Vacation like a Hobbit: How Small Spaces are a Big Trend

By Marc Acton on June 25, 2014 at 6:00 am EST
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Big things sometimes come in small packages, and increasingly that goes for vacation properties too. While unique vacation and housing options have always been around, many of the hot new properties (for purchase and for rent) come from the non-traditional, or “adventure travel” market.

“Glam Camping”

If you’re an adventure vacationer and you haven’t heard of “glamping,” you will soon. It combines the nature-loving aspects of camping with the comforts of more glamorous housing options. Many of these houses are available for purchase or for rent. Here are three glamping options with houses that would be just as at home in Tolkien’s Shire as they are on AirBnB.com:

Hawaii Volcano Treehouse

This treehouse on “the big island” is located near Hawaii’s Volcanoes National Park. It’s run by Skye Peterson, a volcano enthusiast who has decided to share his self-built accommodations with other connoisseurs of adventurous accommodations. He says, “Most people that come here are folks that like to enjoy their lives and nature and see the beauty that our world has to offer when you slow down a little and look. They all smile easily and seem to be at home in their own skins. Some say they can cross it off their bucket list and others never want to leave. All of them thank me for offering a place that's unique, fun and one of a kind.”

Redwood Tree House

History and nature meet at Linda Forssman’s Redwood Tree House outside of Healdsburg, California. It’s been nestled in a ring of century-old redwood trees (one of which was used to build the original cabin) since 1927. Forssman says, “People who stay here are looking for an experience, not just a place to stay. The combination of nature, peace, the river in the front of the house, and the trees all contribute to the ambiance. The property offers the best of both worlds: Quiet nature retreat plus access to a world class food and wine destination town.”

Timber Ridge Outpost & Cabins

The Illinois Ozarks are home to this collection of luxury log cabins and treehouses just outside of the Shawnee National Forest. Owner Elizabeth Canfarelli says they’ve had guests from 13 different countries, all escaping the rat race of day to day life. “People want to remember simpler times…and are looking to create unique memories for their children and Grandchildren. The world is a stressful place these days – people want to go somewhere they can relax, spend quality time with their loved ones and remember the important things in life….family. There is no place more peaceful than sitting 24' up on the deck in a 200 year old white oak watching the squirrels jump from tree to tree and listening to the birds sing. The stresses of life seem to just melt away.”

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