Humans have always felt at home in the trees. It is, after all, where we came from a long, long time ago. But even in the modern age, trees play a very important role in our lives. People who live near trees are known to have better physical and mental health, and the presence of trees is important for preventing climate change.
Naturally, as we learn more about our relationship to trees and our planet, we’re realizing we want to spend more time in and around them. More and more people are building creative treehouses for use as hotels, restaurants, teahouses, or occasionally as a means of communicating with extraterrestrials (seriously! — see the Beach Rock Treehouse below). Here are some of the coolest treehouses in the world.
1. TreeHouse Point
Just outside Seattle in Issaquah, Washington, is the treehouse B&B named TreeHouse Point. The place has six treehouse rooms available.
2. Silky Oaks Lodge
Silky Oaks Lodge is a luxury resort in the jungle around Queensland, Australia’s Mossman Gorge River. It features a treetop restaurant overlooking the river.
3. Yellow Treehouse Restaurant
The Yellow Treehouse Restaurant near Auckland, New Zealand, is built around a 40-meter-tall redwood tree. It doesn’t serve as a regular restaurant — it’s only open for special events.
4. Finca Bellavista
Finca Bellavista is a sustainable treehouse community in Costa Rica’s rainforest canopies. You can purchase a parcel to build your own treehouse on, or just crash there for a few nights. They let you zipline between treehouses. It’s quite possibly the coolest place on earth.
The second-to-none Treehotel in Harads, Sweden, has six absolutely incredible treehouse rooms — from the bizarre, alien-themed UFO room to the almost-invisible Mirrorcube, it takes your weirdest ideas about treehouses and runs with them.
6. Nanshan Treehouse Resort
On the island of Hainan in the South China Sea, the Nanshan Treehouse Resort features three large treehouses that can house up to 20 people. The resort’s also near a Buddhist “theme park,” with a number of pagodas and temples.
7. Teahouse Tetsu
The Teahouse Tetsu is exactly what it sounds like: a teahouse in a tree. It was designed by architect Terunobu Fujimori and sits among the cherry blossoms in Hokuto City, Japan.
8. Soneva Kiri Treepod
The Soneva Kiri Resort on Koh Kood, Thailand, has a one-of-a-kind feature: “treepod” dining. Basically, you enter the pod on the jungle floor, and then it’s hoisted into the canopy, where you’re served a meal by a waiter on a zipline.
9. Nothofagus Hotel
The Nothofagus Hotel is among the treetops of the Huilo Huilo Biological Reserve in Chilean Patagonia.
10. Inhabit Treehouse
The Inhabit Treehouse was created by designer Antony Gibbon. It can be accessed through a trapdoor underneath the house. Unfortunately, this design as of yet only exists on the drawing board, but you can change that.
11. Muskoka Treehouse
Designer Lukasz Kos’s treehouse in Lake Muskoka, Ontario, is named the 4Treehouse. It was designed to minimize its impact on the surrounding trees. There are three levels to this treehouse, which looks like a Japanese lantern when lit up at night.
12. The Minister’s Treehouse
The Minister’s Treehouse in Crossville, Tennessee, is possibly the world’s largest treehouse (it hasn’t been verified yet), standing 97 feet tall with over 80 rooms. Minister Horace Burgess started building it in 1993 and hasn’t stopped (though it’s been temporarily closed by the county fire marshal). It also serves as a church. The house is built around a massive oak with six other oaks used for support.
13. Hapuku Lodge and Treehouses
Hapuku Lodge is a luxury resort in Kaikoura, New Zealand, featuring a number of 30-foot-tall treehouses that overlook the mountains and the coast. The treehouses are big enough for couples or for families.
14. Costa Rican Airbnb
This treehouse with a wraparound balcony is in Alajuela, Costa Rica, and is adjacent to hot springs. It’s $85 a night. It’s a short drive from the treehouse to Costa Rica’s famous Volcano Arenal.
15. The Burning Man Steampunk Treehouse
Burning Man has given the world a lot of awesome things, but it tends to burn those things at the end of the festival. Mercifully, the awesome Steampunk Treehouse, created by Sean Orlando and Kinetic Steam Works for the 2007 festival, was relocated to the Dogfish Head Brewery in Milton, Delaware, where it’ll stay permanently.
16. Three Story Treehouse
The Three Story Treehouse is an attraction in British Columbia’s Enchanted Forest Theme Park. It includes fairy-tale characters and nature walks, but the highlight of the park is clearly the treehouse.
17. Alessandria Treehouse
Another beautiful treehouse available on Airbnb. This one, in Alessandria, Italy, offers free wifi and access to a 19th-century wine cellar.
This bizarre treehouse in Beach Rock Village in Okinawa, Japan, was built by Kobayashi Takashi with the intention of communicating with beings from outer space.
19. Free Spirit Spheres
Free Spirit Spheres are available for rent in Qualicum Beach, British Columbia. Suspended from webs of rope, the spherical hotel rooms are accessible through spiral staircases and small suspension bridges.
In Aquitaine, France, the Chateaux dans les Arbres features the Monbazillac Treehouse, a treehouse you can rent on Airbnb. There’s a wraparound terrace with a Jacuzzi.