FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
On The Verandah Events in Australia and Italy.
Last updated 19/11/18.
What is On The Verandah?
On The Verandah is an Australian creative tourism business run by Perth based couple, Rachel Dillon and Andrew Kikeros. We offer adventure holidays, creative workshops and events. Our hope for our guests is that during their time with us, they get to spread their wings and discover what they are truly capable of.
We created On The Verandah in 2009 to hold music events with a community focus. Since November 2013 we have been creating workshops in photography, art and writing plus Kimberley adventure itineraries for women.
Our workshops are primarily in he Kimberley region of north WA and in 2017 we held our first art workshop in Assisi, Italy.
Where is the Kimberley?
The Kimberley is a vast, mostly unpeopled region in the far north of Western Australia. We operate in the NE of the region, 130kms from Kununurra and 37kms from one of Australia's most remote towns, Wyndham.
Where will I stay?
In The Kimberley - Digger’s Rest Station
Digger’s Rest Station is a remote cattle station and horse trekking business owned and operated by third generation cattle man, Roderick Woodland and his wife, Alida. It is located 37kms along the King River Road from Wyndham in the far north east of Western Australia. Accommodation consists of 6 Bush Huts and 2 Bunkhouse rooms.
The region has a tropical climate with the ‘Wet’ (hot) season between November and April and the ‘Dry’ (warm) season between May and October. We operate our tours in the Dry, between May and August.
In Italy - Casa Rosa, Assisi
Casa Rosa is a 100 acre farm in Umbria, 10km north-east of Assisi. The traditional stone farmhouse was purchased many years ago by artist, Jennifer Gay Holmes. Jennifer passed away four years ago before her dream of running her own art workshops there could be realized. Casa Rosa is now run by Jennifer’s daughter, Emanuela and her husband, Alessandro, to whom we were introduced by our good friend Zoey (Jennifer’s sister).
The original farmhouse has been converted into 3 self-contained apartments; there is a small cottage in the converted stables and a separate studio apartment. Apartments have a kitchen, bathroom, and balcony or terrace and are centrally heated. The swimming pool has panoramic views over the National Park of Mount Subasio. The picturesque hilltop town of Assisi provides a blend of romance, medieval history and warm hospitality and remains relatively quiet in terms of crowds and tourism.
What kind of weather can I expect?
Overnight lows and day time highs could be –
May 20 - 35°C
Showers are possible in early May becoming less likely mid to late May
June 18 - 33°C
July 9 - 32°C
August 15 - 36°C
September 13 - 27°C
October 9 - 21°C
What is included?
- All accommodation during the tour
- All meals as per the itinerary*
- 24/7 tea and coffee
- All workshop tuition as per the itinerary
- Transfers between Kununurra and the venue
- All transport during the workshop
- All activities as per the itinerary
- Alcohol, soft drinks, your preferred snacks
- Travel insurance (Travel insurance is strongly recommended)
- Horse riding (Unless included in the itinerary)
- All accommodation during the tour
- Tea, coffee, morning and afternoon teas at Casa Rosa
- Workshop tuition by Judith White as per the itinerary
- Transfers to locations and activities as per the itinerary
- All tickets and entry fees for activities in the itinerary
- Art materials
- Alcohol, soft drinks, your preferred snacks
- Travel insurance (Comprehensive Travel Insurance is mandatory on international trips with On The Verandah)
- Travel costs and activities you undertake on any free day
What are the prices?
2019 7 day Photo workshop is $3400pp Twin Share.
2019 7 day Writing workshop is $3400pp Twin Share.
2019 9 day Painting and Drawing Workshop is $4200pp Twin Share.
2019 7 Day Women’s Horse Riding Adventure is $3400pp Twin Share.
Kimberley Single supplement – Add $250 for single accommodation.
2019 - 10 day Art workshop is AUD $4200pp Twin Share.
Italy Single supplement – Add AUD $200 for a DBL room in a shared apartment, or AUD $400 for an unshared DBL apartment.
Are there any concessions or discounts?
We offer several discounts, however no age concessions.
Early Bird Discount
We offer a $200 discount per guest, if paid in full 120 days or more before the start of the trip. There is no Early Bird Discount on Judith White trips.
