Saturday, February 21, 2015

eco lodge

South Africa

executive summary by darmansjah

Bulungula Lodge-A bumpy ride down a long dirt track ends at Bulungula on South Africa’s “Wild Coast,” where ten whitewashed roudavels (traditional rounded thatched huts), co-owned and managed by Xhosa villagers, use the sun, wind, and rain to provide daily energy needs. Shoestring traveler are welcomed like family to this rustic lodge that also provides economic opportunities for the rural community. Breakfast? Down a fresh fruit smoothie, then join villagers in activities like brickmaking, beer brewing, and maize stamping. Or set out for a walk across miles of empty beach, listening to the sound track of rolling waves,  10 hutss; from $39.

Bushmans Kloof Wilderness Reserve-Each September, the UNESCO-protected Cape Floral Region bursts into living color with some of the greatest consertrations of floral species in the world. Bushmans Kloof, a century old homestead turned nature reserve, cares for 18,532 acres of this rare habitat-home to endangered Cape mountain zebras and archaeological sites that include 10,000-year-old San rock paintings. “We are dedicated to Bushmans Kloof’s enduring legacy, to help protect and preserve its precious heritage through ecotourism, conservation programs, and community benefit projects,” says South Africa-born Toni Tollman, who oversees the reserve on behalf of her family. Sixteen lavish rooms and a private family villa serve as the base camp for daily outings or unwinding with a glass of the Cape’s finest vintage. 16 rooms; from $420, including full board.

I n d ia

executive summary by darmansjah

Orange County, Kabini- Watching the sky radiate its sunset palette from the riverside tables of Kabini’s open-air restaurant brings a tranquil end to active days. Visitors explore Nagarhole National Park in search of the elusive Bengal tiger and India’s largest herds of Asian elephants, along with other flagship species (leopard and wild-dog). Simple-looking mud-and-thatch huts built in the traditional style of the indigenous Kuruba tribes belie more opulent interiors while also minimizing the environmental footprint ( a reserve osmosis system in each building eliminates the need for imported drinking water). The lodge supports the Kuruba heritage with interactive story telling sessions, dance performances, and river outings in a handmade coracle. 37 cottages; fro m$478, including full  board.

B r a z i l

executive summary by darmansjah

Cristalino Jungle Lodge- A 28,167 acre rain forest reserve in southern Mato Grosso envelops Cristalino’s wood-and-tile bungalows, designed to take advantage of cooling breezes and natural light. The languid Cristalino River provides plenty of opportunities for canoeing, swimming, and wildlife viewing-from the rare giant otters playfully at home in the water to the endemic red-nosed bearded saki monkeys traversing the treetops. Climb one of the two 164-foot observation towers to get a look at some of the more than 550 birds that have been identified in this species-rich corner of the Amazon and be rewarded with a stunning above-the canopy view of the world’s largest jungle. 16 rooms; from $630, including full board and exploration trips.

C a n a d a

executive summary by darmansjah

Cree Village Eco Lodge- OVERLOOKING the subartic waterways of the tidal Moose River in Northern Ontario, the 20-room lodge is designed in the style of a Cree village shabatwon-a traditional long tepee with doors at each end. The soaring structure of pine, cedar, and hickory lets in the nearly 20 hours of summer lights; stone fireplaces and warm guest rooms padded with thick carpets and blankets of natural wool keep winter’s chill at bay. Guests can hike in Tiderwater Provincial Park .take a boat to James Bay for seal – and whale – spotting led by local guides, or view the northern lights at night. The lodge restaurant serves fair-trade coffee as well as health-minded aboriginal cuisine, including free-range bison from Ontario and caribou from Nunavut. 20 rooms; from $168.

Concordia EcoTents, U.S. Virgin Islands 

Key Features: active adventures, family
Concordia's solar-powered tents are decidedly rustic (yup, composting toilets), but their location on St. John’s is five-star, set on a hillside next to Virgin Islands National Park. Snorkeling and scuba diving are de rigueur, as is a visit to Maho Bay's Trash to Treasures, where guests make art from recycled glass.
+ Doubles from $105; 

Kosrae Village Ecolodge & Dive Resort, Micronesia

Key Features: active adventures, local culture, family
Located east of Palau, the jumble of steep jade mountains known as Kosrae Island is farther than most tourists venture. That's why Kosrae Village, the island's one and only ecolodge, feels like such an authentic slice of South Pacific life. Dive for a coral-monitoring project, learn to weave at a local village, and dine on coconut-smoked wahoo.
+ Doubles from $149; 

Nihiwatu, Indonesia 

Key Features: luxury, active adventures, local culture
Nihiwatu has a consistent break right off its 1.5-mile beach, but this chilled-out surf nirvana attracts more than pro riders. Join the active devotees of this coconut-biodiesel-fueled resort for yoga in the thatch pavilion, find bliss in the spa, and mountain bike to remote villages. Thanks in part to the resort, thousands of villagers now have access to clean water and health clinics.
+ Doubles from $440; 

Ranweli Holiday Village, Sri Lanka

Key Features: local culture
Staying at Ranweli's tiled bungalows, modeled after a traditional village, is just short of complete Sri Lankan immersion. Locals demonstrate weaving and cooking techniques, an on-site fruit stall sells medicinal drinks, and an ayurvedic center offers herbal oil massages—all just a two-hour drive from the capital.
+ Doubles from $60; 

Rosalie Forest Eco Lodge, Dominica 

Key Features: active adventures, family
Instead of white sand and palms, the Caribbean isle of Dominica is covered in volcanoes and virgin jungle. A15-minute hike into the vines and heliconia, Rosalie's tree houses and cabins feature wind-powered lights and rainwater showers. After waterfall hikes, eat an organic dinner with Brit owner Jem Winston, a London taxi driver turned sustainable-living guru.
+ Doubles from $50; 

Soneva Fushi by Six Senses, Maldives

Key Features: luxury, active adventures
"No news, no shoes," is the resident philosophy at Soneva Fushi, which is to say: Kick back. Dive or windsurf the baby blue waters, take a wine-tasting tutorial with the sommelier, or dine on your own private beach. Behind its elegant facade, this 65-suite resort has committed to zero carbon emissions by 2010 with innovations like deep-ocean water cooling.
+ Doubles from $749; 

Tiamo Resort, Bahamas 

Key Features: luxury, active adventures, family
While hoteliers have jostled for elbow room on Caribbean beaches since the 1950s, remote South Andros Island has remained blissfully development free. To preserve the pristine area, Tiamo’s owners hid their 11 airy wooden bungalows in the jungle and built a field of solar panels to power them. Cast for bonefish in world-renowned flats or snorkel one of the planet’s largest reefs.
+ Doubles from $630; 

Vamizi Island, Mozambique

Key Features: luxury, wildlife, local culture
Vamizi Island, in the Quirimbas Archipelago, is the prototypical white-sand-and-palms paradise, but the real attraction at this ten-villa resort lies in the water: Explore some of the world’s most pristine coral reefs, sail on locally made dhows, then head offshore to search for migrating whales.
+ Doubles from $900;

North Island, Seychelles 

Key Features: luxury, active adventures, wildlife
While taking in uninterrupted views of the turquoise sea from a villa handcrafted by local Seychellois carpenters, it's easy to mistake this as one's own private island. It's even harder to believe that the isle was once ravaged by invasive species. African outfitter Wilderness Safaris rehabbed the land by reintroducing endemic tortoises, birds, and plants and building 11 no-expense-spared villas, a spa, and a dive center.
+ Doubles from $5,000;

No comments:

Post a Comment