|Bed by Unyoked (and pic)|
(If you missed the others, they were: Edmond, just south of Sydney, Tallarook Tiny Home on the NSW south coast and Fred's Tiny House in Castlemaine, Victoria. And for more on the whole "tiny house stay" thing, see my tiny house travel story in Traveller.)
Tiny house stays officially arrived in Australia when twin brothers Cam and Chris Grant quit their corporate jobs in Sydney and set up Unyoked in 2016.
|Cam & Chris in Unyoked country|
"It's not just about renting tiny houses," says Cam. "We want people, through our experience, to realise that sitting at a desk for eight to 10 hours a day, answering emails in bed and feeling guilty for taking that one trip at the end of the year isn't the way we have to live.
"I think collectively we're starting to realise that and more and more of us are looking to get back to simpler times, to reconnect with nature and get off-grid once in a while."
|Country Victoria roads...|
Just getting to Micah, one of Unyoked's six tiny houses, felt like a small adventure, despite it being only an hour from Melbourne. Mr No Impact Girl and I drove along dirt roads under Simpsons-blue skies dotted with fluffy clouds, through five farm gates, past sheep and windmills.
Parking inside the last gate, we loaded our bags and an esky into a little black wagon, and trundled down the hill to where Micah sat - in a paddock ringed by gnarled old eucalypts beside the bone-dry Campaspe River. A few lonesome crows provided the outback soundtrack.
|There she is! (Because like ships,|
tinys are always girls)
You probably won't see another human being during your stay, in fact (except the one you brought with you) or anything man-made.
This is why Unyoked calls its tiny houses "cabins" or "hideouts". As Cam Grant explains: "What we're trying to do is emulate the experience of hiking through a forest and finding your own cabin in the woods."
|Micah's minimialist facade|
First impressions: Micah is the epitome of simple, basically an off-grid wooden box, on wheels cleverly concealed by stacked campfire-wood. It also has a flat roof instead of the storybook gable roof seen on most tiny houses.
Most different of all, there's no loft bed. Instead the queen bed is at waist-height, a signature Unyoked feature. Much as I love the cubbyhouse feeling of climbing a ladder to bed, I also loved this bed-couch-daybed. Plus it was flanked by two enormous picture windows that brought the outdoors in.
|Happiness is a sunny bed|
In other words, you can be inside and still keep abreast of what's going on in the real world, i.e. outside.
Even after dark. That night, after an early dinner, we lounged in bed and watched the best show in town: the full moon rising from behind the nearest hill. The next morning we saw the sequel, also from bed: a spectacular sunrise.
|A cabin of wood + light|
Beyond the bed, Micah's plywood interior gives it a cosy, cabin-y feeling, a nod to Unyoked's Scandi-Japan design ethos. There's plenty of natural light - from the sliding door, those two picture windows and another window over the sink.
I loved the minimalist kitchen with its camping-esque gas cooktop and white enamel plates, bowls and cups.
|Wine supplied (for a price)|
Other thoughtful touches included: hot water bottles for cold nights, a couple of yoga mats, loose leaf tea and coffee beans - plus a grinder, a plunger and an aeropress coffee maker. And there were "provisions" (with price tags) such as wine and pancake kits.
|Barefoot on prickly grass|
Micah's location and non-loft bed are its winning features and I love that Cam and Chris are thinking outside the hotel room box, curating experiences with a sense of fun and creativity.
Most importantly, they really deliver on the "unyoked" promise: helping you step away from the striving-working-busy vehicle and surrender to a slower way of being in the world, if only for a night or two.
|Micah's sunset view|
Gratitude: Thanks to Unyoked for hosting us for a night at Micah. I can recommend their free weekly "Dispatches" too, creative emails bearing tiny-related news items like "why silence is good for your brain".