Meet our Members: Fellow Member Arkaba (Australia)
Arkaba has been an active member of The Long Run since 2018 and they continue to stay true and improve the vision of the 4Cs (Conservation, Community, Culture, Commerce)..
Fellow Member Arkaba (Australia) shares its sustainability journey, and its concept of wild bush luxury which involves a fully hosted, fully guided experience for guests that aim to provoke, inspire, and reconnect to the bush.
Charles Carlow, the Owner of Arkaba recently shared about their journey.
Arkaba is in one of the most unique parts of the world:
- Australia is one of 17 megadiverse countries in the world and 10% of the world’s biodiversity is found here.
- 90% of Australia’s mammal, reptile & frog species are found nowhere else in the world.
- Australia has the highest mammal extinction rate in the world.
- More than 20% of Australia’s mammals are classified as endangered as well as more than 15% of the birds.
- Feral cats are the single greatest threat to Australia’s biodiversity.
Arkaba is surrounded by 60,000 acres of privately-owned and carefully protected outback. Nestled within the Flinders Ranges the unusual blend of semi-arid and temperate habitats supports numerous species of plants and birds. The Flinders Ranges were originally inhabited by the Adnamatna (Hill People) thousands of years ago, and many still reside in the region today.
Arkaba is part of Wild Bush Luxury whose vision is to be ‘’ The Benchmark for Contributive Tourism’’ in Australia through its mission to:
- Conserve the environment that sustains us and
- To provoke, inspire, educate, and connect guests to the bush through experiences that are natural, exclusive, and truly Australian
Committed to conservation and inspiring guests to value nature’s beauty, ‘Arkaba’ in the local indigenous dialect means land of abundance. In the Flinders Ranges alone, since European settlement 150 years ago, nearly 24 of the 58 native mammals have become locally extinct.
Arkaba’s focus has been to reverse the detrimental effects of livestock-grazing by regenerating habitats and welcoming back native species.
Efforts include removing sheep stock, eradicating feral species like goats, foxes, and cats (which can claim the lives of between four to 20 native creatures per night), and restoring vegetation.
Arkaba works with the Australian Wildlife Conservancy, Australia’s leading conservation group, both in learning techniques to apply to conservation programs and in helping channel guest donations to the AWC. Since 2018 they have sent over 300 donor leads to them.
Environmental awareness and conservation are integral to the Wild Bush Luxury guest experience. Guests at Arkaba can choose from various options:
- A stay at the restored 1850s Arkaba homestead. With just five rooms, Arkaba’s homestead is not only a romantic retreat for couples but a homely base for families hungry for adventure in the bush — interactive activities draw kids (from the age of 8) into the conservation ethos.
- A 4-day/3-night guided overland walking safari through Flinders Ranges that concludes at the Arkaba homestead.
- Guests can enjoy safari drives, walking, helicopter excursions, stargazing, as well as more hands-on activities such as tracking feral cats, setting up trip cameras, and joining biologists on land surveys and vegetation identification.
- An opportunity to learn about Arkaba’s history and culture through Pauline Mackenzie a local Adnamatna elder one of few people who still speak the Adnamatna language fluently. She works with Arkaba to tell stories of the land and her personal story growing up to the guests as a person in ‘white’ Australia providing a glimpse into Australia’s Aboriginal history and the issues that confront Aboriginal society today
Since 2020, Arkaba has now focused on diversifying its income in various ways:
- They have a new tourism investor on board – Experience Co and desire to grow the business within tight environmental guidelines.
- By the end of 2022, launch Arkaba Wilderness Trails, the brainchild of new Manager Bruce Lawson, a 7-night complete immersion and disconnection experience for guests to connect with nature.
- They are planning to build a new Woolshed Camp by March 2023 to enable expansion capacity for their walks.
Find out more at arkabaconservancy.com
If you’re interested in finding out more about Fellow membership at The Long Run, please get in touch with [email protected].