We recently wrote about the weirdest hostels to stay in in the world. That list included spending the night in a jumbo jet, a converted prison, in a cave, and on the rooftop of a Moroccan riad. But it’s not just backpackers who get to stay in ‘unique’ kinds of accommodation. Here we list the weirdest accommodation alternatives if you’re on a bigger budget.
Photo By: Kaklauttanen Arctic Resort
Glass Igloo at Kakslauttanen Arctic Resort, Finland
These glass igloos pictured above and in the cover photo of this article are magic! You can sleep in style, while enjoying a view of the northern lights and a sky full of bright stars. Each igloo is designed for two (or max three) and have a toilet, but the showers and saunas (it is Finland after-all!) are located in a separate building. Kakslauttanen is in far north Finland (very far from the capital, Helsinki) but the benefit of this is the incredible wilderness, and closeness to the Arctic Sea. You can get a flight from Helsinki to this area, and by the way it’s located in the Lapland region, meaning you might also like to pop in to see if Santa is home!
Good to know! If sleeping in an igloo with it’s relatively basic amenities turns you off, then don’t worry! The Kakslauttanen Arctic Resort also offers an igloo that adjoins the side of a log cabin. So you have the best of both worlds! The log cabin sleeps six, and has its own sauna, kitchen and fireplace.
No-Man’s Fort (aka Solent Fort), England
One of the forts in the body of water south England called The Solent has been transformed into a unique form of accommodation. No-Man’s Fort is a fort (pictured above) located in the waters between England’s mainland and the Isle of Wight. Rock up by boat and stay the night. The fort had played an important role in the protection of England from various threats including Napoleon, and the two world wars. Most come for a short two-day getaway in the relaxing environs and historical element, while the rooms range from smart suits, to the Lighthouse suite which boasts floor to ceiling windows. The stargazing from the atrium can be incredible on a clear night. Visiting No-Man’s Fort can be done by following the 2-day planned itinerary which includes activities and meals.
Salt Palace, Bolivia
One of Bolivia’s most famous natural landmarks is the Salt Flats of Uyuni (aka Salar de Uyuni). The Salt Palace is made pretty much entirely of the salt found in the area. You can choose from nice double or twin rooms. Remember the characteristics of the Salt Flat vary depending on weather its dry or rainy season, although the hotel is open year-round. If going during the rainy season the fine layer of water on the flat will make it as reflective as a mirror! While in the area you should check out our guide to the Andes mountain range, and check out our tips for backpackers in South America.
Magic Mountain Hotel, Chile
In the middle of the Chile’s Patagonian Rainforest, you’ll find the Magic Mountain Hotel that was established by members of the the Hulio Hulio reserve. The mountain is truly fairytale-esque with a waterfall that cascades down the side from the top.
Ice Hotel, Sweden
The Ice Hotel is the world’s first hotel made of ice and snow. It’s located in the Swedish village of Jukkasjärvi, well within the Arctic Circle. This hotel is incredible because each summer it melts, while it’s built up again when the cold weather sets in again. The resulting hotel, which looks different each year it’s designed, is both accommodations and an art project of sorts. The ‘cold rooms’ are -5 degrees (!!!), but there are also some warm rooms. Each of the cold rooms includes an ice art installation. Those sleeping in the cold rooms are advised what to bring as you’ll be sleeping in your thermals and other warm clothing. You can fly, drive or get public transport to this awesome destination. Considering you’ll be sleeping in a room made of ice, in temps in the minuses, in a hotel that will disappear as the snow melts, this definitely qualifies one of the world’s weirdest accommodation alternatives!
Treehouse Point, United States
Soaring high up, these gorgeous tree houses are a passion of the owner of the Treehouse Point lodgings in Washington state. They don’t include bathrooms (these are shared facilities back on the ground), but you’re practically guaranteed a peaceful night’s sleep among the nature, with no disruptions. This is a tranquil setting and the things to see and do include hikes, meditation and yoga.
The Boot Bed and Breakfast, New Zealand
Have you ever thought of living in a boot? It turns out one of the weirdest accommodation alternatives allows you to do just that! The Boot Bed and Breakfast is a fairytale location in the Tasman region of New Zealand. The Boot is built like a cottage for one booking at a time. Downstairs is the loungeroom and kitchenette, while up the spiral staircase is the bedroom. Nearby you can explore New Zealand’s natural sights: beaches, mountains, Abel Tasman National Park, wineries, galleries, cafes, golf courses, the city of Nelson and quaint villages and towns.
Another alternative in New Zealand is the The Hobbit Motel, so for fans of all things The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings, this could be the option for you!
Giraffe Manor, Kenya
Oh my goodness! Feed a giraffe from your window! Stay at the eco-friendly Giraffe Manor in Kenya and do just that! Located in the Langata suburb of Nairobi, this iconic building is perfect for animal lovers. Other than a beautiful building and stunning interiors, the best thing about the Giraffe Manor is the tall animals that come by to say hello and maybe even get some treats from guests! This has got to be one of the weirdest accommodation alternatives, but also the sweetest!
Four Seasons Resort, Bora Bora
Bora Bora is a small island in the South Pacific, and the most famous of French Polynesia’s islands. You might not have heard of Bora Bora, but the Four Seasons Resort there offers rooms in mini-houses on stilts and all the luxury you could imagine. The one-bedroom overwater bungalow suites have a view over Mount Otemanu, and water right at your door. Can you imagine anything more romantic or relaxing?