Playground Abodes: Channel Your Inner Child at These 4 Eclectic Airbnb Retreats

Lindsay Appel, @lil_appel

Come June the days grow longer and the temperatures begin to warm, evoking in us a restlessness once liberated by another school-year commencement. And while the luxury of a three-month-long break may be out of reach for most, a weekend trip to one of Airbnb’s most enchanting retreats can help you make the most out of the warmer months and rediscover the childlike enthusiasm of summers past.

Secluded Intown Treehouse, Atlanta, Georgia

The #1 most wish-listed property in the world” by Airbnb, this treehouse property located in a quiet wood ten minutes from downtown Atlanta is an escape straight out of your childhood dreams. Large enough for two adults, guests can lounge in the treehouse’s three separate living spaces, traversing across the light-adorned rope-bridges to maneuver between the living room, bedroom, and deck. During the summer months, roll the double bed onto the bedroom’s exterior platform and fall asleep under a blanket of stars, surrounded by a lush sea of green.

Breath in the crisp morning air on the open deck with a fresh cup of coffee brought to courtesy of the property owners before heading out to Sweetwater Creek State Park for a daylong hike along Civil War ruins dappled with waterfalls and scenic views. Afterwards, visit the infamous Skyview Ferris wheel and take in 360 degree views of downtown Atlanta from the gondolas, circling Centennial Olympic Park at 200 feet.

Atlanta’s food scene claims some of the country’s best chefs as their own and Gunshow, where “eating well and without pretension” is gospel, retains eight of those very chefs. With a rotating menu featuring comfort food like baby-back ribs to taste bud shocking dishes such as Korean crab salad, Gunshow is the perfect blend of high and low end dining.

Vintage Caravan, Oakland, California

Vintage Caravan, Oakland, California
Lewis & Ginger, Airbnb

New York Times has dubbed “Brooklyn by the Bay,” in a vibrantly refurbished vintage caravan that captures Oakland, California’s eccentric personality to a tee. This property, dubbed “The Muffin Mansion” by its owners, is a quirky and quaint abode equipped with a full kitchen and sink, large enough for two people to unwind and relax after a long day of exploring the city. The outside of the caravan is a mirror of the retro interior whose palette is about as subdued as it is conventional; this is your chance to “play camp” amongst the hustle and bustle of a thriving city.

After a delicious breakfast of fresh eggs straight from the owner’s personal chicken pen (located in the camper’s adjoining garden), hop on a bike to explore Oakland city. Ride down to the Grand Lakes Farmers’ Market and stock up on fresh produce before continuing to Lake Merritt for a waterside, picnic lunch. The lake is hardly just for your viewing pleasure as you can hop on a Venetian gondola ride for a romantic tour around the lake’s entirety. The gondola ride may be BYOB, but at The Trappist, where they brew specialty craft beer in their 1870s-Victorian-building-turned-bar, it certainly is not.

Underground Hygge, Orondo, Washington

Underground Hygge, Orondo, Washington
Kristie, Airbnb

Calling all Lord of the Rings fans, this is your chance to live like Bilbo Baggins. This underground hygge, located in the very remote town of Orondo, Washington, offers a true Hobbit experience from the moment you step through the iconic round door. Dark wood envelops the interior walls and a large cobblestone fireplace acts as the grand focal point beneath the subtle glow from the rod iron chandeliers–a feature second only to the panorama views of the Columbia River and rolling hills that rest a few steps from the front door.

This property is ideal for one or two adults looking for an escape from today’s modern nuisances, given the Airbnb’s lack of internet and secluded location. Relax and unwind, hike, or take a quick trip into town to peruse the handful of shops and restaurants before settling into the queen-sized, engraved, sleigh bed. If you plan on visiting during the winter months, when the mountain is beautifully covered in a blanket of snow, an electric heater is available, but the owner insists that your car be equipped with four-wheel drive.

Pirates of the Caribbean Getaway, Topanga, California

Pirates of the Caribbean Getaway, Topanga, California
Darrell, Airbnb

If you thought escaping to Neverland was impossible, think again. While this property is marketed as a Pirates of the Caribbean getaway, your imagination will come alive with possibilities as you explore this tropical retreat. Around every turn hides an exciting new discovery–a furnished teepee, countless swings, hammocks, a fire pit, and hot tub are just a few of the features that are dotted throughout the vast sea of palm trees and fairy lights. This “straight-off-a-movie-set” house includes one bed–large enough for two adults–a kitchenette, bathroom, a washer-dryer, and wireless internet access.

Situated on the western coast of California, fifteen minutes from Santa Monica and forty minutes from downtown Los Angeles, this Airbnb is ideal for beach goers and surfers alike. The owner will happily rent you a surfboard, kayak, or paddle board and direct you towards the best beaches, where you can wade and surf alongside locals.

The world-renowned Getty Museum, which holds over 44,000 Greek, Roman, Etruscan antiques from before 400 AD, is a short 15-minute drive from the property and takes you along the coast on the Pacific Coast Highway. After you’ve worked up an appetite experience authentic “Californian” cuisine at Inn of the Seventh Ray where chef Bradley Miller serves up seasonal, organic dishes under a rafter-exposed wooden pavilion accompanied by a melodic jazz combo.

Prices for the properties listed above vary throughout the year depending on time and availability. It is best to check the Airbnb listing for an accurate estimate. Due to the novelty features of these properties they do not permit children, however some properties do allow teenagers; these details are listed in the details of their Airbnb listing.

Holding a BA in journalism from North Carolina's Elon University, Megan Cummins maintains a freelancing career from her home-base in the Massachusetts’ Bay area. When she's not writing or working full-time as a Quality Assurance lead for one of the East Coast’s top e-commerce companies, she is indulging in her in love of travel and exploring new places across the globe.

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