Going Wild: Exploring 5 of the World’s Most Incredible Jungle Escapes
As life becomes increasingly stressful in a modernized world, many travelers look to completely unplug. Reconnecting with nature is a great way to rejuvenate the mind and body – jungle retreats offer a relaxing experience in a peaceful setting that is miles from the fast-paced life most of us lead. The soothing sound of bird songs, the gentle rustle of palm leaves and the caress of warm, balmy air are just a few of the added amenities of a jungle stay.
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Whether you fancy a holiday amidst sea and jungle or a stay enveloped by rainforest, these five escapes promise a restorative experience — even Tarzan would approve!
#1: Anjajavy (Madagascar)
Set along the bio-diverse Mozambique Channel, Anjajavy is home to more than 1,800 floral species and a variety of exotic fauna such as the famous Sifaka lemur, the bird of paradise, the chameleon and Cuvier’s oplure (a type of iguana). Apart from its stunning setting, the hotel’s most alluring attribute is its Oasis, a “Garden of Eden” designed by well-known Parisian landscape architect Camille Muller. Within the Oasis lies a vast array of aquatic and climbing plants, papyrus reeds, tree ferns and palm trees that are home to humming birds, lemurs and malachite kingfishers.
#2: The Lodge at Chaa Creek (Belize)
Nestled within one of Belize’s most untouched settings, The Lodge at Chaa Creek boasts 365 acres of pristine nature reserve along the banks of the Macal River. Reaching towards the foothills of the Maya Mountains, the eco-lodge offers 23 palm-thatched cottage rooms with 10 percent of all accommodation revenue going to environmental and social programs that support the local community. Chaa Creek also boasts one of the best restaurants in Belize, serving up what they’ve dubbed as “jungle cuisine” — all sourced from their organic farm or hand-picked by local producers.
#3: Daintree Eco Lodge & Spa (Australia)
Stay in an exotic treehouse-style room that provides unparalleled access to the Daintree Rainforest, one of the oldest living rainforests in the world. Here you can unlock the secrets of the jungle while learning about the region’s ancient Aboriginal culture. Having thrived for more than 110 million years, the Greater Daintree forest is situated within eight wildlife habitats and is the only place in the world where two World Heritage Sites meet””the Great Barrier Reef and the Wet Tropics Daintree Rainforest.
Daintree Eco Lodge & Spa offers a myriad of tours from rainforest walks to lectures by Indigenous teachers about the history, tradition and culture of the region’s Kuku Yalanji people.
#4: Oxygen Jungle Villas (Costa Rica)
One of Costa Rica’s most stunning boutique properties, Oxygen Jungle Villas is tucked within the tropical landscape of the Marino Ballena National Park. The property is located just minutes outside the charming town of Uvita and is elevated on a verdant mountainside with unparalleled vistas of the sea and jungle.
Relaxation, rejuvenation, and tranquility are the main themes that permeate the airy, Balinese-style villas, the lavish infinity pool and the spacious sun deck. Organic ingredients are used whenever possible for spa treatments and within the fresh, healthful dishes at the O2 Restaurant.
#5: The Lodge at Pico Bonito (Honduras)
Voted as one of “The Top 50 eco-lodges of the World” by National Geographic Traveler, The Lodge at Pico Bonito is the ultimate jungle stay. Located on the Caribbean coast of Honduras near La Ceiba, the lodge is enveloped by the lush and vast Pico Bonito National Park. With the rainforest as their playground, guests can enjoy nature walks with trained guides, boating trips though a manatee reserve, hikes to cascading waterfalls and tours of the local village. Twenty-two eco cabins blend seamlessly within the natural environment and the property’s newly renovated restaurant serves Mesoamerican cuisine created using locally-sourced ingredients.