Bucket List Worthy
As the world’s leading hotel chains attempt to lure travelers in with Belgian waffles and underwhelming exercise rooms, bed and breakfasts are emerging as comfortable and authentic ways to experience some of the world’s favourite travel destinations.
At these smaller, more charming establishments, visitors are receiving more than a comfortable place to rest their heads. They’re gaining tips from the people who call the destination home, dining on fresh local eats and experiencing what it feels like to have a luxurious vacation house — at least for a little while.
These 13 off-the-beaten-path bed and breakfasts will serve as ideal home bases for your unforgettable summer escapes.
Travelers who love the rustic elements of an outdoor escape but crave the luxuries of a cozy hotel will fall in love with the Lodgen Lodge. This set of four lavish mountain cabins on 42 acres of private land in the British Columbian Kootenays will encourage you to experience the best of both worlds. Top-quality bedding, large soaker baths, large beams and hardwood flooring create an ambience of rustic elegance while a world of adventure awaits just outside the door.
The friendly staff at the Lazy Dog Bed and Breakfast believe that the key to a great vacation is made with just three easy ingredients: good food, good company and good vibes. Located on Bolabog Beach, this bed and breakfast encourages visitors to soak in the rays, dine on local eats and enjoy authentic island living from the comfort of a private cabana. Nightly rates are affordable, breakfast is included and pets are welcome, so you can stop sweating the small stuff and enjoy a truly relaxing beach escape.
Anyone who has traveled to Ireland will tell you that it pays to stay with a local. Not only will you experience the infectious Irish hospitality and charm, but you’ll enjoy a traditional Irish cottage up close and personally. The An Creagan Bed and Breakfast is located in a scenic area of Inis Oirr, the smallest of the three Aran Islands. This traditional thatch cottage style home is filled with the amenities and comforts that make it an unbeatable home base for a tranquil island escape at the shores of the wild Atlantic Ocean. The An Creagan is located just a stone’s throw from other island must-sees, including the shipwreck of the Plassy, the lighthouse and the traditional village.
The Nass Valley Bed and Breakfast gives visitors an opportunity to sleep safely and soundly amongst the wildlife of British Columbia’s Nass Valley. The Ginget ecological reserve, also known as the “bear patch,” sits along the trail just steps from the comfort of your room, offering opportunities to spot beavers, coyotes, fox, black bears, grizzlies, wolves and other rare wildlife. This bed and breakfast offers 172 acres of mountain adventure and a cozy yet luxurious place to rest your head at the end of the day.
Surrounded by the colors and sounds of nature and with picture-perfect views of the Aosta Valley and Alps, Le Renard d’Introd Bed and Breakfast boasts local antique furniture and the finest finishings with natural materials only, from wood to stone and iron to pure cotton. Every detail has been meticulously chosen to make guests feel at home. Homemade, local and organic products make guests rave about the breakfast served every morning in the sunlit veranda. Whether you’re seeking a romantic retreat, pure relaxation, mountain hiking, a foodie escape or a place to snap photos of wildlife, Le Renard d’Introd Bed and Breakfast is the home away from home you’ll never want to leave.
Ralph’s Place is the ultimate way to experience the white sands and blue waters of Boracay’s Bolabog Beach. The residential compound was established in 1990 by a Swiss-German couple, and it now includes several luxurious native-style bungalows spread over 5,000 square metres of lush gardens and tropical foliage. The 86-step hike to the property offers a moderate workout, but it’s the views from the top that will truly take your breath away.
The Eagle Rock Bed and Breakfast has been TripAdvisor’s No.1 rated bed and breakfast in Chemainus for four consecutive years. You’ll understand the establishment’s praise when you experience the luxury, privacy and comfort of this two guest room home. The bedrooms are far more than just “rooms,” offering 1,200 square feet of elegance and comfort with dark walnut hardwood floors and tasteful furnishings that make it easy to find peace and relaxation. Eagle Rock is one of few locations on Vancouver Island with access to a semi-private beach, which means visitors enjoy all of the benefits of owning a lavish, oceanfront beach estate without any of the hassles.
