In honor of the upcoming Earth Day, April 22, we’ve scoured the globe to bring you the most environmentally-friendly stays at eco-tourist hotspots worldwide. From Alaska and the Amazon to Costa Rica and Australia’s Blue Mountains, we picked top-rated lodges where a unique wilderness stay can be yours for just a wee bit of green. Book yourself into one of these eco-havens and you’ll enjoy the added value of a clean conscience, isolation and plenty of style. Rates start at only $110/night per person at a lush rainforest retreat in Costa Rica.
Take in Alaskan wilderness for $395/night
For a premier look at Alaska’s epic grandeur, book a night at the remote Tutka Bay Wilderness Lodge along the Kenai Coast. This cluster of rustic buildings gets top marks for combining deluxe lodging with nature activities while not losing regard for its pristine environment. Frommer’s describes it as “an upscale hotel in the wilderness, with cabins connected by long boardwalks ... and a kitchen capable of producing gourmet meals.” Two-night packages start at $790 per person, with a variety of inclusions (see below); three-night sojourns go for $1,185. Note that a $90 fee applies for water taxi round-trip transfer to the lodge.
Eco-stay in Brazil’s Amazon for $340/night
To experience untouched wilderness down in the Southern Hemisphere, there’s no place more incredible than the Amazon rainforest. You can check it out its virgin jungles while staying at Brazil’s Ariau Amazon Towers Hotel for $340 for a two-day package. Condé Nast Traveler writes: "Imagine a hotel built among Amazon treetops: catwalks 70 feet up leading from a great circular dining room of polished tropical woods, a bar like an eagle's nest, a honeymoon suite built 110 feet up a mahogany tree, and friendly monkeys, macaws, sloths, and parrots scampering, fluttering, and dangling all over the place."
Costa Rica’s rainforest lodge for $110/night
Back in the northern spheres, Costa Rica beckons with its status of a premier green destination. Having been in the eco-spotlight for several years, the Switzerland of Central America safely guards its natural riches. Case in point is the delightful Luna Lodge, perched over the Osa Peninsula rainforest with waterfalls, hundreds of bird species, fragrant fruit trees, and Pacific vistas. Travel + Leisure writes, “Prepare to share a trail with sloths, tapirs, kinkajous, anteaters, spider monkeys, and the occasional jaguar. Not natural enough? The eight stylish bungalows all have private tropical gardens.” Doubles start at $110/night.
Australia’s Blue Mountains lodge for $386
For an eco-friendly hideaway in the heart of Australia’s UNESCO-protected Blue Mountains, you can’t beat a stay at Kanimbla View, The Clifftop Retreat. The environmentally-friendly property has two cottages with solar power; furniture made from trees felled on the neighboring land; sash windows salvaged from a demolition in Sydney; walls and floors painted with natural paints in ochres and reds; and hemp sheets. Surrounding the cottages are head-spinning mountain views and pristine Australian bush, which can be explored on a guided tour offered by the enthusiastic owner. Rates start at $386 for a two-night stay.
The above quoted rates aren’t discounted but they’re certainly worth every penny as they get you the utmost environmental stays. At the Alaska lodge, all the rates cover three meals per day, plus complimentary wine and beer with dinner. Note that a $90 fee applies for water taxi round-trip transfer to the lodge. At the Amazon lodge in Brazil, rates start at $340 per person for a two-day package with boat transfer; a canoe excursion to a native village; two lunches and one breakfast; a jungle trek; and a sunrise tour. At the Costa Rica retreat, between mid-May and mid-October, doubles in the main building start at $110/night per person ($135 per person in a private bungalow), with three meals per day, happy-hour appetizers, and all taxes included. A two-night minimum stay in an eco-cottage at the Blue Mountains lodge starts at $386 for two people for midweek stays; it goes up to $690 on weekends (for up to four people).
Pack your sense of adventure for this intimate encounter with Earth Mother!
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