Sure, you can stay in a chain hotel, but will you really remember it later? Life is too short to be boring! Start by sleeping in a cocoon hanging from a tree. Someday, you'll thank us for this advice when your granddaughter asks you about the craziest adventure you ever had.
We searched high and low for the coolest little getaways all over the globe just for two. These locations provide isolation of a different kind – tasteful interiors surrounded by the most picturesque nature with no lines at continental breakfast buffets or screaming toddlers in sight. These intimate hideaways provide the perfect escape from the rest of the tumultuous world where you can focus on what actually matters. Again, these are tiny locations for two – who you invite is up to you, but we advise you to choose wisely!
Here is a hashtag you can actually sleep in. You should know about Bookworm Cabin because this idea of a Polish marriage is now being written about all over the world. This cabin was specifically designed to free you from senseless distractions so you can finally sink your teeth into the latest bestselling political biography or thrilling true-crime novel while sipping a cup of mulled wine. Tucked away in a private forest just 50 km from the capital, this modern little house has a large window facing the trees which you can look out of while you rest your eyes from staring at the pages. If you need a break from intellectual stimulation, earmark your book and take a walk in the nearby national forest. Bartek and Marta are the mastermind couple behind Bookworm Cabin – he created award-winning pubs in Warsaw and she runs an interior design studio so naturally, this successful duo implemented this cabin concept with refined taste and sophistication but with a sense of hygge.
“The most pleasant thing about the whole stay was undoubtedly the breakfast eaten on the terrace in the company of trees and birds. The view from the cabin is beautiful. The cabin itself is decorated in a modern and tasteful way.”
Slowhop's review: There’s no WiFi but the cabin's bookshelves are fully stocked for your disposal and the fireplace provides the best lighting for reading.
(Photos: Bookworm Cabin)
No, this is not a scene from a Narnia movie, if you were wondering and no fauns live there. We can tell you that a local man saved this ruined mill on a hill in central Portugal after being untouched for a century. Today, guests are welcomed by Simon, a natural wine expert who has extensive hospitality experience, and Fiona, a traveller who works remotely in advertising. Once you step inside the stone structure, you’ll be surprised to find all the comforts of home with touches of history – the bedroom upstairs contains original mill machinery, an old millstone that’s now a desk, and in the bathroom, the sink is a stone chicken bath and the shower a cow trough. If you’re up for a little dip, head downhill to the swimming spot on the river and you might spot an otter or turtle. At night, we hear the sky is illuminated with stars so we recommend pouring a glass of local wine, sitting back and enjoying the (free) show.
“We absolutely loved the beautiful Moinho which is completely fitted with everything you might need. During the day the hiking trails nearby are beautiful and easy, while the night sky is absolutely incomparable.”
Slowhop's review: You have total privacy in the two-person accommodation but the hosts live just down the hill so you can stop by if you want wine advice or a taste test.
(Photos: Moinho da Fadagosa)
Hey, what if we told you there's a sauna on top of it...would you believe us? We also couldn’t believe that an ordinary treehouse can have such wonders. It truly has everything you need to relax and spend some alone time together. Slip into something a little more comfortable...or nothing at all. This treehouse has a hot tub on the deck, a sauna on the roof, outdoor shower and giant copper bathtub. Once your fingers look like raisins, you can hit the hammock and sway to the sound of the surrounding Dorset forest, bake a pizza with all the toppings in the firewood oven or slide down the slide and wander around the property. Your own oasis is located in a secluded corner of a sustainable woodland village called Crafty Camping created by woodwork master Guy Mallinson. He put his skills to use to build a place for people to rest among 10 acres of private woods close to the Jurassic Coast 'World Heritage Site' and East Devon Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
“The treehouse is an absolutely stunning space. In the midst of the woods, it felt so cosy and luxurious but retained an arboreal charm, rather than being so sleek you forget where you are. The best of all worlds!”