Non-participating guest discount
Your friend is welcome to join us. We offer a 5% discount off the TWIN Share price for friends or guests who are not participating in the workshop. Add a single supplement of $250 if not sharing a room. Non-participating guest is defined asa guest on an art trip not doing art; a guest on a photography trip not taking photos, etc.
5% discount off the TWIN Share price for a couple who share a bush hut. Both guests receive the discount.
Club members discount
5% discount off the TWIN Share price for members of WAPF, VAPS, NSWWC, QWC, VIC WRITERS. Add a single supplement of $250 if not sharing a room.
Guests who travel with us for the first time in 2019 and beyond, receive a 7.5% discount off the TWIN Share price for all future On The Verandah trips and events. Add a single supplement of $250 if not sharing a room. Guests who travelled with us up to and including 2018 receive a 10% loyalty discount off the TWIN Share price on all future trips and events booked with On The Verandah. Add a single supplement of $250 if not sharing a room.
+++These discounts are not cumulative. Select the best discount that applies to you and nominate it at the time of booking.
Guests who travel with us for the first time in 2019 and beyond, receive a 7.5% discount off the TWIN Share price for all future On The Verandah trips and events. Guests who travelled with us up to and including 2018 receive a 10% loyalty discount off the TWIN Share price on all future trips and events booked with On The Verandah.
Add the single supplement if not sharing a room.
5% discount off the TWIN Share price for a couple who share a room. Both guests receive the discount.
Non-participating guest discount
Your friend is welcome to join us in ITALY and receives a 5% discount off the TWIN Share price if not participating in the workshop. Non-participating guest is defined asa guest on an art trip not doing art; a guest on a photography trip not taking photos, etc. Add any applicable single supplement if not sharing a room.
#These discounts are not cumulative. Select the best discount that applies to you and nominate it at the time of booking. No Early Bird Discount on Italy trips.
Deposits and Payment
Preferred payment is by EFT bank deposit. We can accept cheque payment where a guest has no internet access.
Kimberley - A $500 deposit will secure your place with the balance paid in full 90 days before the start of your trip. (Or 120 days before the start of your trip if taking advantage of an Early Bird discount.)
Italy – Deposits and registration for Italy must be received no later than March 31 2019. A $500 deposit will secure your place with the balance paid in full 90 days before the start of your trip.
We prefer not to take your credit card details but can arrange payment it if that is your only option. You will be required to pay the additional charges associated with the credit facility – approximately 2%.
Account details for EFT
BSB 086 461
Account Name R.Dillon T/As On The Verandah
Account Number 844023755
Please use your Surname as the reference.
When is final payment due?
Final payments are due 90 days before the commencement of the tour. Final payment for early birds is 120 days before commencement of the tour.
Why do I need to Register so early?
All trips have a cut-off date for registration. Check the Registration cut-off date for the trip you are interested in - some of them are quite early.
An early cut-off date is required by our venues and also allows us to announce well ahead of time whether a trip is going ahead and in turn this allows time for you (and us and our tutors) to secure reasonably priced flights, hotels, etc.
What is the accommodation?
There are 2 types of accommodation – Bush huts and Bunkhouse rooms.
Please let us know your preference. Book early to secure non-shared accommodation.
Bush Huts have a double bed, verandah, mosquito net, ensuite, fan, power-point, light, towels and linen.
Advantages of the bush hut - peaceful, views, birds, wallabies. Staying in a bush hut is an authentic, albeit rustic, Kimberley experience. There are between 4 and 6 Bush Huts available, usually non-shared unless booked by a couple.
There is one SHARED bush hut with two single beds, best suited to two friends or a couple.
Each of the two bunkhouse rooms has a double bed plus 2 or 3 single beds, air-conditioning, lighting, overhead fans, power-point, towels, linen. Bunkhouse rooms are generally shared by two people.
Advantages of the bunkhouse - spacious, air-conditioned, large verandahs, close to the homestead. The bunkhouse has a shared bathroom.
