To me, Earth Day has always been about examining the relationship I have with the environment. Well, that’s what I tell myself. Truth be told, I’m more likely to be refreshing my news feed than attempting self-awareness.

This year will be different.

I’m heading off to the country to a place with no reception (or Wi-Fi) to force myself to commune with nature. Wish me luck. If I’m not posting selfies by Monday then please send a search party.

I love how Airbnb homes give me freedom to experience my surroundings on my own terms. Here are 5 wholesome, hand-picked getaways guaranteed to soothe your soul...

Waterfall, Kwa-Zulu Natal

Do you know how big an acre is? Me neither. Chances are it’s bigger than my cosy studio flat. Well here are 40 of them (acres I mean), a pristine environmental preserve with views that just go on and on. Nestled between the trees on the rolling, green hills is this sublime eco-cottage. Perfect for exorcising The City from your cluttered mind.

Check out the listing here.

Image: Supplied
Image: Supplied


The Crags, Western Cape

Feel like a hobbit, live like a king. This grass-roofed house is designed to operate fully off-grid. The water is harvested from the sky, and the solar panels will provide you with all the electricity you need. The surrounding Garden Route National Park has more than enough activities to keep your mind off your daily grind.

Check out the listing here.

Image: Supplied
Image: Supplied


Franschhoek, Western Cape

Learn to let go from the best teachers out there – our fellow animals. This barn is the perfect place to stay if you want to get a perspective of man’s place in the eco-system. Out of respect for the animals at this sanctuary, meat and dairy products are not allowed on the premises. Bonus: a painting pig!

Check out the listing here.

Image: Supplied
Image: Supplied


Umdloti, Kwa-Zulu Natal

Salt is supposed to cure all ills: whether tears, sweat or sea. If this speaks to you, then this is the house for you. You’ll definitely break a sweat walking up the 200 stairs to this stilted cabin, and the views of the balmy Indian Ocean may move you to tears.

Check out the listing here.

Image: Supplied
Image: Supplied


Carnovon, Northern Cape

Go back to basics! This Corbelled house was built in the 1700s, and not much has changed since. The big, starry skies of the Karoo are just the thing to put your ego in its place, so you can rediscover your true place in the world.

Check out the listing here.

Image: Supplied
Image: Supplied