Slowhop's review: On chilly nights (this is the UK after all), you can light the rotating fireplace that can be pointed toward the king-size bed, leather sofa or fully-equipped kitchen.
(Photos: The Woodsman's Treehouse)
If you were wondering what kind of crazy person comes up with such ideas, we’re here to tell you. Adrenaline lover Ario Ferri constructed these mountain suites suspended on rocks in Peru after moving to Sacred Valley in search of peace away from the big city. Warning: only suitable for people who don’t feel woozy when they look down from up high on the mountainside. Imagine sleeping in a condor’s nest on the edge of the Sacred Valley of Peru, or at least in this case – a transparent capsule that’s suspended 400 metres. It’s just big enough for beds, a small eating area and a bathroom with a dry ecological toilet and sink. But they’re called ‘Adventure’ suites for a reason – to get there, you have to climb Via Ferrata, cross a sky-high suspension bridge and ride a zipline over the valley. But don’t worry, a team of guides will lead the way so you don’t go astray.
“Skylodge was beyond our wildest dreams. It surpassed any travel experience we've ever done before. Our guides made us feel completely safe and at ease and the climb itself was incredible.”
Slowhop's review: The view from here is top-notch but what makes this stay extra special are the guides who will whip up meals and serve them in the dining pod, they’ll keep you safe going up/down, and no habla español? No problem.
(Photos: Skylodge Adventure Suites)
We’re a bit afraid to ask what comes to mind when you think ‘Poland’, so we'll tell you just in case. This house stands in a place which draws in artists and aesthetically sensitive people. There are forests, ravines and excellent wine, and right in the middle is a real gem: a little town called Kazimierz Dolny. But if you ever wanted to try ‘slow’ living, this is it. Climb up to the modern treehouse, look out at the panoramic view of the pine trees and take a deep breath. You have full permission to do absolutely nothing – just reset your mind. Get back to nature, breathe in the fresh air, eat real food. At dawn, the sun stretches out over the terrain and floods the windows with light as deer munch on low-hanging leaves. Don’t waste your time trying to download emails because there’s no Wi-Fi so instead, spend the day at the herbal spa with a hay bath or a massage or you can grab binoculars and venture out into the forest in search of wild birds. Karolina and Mateusz invite you over for spruce tea and to play an original field game to discover secrets of Lupine Hill.
“From the very beginning, you can feel a lot of love was put into creating this place. The place is beautiful and cosy. Everyone will feel at ease here. You can feel the closeness of nature with every step.”
Slowhop's review: There’s no kitchen, but hearty breakfasts are delivered in baskets at your doorstep. For dinner, head down to the on-site restaurant for local delicacies such as rabbit in a cream sauce, or solely plant-based dishes for herbivores.
(Photos: Treehouse ‘Breath’)
The barriers are dismantled between nature and comfortable living in this glass house that’s located in a vast landscape. Gaze at an unobstructed 360°view of the spectacular Seaward Kaikōura Mountain Range in New Zealand. Leave your car and walk 10 minutes through a bush pathway, passing a grove of kanuka trees and you’ll find the little house up the hill with its glass ceiling and floors. Facing North, you have snow-covered Mount Fyffe and the largest peak in the Seaward Kaikōura range – the mighty Manakau mountain which rises to over 2600 metres. On the South side, marked trails are just waiting to be explored. When you work up an appetite, crack open the pre-ordered food package and slap a chef’s selection of lamb, beef or venison on the barbie and watch the sun go down. As the stars take over the sky, use the telescope to scope out constellations and galaxies far, far away.
“We have traveled all over the world and slept in so many interesting places, but none as unique as this! We loved that our entertainment was watching the clouds roll in and waiting for the stars to peek out. Spectacular!”
Slowhop's review: Despite its fish tank design, PurePod has everything you need for a comfortable stay – full bathroom (shower included) and cooking gear including a hob and barbeque.
