At the risk of putting a dampener on your next trip way, have you ever thought about the carbon footprint of your holidays? The biggest sin is obviously air travel, so if you want to minimise the impact you have you can start by staying in Australia.
Then, consider booking an eco-friendly lodging in place of a run-of-the-mill hotel. Green lodgings have come a long way from trickling showers and scratchy toilet paper. In fact, some good-for-the-environment accommodation is so chic, you wouldn't even know it was eco.
With Earth Day as inspiration (which is coming up this Friday, kicking off a long weekend) we were inspired to put together a collection of stays that tick boxes both in the style and sustainability stakes.
The Daisy House, Subiaco, WA.
Sleeping up to four guests, this two bedroom home is downright adorable. Not compromising on mod-cons such as heating and air-con, The Daisy House was hand built by award winning Perth architect Brian Klopper in 1978. It was one of the first homes in the area to use recycled bricks in addition to reclaimed steel from the railway.
Treehouse Eco Shack Retreat, Currumbin valley, QLD.
Aptly named, you'll feel like you're actually floating above the trees in this place. With rainwater harvested from the roof for all of the houses water needs and 100 percent alternate renewable power, you can sit smugly observing the 160 plus different bird species sighted nearby without any enviro-guilt whatsoever.
Treehouse Blue Mountains, Bilpin, NSW.
Looking for luxury? This place is it. Sleeping only two for close to a grand a night, this stunning cabin is nestled (literally up in the trees) between two national parks and a World Heritage listed rainforest. Though it's likely you won't want to leave the log lined and fur adored space up in the sky, and for that price we don't blame you.
Hobart Hideaway Pods, Kingston, TAS.
20 minutes from Hobart, this property boasts a collection of 'pods' which are wheelchair accessible, offer stunning views and are kind to nature (the toilet is self composting). The kitchen has all you need to take your own brekkie stuff and kick back for long lazy days talking to the alpacas. It's also a steal at $140 a night.
Point Boston Beach House, Port Lincoln, SA.
Get a few couples together and head to this house which sleeps six, situated in a friendly beachside eco estate. The outdoor shower is perfect for rinsing off after a swim and if you're lucky you might spy some dolphins frolicking in the ocean.
Tanonga Ride Lodge, Charlton Gully, SA.
This property is environmentally sensitive and boasts a self sufficient sustainable design, including solar power and a wood fire. Perched high on the hilltop with 360 degree views, even the supplied toiletries are organic, derived wholly from pure and natural ingredients (of course).
Peninsula Shepherds Hut Retreat, Mount Eliza, VIC.
This place proves that small can still mean mighty. Positioned in a private courtyard next to a secluded beach, don't mistake this caravan style accommodation for slumming it. Owner Robert claims that nearly all the visitors to the Peninsula head further South, leaving Mount Eliza untouched by the city crowds.
Kalang Mud, Bellingen, NSW.
6kms from Bellingen town, this home was literally handmade by owners Helen and Bruce. "We hand built every brick, scrounged every window and door from the wreckers yards and put it altogether with attitude. The property sits on 4 acres on the Kalang River, the gardens are lush and green with sculptures and seasonal surprises everywhere," they proudly state.
Artists Eco Mud Brick Retreat, Pokolbin, NSW.
This accommodation is a large private room within a residential mud brick home overlooking the pool with a private en-suite bathroom and separate entry. The property is run on rainwater and solar power. A fun option if you're open to staying with two artists in the heart of the Hunter Valley wine region.