Travel has gone green. From remote hideaways with Himalayan views to family-focused golf resorts closer to home, travel destinations are keeping their environmental footprint in check. Here we have three gorgeous getaways, plus the perfect outfit for wherever you go.
Located on Central Florida’s northwestern “Nature Coast,” 75 miles north of Tampa, Plantation on Crystal River is an eco-friendly luxury resort that has made it a priority to save energy, water and reduce its overall carbon footprint. A member of the Green Hotels Association, the resort also prides itself on being a welcoming, family friendly place, where you can lounge by the pool, kayak on the river, or take a tour to see the local celebrities—manatees. The Crystal River is one of the best places to catch a glimpse of these VIPs in action.
The greeting at Ballyvolane House—”Would you care for tea and homemade cake in your room?”—could not be more welcoming. Set in Ireland’s County Cork, an easy drive from Dublin, the gracious house was built in the Georgian style in 1728. Now owned by the Green family (no pun intended!), the house is a relaxed, beautifully decorated country getaway. Think Downton Abbey, but real. Even better? The food, nearly all of which comes directly from the property’s farm (including the gin, for cocktail hour.) Country walks, trips down to the coast, private fly fishing beats—there’s plenty to do. But you might just want to sit, relax and enjoy the spectacular grounds.
A chain of four luxuriously appointed lodges, the Shakti group was founded by Jamshyd Sethna, one of India’s leading travel professionals. The locations are all extraordinary; in remote areas with views of the Himalayas. Having worked in India’s luxury travel business for over two decades, Sethna saw an increasing number of sophisticated travelers seeking something beyond five-star luxury and great monuments—something simpler, which would take them off well-trodden paths. Minimizing negative impact on the culturally and ecologically sensitive areas is a central tenet of Shakti’s philosophy. The hotel uses earth-friendly materials in all its buildings; hires and trains as many local people as possible, and much more. Go the distance for a truly once-in-a-lifetime experience.