Remote mountaintop lodges. Historic hotels in the middle of lively cities. Barefoot bungalows on far-flung tropical islands. Just like a great travel moment can alter your perspective on the world, the right stay can cast your trip in a whole new light. That’s why our specialists work so hard to choose the right hotel for your style of travel, whether you’re looking for a peaceful retreat or a room with a view. We’ve shared our top choices before, of course, but here we’ve highlighted the stays that you rated the most highly over the past year.
In the city
Museums, markets, a thriving restaurant scene, interesting nightlife, history right under your feet — there are so many reasons we love staying in cities when we travel. Judging by these top-ranked hotels, you also enjoy it, especially if the rooms have great views and modern decor.
Palace Hotel, Tokyo, Japan
Why unpack here? Nestled up against the Imperial Palace, Palace Hotel has a privileged location in the heart of Tokyo. You love it for the private balconies with views of the royal gardens, the clean and contemporary decor, and the easy ten-minute walk to Tokyo Station, not to mention the exceptional food available in the hotel’s ten eateries.
Get me there: Grand tour of Japan.
RAAS Jodhpur, India
Why unpack here? The only boutique hotel in the old city, RAAS Jodhpur stands in the shadow of Jodhpur’s Mehrangarh Fort, offering unrivalled views of the hilltop stronghold from the private terraces. Distributed over several buildings, the rooms blend sleek modern style with traditional touches like latticework screens and splashes of the city’s signature shade of blue.
Get me there: Classic Rajasthan.
Welgelegen, Cape Town, South Africa
Why unpack here? There are just 13 rooms scattered across the two 19th-century houses that make up Welgelegen, a boutique hotel in the heart of Cape Town. Over the years, you’ve praised its location, close to the bustle of Kloof Street and within easy reach of the V&A Waterfront, but still removed enough to be a quiet retreat. Another big attraction here is the sweeping view of Table Mountain.
Get me there: Discover South Africa.
Where the wild things are
Whether you’re in the rainforests of Costa Rica or the vast plains of Tanzania, you prefer wildlife lodges that let you live alongside the animals you’re there to see. You might glimpse an elephant while you eat breakfast or sip your morning coffee to the trill of bird song. Here, we share three of your best-loved wilderness camps and lodges around the world.
El Remanso, Osa Peninsula, Costa Rica
Why unpack here? El Remanso is surrounded by its own wildlife reserve on the Osa Peninsula. The rooms are scattered among the jungle greenery. While you’re there, you might see anything from scarlet macaws, sloths, and anteaters to roving bands of spider and howler monkeys. The peninsula is also home to about 450 bird species, including the elusive black-cheeked ant tanager.
Get me there: Wildlife of Costa Rica.
Oliver’s Camp, Tarangire National Park, Tanzania
Why unpack here? Your top-ranked safari camp in Africa, Oliver’s Camp in Tarangire National Park is small, stylish, and very comfortable, despite its remote location. You’ve said that the guides and hosts are exceptionally knowledgeable about the area’s wildlife, which you can spot on day and night drives, walking safaris, and while fly camping. In addition to the Big Five, look out for hippos, giraffes, bat-eared foxes, and wild dogs.
Get me there: Luxury safari in northern Tanzania.
Denis Private Island, Seychelles
Why unpack here? At the very northern edge of the Seychelles, Denis Private Island combines conservation with down-to-earth luxury. The 23 cottages are nestled amid a green and flourishing tropical-island ecosystem that’s been carefully rewilded. You might walk to turtle nesting sites or look for endemic bird species like Seychelles fody and paradise flycatcher with the resort’s resident naturalist. The highlight, though, is the collection of thriving underwater coral reefs that you can explore while snorkelling or diving.
Get me there: Praslin & Denis Private Island.
Room with a view
Whether its dawn breaking over a mountain range or the sun sinking into the ocean, many of your best-loved hotels came with show-stopping views. You say that you like these options not only because you can admire the scenery from the window of your room, but also because they’re great bases for exploring those same views with a guide.
Kasbah Bab Ourika
Why unpack here? Perched on a hilltop, Kasbah Bab Ourika boasts a panoramic view of the lush green Ourika Valley, cradled by the rust-red High Atlas Mountains. When you’re not soaking up the scenery from the terraces or outdoor pool, you might head out on a hike up the slopes, visit a nearby village, or spend a day getting to know a local Amazigh family.