Casa Rosa has both shared and non-shared apartments. Each apartment has its own kitchen, bathroom and balcony or terrace. Apartments are comfortably furnished with full central heating and free Wi-Fi. Towels, pool towels and bed linen are provided and there is a free laundry.
Will I be sharing?
Kimberley - room sharing
If you do not wish to share, you’ll usually stay in a bush hut. The bunkhouse rooms are usually only available for sharing with one other. There is a single supplement of $250 for an unshared bush hut.
Italy - room sharing
There are shared and unshared, single, twin and double options. Select your preference when booking. Single supplement is either $200 or $400 depending on whether you have a DBL room in a shared apartment or a DBL apartment to yourself.
Will I be Camping?
You'll be in comfy accommodation at the station for most of your stay and some itineraries include 1-2 nights camping. All camping gear is provided by us – camp chair, mosquito dome tent, swag & mattress, blankets, pillow, towel and linen. If you feel unsure about camping, we encourage you to give it a try! Guests who are unaccustomed to camping often comment it was the highlight of their stay.
No camping on the Kimberley Women’s trip and the Italian trip.
What is the food like?
In the Kimberley we do not have the services of a full time chef or cook, however you will be spoiled by the healthy home style cooking of station owner, Alida Woodland.
In Italy, at Casa Rosa, the welcome and farewell dinners at the venue will be traditional meals prepared by chef, Alessandro and his mother, Rita. Three dinners, six lunches and nine breakfasts will be prepared at the venue by Rachel and Andrew of On The Verandah. One evening meal at a restaurant in the old city is provided. Three lunches and three dinners will need to be purchased by the guest when we are away from the venue.
We can prepare Gluten Free dishes and meals for Celiacs. We can provide Vegetarian options. We cannot provide vegan meals. We do not employ full time or professional chefs and cannot accommodate complex dietary needs, allergies or lifestyle diets.
How do I get there?
How do I get there? - Kimberley venue
You will need to be in Kununurra before midday on Day 1 of your trip – preferably between 10 and 11am. We will meet your flight at Kununurra or pick you up from your hotel. Please provide a mobile phone contact number on the Registration Form and the name of your hotel or pickup address if known.
If you are not able to get a direct flight to Kununurra from your city, fly to Darwin or Broome and get a connecting flight to KununurrawithAirnorth.
IMPORTANT: Connecting flights may arrive in Kununurra too late to meet us, so consider arriving in Kununurra a day early and stay the night in a hotel.
We return you to Kununurra on the final day of your workshop. Please select a flight that leaves Kununurra after 2pm.Book flights as soon as you can - theyfill quickly and become veryexpensive.
If you are planning to drive to the Digger’s Rest Station you will need a 4WD vehicle. We will meet you at an agreed point near Wyndham and you can follow in your vehicle. If you have a 2WD drive vehicle, or are towing a van, we recommend you leave them in Kununurra in secure parking. Contact the Kununurra Visitor Centre for secure parking options.
How do I get there? - Italy venue
From Australia, you can fly to Rome then take a 2 hour train trip to Assisi. We’ll meet you at the station or in the town. If coming from London, you may get a connecting flight with Ryanair (leaving from Stansted airport) to Perugia. Perugia is about 20 minutes by train to Assisi.
You will need to be in Assisi (either the old city or at the station) on day 1 of the tour so that we can meet you and other guests between 10 and 11am. From there we'll either get lunch in Assisi or head on up to the workshop venue (Casa Rosa). On day 10 we will deliver you to Assisi train station, Perugia airport or to your hotel in the area between breakfast and midday.
For quotes and advice - For flights or travel insurance, we use and highly recommend Carolyn Burgmann at Travel Managers. Email Carolyn at firstname.lastname@example.org or phone 0459 434 909. We do not take a commission.
Is it a tour?
For the purposes of the website descriptions we call them tours but they are not really tours. You won't drive for miles each day before setting up camp in a new location. For the duration of the trip you will be based on a working cattle station called Digger’s Rest, making short daily trips to locations and activities. Some itineraries have an overnight camp.
