My Top 20 Nature-Centered Dream Getaways
- Published on: 23 May, 2016
- Last update: 07 August, 2017
If you follow me on Instagram, you know I’m obsessed with AirBnB. I’ve convinced everyone I know to stop overpaying for hotels and try these chic getaways away from the usual touristy spots.
I started using their website when I was studying abroad in college and my flatmate booked a hostel in Amsterdam. Let’s just say that ended with us arguing at 3 a.m. with the hostel staff member who tried to come into our locked room (with his master key) “looking for someone’s lost shoe.” Plausible, but a sketchy and a scary experience, especially since he thought none of us were in there. Who knows what they could have taken? It just didn’t feel right, especially for a group of 6 girls.
From that day on I took control of booking the rest of our weekend adventures. My first reservation was for a 6-person AirBnB apartment in Paris… and I’ve been hooked ever since! And no – AirBnB is not paying me to write this, I just get a bunch of questions about where I stay when I travel, and have been dying to put together a fun post like this for a while.
Some of the spots on this list I’ve actually been to, and others are dreams of the (hopefully near) future! All of them are nature-centered, however. They will help you ditch your laptop and become one with the great outdoors, so get ready to sit back and relax.
*If this is your first time making an account, you can use this link to save $20 off a stay anywhere in the world! That will give me $20 towards traveling too, so I appreciate the nomad love 🙂
Let’s get started!
If you’re a New Yorker like me looking for a summer getaway that’s still close to home, this is a great find! It’s small and cozy, perfect for a couple, and the property is full of the nature us city folk neeeeeed. The beach is only a short distance away – perfect if you have a few books to read and a tan to work on!
19. A tree house… in L.A.?!
This is probably one of the coolest AirBnBs I’ve ever seen in my life! (Although it’s high up on the list because L.A. isn’t exactly filled with nature, haha). Since I included the Hamptons getway for New Yorkers in #20, I wanted to have a similar option for my Californians! If you love living in L.A. but need a short break from the city, this would be a whole new way to experience and appreciate the place you call home. And if you’re not from L.A. but always wanted to visit, this is the perfect unconventional way to do so! You’ll still get greenery, fresh air, and trees mixed in with your city adventures.
The price tag is a hefty one at $700/night, but there are three bedrooms that can sleep 6 people. Splitting with 5 friends would cost each of you $116/night, which is so worth it for an unforgettable weekend!
Don’t think I forgot about you, my CT friends! New York may get all the buzz, but Connecticut next door has a lot of hidden gems – especially by the coast. I haven’t been here yet even though it’s an hour from my house, but it’s on my bucket list for sure. In my mind, you can’t get any closer to perfection than waking up to the sound of waves. It’s one of the most healing things you can do for your body and soul. I am dying to come here and just write my heart out to this view!
17. And here we have the most beautiful treehouse on this list – located in Atlanta, Georgia!
I’ve got something for everyone on this list! If NY & CT are not your thing or you had the Southern states in mind, you cannot miss this incredible hideout in the trees. It’s tough to get a reservation here, due to the fact that it’s AirBnB’s #1 most wish-listed property in the world. But if you happen to be flexible and can squeeze into their few remaining dates, don’t pass the opportunity up! Probably one of the most unique experiences you’ll get in the states – right in the center of some beautiful nature 🙂
Oh, Canada. The nicest country in the world. Where everyone says “sorry” for even slightly bumping into you (in the cutest accent, btw). Sign me up! No seriously, I do love Canada and all the lovely people I’ve met there. I can’t think of a better way to enjoy their clean air and beautiful bodies of water than to stay right on Golden Lake. There are a bunch of hiking and biking trails around the house and I’ve read in the reviews that the owner may be able to lend you some bikes on request. I’m a big fan of canoeing/kayaking so I love that there are ample supplies right on the property.
Can you imagine if this was the view from outside of your house? UNREAL. This is what I’m talking about! Huge valleys, breath-taking mountains and lots of bright green grass to charge up your heart center. They provide you with 2 bikes, a canoe, and they even have two fireplaces for cozy nights. The cottage is a short distance to plenty of hiking, beautiful views, and a beach. This is some of the best nature you’ll find anywhere in the world, and I hope one day I’ll be able to soak it all in.
14. Get away from city noise in this futuristic Geo Dome – located right on a farm in Upstate New York.
There are several ways to make me happy. Give me a lifetime supply of almond milk matcha lattes, watch funny movies with me on a Friday night, or bring me to the middle of the forest to sleep with no walls separating me from the great outdoors. Thanks to this AirBnB find, #3 may become a reality very soon (ahem, my birthday is coming up Nick! :D) The description states, “if you like to cook, hike, swim, visit farmers markets and be surrounded by animals, this is the place for you.” I’ll take 2 weeks please!