Get me there: Marrakesh, the High Atlas & Essaouira.
Farewell Harbour Lodge, Vancouver Island, Canada
Why unpack here? Perched right on the waterfront at the edge of the Great Bear Rainforest and Broughton Archipelago Marine Park, Farewell Harbour Lodge is best known as a base for spotting western Canada’s abundant wildlife, including whales, orcas, seals, and bears. But the view from your room and the lodge’s outdoor deck, especially as the sun sinks behind the hills serrated with pine trees, also makes it a top choice for you and us alike.
Get me there: Bears of British Columbia.
Hoodia Desert Lodge, Sesriem, Namibia
Why unpack here? With orange sands rising in the distance and a backdrop of purple-hazed mountains, the Namib Desert is a sere and spectacular setting for Hoodia Desert Lodge. You tell us that you enjoy the outdoor terrace, where you can sip sundowners and watch the day burn down to dusk. This is also a great base for exploring the vast, echoing beauty of Namibia’s deserts on drives, walks, and picnics among the dunes.
Get me there: Namibia flying safari.
By the water
They say water is the source of life, but if your most revered hotels are anything to go by, then water is also a source of happiness. From riverside retreats to floating rooms on the lakeshore, you praise these stays for the view, yes, but also the chance to get out on water, whether that’s through snorkelling, boat safaris, or simply swimming.
Jaya House River Park, Siem Reap, Cambodia
Why unpack here? Set along the bank of the Siem Reap River with pools, ponds, and fountains decorating its grounds, the 36-room Jaya House River Park gives you abundant water views in the heart of Cambodia’s second-largest city. You say you love it for its swimming pools and spa, as well as its convenient location close to Prek Toal floating village and Phnom Kulen waterfall.
Get me there: Cambodia's nature & communities.
Caiman, The Pantanal, Brazil
Why unpack here? Deep within the world’s largest inland wetland, Caiman offers encounters with some of life’s rarest flora and fauna in a remote wildlife refuge. On the grounds of its two ranch-style lodges, you love to relax in the peaceful hammocks and pools or take in the watery views from the lakeside suites. But, real adventure comes in the form of its expeditions into the Pantanal, where you might spot capybara, hyacinth macaws, and, if you’re lucky, jaguars.
Get me there: In search of the jaguar in Brazil's Pantanal.
Elephant Hills Lake Camp, Khao Sok National Park, Thailand
Why unpack here? Falling asleep to a symphony of bird song and waking to the sight of emerald-green waters... At Elephant Hills Lake Camp, each of the luxurious yet eco-friendly tents ‘floats’ on Cheow Larn Lake in Khao Sok National Park. You tell us that you’d return for the camp’s adventurous experiences on the lake and in the surrounding rainforest, from kayak safaris with a guide to jungle trekking.
Get me there: Thailand beach & rainforest escape.
Get away from it all
Sometimes, the world is too much with us. That's when we — and you — look for retreats where you can unplug, unwind, and rejuvenate. Ranging from a remote island in the Indian Ocean to a snug B&B in New Zealand, these are your top-ranked options for where to go when you need to get away from it all.
Constance Moofushi, the Maldives
Why unpack here? For unabashed barefoot luxury, it’s hard to beat Constance Moofushi, with its thatched-roof villas, palm-shaded beaches, and rich coral reefs. Set on its own private island in the depths of the Indian Ocean, this indulgent resort offers a tropical retreat that’s literally miles away from the rest of the world.
Get me there: Constance Moofushi & Dubai.
Hahei B&B, Coromandel Peninsula, New Zealand
Why unpack here? A four-room guesthouse, Hahei B&B earns its place on this list with its warmly welcoming hospitality and location in the heart of New Zealand’s Coromandel Peninsula, a region known for its peaceful natural landscapes and laid-back attitudes. You can relax by the swimming pool or in the gardens, or take a short walk to the nearby coastline.
Get me there: New Zealand’s North Island.
Patagonia Camp, Torres del Paine, Chile
Why unpack here? If you prefer your relaxation with a side of pristine forest, soaring mountains, and ample wildlife, consider Patagonia Camp in Torres del Paine National Park. You speak highly of the spacious yurts, especially those with a private hot tub, as well as the guides who lead you on hikes, boat trips, and fishing sessions from the camp.
Get me there: Patagonian Highlights.
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