What could be more enjoyable than a relaxing holiday in a secluded lodge, surrounded by fascinating wildlife and spectacular scenery? If you can have world-class luxury accommodation, that is both eco-friendly and supports animal conservation at the same time, then we think you are off to a good start. That is why we have prepared a selection of some of the best nature lodges and eco-resorts in Asia, perfect for adventurous couples, nature-loving families, honeymoons or romantic getaways.
These lodges provide excellent accommodation with an eco-friendly philosophy, preserving the breath-taking beauty of their natural surroundings by blending in seamlessly with the environment around them. They also offer a wide range of animal related activities, which are both educational and entertaining, while helping to support and promote wildlife conservation efforts. If you love nature and animals, then you should definitely consider visiting one of these amazing nature lodges and eco-resorts.
Borneo Rainforest Lodge – Malaysia
Nestled deep in a remote rainforest valley, the Borneo Rainforest Lodge offers unique wildlife experiences in the heart of Sabah. The Danum Valley Conservation Area is home to orangutans, gibbons, mousedeer, clouded leopards, elephants and what is thought to be the last surviving Bornean rhinoceroses left in the wild. The Borneo Rainforest Lodge boasts a comprehensive green policy and is especially active in orangutan conservation and research.
Some of the highlights on offer include a range of spa treatments and fine-dining experiences, as well as wildlife treks, night safaris and the spectacular Tree Top Canopy Walk. The Borneo Rainforest Lodge offers the perfect blend of comfort, relaxation and excitement. For the truly adventurous, you can combine a trip to the Danum Valley Conservation Area and Borneo Rainforest Lodge with a wilderness tour of Borneo, visiting the famous Kinabalu Mountains and Kinabatangan River.
Misool Eco Resort– Indonesia
This exclusive dive resort is located on a private island surrounded by a 1220-square-kilometer protected marine area in southern Raja Ampat. The resort runs its own conservation centre, which is registered as a charitable organization under the name Misool Baseftin. This organization has dedicated its resources to several marine life conservation efforts, including reef restoration and the creation of a “No-Take” zone, monitored by its own Ranger Patrol. In 2011, the funds from the resort were instrumental in the creation of a shark and manta ray sanctuary.
This resort offers the ideal accommodation for diving enthusiasts and lovers of marine life, cottages built out of reclaimed wood on stilts, with direct access to the dive centre. The reefs of Raja Ampat are home to over 1400 different species of fish. Besides their work with marine conservation, the resort is very active in socially responsible efforts. Misool Eco Resort employs almost exclusively locals from the nearby villages and their community involvement includes funding school libraries throughout the region and sponsoring school teachers for remote villages.
4 Rivers Floating Lodge – Cambodia
This lodge has to be seen to be believed. It is comprised of white tents perched on the banks of the Tatai River and located deep in the heart of the Cardamom rainforest. This floating lodge must surely be the ultimate luxury “camping” experience, providing of course that your idea of camping involves tents equipped with designer furniture, flat-screen televisions and a minibar. The 4 Rivers Floating Lodge also offers fine-dining of exquisitely plated Cambodian delicacies, made from fresh local ingredients, as well as providing excellent services and amenities in general.
The Cardamoms are literally teeming with wildlife, with over 100 mammal species and a staggering 553 varieties of birds. Gibbons, sun bears, elephants, leopards and tigers, all call this tropical paradise home. Guests at the 4 Rivers Floating Lodge can participate in diverse activities, such as kayaking, trekking, fishing and sunset cruises along the Tatai River. There are also many opportunities to learn about the local cultures, beliefs and traditions of the indigenous people who live along the river. This is the perfect lodge for luxury travellers with a taste for adventure.
Six Senses Con Dao Resort – Vietnam
The Con Dao archipelago is an area of outstanding beauty in the Southeast of Vietnam. Formerly used as a prison colony during the French occupation, the islands are relatively untouched and undeveloped. Today, the only inmates are high-end travellers and luxury resort guests, who either refuse to leave or keep returning of their own volition. The Con Dao National Park is home to several endangered species, including a few rare species of turtles, dolphins and dugongs.
The Six Senses Con Dao Resort is particularly dedicated to the preservation of the dugong, working in close cooperation with the National Park Authorities to create the best possible conditions for this rare and much loved marine mammal. The resort also actively supports the local community, especially in regards to child safety and education. A concerted effort has been made to provide clean water supplies to schools, as well as free swimming lessons to local children who are not traditionally taught how to swim.
Anantara Golden Triangle Resort – Thailand
The Anantara Golden Triangle Elephant Camp and Resort works tirelessly to promote welfare for elephants in captivity and rescue mistreated animals. The camp provides a home for around 30 rescued elephants, that cannot be returned to the wild, and is one of our preferred Buffalo Tours audited elephant camps. Besides their work with elephant welfare, Anantara is extremely active in social responsibility initiatives and provides scholarships to some 449 disadvantaged children every year through the Heinecke Foundation.
The resort offers a wide range of activities including spa treatments, yoga classes, cooking classes and even Muay Thai kickboxing. Among some of the more unique animal related experiences are an elephant picnic and elephant yoga. Guests can trek through the jungle alongside the elephants and witness them playfully bathe in the river. Our absolute favourite activity has to be dining with baby elephants as pictured below:
You can read more about our work with elephant camp auditing and responsible animal tourism here.
We hope this article has inspired you to consider supporting responsible travel by visiting a nature lodge or eco-resort as part of your next holiday. You can book these amazing locations by contacting us today for fantastic offers and packages.