Whether you're looking to get back to nature or you just want to reduce your carbon footprint a little when travelling, a sustainable escape is likely on the top of your travel list for this year.
Data from Airbnb shows searches for "earth houses" by Kiwi guests have increased by over 120 percent in 2021 compared to the last three months of last year, with searches for tipis and yurts increasing by 90 percent, and treehouses up by 75 percent.
Around Aotearoa we have some of the best options in the world for tiny houses, tents and yurts in what is colloquially known as "the wop wops".
Whether you're looking for a long-weekend nature escape in your own backyard or you're excitedly planning to jump over the ditch this year thanks to our newly opened travel bubble, Airbnb has put together some of it's top stays championing sustainable, eco-conscious living off the beaten track both here and in Australia.
Eco stays in Australia:
From converted shipping containers to homes built with recycled nails, you could get off the beaten track in picturesque eco-stays across the country:
An off-grid tiny home built from scratch - Marion Bay, SA
This newly built tiny house is fully off the grid, running solely on solar and rainwater and with a composting toilet. The tiny house is only two minutes outside of the town, positioned on a natural grassland, with views from every window. You might even be lucky enough to spot one of the local kangaroos or emus from the breakfast bar while gazing out at the vast views of the surrounding grasslands.
Eco-luxe recycled shipping container home - Lilydale, TAS
'The container' at The Trig is a one bedroom getaway boasting a king-sized bed decked out with organic linen sheets, robes, full kitchen facilities, fine Tasmanian wines, movies, a record player, art supplies, books, games and musical instruments. With organic breakfast provisions provided, you can enjoy granola with yogurt, fresh fruit, organic sourdough bread or eggs if you wish.
Eco-friendly earth-covered house - Rock Forest, NSW
Conceived and constructed by a German builder in 1994, this unique house is earth covered and naturally air conditioned, using the thermal mass of the earth to achieve ultra low energy consumption. Set on a conservation property, it's great for couples craving a soul-restoring getaway and a little extra privacy.
Eco-stays in New Zealand:
For those turning their dreams of overseas travel into a local reality, be inspired by off-grid eco-luxury:
Eco escape self-contained off-grid tiny home - Korito, Taranaki
This escape is a two-part tiny home nestled at the base of Taranaki with unmatched mountain views. Fifteen minutes from town and the beach and a stone throw to the mountain and bike tracks, this self-contained tiny home is a perfect spot for those wishing to visit Taranaki for an adventure or to unwind. Powered from both solar panels and hydro turbines, this place is as "off-the-grid" as it gets.
Arohanui Cabins Mangawhai - Mangawhai, Northland
Totally off-grid, Arohanui offers campfires and tree swings, an open air cast-iron bath and a cozy bedroom cabin with skylights for stargazing. At night, the view of the night sky and stars is amazing. From the bedroom cabin, french doors open up connecting you to the natural surroundings. At the heart of all the cabins is a landscaped courtyard and covered pergola, complete with an authentic pizza oven and hammock, providing the ultimate outdoor living experience.
Te Papa Eco Cottage, off the grid luxury - Waiuku, Auckland
Set on a secluded hilltop overlooking the Waikato River, Te Papa offers a rustic luxury off the grid experience. It's furnished with original art, antique chairs by a cosy wood fire, a huge king-size bed, a spacious bathroom and outdoor bath. Spend your time at Te Papa watching the world cruise past from your hilltop perch or experience the many activities available, mountain biking, bush walking, explore the wetlands and even try your hand at white baiting when in season.