Hip Hotels Review

Release date: 15-Jul-2011

Daily Travel Inspiration - The Prairie Hotel, Australia

Parachilna is the last place you would expect to find fine cuisine. Yet the Prairie Hotel has earned an international reputation for its innovative use of bush tucker or 'Feral Food'. Where else in the world can you get an antipasto of smoked kangaroo and camel sausages or wallaby shaslick?

People travel from all over Australia and indeed from all over the world to this tiny pub in the middle of nowhere to sample its unique "bush" cuisine and to immerse themselves in the strangely bewitching culture of the Aussie outback.

Parachilna is situated at the foot of South Australia's Flinders Ranges, the last geographical barrier en route to the middle of the continent. This is a vast, empty land of red sand dunes, spectacular gorges, forests of dead trees, sparkling white salt beds that stretch to infinity, mountains that turn purple in the afternoon sun, and endless flat red plains punctuated by nothing more than the odd shrub.

With the verandah and corrugated roof, almost nothing has changed at the Prarie Hotel since it was built in 1874. The accommodation lying behind the typical stone façade, corrugated roof, and lace ironwork of the old pub, is a fine piece of ecomodern design. It was devised to provide a cooling system that would not consume vast amounts of energy.

They call it the back of beyond. This is the real outback, where everything is surrealistically distorted, where farms of 200,000 acres are considered to be on the smallish side, yet towns such as Parachilna count as an official population of seven. There may be no more illustrative example of the back-of-beyond experience than the Prairie Hotel, or the Parachilna Pub as the locals know it.

Propping up the pub with a 'stubby' of beer in hand is not only a popular pastime in Parachilna - population 7 – its the only pastime!

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