Meet Jan and Lin: Bells by the Beach Holiday House

Meet Jan and Lin, owners of Bells By the Beach Holiday House located in Ocean Grove, Victoria!

Jan and Lin Bell – business owners

With retirement on the horizon and after working in the fire service and retail/admin sectors, the pair were in search of somewhere to live permanently or open a holiday rental business.

The pair first visited the Bellarine Peninsular in search of somewhere to live permanently or a place that felt right to open a holiday rental business. Jan and Lin found a two bedroom unit in Ocean Grove; their first holiday rental business. It was later on when they found it a right time to buy a larger home around the corner on Roditis Drive, the start of Bells By The Beach Holiday House. The couple moved permanently to another location in Ocean Grove to be close to the investment and serve guests 24/7, which they still do.

Bells By The Beach Holiday House is now a welcoming holiday home for families to spend a short or extended time, with or without their dogs.

During the past 15 years or so, Jan and Lin have welcomed more than 400 different dogs, with pet-parents from regional Victoria, suburban Melbourne and interstate to holiday in their home. Guests return time and time again to the welcoming home as they love the property facilities, the squeaky clean house and the neat and tidy dog-friendly coastal garden…not to mention the beach is just a short doggy stroll (500 metres) to the sand dunes and over onto the beach.

We love being holiday accommodation owners, it gives us much satisfaction to know we are helping families plan and budget for holidays well in advance

Dog-lovers are delighted to find that the house truly is dog and family friendly, where dogs are welcome to sleep indoors with their family and be safe and secure in the fully fenced property.

About the area

Ocean Grove is growing into the largest township on the Bellarine Peninsula. The area is surrounded by renowned wineries, walking trails, pristine beaches, fishing spots and golf courses. Bring your dogs down to run along the beach, crash through the waves, or just enjoy a swim. Head further away and explore the many local attractions across the region. There’s something for everyone to enjoy at Ocean Grove.

With the property in easy reach of shopping, activities and the glorious beach, it is no wonder that the property is thriving with guests in Spring, Summer and Autumn.

We look forward to meeting new guests and welcoming back others who consider our house as a home away from home. We sometimes wish we had another house to ‘spread the beach love’ to everyone who wants to stay and who are disappointed to find we are booked out.   

Interested in staying at Jan and Lin’s Pet and Family Friendly accommodation? Book NOW >> https://aabode.com/australia/ocean-grove/pet-and-family-friendly

Your guide to being a more responsible traveler

Travelling for many has become a huge part of enjoying life, however, it is having an impact on our environment and the local cities that are being frequently visited, it is time to thoroughly consider how we can preserve and support the communities we visit! By making some simple choices, you will help preserve the countries culture, heritage and environment.

Re-think wildlife activities

It is particularly prevalent in South East Asia for guests to ride elephants, pet tigers or swim with the sharks, however, the cost of these activities come at the price of the animal. Within many tourism businesses involving wildlife, the well-being of the animals are not taken into consideration and as a result, many species have been classified as endangered. When you come across these activities or have considered them for your holiday, take into the consideration of the animals that are being utilized! Whether you visit a sustainable sanctuary or opt out of the activity, there’s something you can do to protect the local wildlife.

Respect local cultures and customer

Being a responsible traveler is not only taking into consideration your impacts on the environment, but also the impact you will have on the local people. It’s extremely important to respect the culture and customs of the destination you’ll be travelling to as they might adhere to a different set of social standards! In many part of the word, wearing short sleeves or short shorts aren’t appropriate, so be sure to pack accordingly. Alternatively, in other parts of the world, opposite sex communication is generally frowned upon. Before you head on your dream holiday, just be sure to look up and research any of the local rules you might need to follow.

Learn a few phrases in the local language

Language is such a large part of a country’s culture and history. Learning the local language could get you a long way and show the locals that you respect their time, space and culture. Brushing up on a few phrases like ‘hello’, ‘thank you’ or ‘please’ will show that you appreciate them! Often when you’re travelling, engaging with local people will give you a deeper insight into their lifestyles as well. Expecting everyone in foreign countries to be able to speak English could be considered rude or ignorant! You definitely don’t have to be fluent in the local language but be sure you brush up on some key phrases.

