There is a special feeling that comes over you when you enter a perfect hideaway that vibrates in harmony with nature. Green vacations are not just about water-efficient bathrooms and recycling. They provide you with the time and space to reconnect with nature and return to your roots.
Our top 25 list includes unique mountain lodges, rainforest retreats, wilderness expeditions, coastal and beach hideaways. Explore the pristine wilderness of British Columbia, snorkel on the Great Barrier Reef in Australia or relax on the beach in Fiji. Whether you are planning a honeymoon, family getaway or a special celebration, eco-friendly getaways are the perfect way to get back to nature.
1. Rancho La Puerta, Mexico
© Rancho La Puerta
Rancho La Puerta is an amazing destination spa which has been a green getaway since its beginnings in 1940. The resort has an on-site garden with 22 full time gardeners which produces vegetables for the resort kitchen. The gardens are fertilized using composted organic matter and employ natural pest management. You will see many migrating birds on the property which has become a sanctuary for them on their migratory path. There are 200 different plant species at Rancho La Puerta which remain as undisturbed as possible.
The resort is a leader in their community, offering innovative eco-friendly ideas to those around them. For example, at the end of the Christmas season, Rancho La Puerta' wood chipper is used to turn Christmas trees into mulch for the grounds. At Rancho La Puerta, you will find green buildings and furniture, innovative water conservation practices, energy conservation and recycling. This is a truly exemplary green vacation getaway (800-443-7565, 858-764-5500).
2. Blue Lagoon, Iceland
© Blue Lagoon, Iceland
Blue Lagoon is an awesome spa destination in Iceland which is 100% powered by clean geothermal energy. The resort built a special power plant which meant drilling deep wells up to 2,000 meters into the ground to tap into the 240 degree geothermal fluid.
This is used to create electricity and heat water for central heating at Blue Lagoon. This innovative power plant is the only one of its kind in the whole world. The design of the resort reflects harmony with nature. The entrance to Blue Lagoon leads across a footpath cut through lava rock and past a beautiful lava wall built from 70,000 lava pieces (+354 420 8800). You may also like: Honeymoon in Iceland.
Good to know: Best Time to Visit Iceland
3. Cycling or Walking Vacation with The Carter Company
Cycling and walking holidays are quite trendy nowadays, with many new companies offering these kinds of experiences, but The Carter Company was there right from the start and has over two decades of experience behind it.
The Carter Company is highly flexible and works closely with every traveler to provide a customized package and personalized service. When you travel for luxury UK cycling holidays and amazing Europe walking holidays with The Carter Company, you’ll be getting the very best and most personalized experiences, making unique memories just for you and having one of a kind days out from start to finish. More info
4. Stanford Inn, Mendocino Coast, California
© Stanford Inn
If you are a vegan, it doesn't get any better than the Stanford Inn, the only vegan resort in the U.S. Located on the scenic Mendocino Coast in California, the resort has a fantastic organic restaurant, romantic rooms with wood-burning fireplaces and a wellness center. Guest rooms and suites have views of the Pacific Ocean, Big River and the inn's own organic gardens. Vacationers enjoy a full range of amenities including an indoor swimming pool, sauna, hot tub and free mountain bike rentals. The wellness center offers gardening classes, meditation, nutrition, weight management and cooking classes. Treat yourself to a soothing massage, Ayurvedic treatments, Acupuncture or Acupressure during your stay. Rooms start at $211 per night, including organic breakfast, free WiFi, organic coffee and eco-friendly amenities. The property is pet-friendly and welcomes children (800-331-8884).
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5. The Kasbah du Toubkal, Morocco
© The Kasbah du Toubkal
Toubkal National Park, located just 60 km from Marrakech, is a beautiful spot for nature enthusiasts. The photos of this place are stunning. The Kasbah du Toubkal is an eco lodge set at the foot of Jbel Toubkal, the highest peak in North Africa. Visit this unique mountain getaway as a side adventure on your trip to Morocco, or call the hotel and have them arrange a complete hiking trip for you.
