Everyone dreams of living in a treehouse. Some of us even make it as far as the canopy. In most cases though, our foray consists of little more than a couple of pallets and a length of twine. An admirable effort for an eight-year-old, but hardly somewhere you could spend the night.
Then we grow up and the dream of living in a living organism is abandoned, along with the aspiration to become an astronaut and journey to the end of space.
But who says it has to be that way? What’s to stop us, as fully formed adults, from living that dream? If not for our sake, then for our kids, who are at the same stage as we once were: aiming high, with eyes to the skies. We’ve uncovered ten amazing treehouses where you can eat, sleep and play. No building required. If you can handle the heights, they’re yours for the night.
Why live on the ground when you can live in the trees?
1. Creatures and creature comforts in an enchanted treehouse
Some houses are built in the trees. But in Costa Rica, there’s a place where the tree’s built in the house. What came first – the tree or the treehouse?
While you ponder that one, here’s what you can expect during your nature-hugging stay:
The most soothing, harmonious holiday of your life
The prospect of living in a giant rubber tree
Falling asleep to the sounds of the jungle
Morning coffee as you gaze across the canopy
The occasional sloth popping by to check up on the neighbours
Oh, and if all that wasn’t enough, your tree-cum-holiday home is also close to the beach. Butlins just can’t compete.Swing over to Topo’s Tree House
When you were a kid, you never dreamed of having a treehouse with a HDTV and internet
2. A treehouse with a hot tub near a volcano – just like you always imagined
Take the following ingredients and combine them to make a kick-ass holiday: a treehouse, a hammock, a hot tub, a bamboo bedroom, a trapdoor, a veranda, a Hobbit door. Hawaii’s Mahinui Na Lani is billed as “a playhouse for grownups” for reasons that are patently obvious.
This two-person abode boasts all the cool features you dreamed of having in your treehouse as a kid, only instead of drinking Sunny D on the veranda you get to sup Prosecco. And to kick back in a fragrant cedar hot tub while you watch the stars. And to be grownups, but without all the rubbish things that come with being grown up, like responsibilities. Leave the kids with their grandparents for a week; they wouldn’t appreciate this place anyway.Visit Mahinui Na Lani
3. The house so close to the trees we’re just gonna call it a treehouse
How close to the trees does a log cabin have to be for it to become a treehouse? We’re not sure (Google wouldn’t say), but this Tennessee timber dwelling straddles that ambiguous line. It’s listed as a log cabin but is named – wait for it – The Treehouse. We’ll leave it to you to argue over this one while you kick back in the hot tub and marvel at all that wood: the wood in the woods and the wood in your cabin, high above the Great Smoky Mountains Parkway. When you were a kid, you probably never dreamed of having a treehouse with an HDTV and internet, huh? Oh well, you’ve got one now. Deal with it as best you can.
Whales? In the jungle?
4. The treehouse with the best view in the world
Disclaimer: ‘The best view in the world’ is a highly subjective statement. There may be treehouses with better views, but this is by far the greatest we’ve seen yet. On one side, the calm waters of Marigot Bay, while to the rear, the rainforest of St Lucia. Hummingbirds preen their feathers, lizards scamper dextrously and a green heron watches patiently for fish. The Treehouse (get used to reading about a lot of properties called The Treehouse in this article) may not be built in the canopy, but it’s surrounded by leaves and boughs on three sides. There’s a secluded cove for snorkelling, a sun deck and an abundance of fruit that can be picked and juiced in an instant. All hyperbole aside, this place is paradise.Stay in this tree house hideaway
5. The triple-decker treehouse
Costa Ricans seem to love their treehouses and this one might just be the pick of the bunch. Where does one even start? Let’s begin with the timber; purple heart and teak manu complimented by local materials. There’s a spiral staircase, hand-crafted furnishings and an exquisite open plan – in fact make that open wall – living room. That’s not a real jaguar chilling on the top deck by the way. Least, we don’t think it is. There is plenty of bona fide wildlife to spot though including capuchin monkeys, scarlet macaws, sloths, eagles, hummingbirds and humpback whales. Whales? In the jungle? Oh yeah, we forgot to mention the other cool thing about Punta Jaguar: it boasts gorgeous ocean views. As the saying goes, sometimes you can’t see the whales for the monkeys.
Sleep in a tent, play in the trees
6. A room with a view of Sunset Beach
How’s your heart? Still beating? Good. Keep it that way, cos you’re gonna need it for our next treehouse which is described as being “not for the faint-hearted”. That’ll be on account of the 100 stairs you’ve got to ascend to reach your des res. Still, when you’re living in a treehouse, climbing comes with the territory. When you reach the top your reward is a view over the surfer’s paradise that is Sunset Beach. Oh, we’re back in Hawaii by the way, but you’ll have figured that already. Fall asleep to birdsong, awaken to the waves then sprint all the way to the beach and surf, snorkel, swim or windsurf your way from there. Repeat every single day of your holiday, cos what else are you gonna do? This is Hawaii, yo. It’s all about the water. And the trees. And the organic fruit and tropical flowers and the never-ending beauty.Climb up to this Sunset Beach Tree house
7. How much wow can you handle?
Technically this is another home that’s not quite a treehouse, but once you’ve glimpsed this little beauty, you’re unlikely to get too hung up on semantics. The Treehouse (there’s that name again) is an outright stunner. Situated on New Zealand’s North Island, it’s set across three levels that are linked by a spiral staircase. There’s a spa pool where you can kick back and watch the stars, a suntrap living area, a treetop vista, decking and BBQ area. That’s a lotta wow, and we haven’t even discusses the adjacent vineyard or fishpond.Stay at the Treehouse, Waiheke Island
Enough to pacify even the most quarrelsome of siblings
8. Live like a maharajah in the sky
Not all cottages have to be nestled in the hills or posited on the beach; in India, they can be found lurking in trees. Treetop Cottage is a charming arboreal retreat complete with living branches that pass through it. Rich decor, traditional trinkets and ornate carvings give this Indian abode an air of the exotic. Take to the trees and become one with nature. Is there any other way?Live like a maharajah in this Indian treehouse
9. Rent a teepee, get a treehouse
Where would you rather stay – in a teepee or a treehouse? In Texas Hill Country, you don’t have to make that choice because you get to enjoy the best of both worlds. Seven teepees (or ‘tipis’ if you prefer) are situated close to Guadalupe River, each with sleeping space for six. They’re served by a common area treehouse complete with games room and decking. Sleep in a tent, play in the trees.
10. A treehouse for the kids, a house for the grownups
What to do if the young ‘uns are set on a treehouse but you’d rather stretch out in the comfort of a bricks and mortar home? Well, you could just tell them to put up or shut up – you’re the one paying for the holiday after all. Then again, you could reach a compromise by checking into this sumptuous holiday home in the Rhone-Alpes. With eight bedrooms, there’s enough room to sleep the Waltons, but the real fun can be found in the garden. In addition to a swing, barbecue, heated pool with slide and table tennis, there is not one but two treehouses, enough to pacify even the most quarrelsome of siblings.Check out this combo rental in Rhone-Alpes
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