Minimise carbon emissions while travelling

Even while you’re on vacation, there are some simple things you could do to minimise carbon emissions! If you must fly to your destination, try booking direct flights and flights with carbon offset. Alternatively, you could travel by train instead as it’s a sustainable, affordable and landscape filled way to travel from city to city. When travelling around the city, you could also opt to use public transport. It’s convenient, cheap and more sustainable than renting a car or using taxis! Check out more tips on how to travel sustainably!

Travel with less waste

One sign of tourists bombarding a local area is the significant amount of waste and rubbish being left behind. Not only does it detract from the beauty of the city, an excessive amount of waste is also harmful to local animals and the environment. Regardless of whether you’ll be travelling in cities or roaming in rural areas, be sure to carry out what you carried in! While it is hard to eradicate all waste from our travel, we should still try our best to minimize it! It can be something as small as dining in at a restaurant or bringing a reusable water bottle. Check out our other tips on how to travel waste free here!

These are just some of the few simple ways in which you can help out the environment of the local residents in your destination! Another is to book home stays for a more local experience, so check out the properties we’ve got at Aabode.com!

Sites that must be seen: WA

When travelling, there is always that concern that you’ll miss something that is a MUST see, which is why we’re starting a series of blog posts with sites that must be seen!

Let’s start in Western Australia.


Kalbarri National Park

Within Kalbarri National Park alone there are a countless number of things that you MUST see! Bring your camera, a big bottle of water, and a fly net, because boy are there a lot of flies down there.

Kalbarri National Park is one of Western Australia’s best known parks, with scenic lookouts, gorges and coastal cliffs. When heading to the National Park, you will need a car as you will have to drive through a magnificent 80 kilometer gorge. Throughout the gorge there are a number of pit stops and walks that will take you to amazing formations such as Nature’s Window, and the Loop, Z-Bend and Hawks Head.

Coral Bay

You’ll want to pack your snorkels for this one! Head up the coast of WA to Coral Bay, where the fish, coral, and marine life is plenty! Choose to either snorkel from the bay or head out on a coral viewing boat to experience the beautiful underwater world that is the Ningaloo Reef. Be sure to book early as tours often book out, especially around the school holidays!

Looking for something a little more adventurous? Head to the area between March and June and swim with the largest fish in the world; the whale sharks! We know what you’re thinking. Sharks? No way. These sharks aren’t ordinary flesh eaters, instead they’re filter feeders (meaning they live off plankton and krill)!

Not your thing? Head to the area between June to October and experience the migration of the Humpback Whales, or November and February for turtle nesting!

Horiztonal Falls

When you think of waterfalls, you generally think of large amount of water falling from a height. Horizontal Falls will change your perception of a waterfall, the falls are situated at the very top of Western Australia. They are fast moving tidal current squeezes through two narrow gorges of the McLarty Range, and have been described by David Attenborough himself as “Australia’s most unusual natural wonder”.

Purnululu National Park

A must see when travelling WA is Purnululu National Park, most well known for the incredible rock formations known as the Bungle Bungles. The Bungle Bungles are distinctive striped beehive like domes that rise approximately 300 metres above the surrounding grassland.

Be warned however, as the tracks to get to the Bungle Bungles have a bad reputation as a rough and difficult 4WD track.

Windjana Gorge National Park

Windjana Gorge National Park is known as one of the Kimberley’s most stunning gorges, with water streaked walls that rise to incredible heights of 100 metres. Unlike many Western Australian National Parks, this one is easily accessible.

Fun fact: Over 300 million years ago, the whole area that is the Windjana Gorge National Park was under the ocean!


Be sure to book your accommodation through Aabode.com!

Your fashion essentials for your Queensland trip

For most people traveling to Queensland, their first stops are Gold Coast and Brisbane- places that are full of fun, beach and sun! With a strong backpacking community and other wide range of activities and exciting nightlife, here are a list of wardrobe must-haves in your luggage for your ultimate Queensland trip:

Cocktail dress for day-drinking or wild night outs

With a large number of trendy restaurants and an obvious lively nightlife, dress codes are enforced in many venues and because of the famous beach culture, 1 or 2 bright and fun dresses are a must!