The Marifield Manor offers a historic look into life on Vancouver Island. In 1910, Colonel Eardley-Wilmot returned from a 30-year regiment in India. Foregoing the idea of settling on his family estate in Ireland, he created a new home for his family on Vancouver Island. The massive home, named Knockdrin, stood on a bluff overlooking the lake. It is now surrounded by a peaceful subdivision and has been renamed Marifield Manor.
Today, the home serves as a lavish bed and breakfast, offering seven luxurious rooms decorate with period furniture and oozing with old world charm. Visitors can’t help but fall in love with the 105 years of history and the hosts Jocelyn and Mitch Williams who share a passion for Vancouver Island, fine food, travel and this grand estate. It’s a bed and breakfast you simply have to see to believe.
Bedayah is the ultimate home base for exploring Jordan’s most treasured archaeological site (Petra) with knowledgable area guides as hosts. Operated by Bev Taylor, this bed and breakfast makes visitors feel at home when they couldn’t be much farther away. Home made Jordanian breakfasts, locally-crafted rustic furniture and sumptuous bedding means you enjoy the rustic beauty of the area without sacrificing comfort or relaxation. Perched on a hill, visitors enjoy unrivaled panoramic views of the Petra Mountains and the local town of Wadi Musa. Enjoy the benefits of staying in a friendly, local neighborhood while remaining just minutes from main entrance of Petra and steps from even quicker back routes into the site.
Victoria is loaded with hotels, motels and bed and breakfasts, but none offer the charm, comfort, romance and hospitality of the award-winning Hemingway’s By the Sea Bed and Breakfast. Located close to downtown Victoria and just two blocks from the sea, this Tudor-style home will make you feel at home the moment you arrive. Rooms are spacious and filled with amenities, including luxurious linens, robes, antique furnishings and fireplaces. Guests enjoy full use of the home’s lounge and dining area, where they can sip a cup of tea or coffee before venturing just a couple blocks away to the ocean or the popular Victoria neighborhood of Esquimalt.
The moment you arrive at Reves Gourmands, Bob and Cecile will welcome you into one of just six well-appointed guestrooms and encourage you to explore the flowered garden with seating areas, covered terrace and other amenities of their charming Swiss home. The bed and breakfast is located in the small village of Vernayaz, offering a look into the traditional way of life in picture-perfect Switzerland.
The area surrounding the establishment is loaded with hiking and biking trails, caves, gorges, alpine lakes, thermal baths, stunning mountain views and vineyards, providing year-round fun for every type of traveler. And you won’t want to miss the reservation-only, four-course meal known as the “surprise dinner.” Bob’s gourmet cuisine and local wines are something you’ll crave long after you’ve returned home.
You don’t have to leave British Columbia to enjoy the ultimate island escape. The Salt Spring Stonehouse Bed and Breakfast on Salt Spring Island offers the epitome of Canadian West Coast elegance and modern luxury. With panoramic views of the Southern Gulf Islands and the volcanic peak of Mount Baker, this establishment boasts unbeatable natural scenery, top-notch hospitality, a collection of artwork by local and international artists, and lavish rooms just steps from some of British Columbia’s grandest outdoor adventures. Even better, this home-away-from-home offers carefully prepared gourmet breakfasts that serve as the perfect start to each day of adventure on Salt Spring Island.
Union Bay’s Two Eagles Lodge offers a stress-free escape in comfortable, waterfront lodge that’s easy to call “home.” Private entrances to the B&B rooms and a family-size suite allow visitors to come and go as they please. Carolyn prepares a a hot buffet breakfast every morning, and you’re also invited to enjoy a shared lounge, kitchenette and other amenities that make this award-winning 12-acre hobby farm feel like your very own vacation house. Steve and Carolyn are your “ambassadors” — excited to introduce you to Vancouver Island’s picture-perfect lakes, hiking trails, and all of the natural wonders that surround their slice of heaven.