Dorothy said there was no place like home.
As travellers, we would usually have to disagree. Especially after she stole our favourite red sparkly party shoes and there was that whole ‘talking to scarecrows’ incident.
But for many of us, home is the safest and most responsible place to be at the moment. However, that doesn’t mean we can’t dream of upgrading our four walls to a Scandi treehouse, or an underwater reef hotel, right?
When it’s time to get back on road, add a couple of these unique places to stay to your travelling property portfolio. Sorry about the hotel porn, peeps. We’ve got a bit of cabin fever setting in…
Reefsuites, Great Barrier Reef, Australia
Despite being underwater, there are no wet beds at Reefsuites.
The Great Barrier Reef’s first underwater hotel, Reefsuites is part of Reef World: a permanent pontoon moored off Hardy Reef. A truly unique way to experience the Great Barrier Reef, cruise through the Whitsundays for days of diving and snorkelling, before retiring beneath the waves to watch the reef come to life through your floor-to-ceiling bedroom windows. Or as we like to think of it, sleeping with the fishes.
Treehotel, Harads, Sweden
You’re never too old to climb trees.
Especially when at the top of that hunky Scandi pine is a UFO, a giant bird’s nest or a mirrored cube. Deep in the forests of Northern Sweden, these ‘we’ve-definitely-not-come-from-Ikea’ architecturally-designed and dressed treehouses allow you to get fully back to nature, whilst also eating locally-made produce, bombing around on skis, and bumming around in hot tubs. Plus, the chance to see the Northern Lights in winter. We said ‘lights out’ Aurora Borealis, it’s bedtime!
Cappadocia Cave Suites, Goreme, Turkey
Caves have had bad reps recently. We blame it on the men.
If your current living situation is starting to resemble something of a quarantined man cave (PlayStations, sweaty socks, burping) then start dreaming of this type of cave living in Turkey’s world-famous Cappadocia instead. Striking a balance somewhere between Flintstones and fairy tale, these 9th century caves have been given a stylishly sympathetic 21st century facelift, with handcrafted features, Turkish textiles and romantically-lit courtyards.
Pumba Private Game Reserve, Eastern Cape, Africa
There are no flies on this place.
Largely because this Big 5 game reserve is set within the stunning savannahs and watering holes of the malaria-free Eastern Cape. But also, the owners are bang up to date with everything you’d need to have a luxurious but eco-friendly and socially responsible stay. One of the main employers of the surrounding community and part of the Green Leaf Conservation initiative, this is a sustainable way to both go on safari and experience staying in the heart of the African Bush. Which you can do from either the Bush Lodge or Water Lodge – the latter boasting private plunge pools, game viewing decks over the watering hole, and outdoor showers.
Under Canvas, various national parks, USA
We’re digging these canyons.
Billion-year old arches, trees so big you can drive a monster truck through them, and sacred rock-strewn landscapes. It’s fair to say that America’s second greatest gift to the travel world was its national parks. (The first was happy hour).
These eco-conscious safari-style tents come complete with king-size beds, en-suites and star-gazing decks, and allow you to completely unplug* while witnessing the wonders of Yellowstone, Grand Canyon, Zion, Moab, Glacier, Mount Rushmore and Smokey Mountains national parks first hand.
*Don’t panic Millennials, there’s Wi-Fi.
Peru Ecocamps, Salkantay Trek, Peru
No judgement here, glampers.
We’ve shivered our way through enough Inca treks to know that these wilderness eco-domes are an all round awesome idea.
Consisting of five campsites spread along the six-day Salkantay Trail to Machu Picchu, Ecocamps are Peru’s first sustainable luxury campsites. With three-course meals made from organic vegetable gardens and cold Andean nights snuggled up in cosy beds with log burners, this is a truly one-off way to experience trekking in Peru.