Fed up of cleaning up after yourself or your family? Desperate for a break free of the stress and clutter that comes with everyday life? It’s no surprise really that Booking.com has found that more than half (57%) of Kiwi travellers value experiences more highly than material possessions.
For some peace of mind, these minimalist and natural locations will provide the perfect haven. From the natural beauty of Alajuela and Los Rios, to the trendy but calm Costa Blanca and Stockholm, to the cultural haven of Kanagawa, these properties will help you to cultivate calmness, channel a balanced mind and bring the good vibes back home with you.
Alajuela, Costa Rica
Escape to Alajuela in Costa Rica and explore the beauty of mother-nature. Clear your mind with a relaxing soak in the Termales del Bosque Hot Springs, surround yourself with the beautiful scenery of Rio Celeste, or take a scenic hike around Poas Volcano.
Where to stay: The charming Casitas Tenorio B&B and Farm is the perfect nature retreat for travellers seeking relaxation and natural beauty, with the Rio Celeste and Volcano Tenorio National Park both a short drive away. Set in lush tropical gardens, each cozy cottage offers panoramic vistas of the surrounding nature parks. Guests can also roll up their sleeves on the working farm and help milk the cows and make the cheese. Keep an eye out for the sloths and monkeys that live on the property, as well as hummingbirds and toucans.
Los Rios, Chile
Vacate to the Los Rios region in Chile and venture through the Huilo-Huilo Biological Reserve to discover the wonders of the rainforest, with the majestic backdrop of the Andes mountain range. Otherwise, opt for a hike through the Villarrica National Park; the perfect peaceful retreat to clear your thoughts and re-energise.
Where to stay: The striking Huilo Huilo Nothofagus Hotel & Spa is the perfect accommodation to feel like a child again with this treehouse-style hotel nestled in the forest. Located in the heart of the Huilo Biological Reserve, it boasts indoor and outdoor pools, plus a relaxing spa; ideal for recharging your batteries after an energising hike. Wake up to sprawling views of the nature reserve and breathe in the fresh mountain air on your balcony.
Costa Blanca, Spain
Costa Blanca is more than 200 km of beautiful coastline on Spain’s south eastern Mediterranean coast, but there is a lot more to discover than just sun, sand and sea. Soak in the heritage and history with a trip to the Catedral de Santa María in Murcia, get your cultural fix at Museo Arqueológico Provincial, take in the tranquility of nature by visiting the Algar waterfalls, or take a relaxing hike across the vast Serra Gelada nature conservation area.
Where to stay: Treat your mind, body and soul at the luxurious Sha Wellness Clinic and spa. Situated on the beautiful Costa Blanca coastline in Albir, it offers a wide range of treatments and facilities based on the SHA method, integrating natural therapies, therapeutic nutrition and preventive medicine.
Surrounded by islands and enriched with history and culture, Stockholm is a must-visit destination to cleanse your mind, body and soul. Take in the fresh air and sea breeze by sailing around one of Stockholm’s 30,000 island archipelago. Embrace the Nordic ritual of sweating out your stresses with a detoxing trip to Hellasgården’s lakeside sauna.
Where to stay: The eco-friendly Hotel Skeppsholmen offers delicious Swedish dishes at the onsite restaurant with beautiful waterfront views. Take a ferry to Stockholm’s Old Town, Gamla Stan, or unwind in your fluffy bathrobe and slippers and enjoy a relaxing stay on this peaceful city island.
Just outside of the neon-lit and eccentric city of Tokyo is the coastal city of Kanagawa. Take a relaxing stroll through the Sankeien Gardens, explore your spirituality with a trip to the Hase-dera Temple and the Kotoku-in; the Great Buddha of Kamakura. Following this, surround yourself with natural beauty during a trip to Lake Ashi and Sunset Falls.
Where to stay: WeBase Hostel Kamakura offers affordable accommodation just a short walk from Yuigahama Beach. Guests can take part in daily yoga classes and meditation sessions in the onsite yoga studio or join in the beach yoga classes.