Accommodation options include Deluxe and Standard en suite rooms, and Berber Salons with areas for families and groups. The luxurious Garden House has a glass wall looking up the mountain peaks. Guests can also stay at a remote trekking lodge in a traditional Berber village in a nearby valley. Rates start from 130 Euro per night (+212 (0)524 485611). The resort founded an association which helps the community with projects like providing the region's first ambulance and driver, building a hammam (the region's first community steam bath) and assistance with the construction of a school for 80 children.
6. Nimmo Bay Resort, British Columbia
© Nimmo Bay Resort
Nimmo Bay Resort is a sustainable hideaway in the British Columbia wilderness. The resort uses a waste management system which cleans black and gray water so that only clean water is returned to the surrounding nature.
Nimmo Bay works with local suppliers to be able to serve their guests sustainable foods and other products. Fishing at Nimmo Bay is catch & release in order to protect the local fish population. The resort is helping protect wild juvenile Pacific Salmon from sea lice.
7. Tabacon Grand Spa Thermal Resort, Costa Rica
© Tabacon Grand Spa Thermal Resort
Tabacon Grand Spa Thermal Resort in Costa Rica is a getaway for nature lovers. You will be surrounded by the pristine rainforest, filled with tropical birds and wildlife. The resort was awarded the three-leaf Sustainable Tourism Certificate for its sustainable tourism practices. Green practices include recycling, use of biodegradable materials, water and sewage treatment, and reduction of energy consumption. You can enjoy your stay, making a small footprint and helping preserve this unique destination. The spa offers unique treatments such as invigorating hydrotherapy therapies and volcanic mud therapies. You can bathe in natural mineral hot springs known for their rejuvenating properties. The property offers 102 guest rooms and suites at the base of the Arenal Volcano. (+ 506 2479-2099).
8. Pikaia Lodge, Galapagos Islands
© Pikaia Lodge
Pikaia Lodge in the Galapagos Islands offers 3- to 7-night all-inclusive packages which combine scenic hikes, boat tours and wildlife adventures with great service and designer accommodations. The eco-friendly lodge, built on an extinct volcano crater, utilizes alternative energy sources and is home to its own Tortoise Reserve. Luxury amenities include an infinity pool with lounge chairs, Sumaq wellness center and several dining options. The spa offers indulgent treatments, Zen-style design and floor-to-ceiling windows overlooking the Pacific Ocean. The spa has an infrared sauna, whirlpool and a gym. Pikaia Lodge is near beautiful sandy beaches and endemic forests where you can see giant tortoises on your morning walk. The resort has a private 100-foot yacht used for exploring the nearby islands and a 35-foot boat which offers guided fishing and snorkeling tours around the island of Santa Cruz.
Guest rooms and suites at Pikaia Lodge feature contemporary design with panoramic windows so that you can have a great view right from your bed. Each room has a terrace, plenty of natural light and black out curtains if you decide to sleep in. The restaurant, bar and lounge all offer stunning views of the island and the ocean. The "Evolution" Restaurant offers elegant dining indoors as well as romantic candle lit dinners under the stars.
DNA Bar serves famous cocktails and local drinks. All inclusive rates include accommodations, VIP airport lounge access, airport transfers, all guided tours, sports equipment, lectures and all meals.
9. Singita Lebombo Lodge in South Africa
© Singita Lebombo Lodge
Singita Lebombo Lodge in South Africa is surrounded by some of the most amazing wildlife on the planet. The lodge is located in
Kruger National Park. It has a guest swimming pool with comfortable lounge chairs great for relaxing between Land Rover and walking safari tours. Guests can request massage and other spa services at the lodge. The hotel has 15 spacious guest suites decorated with native materials and colors. The lodge serves breakfast, lunch and dinner, included in the daily rate. Teas, coffees and drinks are available to hotel guests. Fly to Kruger Mpumalanga Airport or Johannesburg International Airport and catch a connecting flight to the lodge. Singita may also be accessed by private air charter directly to the lodge during daylight hourse (+27-21-683-3424).