(Photos: Manakau PurePod)
This ‘humble’ abode in the woods of Devon is still fit for a queen bee. Your host Yvette, a gallery owner and environmental artist, designed this three-storey beehive which perfectly blends into its woodsy landscape. Rustic with a perfect harmony of exposed dark wood beams and metal elements, this is a cosy little house where the earth is the central focus. The winding staircase leads up to the king-size bed on the upper level which provides total privacy but has a round window so you can gaze at the treetops. Spend your stay sitting by the electric heater and reading the latest best-seller or sip champagne in the private outdoor bath with the sounds of nature as your soundtrack. We encourage you to open the double doors and stay still for a chance to spot deer grazing, a fox scurrying across the garden or an array of colourful birds fluttering between the branches.
“The attention to detail that has been put into the humblebee is second to none! We loved every aspect from the private outdoor heated bath to the quirky tin shower room. Just wow, we've left the humblebee feeling very relaxed and can't wait to return there!”
Slowhop's review: If you need to restock the kitchen, head to Okehampton town centre which has a farmer’s market and small mom-and-pop shops where you’ll find healthy food, local products and fresh meats.
(Photos: Humble Bee)
This spot may be hard to find because it’s practically invisible among the trees in Northern Sweden. The mirrored walls of the glass box reflect its natural surroundings, acting as the perfect camouflage. Suspended 4-6 metres above ground around the trunk of a tree, the 4x4x4 metre box is made from plywood with a birch surface and you can look out of its six windows at the totally panoramic view of the forest. But don’t let its size fool you – it’s big enough for two people with a double bed, bathroom, living room and even a roof terrace. While it lacks ostentatious furnishings, it makes up for it with the unobstructed scenery of the tall pine forest and Lule River. Fun fact: the glass panes are laminated with a transparent ultraviolet colour which is only visible to birds and prevents them from colliding with the treehouse.
“We had an absolutely wonderful experience staying in the Mirror Cube. Wonderful view and feeling to be up in a tree, cosy cabin. Friendly and helpful staff made you feel welcome, delicious food in the restaurant.”
Slowhop's review: One drawback is that the shower and sauna are located in separate buildings and there’s no kitchen inside the treehouse but you’re invited to Britta’s Pensionat which has a restaurant, bar, relaxation area and free WiFi (if you really need it).
(Photos: Mirror Cube)
Turns out, it is possible to stay at a luxurious resort in Bali, minus the guilt of the environmental impact. Deemed ‘EcoLux’ by its founder, this place is surrounded by untouched jungle forest, rice fields overlooking the BatuKaru mountain, and lush tropical fruit trees. Canadian business entrepreneur Dino Magnatta imagined a heavenly place which combines luxury and sustainability and Charlie Hearn, a “green architect” made it a reality here on earth. We recommend staying in one of the private villas which are constructed from earth and bamboo. Inside you’ll find a king size bed, boho-chic furniture and a dose of modern comforts – air conditioning and TV. Soak in the wooden bathtub in the semi-outdoor bamboo bathroom or head out to the balcony and unwind in your personal infinity salt water pool while listening to the rippling flow of the nearby waterfall. For dinner, you can choose between the communal table in the main house, or outside on the cliff, in the treehouse or overlooking the Ulaman river. Did we mention the hand-carved Buddha mural? Scaling over 40 metres into the side of a cliff, the work of art depicts his life and journey.
“Loved everything about this place. I was amazed by how bamboo can collaborate perfectly with a rammed earth wall. It feels natural and luxurious once you enter the area. Homy vibes, cosy room, great foods, tasty wines, friendly service. Bravo!”
Slowhop's review: The full body experience doesn’t stop at massages and relaxation – we hear Chef Arik’s Balinese cuisine truly awakens your taste buds. The menu is limited but you’ll find raw, vegetarian, and vegan options presented with edible flowers and herbs.
