When you’re travelling abroad, it’s difficult not to have an impact on the environment – but the good news is that there are ways to have an eco-friendly trip.
Nowadays there are plenty of brilliant places to stay which try to work with the surrounding landscape rather than simply use up the space – and you don’t need to splash the cash to stay there.
Airbnb can be a great source for this, with plenty of quirky properties which focus on sustainability and ethical travel.
In fact, there are seriously amazing eco-lodges, treehouses and environmentally-friendly temporary homes.
We take a look at some of the prettiest and coolest ones from around the world – and how you can book in your stay.
1. The Hideout, Bali
Tucked away in the mountains of the Gunung Agung volcano lies this breathtaking all-bamboo home, which features two floors with quirky amenities including an outdoor shower and large hammocks for lazing about with a book right by the river.
Located right by the river amongst rice fields, it’s the ideal location for getting off the grid and soaking up the lusciously green and tranquil surroundings.
The nearest village is 500m away – but don’t be caught off-guard – sometimes the locals have been known to use the river for bathing and ceremonies!
How much? Prices from £104 a night – click here for more details .
2. Karijini Eco Retreat, Australia
Hidden away in the awe-inspiring Karijini National Park are the deluxe eco tents that take glamping to a whole new level.
Not only do they have their own private ensuite bathrooms and some seriously stylish interiors, but there are some stunning front and rear decks on which to relax while you take in the exquisite views.
There’s minimal power available (just enough so you can charge your phone) and rechargeable lanterns, as the tent relies on solar power.
It’s all natural products only – bedding is made from 100% cotton, and there’s natural ventilation and a floor made from composite timber for minimal disturbance to the ecosystem.
How much? Prices vary but tend to start from £190 a night for a Deluxe Eco Tent – click here to book on Laterooms.com .
3. Pousada Jeriba, Brazil
Located right on the beach in Jericoacoara National Park, this resort has been praised for its environmentally-conscious approach.
You’ll feel like an A-lister thanks to the luxurious rooms, breathtaking ocean views and of course all of the tropical vegetation which fills the hotel’s grounds.
This boutique gem uses solar power for its electricity and hot water, not to mention it’s built within the landscape to cause minimal disturbance to the beautiful natural surroundings.
How much? Prices are an average of £221 a night on TripAdvisor here .
4. Rockaway Lodge, England
The owners of this home nestled in the heart of the woodlands near Bath built the eco-house themselves!
There’s wooden furniture, large windows overlooking the impressive oak trees, not to mention the food served is vegan – sourced from the site’s own vegetable garden.
Even the beds are ecological – they’re made of bamboo with all-cotton bedding.
How much? Prices start from £45 a night – click here for more details .
5. Lefay Resort & Spa Lago di Garda, Italy
This stunning resort has everything you need for a luxurious break from infinity pools to a wellness centre to spectacular views of Lake Garda itself.
Awarded a platinum level GreenLeaders certification on TripAdvisor, it follows a series of eco-friendly practices from using organic ingredients for toiletries to using energy-saving methods when it comes to their heating and water – and there are even sensors to turn off electrics when guests have left the room.
How much? Prices start are on average £334 a night on TripAdvisor here .
These innovative pods caused a social media frenzy earlier this year thanks to their science fiction-esque appearance, but they’re very much real!
Their power is generated by their mini wind turbine and solar panels, meaning that travellers can set up camp pretty much anywhere in the world from mountains to the seaside, while their clever rainwater collection system means you can have running water.
How much? They’re set to go on sale in 2018 – but they come with a hefty price tag of €79,900 excluding VAT.
7. Grand Velas Riviera Maya, Mexico
This all-inclusive resort remains a firm favourite for families after a holiday of a lifetime!
Right on the beach, it offers a jam-packed activity programme including watersports, bicycle tours, snorkeling and flag football, not to mention kids can take part in treasure hunts, arts and crafts and sand castle building.
Rooms range from family-friendly accommodation to adult-only ‘zen gardens’, but no matter where you’re staying there’s plenty of beautiful plants and scenic views to take in.
Its commitment to the environment is equally impressive: the resort uses biodegradable toiletries, has energy-saving light controls, not to mention they recycle and donate leftover food.
How much? Prices are on average £806 a night on TripAdvisor here .
8. Tambo Del Inka, Peru
This luxury collection Resort & Spa has everything you need for ultimate relaxation.
The outdoor thermal pool offers unrivalled views of Machu Picchu, there are plenty of treatments available at the tranquil spa, and there are countless restaurants where you can dine before going back to your room and falling into the extra-comfortable beds.
The resort uses a geothermal heating and cooling system so there’s minimal effect on the landscape, staff are trained to be as environmentally-conscious as possible, and organic and biodegradable ingredients are used for toiletry products.
They also use alternative water sources to keep the gardens looking lusciously green, for example by collecting rainwater.
How much? Prices are on average £225 a night on TripAdvisor here .
9. Golden Oak Cabin in Strathyre, Scotland
All of Forest Holidays’ Golden Oak Cabins are built from scratch, so they’re in complete control of their environmental impact.
Nestled in the Scottish countryside, this cabin is built to BREEAM specifications (BREEAM is the body that sets the standard for best practice in sustainable design).
The foundations and roofing allow rainwater to flow back into the forest grounds, while the heating service ensures that the cabin is warm and cosy while still being energy-efficient.
How much? Prices start from £455 for two bedrooms for 3 nights – click here for more details .
10. Banyan Tree Mayakoba, Mexico
You’ll be spoiled for choice with activities at this hotel: dining on the river in a traditional trajinera boat, playing a game of golf, unwinding at the spa or exploring the grounds’ three-mile long nature trail are just some of the services on offer.
Meanwhile, Banyan Tree is both Rainforest Alliance verified and Earth Check certified thanks to its very green approach, whether staff are being trained to keep damage to the surroundings to a minimum, or guests are being encouraged to learn about the natural landscape on an eco-tour.
How much? Prices are on average £611 a night on TripAdvisor here .
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