For the purposes of the website description we call it a tour but it is not really a tour as you will be accommodated at an Umbrian agritourismo. This workshop is an opportunity to learn from a respected experienced art tutor and develop your art practice. About half of the itinerary is designated studio time. To give context, relevance and a local influence to your work, the itinerary includes special experiences not available to the average tourist, including visits to the studios of nearby artists and the home of a private collector.
What events are available?
2019 Short Workshops
- Painting and Drawing in FREMANTLE, WA with Judith White. 3 Days. Dates TBC.
- Creative Writing - Perth’s forgotten lakes – a day walking and writing in the city, unearthing hidden waterways with Dr Nandi Chinna, Perth, WA. Date TBC.
- Creative Writing with Dr Nandi Chinna 7 Days, May 1 - 7.
- Photography with Bewley Shaylor, 7 Days, May 11 - 17.
- Art with Judith White, 9 Days, July 2 - 10.
- Women's Horse Riding Kimberley Adventure 7 Days, August 8 - 14.
10 Day Art Workshop with Judith White, Sept 28 - Oct 7.
What is there to do during my stay?
Kimberley - What is there to do?
As well as your daily workshop activities your itinerary may include additional activities.*
- Complimentary welcome nibbles and bubbles at the sunset spot
- Evenings with music around the campfire
- Visit ancient boab trees and the Prison Tree
- A overnight camp
- Fish for barramundi
- Stargazing event
- Aboriginal rock art
- Secluded billabong swims
- Observe station life, cattle work, young horses being trained
- Crocodile spotting
- Visit Five Rivers Lookout, Parry’s Lagoon/Marlgu Billabong, Wyndham Port
- Cultural event on some itineraries
- Final evening party with complimentary nibbles and bubbles
- Horse riding is available for experienced riders. 90kg weight limit for riders. Horse riding is an additional charge if not included in your itinerary.
Italy - What is there to do?
As well as your daily workshop activities your itinerary may include additional activities.*
- Complimentary welcome/farewell champagne
- Visit historic and scenic locations around Assisi
- Walk and swim in Mount Subasio National Park
- Guided tour of the World Heritage Basilica of St Francis (begun in 1228) and Roman Forum
- Visit Assisi to stroll, sketch, photograph, shop, dine
- Assisi markets during the Feast of St Francis
- Enjoy the views from the turret of an 1100 year old castle
- See hundred year old olive trees
- Enjoy a rustic lunch and walk the woodland of St Francis recently reopened by Italy’s National Trust for the first time in 800 years
- Be welcomed into the homes and ‘laboratories’ of local artisans with unique collections
- Enjoy a wine tasting with a Montefalco winemaker
- Visit Fabriano, the home of the famous rag papers and see 12th century machinery still in use
- A free day to explore the region – pamper yourself at the historic Nun Spa in Assisi, or visit nearby towns: Gubbio, Spoleto, Deruta, Spello, Foligno, Orvieto, Bettona, Perugia, Norcia
How big are groups?
Group size is between 7 and 10 for our Kimberley trips and 8 for Italy.
Can I join a trip if I don't know anyone on it?
Of course! Many of our guests are lone travellers!
I don’t need instruction. Can I tag along?
Pro photographers are welcome to be part of the photography week but we ask that you participate in the social, sharing and discussion aspect.
Artists & Writers: no tag along option in 2019. Contact us if you are interested in a non-tutored retreats for writers or artists. Phone 0428 254 529.
Non-workshop partners or friends are welcome.
What should I Bring?
Things to bring - Kimberley
- Lightweight, light coloured, long-sleeve, cotton shirts with collar you can turn up to prevent sunburn.
- Cotton pants, jeans or shorts. A pair of cool long pants (or cotton jeans) for hiking through spinifex if you have sensitive skin.
- Wide brim hat.
- Sturdy closed-toe footwear (Hiking sandals are ok around the station but painful walking through spinifex)
- Comfy clothing for evenings around the fire. A jacket. Shirts you can layer.
- Sturdy, re-usable drinking water bottle (1L is a good size)
- Sunglasses, sunscreen, personal toiletries, insect repellant and anti-itch cream
- Sufficient supply of your medication, antihistamines
- Good headlamp and/or compact torch
- Batteries and chargers for cameras, torches, double adaptor
- Your art materials – refer to the list provided by your tutor at booking
- A back pack or similar sized bag for day use / overnight camp. Artists - Light cotton shoulder bags are useful to carry art gear and don’t take up much space in luggage.