Workout gear for all your endless adventures

Brisbane and Gold Coast are the hubs for tons of fun activities, so while you’ll be spending your nights in cute dresses, it is very important to pack workout clothes for the day. Pack a good pair of shoes as well, because I’m sure you wouldn’t want to miss out on bridge climbs or parasailing!

Your swimmies of course!

They don’t call it Surfers Paradise for nothing! Whether you’re just taking a dip or full on catching some waves, wherever you go, there will be a beach, so packing a cute bikini or any swimwear should be put first in your bag or suitcase.

A light jacket

It’s hot when the sun is out, but the nights cool down quite a bit, so carrying an extra layer for some warmth for whenever you need it, is definitely a good idea. Enjoy the cool breeze at the same time and layer up to add some style as well!

Get all your wardrobe packing essentials and visit Aabode.com for accommodations that will make your Queensland trip the best trip of your life!

24 Hours in Adelaide

Whether you’re in Adelaide for a stopover or just whisking yourselves on a weekend getaway, we’ve got the perfect plans for you! From delicious pastries to decadent beaches, we’ve got a packed day for you!

9am – Jamface

Start your day with a range of sweet pastries and house made relishes at Jamface. Run by ex masterchef Poh, Jamface is a culinary favourite within Adelaide and offers some of the best baked fares in the city. Whether you begin your morning with a lychee raspberry bavarois tart or a simple cup of joe, Jamface will help you kick start your morning! Hot tip: Jamface always changes their pastries and treats based on what’s in season so try whatever is displayed! You’ll never know if you’ll be able to try it again!

10am – Adelaide Central Markets

Once you step right out of Jamface, you’ll be situated right in the center of the Adelaide Central Market! This place is the central hub and is the epicenter of the culinary world within Adelaide. Grab some cheeses, cured meats and local treats for a picnic treat later! If you’re still peckish there are loads of small side dishes, fresh juices and plump oysters for you. Whether you’re after a nibble, bite or stroll, the markets will overwhelm you for choice!

11:30am – Beerenberg Farm

After you leave the busy markets, take a quick ride for thirty minutes or an hour bus ride east to Beerenberg farm. Spend your afternoon away from the hustle and bustle by picking strawberries at this quaint farm! Open from November to April, you’ll be able to pick your own juicy strawberries at this farm for only four dollars! Pick your strawberries and peruse down the farm. Don’t worry, we won’t tell anyone if you eat any on the way!

4pm – Take a dip at one of the beaches

After all of that exploring on the farm, you need one last bit of relaxation before tonight’s activities. Whether you’re going by car or public transport, heading to one of Adelaide’s picturesque beaches is a must do when in the city. If you’re in the city center, Glenelg beach is just a quick tram ride away, but if you wanted to venture a bit further, go and check out Semaphore beach! Plop yourself down on the plush white sand and take a refreshing dip before the next feed. Hot tip: Check out Adelaide on a budget!

7pm – Africola

As 7pm rolls around, so will your stomach. The best place for your last meal in Adelaide will be at cult favourite, Africola. This joint will be tantalizing your taste buds till the sun comes up and will tempt you with their smoked meats, African inspired vegetables and house pickles. Try out some of their grilled smoked tongue or their wood over cauliflower! Whatever you choose to graze on, be sure to finish it with their tahini ice cream and tamarind roasted pineapple!

10pm – Electric circus

If you still have the energy to party on a Friday or Saturday night, dance yourself down to Electric Circus. EC is one of the best clubs in Adelaide, offering some of the best tunes in the city. If you want to get even more out of your night, the upper levels of EC are also home to Rocketbar & Rooftop and Mr Kim’s if you’re after a more chilled night. Whether you want to dance the night away or unwind with a drink, Adelaide will have something for you

Have more than 24 Hours? Check our more sports to visit here!

Whether you’re staying in Adelaide for 24 hours or 24 days, we’ve got the perfect place for you to stay at Aabode.com!