(Photos: Ulaman Eco Retreat)
This hut may have been inspired by the classic tent ‘A’ frame, but the similarity stops there. This solar powered one has modern interiors and everything you need to live off the grid high on a hilltop with an ideal view of the Murrumbidgee River flats and grand hills. Situated on one of the oldest properties in this region on a 7000 acre working sheep and cattle farm, you’re surrounded by nothing but nature. The tiny structure is anchored by Australian hardwood and the interior has timber furnishings throughout. Here we have a bedroom, small kitchenette, bathroom and living area which opens up to a timber outdoor deck so you can just soak in the scenery. There’s a BBQ, camp stove and table for outdoor cooking and dining. End each day in the wood fired hot tub while the stars slowly take over the night sky. By the way, your host Emelia lives and works on the farm with her husband and family so be sure to ask her about local food, wine and tourist attractions!
“The surrounding scenery/view and design of the cabin itself was stunning. So relaxing and cosy – the perfect weekend escape! We really enjoyed the breakfast provided and the attention to detail throughout the cabin. The hot tub was also a major highlight!”
Slowhop's review: You have to be mindful of the weather – it can get really hot in the summer and there’s no air conditioning or fan. In the winter, you may need to keep adding wood to the log heater.
(Photos: Sweeney’s EcoHut)
This secluded hideout nestled among the chestnut and oak trees is more of a castle than a cabin. Modelled after a traditional French château, the floating house was built by the owner, Rémi, who has been building tree houses for several years. Conscious of the environment, he uses locally-sourced, untreated wood which has a low carbon footprint. His craftsmanship and attention to detail is seen in this one bedroom château. There’s no kitchen, but you can order a hamper of local delicacies to be delivered. Former guests also rave about Chef Vincent Lucas and the restaurant Etincelles just a few kilometres away. You’re welcome to lounge on the private terrace overlooking the property or letting go of everyday worries in the hot tub as you gaze at the horizon. Come down from your mini palace in the sky to swim laps in the swimming pool on the ground level or go explore the 11 hectare park on foot or two wheels. If you’re lucky, you just might come across some deer, wild boar or rabbits and squirrels.
"Who wouldn't want to stay in a tree house, especially one that looks like a chateau? It was a truly special stay. Beautifully finished, luxurious hot tub and we loved being delivered our breakfast in a basket that we hoisted up on a pulley.”
Slowhop's review: Some requests might be lost in translation because the staff may not speak English but they’ll still find a way to help you plan activities such as canoeing down the Dordogne, hot air ballooning, and waterskiing on the lake.
(Photos: Monbazillac Treehouse)
So you can’t fly like a bird, but you can sleep like one in this vibrant yellow fibreglass sphere suspended between the trees. Stroll over a short bridge and climb a few stairs wrapped around a tree to enter your own private birdhouse for humans. It may seem cramped at first, but you’ll realize it’s actually quite cosy and has everything you need for your stay. Hosts Tom and Rosie built these spheres themselves and you mustn’t worry – the heavy duty roping and sphere harness system guarantee your safety so you can peacefully hover amongst the trees and birds while looking out the windows and skylight. Space is utilised to the max – at night, the murphy bed comes down to create a bedroom while during the day, bench seats under the windows and two tables that fold down create a living area. Located on a 5-acre property with a pond and plenty of wildlife, this is also a great option for artists, musicians and writers who need creative studio space surrounded by nothing but the forest and Mother Nature herself.
“A magical balance of old world craftsmanship and physics, combined with beauty that seamlessly intertwines with the trees and nature around it. I couldn't recommend this place any more highly, it’s one of the most beautiful places I have ever stayed in my life, anywhere around the globe.”
Slowhop's review: Don’t worry about the lack of a bathroom inside the sphere. We’re told that the bathhouse is clean, modern and comfortable. It’s just a short 50-metre walk and the path is illuminated by lamps for night-time trips.
(Photos: Melody Sphere)