- Australian Standard Helmet if riding horses during your stay (Also boots, half chaps, riding jeans / jodhpurs)
- Quick dry compact travel towel
- A few sachets of powdered electrolytes
- Small amount of washing powder
- Labelled zip-lock bag for your medication requiring refrigeration
- Please pack light. One small / medium suitcase and one or two backpack size bags per guest.
- Alcoholic beverages and mixers – put your order in with On The Verandah a few weeks before you arrive
You won’t need -
- Good clothes, high heels, hair dryers
- Packs of bottled water. The drinking water is good tank water and we aim to minimize plastic waste.
Things to bring - Italy
- Old clothes for working in the studio
- Sunscreen, toiletries, insect repellant, anti-itch cream
- Waterproof walking shoes and a light rain jacket
- Re-usable drinking water bottle
- Sufficient supply of your medication, antihistamines
- Camera and associated batteries, chargers
- European power plug
- A back pack or similar sized bag for day use. Light cotton shoulder bags are useful to carry art gear and don’t take up much space in luggage.
- Please pack light. One small / medium suitcase and 1 or 2 backpack size bags per guest.
Do I need to be a professional artist?
No, you do not need to be a professional artist. We have artists of all levels join our art trips however please note that the Judith White workshops and tours are pitched at participants who have intermediate to advanced levels of art knowledge and skills.
Does On The Verandah provide easels and art materials?
We do not work on easels as the techniques often involve very fluid mediums. Each guest will have their own workstation. A materials list is provided when you book and you will be required to purchase the items and bring them with you.
Can I take my artworks with me?
What is the art focus?
The Judith White workshops focus on making preliminary drawings and diagrams (landscapes/interiors) colour, tone, composition and key with an emphasis on helping you develop techniques and produce works that reflect your unique response to the location.
Is there free time?
Our residential art itineraries average 1 -2 hours of free time each day.
I'm planning to ride horses while there. Do I need a helmet?
We require you to wear a helmet when riding in the Kimberley. If you don't want to bring one we have a good selection at the station.
Are there communications?
Mobile phone signal at Digger’s Rest Station varies from zero to full signal. To connect a laptop to the internet, try using the hotspot feature on your smart phone.
There is free Wi-Fi at the accommodation, Casa Rosa, and some phone service. There is full phone service in Assisi.
Is the water safe to drink?
Yes it is rainwater. It is easy to become dehydrated in this environment. Take at least one litre of water with you each time we leave the station and drink regularly. There is a rainwater tank at the station to refill water bottles and cooler to refill from. Label your bottle/s with your name.
Yes! However the water used in the fountains and gardens is not suitable for drinking.
Are there crocodiles?
We will occasionally be in the vicinity of rivers and riverbanks that could be habitat for large saltwater crocodiles. We will let you know whenever we are approaching crocodile habitat. Do not stand or walk near the water’s edge or in the grass near the river. Do not enter the water. Stay several metres from the water or tidal zone. There are very few places you can swim in this region. We will be very specific in this regard.
Can I do some washing?
There are coin operated washing machines at Digger’s Rest Station (5 x $1 coins per load). Bring a small amount of washing powder just in case.
Washing machines and powder are free for guests to use.
Will I need cash?
You will need to buy your lunch after we pick you up on day 1. Check your itinerary as we sometimes have a day-trip when you may need to buy lunch. If we have purchased alcohol on your behalf you’ll need to reimburse us with cash. The station has coin operated washing machines. Horse rides can be scheduled and are an extra, payable to Digger’s Rest using cash or card. All other activities on the itinerary are included.
It is a good idea to have a modest amount of cash for purchases (Euros).
Can I extend my stay?
Kimberley and Italy
You can extend your stay if there is accommodation available. Please deal directly with the venue to extend your stay. We ask that you stay on after the workshop rather than arrive prior.
What if I have a medical condition?
