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21 Remote European Escapes this summer

Section: UK — by techstar, 13 Jul 2015

Deai, Soller, Holiday home, sleeps 6

No 21. Majorca off-grid near Deia

From a private island to a lakeside cabin, via a Majorcan mountaintop with a spring water fed hot shower. From Finland in the North to Corsica in the South – here are 21 options that will make a great break. We save the best to last.

1 Domaine de Murtoli Southwest Corsica

Set amid 5,000 acres (20 sq km) on a private estate in the southwest of Corsica, this is a collection of 16 restored shepherds’ dwellings. Each has 3ft-thick stone walls and its own garden and pool. There’s a two-mile (3km) stretch of private beach to cavort on, although a couple of the houses — sleeping between two and 13 people — have their own private bays and saunas. Breakfast is left on the doorstep in a wicker basket, and the guests are encouraged to help themselves to the fruit, vegetables and herbs from the kitchen garden to use in the well-appointed kitchens. Groceries are also delivered daily, but as back-up you can take advantage of the two restaurants on site. (more…)

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Cedar Rapids eco lodge

Section: N.America — by rooter, 16 Jan 2015

Cabins_Cedar RapidsDown a somewhat private lane on the west side of Fontana Park in Buchanan County sit two solid new cabins — prime examples of sustainable resources, says Buchanan County Conservation Executive Director Dan Cohen.

Built and opened to the public in 2011, the cabins feature many sustainable-living elements, including triple-paned, energy-efficient windows, structural insulated panels and locally sourced materials and labor. All of the electrical needs are operated through off-grid solar panels. (more…)

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Gap year do-Gooders can do Harm

Section: UK — by Nick Rosen, 28 Nov 2014

Helping out at an African nursery or digging trenches in rural India has become a fashionable – rite of passage for a generation of young Britons.

But many volunteers end up doing more harm than good – and the gap year trend is even being blamed for potentially fuelling child abuse in the host communities.

Mounting concern that the growing numbers of tourists keen to work in orphanages in countries such as Cambodia and Nepal could be leading to local children being abandoned or abducted to meet the demand has led to calls for a radical rethink on the ethics of so-called voluntourism. (more…)

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Ethical Boat tour of Philippine Islands

Section: Asia — by lilac, 24 Nov 2014

holidays between El Nido, in the north of long, thin Palawan island, and Coron, further north, off Busuanga island.

Drifting with good intentions

The endless ocean, broken occasionally by sand-fringed islands, stretched before me. A salty breeze caressed my face and two magnificent sails billowed bright in the sunlight as we headed into the unknown. I was on an oceanic adventure, sailing across the Palawan archipelago in a replica of a boat that first crossed these Philippine seas more than 1,000 years ago.

My trip was a taster of a new tour by local company Tao Philippines, which offers off-the-beaten-track sailing holidays between El Nido, in the north of long, thin Palawan island, and Coron, further north, off Busuanga island. Taking in areas few tourists visit, it directs some of its profits to funding community projects across the islands. (more…)

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Eco-Hotel Spa Yves Rocher

Section: Rest of Europe — by marese, 30 Sep 2014

spaAt Spa Yves Rocher, in the heart of France’s Brittany region, you’re definitely in five-star-boho territory. Everything about the Eco-Hotel, including the elegant treehouse, immerses you in a sensual experience with nature.

Let’s start with the food. The restaurant, Les Jardins Sauvages, serves organic meals made from ingredients grown by local gardeners, prepared by local bakers, craftsmen and apiarists, all within 20 or so miles from the hotel. (more…)

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Keeper’s House Inn

Section: Houses;N.America — by rosario, 22 Apr 2014

living off grid, off grid livingWorking Lighthouse in Isle au Haut, Maine:

Yearning for a true island getaway? “No television, no fax, no e-mail, no Internet, no electricity,” promises the Keeper’s House Inn.

A 40-minute ride on the mail boat from Stonington takes you across Penobscot Bay to Isle au Haut, on which dwell about 75 full-time residents, a stubby 1907 lighthouse, and the comfy but rigorously off-the-grid inn. There’s no electricity here, save for some solar and windmill power supplementing the gaslights, candles, and kerosene lanterns. (more…)

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Gadget-free isle of Tiree

Section: UK — by Nick Rosen, 12 Apr 2014

YOU know you are way off-grid when people view WiFi as a question.

“Why Fi? Why indeed,” came the response when I asked about about internet connection upon realising I had no phone signal.

As if that wasn’t bad enough, the kids went white when we arrived at our cottage to find there was no TV signal. What the hell were we going to do for three days?

The only SKY was the big boring blue stuff outside.

But it doesn’t take long after arriving on the fantastically remote and beautiful island of Tiree to adopt a similar view to the locals. (more…)

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