If you can’t afford the trek to Jordan, don’t fret — there are ecolodges closer to home. Here are five Canadian ecolodges for the environmentally-minded vacationer.
1. The Ecolodge at The Tofino Botanical Gardens, B.C.
Located between Tofino and Chesterman’s Beach on Vancouver Island, the 10-room ecolodge is situated on 12 acres of waterfront gardens and rainforest. The ecolodge works towards using energy efficiently and protecting the environment, with water conservation measures like using rainwater to replenish gardens and low-flow showerheads for guests. Going beyond yoga retreats and nature walks, there are also activities for energetic travellers, with sea-kayaking and surfing lessons available.
2. Cree Village Eco Lodge, Ont.
It may be Canada’s first ecolodge designed and created by indigenous people. This 20-room lodge in Moose Factory, Ont. is filled with Cree history. Don’t miss out on the beauty surrounding the lodge — a boat tour on a freighter canoe is a must! You’ll travel along Moose River to James Bay, where a stop at Shipsands Bird Sanctuary beach gives you the opportunity to view ancient travel marks and marine life. If you’re really lucky, you may catch of glimpse of the northern lights.
3. Waters Edge Eco Lodge, Sask.
Opening this summer, the lodge is located on the edge of Greig Lake inside Meadow Lake Provincial Park. Guests are able to enjoy the picturesque setting and all-season activities, while knowing the lodge is working to conserve water and energy. Relax by an outdoor fire or enjoy berry-picking in the summer. In the winter, break out the skies, snowshoes, and skates for snow-filled fun.
4. Trout Point Lodge, N.S.
Only a 30-minute drive from Yarmouth and three hours from Halifax, enjoy this water and wilderness retreat. Close to the Bay of Fundy and the French Acadian coast, guests can swim, canoe or kayak. If you prefer to stay on land, the neighbouring Tobeatic Wilderness Area is perfect for hiking and wildlife viewing. But a stay here is hardly roughing it. Local cuisine is paired with award-winning wine, after which, guests can relax in the outdoor barrel sauna or the wood-fired hot tub.
5. Bathurst Inlet Lodge, Nunavut
The best places are sometimes the hardest to reach. Accessible only by a chartered plane from Yellowknife, the lodge is 48 kilometres north of the Arctic Circle and is only open a few weeks each year. Days at the lodge are filled with watching for birds and seals and listening to the tinkling of sea ice breaking up. In the evenings, the local Inuit community comes to the lodge and engages with guests. You may see a young girl modeling a traditional dress or a grandfather demonstrating hunting tools. Be ready to reciprocate – you’ll be invited to share a story or poem with the locals.