Please let us know if you have any medical conditions we should be aware of; allergies, dietary requirements, EPI pen etc. Refer to our Terms and Conditions about your responsibility to disclose certain conditions to us prior to confirming your booking. We will also ask you for the name and number of a family member or friend we can contact in the event of any emergency affecting you.
Can I post on Facebook about my trip?
If you are a Facebook or Instagram user, we would love it if you post some of your photographs and comments before and after your trip and tag us in them – post directly to our pages! www.facebook.com/ontheverandahwww.instagram.com/on_the_verandah
Will On The Verandah use my photo?
If you would rather we did not use photographs with you in them on our social media pages or in our marketing material, please let us know at the start of the trip. If you agree to us using them – thank you! We promise to not use any unflattering shots!
What is the cancellation policy?
We have strict cancellation policy as we must make firm reservations for you for transport and accommodation and sometimes third party provided activities.
f you need to cancel for any reason, we will provide a full refund if you notify us more than 90 days before the commencement of the tour. If you cancel less than 90 days before the commencement of the tour, it is unlikely that we will be able to fill the place in the remaining time, so a cancellation fee of $500 (your deposit amount) is charged.
The remainder of your payment will be refunded to you within 7 business days of you notifying us. We strongly recommend you take out travel insurance at the time of booking to cover you against these cancellation fees in the event of having to cancel your tour.
Notification Period, Cancellation Penalty
90 days or more from commencement of tour - 0 penalty
Less than 90 days from commencement of tour - Loss of deposit*
Less than 45 days from commencement of tour - 30% of tour cost
Less than 14 days from commencement of tour - 100% of tour cost
Failure to join tour or leaving once tour has commenced - 100% of tour cost
*This amount can be credited to another tour occurring within 18 months of the cancelled tour.
What if On The Verandah cancels?
Cancellation, and notification period
As is normally the case with group tours, a minimum number of bookings is required in order for a tour to be financially viable and to have a good group atmosphere. In the event that adequate numbers cannot be achieved, it may be necessary to cancel a scheduled departure and to offer the nearest possible alternative date, an alternative itinerary, or a full refund of monies. If On The Verandah decide not to operate a tour we endeavor to notify all guests as early as possible (we aim for 12 weeks before tour commencement date) and it will be no less that 8 weeks (60 days). All booked guests will be notified and offered refunds or rescheduling. In this situation guest monies will be returned within 7 business days. We are not responsible for any incidental expenses that you may have incurred as a result of your booking such as hotel reservations, visas, vaccinations or non-refundable flights. Your airline may provide a credit for flights that are cancelled with more than 24 hours notice. We strongly encourage guests to take out travel insurance and that you ensure that you are covered for all costs incurred by such a cancellation.
Will the itinerary change?
On The Verandah reserves the right to make changes to the itinerary where necessary. We may need to make changes due to road, weather or tidal conditions, strikes or other reasons. Where possible On The Verandah will substitute itinerary changes with activities of equivalent interest and of equal standard. Because of the nature of the terrain and remote areas, weather fluctuations can affect road conditions which may require us to alter the itinerary with little or no notice.
Changes to tutor and guides
In the event that the advertised tutor or guide is unable to participate due to illness, injury or unforeseen circumstances, On The Verandah will replace the tutor or guide with a person of similar experience and ability.
Are there other Terms and Conditions?
Yes, please read our Terms and Conditions. By booking a trip with us you agree to our Terms and Conditions. A copy of the Terms and Conditions are provided by email (or post) when you make a booking. They can also be read on our website at http://www.ontheverandah.com.au/policies-terms-and-conditions.html
What are the contact details of the venues?
Digger’s Rest Station address is King River Rd, Wyndham.
Postal address: PO Box 5, Wyndham WA 6740.
Tel. (08) 9161 1029. Mobile. 0418 780 337.
Owners - Roderick and Alida Woodland.
Casa Rosa, Assisi, Umbria, Italy.
Contact phone is +39 075 802322 and Mobile +44 077 0917784. Owner - Ella Grima.
How do I reserve my place?
Call Rachel on 0428 254 529 or send an email.
A minimum deposit of $500 will confirm your booking and reserve your preferred accommodation.