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WILD VILLAGE EXPERIENCE – Nature Connection Through Learning Ancient Bush Skills In A Village Setting

***LIMITED SPACES! To book click here and contact the 8IATC team.***

Wild Village Experience is a post-conference event following the 8th International Adventure Conference in Sydney. For more info about the 8IATC -

Through learning and practicing ancient wild crafts (making fire from friction, animal mimicry, interpreting bird calls, navigation by natural elements, rope making and weaving from natural grasses, barefoot walking by day and night, etc.) and the incorporation of traditional village practices (group processes, storytelling, camp fire cooking, sharing, singing, dancing etc.) there is a tangible surge in connection to nature, self and others. The aim is that the experiences enrich you and will subsequently inspire your own private and professional practices. Developing your own connection to nature improves you own ability to connect others to the healing power of nature. Let’s face it – in adventure therapy, it is the wildness of nature that helps bring the healing.

The camp will be held in the simple and comfortable accommodation of Wangat Lodge, nestled in the sub-tropical foothills of the Barrington Tops within pristine forests and on the stunning Chichester River with its deep swimming holes and rapids to explore. Wangat Lodge is managed as a wildlife sanctuary and conservation area and is rich in wildlife and incredible bio-diversity. It has a large indoor community space and outdoor communal fire pit. All food for meals is provided.

About Nikki
Nikki has spent much of the last 10 years learning traditional bush skills from Indigenous people all around the world. This included spending a year living in the bush, learning and practicing these skills including building her own shelter using hand tools, traditional methods and natural materials. This, on top of working in the outdoors as an outdoors guide, bush regenerator, youth team leader and also following the work of nature connection facilitators, has left her with a passion for sharing the skills as she sees that when we rely on nature to provide our needs, we naturally become connected to it, we naturally want to look after it and we naturally find our place in the world.

About Dan
Dan is a NSW representative for AABAT. For the past 20 years he has worked with youth-at-risk in wilderness settings, running programmes of Bush Adventure Therapy. He has also taught Outdoor Education at Western Sydney University and at various schools. At present, he is co-owner with his wife Verity of Wangat Lodge where they offer accommodation, outdoor education and BAT programmes. He is a passionate adventurer, often putting himself at his edge in nature for personal growth and awareness. He really looks forward to hosting participants at the “Wild Village Experience”. Dan is an historian, youth worker, adventure guide, bird watcher and loves living in the little shire of Dungog.

About Mahli
Mahli grew up in the urban wild of Sydney's Eastern Suburbs staying connected to the natural world through surf and travel, and returned to the 'woods' later in life. After becoming a primary school teacher he discovered the world of nature connection and spent a year with WildWise and Schumacher College in the UK, fostering the arts of connection facilitation through many means including earth skills, play, story and imagination. Returning home he has spent the last 3 years roaming from course to course and place to place to deepen his learning and skills. He spent time with Nature Philosophy, Bluegum Bushcraft, Claire Dunne and Wildcraft Australia (with Nikki), as well as making an annual immersion trip to Arnhem Land to better understand village culture and earth connection. He has been supporting and facilitating camps with these groups for the last three years and began his own business Wild by Nature Australia which focuses on co-creating wild village culture for kids, families and adults with an emphasis on wild adventure, play, story and skills.



  • Cost

    Early Bird Rates (Booked before 3 August 2018):
    - Adults: $660
    - Family of 4: $2000
    - Children 5 and up: $395
    - Children 4 years: $195
    - Children 1-3 years: $95
    - Children: 0-1 year free of charge

    After Early Bird:
    - Adults: $690
    - Children 5 and up: $400
    - Children 4 years: $200
    - Children 1-3 years: $100
    - Children: 0-1 year free of charge

    *We are planning to make an direct donation to AABAT from any profits made (will depend on number of bookings – above our minimum of 14 we will make profit)

  • Equipment Required
    - Sleeping Bag and pillow case (available if required – please let us know before arrival)
    - Clothes to suit conditions – comfortable outdoor clothing
    - Towel
    - Comfortable walking shoes
    - Rain jacket
    - Snacks
    - Optional
    - Compass, Camera, Fixed blade bush knife
    - Any materials or equipment for an adventure, activity, workshop that you would like to run

  • Meals - Monday nights meal will be ready on arrival. All other meals will be prepared by the village using the food provided. Cooking together brings a village together.
  • Daily activities - Nature connection, bush skills and child friendly activities will be on offer in the mornings. After lunch there is an opportunity to explore, rest, play volleyball, climb on the jungle gym, run your own activity or workshop or whatever else you feel to do. The evenings will involve a shared meal and storytelling, music and a night challenge on one or two nights.
  • Accommodation - The Lodge, built by hand of mud bricks, has 10 bunk style rooms with 2, 4 or 6 beds in each and one cottage. Families can book a room or individuals can book a bed. There is also the option to set up a tent.
  • Transport - There is excellent public train transport from Sydney (Central Station) via Newcastle to Dungog. Cityrail and Trainlink. We can pick you up from Dungog Station, and bring you to Wangat Lodge (20 minutes). Otherwise it is a 3.5 hour drive north from Sydney – or 4.5 hours from the conference.





Earlier Event: August 4
The ULTRA Kids Activity Day