Good to know: Best Time to Visit South Africa, Kruger National Park Hotels
10. Arctic Kingdom
© Arctic Kingdom
Arctic Kingdom's mission is to bring travelers closer to nature, helping them visit far away places and unexplored destinations. Arctic Kingdom guides approach all wildlife with mindfulness and respect, following specific company guidelines. The company leads small groups of 4 to 12 people to the Arctic, ensuring that each experience is unique and personal. One of the trips you can take is the "Polar Bear Mother and Newborn Cubs Photo Safari" which lets you watch as newborn bear cubs emerge with their mothers from their winter dens in mid-March. Your guides will get a special permit from Parks Canada to get as close as 100 meters to the bears. In addition to bear cubs, you can see arctic foxes, caribou herds and wolves. When the night descends, you'll be able to admire the stunning display of the Aurora Borealis.
The adventure company uses unique tracked heated vehicles to get close to the wildlife. The trip includes 2 nights' Winnipeg accommodations, 7 nights in an Outpost Lodge (a refurbished navy communications base 40 miles south of Churchill, MB. Canada), a return train ticket from Churchill to Chesnaye and all meals at lodge. The lodge can accommodate up to 18 guests and is self-sufficient with a wood burning fireplace, internet and several guest rooms. The expedition takes 9 days and costs $9,190 CAD plus tax (888-737-6818).
11. Good Day Out - Wildlife Experiences in Wales
Wales is a wonderful location to experience these kinds of countryside activities, being a popular spot for nature walks, farm visits, and more. People of all ages and from all walks of life can enjoy these activities, and an inspirational company named Good Day Out is making the whole thing even better by offering a long list of unique day out opportunities, all for a good cause.
Good Day Out offers unique outdoor experiences that can really appeal to people of all ages. Whether you’re looking for a fun way to spend a day as a couple, a solo traveler, a group of friends, or a family with young children, you’ll find that these experiences all have something to offer you. Kids will adore meeting cute animals like friendly pigs and tiny ponies, while older guests will appreciate the fun of sheep shearing, hedge laying, red kite photography, and more. For every day out you book, a donation is made to a great cause, helping to preserve the countryside and contribute to deserving charities and projects. This lets you have a lovely day out and also enjoy the positive feeling that comes from helping out others. gooddayout.co.uk
12. Treebones Resort, California
© Treebones Resort
Treebones Resort in Big Sur, California, is an eco-friendly camping getaway surrounded by forest and ocean views. Guest tents all have a sky dome above the bed, through which you can watch the stars at night.
Treebones recycles, composts and grows most of the vegetables on site in their organic garden. All of the electricity is created by clean burning micro turbines which provide hot water and heat the pool.
13. Assiniboine Lodge, Canada
Explore the Canadian wilderness on skis while staying at Assiniboine Lodge in British Columbia. The lodge participates in projects dedicated to preserving the surrounding nature. For example, during the "Art for the Park" initiative, several paintings depicting Mount Assiniboine Provincial Park will be reproduced and sold to support the parks in the area.
14. Mashpi Lodge, Ecuador
© Mashpi Lodge, Ecuador
Mashpi Lodge is a hidden gem, located in the heart of the Ecuador Rain Forest. The lodge is
an excellent choice for adventure seekers who would like to explore the exceptional natural wonders of the rain forest. Camouflaged on a natural scenic plateau, the lodge building has wall to floor windows to totally immerse visitors in their natural setting. All the elegant rooms have huge windows to connect you with the forest outside and some have large soaking tubs. Adventures include day hikes to majestic waterfalls, bird-watching tours, visits to the butterfly farm and night walks. You can also ride the Dragonfly gondola for unique 360 views. After your busy day you can enjoy a pampering at the spa.
