Today’s post is a guest post from Isabel Clift.
If you’re planning a trip and looking for cheap hostels to stay in along the way, it makes sense to pick places with great eco credentials. As well as being fun, friendly and affordable, plenty of eco hostels now offer environmentally-friendly services like recycling programs and organic cafes, with some offering improvements like solar power as well. Browse the list of the world’s ten best eco hostels below and discover a greener way to stay.
10. Jemby Rinjah Eco Lodge in the Blue Mountains, New South Wales, Australia
These traditional timbre lodges sit in the heart of Australia’s Blue Mountain National Park. Private cabins and group lodges have energy-efficient lights and heating, plus there’s a romantic retreat cabin with a Japanese hot tub that runs on rainwater.
9. Bellas Artes Guest House Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Sunny Rio de Janeiro is the perfect setting for this eco hostel that heats water via solar power. The hostel itself is run by locals, sells Brazilian crafts through an on-site shop and serves up Brazilian coffee as well as regional food like Minas Gerais cheese.
The only hostel in the world to be Energy Star certified, Hostelling International Washington DC has a recycling centre on every floor, uses energy-efficient fluorescent light-bulbs and only washes linen on request to conserve water.
7. St Christopher’s at the Mosaic House Prague, Czech Republic
St Christopher’s at the Mosaic House in Prague is home to the Czech Republic’s first grey-water recycling and heat recuperation unit. This eco hostel’s heating system runs on solar power, and rooms are temperature-controlled based on whether they’re occupied or not.
6. Birdwatcher’s Paradise Lodge Monteverde, Costa Rica
Birdwatcher’s Paradise works with the Monteverde Institute to plant trees to help reforest the former farmland that it sits on. You can spot tons of indigenous wildlife here, as well as take tours from local guides and sip on organic coffee from the farm next door.
5. La Casa Verde Banos, Ecuador
With aims to go totally off-grid by running on wind-generated power from the valley, this eco-retreat has banned unsustainable building material like jungle hardwood, has a strong recycling program and gets almost all of its produce from local suppliers.
4. Deepdale Backpackers in Norfolk, England
Housed in 17th-century barns converted to incorporate green technology (roof insulation, under-floor heating, low-flush toilets, energy drawn from solar panels), Deepdale Backpackers won Enjoy England’s Sustainable Tourism award in 2009.
3. Eco Oasis Mojkovac, Montenegro
The family-run Eco Oasis consists of four traditional log cabins sits close to the River Tara in Montenegro’s Black Pine Woods, a protected UNESCO World Heritage Site. Cabins are TV-free: you’re encouraged to hike, bike and tour the stunning surroundings instead.
2. Loch Ossian Hostel on Rannock Moor near Edinburgh, Scotland
Loch Ossian’s electricity is generated by wind turbine and solar panels, and it’s only reachable on foot (a mile’s walk from the UK’s most remote train station Courrour, as featured in Trainspotting). All water is recycled, and the hostel even uses bat-friendly paint!
1. Tranquility Island Eco-Tourism and Dive Escape on Moso Island, Vanuatu
Offers beds in a traditional thatch-roof fare on the tiny island’s beach; with reef diving and baby turtle and dolphin-spotting on offer too. Electricity is generated at set times of the day, with no light at all except from your own torch at night. It’s a comfy escape to paradise.
Isabel Clift writes for HostelBookers, the best place on the web for booking hostels and budget accommodation. As a London-based travel writer and blogger, she’s obsessed with all things Scandinavian and has reviewed hotels from New York to Berlin to Tetbury on past travels. She also has a thing for long-distance train journeys.
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