and try new things as we eat what is in season and what we can grow in a tropical climate.
If your dream host is on a suburban beachfront block with maid service, air conditioning and a swimming pool you won't be happy here, so please find a place where you'll be happy! We are not into wanton consumerism or wasting resources. This is your opportunity to see an alternative lifestyle, eat some organic food that is grown here and live in the Rainforest, not live with rich people.  

No illicit drugs allowed on property, alcohol in moderation please.

Kitchenette with hotplates, microwave, kettle, toaster and rice cooker and food of course!!!

Bedroom 2

Bedroom 1

Spacious Living Area

View from your private veranda. A great place to have a coffee in the morning and listen to the birds sing.
The Wwoof House is set in Organic Tropical Edible Gardens including Bananas, Papaya, Passionfruit, Arrowroot,SweetLeaf Lemongrass, Chilis, Tumeric, Kava,Ceylon Spinach to name a few. We have recently reestablished rare and unusual tropical fruit trees as well.

You must also like dogs as we have 3 spoilt pooches who are treated like family........

Tiger (the Magnificent), Diesel and Coco having a day at the beach..


 Please remember that it rains in the rainforest and rainforests have very rich biodiversity, including bugs.  

Yes, there are peace loving spiders in the rainforest.
The food here is excellent, healthy and of very high quality.  We eat meat, lots of fresh reef fish , lots of curries, fruit and veggies from our garden, enjoy a bit of spice in our food but do not cater to special diets or fussy eaters we choose not to host vegetarians or vegans.

You can expect good food, wireless access  and laundry facilities on your days off,

Heading off camping into the magical Hinchinbrook island Wilderness area

Having 2 boats means we can often get our long term helpers/wwoofers out on the water or camping.

A couple of nice Barramundi caught one night by Scott and Wwoofer Joel on a Hinchinbrook Island camping trip..

Wwoofer Christie stayed 3 months during the winter mackeral season and proved to a great Fisherwoman..


For longer term wwoofers,who are prepared to help with preparations and cleanup, a boat trip to the Great Barrier Reef or fishing and  crabbing in amazing creeks and rainforest is quite possible.
During June to September the Fish and Humpback whales are migrating close to the coastline and we love to get out amongst them when the weather allows us..

We also sometimes take longer term wwoofers/helpers camping to Hinchinbrook Island. to fish for the world famous Barramundi..This is mainly in September/October ...If you are not keen on fishing and camping you are welcome to spend your days off somewhere else off our property while fishing or camping trips are on.

Our son Sean castnetting for fresh Barramundi bait at sunset on a Hinchinbrook island camping trip...

Standing 5 metres away from a 12 metre Humpback whale and her calf doesn't seem to be particularly exciting for this wwoofer..Americans seem hard to impress...

There are jungle walks throughout the property as well as a variety of swimming holes walking distance away. We encourage you to use your days off to explore our beautiful area. El Arish is within walking distance (3km) from the property and has a pub, service station and post office/shop. We are in a very rural area which can be quite a shock for some people. While it isn't necessary to have a car it certainly is a bonus if you are keen to explore Far North Queensland while here..
People who can entertain themselves or like bushwalking, swimming,etc are generally better suited to life here than party animals.

We live in harmony with other rainforests occupants.
Obviously, if we are going to open our home to you we need  some info about you.

If you are interested  in staying with us please contact as at:
Please include the following information in your email:
  1. Age?Sex?
  2. Nationality?
  3. Are you comfortable communicating in English?What level..?
  4. What you do for a living or jobs you have had in your homeland?
  5. When did you arrive in Australia? Jobs you have had in Australia..?
  6. "Skills" you have ? For example cooking, carpentry, yoga instructor, electrician, webdesign, graphic artist, landscaping...
  7. How long would you like to stay for?
  8. When you would like to come?
  9. Have you Wwoofed/Helpxed before? If so with whom? Please provide a link to your wwoof or help profile if you are with wwoof or helpx.
  10. Have you done any gardening or physical work before?Can you give details of this work..?
  11. Do you have any medical condition (allergies, bad back, aversion to working in the rain,fear of bugs,fear of dogs) that would prevent you from any sort of physical work?
  12. Do you smoke? 
  13. Why are you wwoofing? 
  14. Where are you now? 
  15. Are you travelling by Car or Bus..?
  16. Are there any foods you won't eat or do you have any special dietary requirements..?
  17. Can you live without perfumes and aerosols while you are with us..?
  18. We would love to see a photo of yourself so we know who you are when we pick you up...
  19. If you get the opportunity are you happy to come fishing and/or camping with us? 
  20. Your hobbies and interests...?

Waterfall on our property backing onto World Heritage Tropical Jungle with Rob, one of our Pommie Wwoofers.
We live in a totally amazing area sandwiched between two World Heritage areas. For most backpackers this is as intimate an experience with Rainforest as they will ever get. Much better than the Daintree! We are also about 15 km from one the the most spectacular beaches in Australia, Mission Beach .

We are two hours south of Cairns and can be reached by Premier Bus. There is a bus that leaves Cairns every morning at 7:25am and arrives at El Arish at 9:05. There is also a bus that travels from the south  arriving in El Arish at 5:40 pm 

Please book your ticket to El Arish. We can pick you up in El Arish by prearrangement (please contact us before you book) We do not make night pickups or drop offs. We prefer people arrive on Mondays so we all can have weekends off.

Cairns is home to both International and Domestic airports....

We provide generous portions of breakfast, smoko, lunch and dinner but no junkfood or alcohol. Please feel free to bring your own as there is a small fridge in the Wwoofer House.

Please remember we are in a rural area so  it's a good idea to bring whatever you need as we only go to town once a week and things are more expensive in rural areas than in larger towns.

We believe it is better to be upfront about our expectations and what you can expect. In the long run it makes for a better Wwoof exchange for both parties. This is our family home and we are happy to share it with people who want a fair and equal exchange.
 The work is physical here, sometimes hard but it's important to us that you are happy here. Our goal is a fair and equal exchange.We love people with landscaping skills like our bubbly Frenchman Jon Marc.

We always have building projects on the go so if you have trade skills or are handy with powertools please let us know!

Wanna see how our Wwoofers and Helpers spend their free time? Hit the link below.
Swimmin'After work

Fancy a little fishing?  Haul from a reef trip
Daniel our Irish electrician got to haul in this Spanish Mackerel all by himself on a reef trip

Dunk Island...a popular place for a daytrip just off the Mission beach coastline...also a great place for Mackeral fishing during the winter... 

The lovely Geminy, potting up plants .

Video featuring Ann and our Dutch Wwoofer Gino on a Tour with Ingan Tours. Gino you're a star!!

1 comment:


What a wonderful way of life!!