Reserva Privada Mashpi, Mashpi 150150, Ecuador, +1 84 738 5895
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15. Mahali Mzuri, Africa
Sir Richard Branson loves Keyna (he was made a tribal Maasai elder in 2007). If you are a fan of his other properties, such as Necker Island and Ulusaba, you will enjoy this 12-tent Kenyan wilderness camp located right in the path of the annual wildlife migration. Mahali Mzuri is located in the Motorogi Conservancy, just north of the Maasai Mara National Reserve and about 240 km west of Nairobi. Year-round, guests can go on twice daily game drives to observe wildlife.
Things get particularly exciting during the annual migration. Resident guides tell visitors about animal behavior as they accompany them on the daily game drives. The luxury camp accommodates a maximum of 24 guests at any one time. Rates are fully inclusive of all meals, drinks & daily game drives as well as unlimited access to the Olare Orok and Motorogi Conservancies.
More ideas: Namu Travel
16. Sundance Resort, Utah
Sundance Resort in Utah has been committed to green practice since its beginning. The resort recycles, uses organic products and helps with mountain restoration by laying erosion blankets and restoring vegetation. Resident artists at the Art Studio break down glass bottles to create decorative art and housewares used around the property (877-831-6224).
17. The Colony Hotel, Maine
The Colony Hotel in Kennebunkport, Maine has a dedicated team which meets regularly to improve the eco-friendliness of the hotel. The Colony Hotel composts organic waste, uses saltwater in the pool, and serves dishes made from locally farmed ingredients. You won't find any aerosol products or styrofoam food containers at this green hotel (+1 207-967-3331).
18. The Woodstock Inn, Vermont
© The Woodstock Inn
Plan a green getaway at The Woodstock Inn & Resort in Vermont. This 142-room resort offers a choice of outdoor activities, including golf and fly fishing in the summer, and skiing in the winter. The health club has an indoor swimming pool and whirlpool, letting vacationers exercise and relax. Green practices includes recycling of plastics, newspaper, white paper, glass and retired technology parts. Fryer grease from the kitchen is used to make bio-diesel. The resort uses green cleaning products, 80% organic fertilizers on the golf greens, and organic soaps in the guestrooms (+1 802-332-6853).
More ideas: 5 Gyres
19. Jetwing Surf, Sri Lanka
© Jetwing Surf, Sri Lanka
Located at Pottuvil Point in Sri Lanka, the Jetwing Surf resort offers visitors an eco-luxury getaway. Dedicated to sustainability, the resort features ingenious open architectural elements which reduce the need for artificial illumination and ventilation. In addition, all waste water is re-used for other purposes and natural materials have been used in the construction of the resort. Your accommodation has been inspired by sea shells and is both luxurious and comfortable and includes modern amenities like Wi-Fi and indoor and outdoor hot showers. Adventures include surfing, boat safaris, local cookery demos, fishing and, of course, soaking up the wonderful Sri Lankan sun.
Jetwing Surf, P20, Kottukal Rd, Hidayapuram, Pottuvil 32500m Sir Lanka,
+94 632 030 300
20. Fregate Island, Seychelles
Fregate Island in the Seychelles is a romantic getaway with a beautiful coral reef where you can spend your days snorkeling and scuba diving. Only 40 lucky guests can stay on the island at a time. The two resort restaurants use fruits and vegetables grown by a team of gardeners. Many of the herbs from the private gardens are incorporated in relaxing spa treatments, so book a couples massage on your romantic vacation.
21. Jean-Michel Cousteau Fiji Islands Resort
Located on the second largest island in Fiji, the Jean-Michel Cousteau Fiji Islands is set on a former coconut plantation, lush with palm trees and other tropical greenery. The resort offers an array of activities, including glass bottom boat tours, reef walks, snorkeling, eco tours, volleyball, fishing, kayaking, tennis, medicine walks and others.
