Travel allows us to see the world from a different perspective, and we’re big believers in heading off the well-worn track to expand those horizons. Whether this entails seeking out hidden corners of a country, visiting local communities or trying out new activities, travel has the power to transform your mindset and help you view things in a new light. But how about extending this philosophy to include your accommodation? Innovative design teams have harnessed existing natural structures, building hotel rooms that both defy gravity and blend seamlessly into their environment. Embrace a bird’s-eye view and take your travel to new heights with a stay in one of the best treehouse hotels around the world.
- Hapuku Lodge and Tree Houses, New Zealand
- Treetop Fiddan, Norway
- Treehouse at Casa Barthel, Italy
- Casa de Novogratz, Brazil
- Khwai Skybeds, Botswana
In New Zealand, the great outdoors reigns supreme, making it the ultimate playground for adventure-seekers. With this in mind, it’s no wonder there are hotels designed for intrepid souls. Take Hapuku Lodge and Tree Houses. Tucked away at the base of the Kaikoura Seaward mountains, in the middle of a deer farm on New Zealand’s South Island, it has rooms set above the canopy of a kanuka grove (the native myrtle shrub) and wraparound windows that capture the dramatic panoramic views across the mountains and to the Pacific Ocean on the horizon. The lodges come equipped with the added creature comforts of a wood-burning stove, plush king-size bed and large bathtub, so you can enjoy being at one with nature while still getting a good night’s sleep.
Norway is the proud owner of more than 29 million acres of forest. And if this stat doesn’t already sound impressive enough, then how about the fact that around 37% of the mainland is covered by forest or wooded land. Since there are so many trees to chose from, Norway plays host to more treehouse hotels than most and has nailed the art of treetop luxury. Camouflaged deep in the dense forests of southern Norway, Treetop Fiddan is designed to merge with the surrounding woodland and be as sustainable as possible, using solar power and candlelight. Spend your time here swimming in the lake, foraging for wild berries and soaking in the hot tub.
Italy is best known for its sweeping coastline (along the Sorrentine Peninsula), ancient architecture (in Rome and Florence) and world-renowned cuisine (found just about anywhere in the boot-shaped nation). So you might not expect to find a charming treehouse hotel hidden away in the grounds of an historic Tuscan villa. Casa Barthel’s treehouse suite comes complete with a canopy bed, large rain shower and knockout views across nearby Florence. And if you fancy climbing down from your home in the sky at any point, you’ll find a swimming pool, tennis court and wood-fired pizza oven in the surrounding gardens.
Like Norway, Brazil knows a thing or two about forests and trees, with a whopping 59% of the South American nation engulfed by tropical rainforest (38% of which is the iconic Amazon rainforest). Naturally, some of these towering trees have been transformed into stylish treehouse hotels, such as Casa de Novogratz, located near the tranquil beachside town of Trancoso in Bahia. Crafted from local tatajuba, paraju and eucalyptus woods, the treehouse perfectly encapsulates the region’s boho vibes and is only a stone’s throw away from an idyllic palm-fringed beach.
Offering up-close wildlife sightings and out-of-this-world animal encounters, safaris are pretty spectacular and hard to top. But Khwai Skybeds in Botswana manages to deliver an enhanced experience. Situated within the Okavango Delta’s Khwai Private Reserve, the Skybeds feature a comfortable four-poster bed in an open-air sleeping area, enabling guests to sleep under the stars of this renowned safari region. From here you’ll also have uninterrupted views of a nearby watering hole, frequented by elephants, giraffes, impala, sable antelopes and the occasional big cat. Nothing beats the feeling of dozing beneath the star-filled sky, and when you add the nocturnal soundtrack of the African bush to the mix, Khwai Skybeds certainly deserves to be crowned one of the best treehouse hotels in the world.
Written by Luisa Watts