A private cabin located in a sub tropical rain forest? Is this even real?! Aussie friends (and anyone looking for a nature-centered place in Aus to visit), this one is for you! Imagine how beautiful it would be to wake up to the sounds of the birds and the sights of huge, native plants. Such a wonderful spot for a romantic getaway or BFF relaxation retreat.
Well, about as close to heaven as you can get! Nothing gives me life more than spending time in nature, but for some reason I always feel like I have to travel far, far away to do so. This Massachusetts getaway is a reminder that sometimes the greatest treasures lie right in your backyard. I wanted to include several places close to where I (and many of my readers) live (shoutout to my fellow tri-state natives!) This is one of my top picks if you don’t want to travel too far across the pond, as it’s only three and a half hours from NYC.
When one thinks of traveling to Sweden, Stockholm is usually the first place that comes to mind. If you’re like me, and want to mix a little nature into your city escapades, this contemporary boathouse on the water could be the perfect ending to your Nordic travels. Östersund is a cute town situated amongst the mountains and lakes of the region of Jämtland and looks like one of the most peaceful places on earth. Even in the winter, the surrounding views are breathtaking. It’s close to a nature reserve and would be a great way to break up the touristy destinations on your Eurotrip itinerary.
This stunning view belongs to Solola, Guatemala and it’s one of the cheapest stays on this list at $39/night. It’s located between the two Mayan villages San Marcos and Zununa, known for their stunning lake views and tranquility. It’s a great spot to use as a base for exploring the Lake Atitlan area, or just for spending some time doing a lot of reading and thinking in nature.
Ok, now we’re getting to the juicy stuff! How awesome is this? As you can tell, I have a thing for domes. This is probably the coolest I’ve found so far – and the only one in the Southern Hemisphere! I can hardly see the stars here in NYC, so I would love to sleep under the magical skies of the Elqui Valley. The company who created these ‘astronomic hotels’ offers services such as specialized astronomic tours, nighttime horse rides, bike rentals, and more. If I ever get the chance to see Chile, I would definitely stay here for a night.
Two of life’s greatest things (rainforests + treehouses) combined? AND it’s in Costa Rica? Truly a once in a lifetime experience. There are even some healing hot springs right on the property. If you need a wifi detox and some good old nature, this is the ultimate getaway!
This gorgeous home in Elizaville, NY was designed by one of the top of the New York Interior Designers, and featured in Metropolitan Home 2007. If want to see NYC then spend a few days in the forest, this would be the perfect last leg of your trip since it’s only 2 hours away.
This chic, eco-friendly hideout is one of the top 10 Airbnb rentals worldwide. The house is 100% off-grid, powered by solar panels for energy and hot water, and is located in a pristine remote valley in the beautiful California high desert. Take note that there is no television or wifi so that you can really soak in the surroundings – come prepared with great books, ready to relax!
Sedona is one of my favorite getaway spots of all time. Hiking on the red mountains is so much fun and you feel incredibly close to nature. I would go back again and again! There’s something special about the air and soil here, it really recharges you like nothing else can. Make sure to check out aaaaaall of the organic/vegan spots in town, and take a red rock as a souvenir to keep you grounded long after you get home 🙂
I WILL visit this place at least once in my life! I’m making it a promise to myself, it’s just tooooo beautiful. Who wouldn’t want to to wake up to mountain ranges and the ocean? Located in the hills of Malibu, this spot is open, bright, and in the perfect location for beach visits and hikes. California also has some of the best organic food/restaurants in the country.
Hawaii is always a little slice of paradise no matter where you go, but this is something special! You will be falling asleep to the waves and waking up to the birds. It’s only a short walk to the beach and I guarantee you’ll eat some of the sweetest fruit of your life.
This place is #2 on my list for three reasons: 1) the great price for 4 people ($56/person per night), 2) the beautiful waterfalls and hikes nearby and 3) the view of the lake and private dock. It’s also very accessible since it’s a 4 hour drive from NYC. I stayed here the last week and loved every second of it – I also had one of the best almond milk mochas of my life at a coffeeshop nearby 🙂 It’s close to Ithaca and Cornell so there are modern restaurants nearby, several of them organic/local/vegan/etc.
It’s worth it to stay here JUST to visit Taughannock Falls and walk Watkins Glen!
I wrote a very extensive blog post about my stay here. This is my favorite AirBnB of all time. The key to success is renting a car so that you can visit the beaches and lagoons (and take a trip down the road to Cafe Flor each morning)! I spent a huge chunk of my time here in their beautiful bath that has a huge window overlooking their peaceful backyard. Honestly, thinking of it makes me want to cry! It was the best experience ever and I feel so lucky to have been here.
Everything about the house is solar or wind powered, and there’s tons of inexpensive fruit for sale in town. There are both locals and French-Canadian visitors that occupy the surrounding city. Be sure to visit Manny’s restaurant to play Jenga!