Couples can book a massage on the beach or in the privacy of their bure. The spa utilizes local coconut oil in its treatments.
22. Movenpick Resort Bangtao Beach, Phuket
© Movenpick Resort Bangtao Beach
Movenpick Resort Bangtao Beach has been awarded the Green Globe Certification for its environmental conservation and support of community-related activities. The property uses of water from their own treatment plant, and a high-efficiency air condition inverter compressor.
23. Movenpick Resort Bangtao Beach, Greece
© Movenpick Resort Bangtao Beach
Milia Mountain Retreat in Greece offers charming cottages with wood burning stoves or fireplaces. If you are planning a romantic getaway, splurge on one of the suites with a large garden.
More ideas: Pack for a Purpose
24. Wolwedans in NamibRand Nature Reserve
At Wolwedans in NamibRand Nature Reserve, guests get to immerse themselves in pristine nature and experience once in a lifetime wildlife encounters. Sustainable buildings offer large windows and outdoor decks which will make you feel connected to nature day and night. Wolwedans is a kid-friendly destination and a unique opportunity for children to learn about the environment.
More ideas: Kind Traveler, The Universal Sea
The 25 of The Coolest Green Trips & Fun things to do near me today:
- 1. Rancho La Puerta, Mexico
- 2. Blue Lagoon, Iceland
- 3. Cycling or Walking Vacation with The Carter Company
- 4. Stanford Inn, Mendocino Coast, California
- 5. The Kasbah du Toubkal, Morocco
- 6. Nimmo Bay Resort, British Columbia
- 7. Tabacon Grand Spa Thermal Resort, Costa Rica
- 8. Pikaia Lodge, Galapagos Islands
- 9. Singita Lebombo Lodge in South Africa
- 10. Arctic Kingdom
- 11. Good Day Out - Wildlife Experiences in Wales
- 12. Treebones Resort, California
- 13. Assiniboine Lodge, Canada
- 14. Mashpi Lodge, Ecuador
- 15. Mahali Mzuri, Africa
- 16. Sundance Resort, Utah
- 17. The Colony Hotel, Maine
- 18. The Woodstock Inn, Vermont
- 19. Jetwing Surf, Sri Lanka
- 20. Fregate Island, Seychelles
- 21. Jean-Michel Cousteau Fiji Islands Resort
- 22. Movenpick Resort Bangtao Beach, Phuket
- 23. Movenpick Resort Bangtao Beach, Greece
- 24. Wolwedans in NamibRand Nature Reserve
Heron Island Resort, Australia
When you are a resort on the Great Barrier Reef in Australia, you have to take extra care not to disturb the beautiful coral reef that surrounds you. Heron Island resort generates its own power, produces drinkable water and offers hands-on workshops that let you learn about the environment. More great beaches in Australia
Set sail aboard one of the three Windstar Cruises ships which use wind power to get around, green cleaning products and other sustainable practices. During a recent refurbishment project, Windstar worked with select vendors who helped the cruise line minimize the environmental impact.
Garonga Safari Camp, South Africa
When you visit the Garongo Safari Camp in South Africa, you can be assured that your luxury Big 5 safari vacation is doing as little damage to the environment as possible. The camp employs various initiatives to reduce their carbon footprint while still providing guests with a luxury experience. Your luxury accommodation consists of a canvas safari tent on a raised wooden deck, from which you can observe a variety of visiting wildlife, and you have an en-suite luxury bathroom with indoor and outdoor showers. Communal facilities include a fire pit, comfortable indoor lounge and dining area and a sparkling pool. Your adventure includes twice-daily game drives, guided walks and boma dinners.
Garonga Safari Camp, Selati Portion 12, KT 143, Phalaborwa, Limpopo, 1390, South Africa, Phone +27 87 057 4504
More African Safari Trips