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Eco destinations to savour without guilt
  • Shearing Shed, Anketell Forest
  • The Stay at Tintagel
  • Deep Creek Retreat
  • Karrak Reach
  • Pike River Luxury Villas
We all love to relax and get away from the stresses and responsibilities of everyday life, but more and more we realise the fragility of the many wonderful eco systems that comprise the Australian continent. We want to be able to leave our troubles behind and there is an inspiring way to do that, make memories and leave only footprints on our stunning landscape.
We have rounded up five of the top eco-friendly destinations on takeabreak.com.au to help you choose a holiday that leaves you – and our country – in good shape.
Anketell Forest, NSW
Anketell Forest has history, location and eco awareness all rolled into one lovely property. All the timber used in the extensions, fittings and furniture was salvaged from fallen trees and milled and handcrafted onsite and natural vegetable oils, not lacquers, are used on the timber. Some of the handmade timber items include the beds, tables, lamps, French doors, kitchen benches and more. Even the stone used in the stylish bathrooms was collected from peelings off the huge granite outcrops that dominate the 2000-acre property.
Once a working sheep station, Anketell Forest now offers a choice of Tor Cottage and the Shearing Shed as accommodation venues with the smallest carbon footprint possible. The owners use salvaged timber, recycled iron, handmade fixtures and furniture, filtered rainwater, grey water systems, low wattage lighting, gas hot water and wood heating using salvaged time and many other tactics to keep environmental costs in check, while maximising comfort and style for their guests.
Anketell Forest is an eco and pet-friendly venue with a difference, comprising as it does an organic free-range cattle farm, wonderful accommodation and walking trails all across the property; and it forms part of the Bolivia Hill/Deepwater bio region, which protects many rare and endangered species. 
The Stay at Tintagel, NSW
This wonderful property was the deserving winner of the 2009 TakeABreak Award for Eco accommodation and allows you to experience genuine eco-living in 4 star comfort and privacy.  The property uses non-grid electricity connected to stand-alone solar power, low energy appliances, solar hot water and rainwater tanks. The cottage is made with recycled building materials, including mud brick, and the operators run a recycling program and only buy products that use minimal packaging, where possible.
The cottage is equipped with low-energy appliances and an energy monitor, and guests are welcome to enjoy the organic vegetable and herb gardens and pick their own produce. Guests are greeted on arrival; they receive a welcome pack of wine, handmade chocolates and slippers. The daily breakfast hamper includes homemade jam and marmalade made with fruit from the garden. Fresh fruit from the garden is provided, as is the ‘Slow Food Evening Meal’ menu.
The Stay at Tintagel is an accredited green star property that has been built with sound eco principles, and is an excellent example of how accommodation operators can offer a great experience that is backed with environmental, economic and sustainable values.
Deep Creek Retreat, SA
Staying at Deep Creek Retreat on the spectacular Fleurieu Peninsula gives guests a real feel for what sustainable living is all about. The property is totally solar-powered and rainwater dependent. There is an organic orchard, olive grove and vegetable and herb garden. Guests love this aspect of the property and many people leave inspired to live a simpler life.
The peace and tranquillity is palpable and while guests arrive with plans for walks in the conservation park and other activities, they often end up staying an the house and enjoying the garden and the serenity.
The view to Kangaroo Island is glorious and there is abundant bird life. The orchard and vegetable garden provides produce for guests to enjoy, when possible. There are many comfy touches that prove very popular with guests, too... bed socks left on the beds (for all ages)... chocolates, fairtrade teas and coffee, CDs, DVDs, games, books and the latest magazines, many of which talk about sustainable living.
Karrak Reach, WA
Karrak Reach is award winning, self-contained accommodation in Denmark in the beautiful Great Southern region of Western Australia. There are three superbly built eco-chalets high up on Golden Hill, nestled into a 200-acre giant karri forest, with sweeping views.
The chalets are located in the heart of the famous Scotsdale Valley Wine district, are just 3 years old and beautifully fitted out with jarrah floors, a full kitchen, and spas with fantastic views across farmlands and forest. The chalets are simple, but built with an eye for detail and a commitment to quality.
The Karrak Reach chalets are architect-designed and are solar-passive so that they are cool in summer and cosy in winter. Reverse cycle heating and cooling ensure effective climate control at all times of the year. The chalets were built with a commitment to respecting the environment and are equipped with a state of the art waste recycling system.
Pike River Luxury Eco Villas, SA
From the moment you step into Pike River’s Luxury Eco Villas the majestic views and the indulgent surroundings will lift your spirits and relax your mind and illustrate how ‘sustainability’ and ‘luxury’ can blend seamlessly. The property houses Australia’s first privately owned sun farm and water catchment facility, boasts panoramic views of the Pike and Murray Rivers and surrounding national parks and offers privacy and seclusion while delivering an indulgent escape for guests.
The villas are secluded, yet within easy reach of the major Riverland towns of Renmark, Berri, Loxton and Barmera. 
The Pike River is at the doorstep and offers direct access to a myriad of river experiences while the magnificent Riverland region provides opportunities to taste the local wines, indulge in the varied cuisine and soak in the spectacular environment.
There are many more wonderful properties listed on takeabreak.com.au that offer wonderful holiday experiences, without leaving a lasting footprint on our land. Just select the eco-friendly accommodation option in the ‘Holiday experiences’ drop down menu and  you are on your way to planning your own environmentally-sound holiday.

About the author
Find out more about Lisa at http://bit.ly/h_experts

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