The natural world can be profoundly impactful to one’s health. A growing body of literature points to nature’s benefits, from promoting healing and optimal health, to reducing stress. In a study led by the University of Exeter, on a sample of 20,000 people, spending at least 2 hours per week in natural spaces can vastly improve health and psychological wellbeing.
For intrepid travellers seeking out spaces between jungle and sea, take a step further and discover three ultra-luxury resorts nestled amongst abundant rainforests and vast oceanscapes, with opportunities for natural immersion. From Koh Samui to the central highlands of Bali, to nearby haven Desaru Coast; these perfect spaces offer plenty of opportunity to immerse in rare experiences and curated activities to enrich mind, body and spirit.
One&Only Desaru Coast
Within Malaysia‘s raw unspoilt nature and warm tropical waters, tropical relaxation awaits at One&Only Desaru Coast, a spectacular hideaway cloaked in blissful seclusion along white powder sands between lush jungle flora and South China Sea. Conceived by Australian architect Kerry Hill, famed for his unwavering respect for nature and obsession with the straight line, One&Only Desaru Coast’s oozes with Kerry Hill’s serenely beautiful design and signature approach weaving nature into the resort’s architecture.
For nature lovers, wild treasures beckon to be discovered at One&Only Desaru Coast. Wan, the resort’s resident Naturalist, reveals wondrous pockets of nature deep within the resort’s natural grounds – the peaceful Panti Forest is home to white-handed gibbons, dusky leaf monkeys, pig-tailed macaques, Oriental pied-hornbills, short-tailed babblers and more. For closer moments with the wild, unforgettable resort experiences include birdwatching expeditions, chef’s garden discoveries and more.
With Wan’s expert guidance on the sunrise gibbon tours, guests can spot different species of monkeys and birds native to the forests of Malaysia, and immerse in birdsong while enjoying a private picnic in the rainforest shaded by tall trees. For adrenaline seekers, The View from the Top is a thrilling tree-climbing experience that takes guests to a viewing platform atop the rainforest canopy, featuring breathtaking views of Desaru Coast from the peak of a magnificent tree.
Buahan, A Banyan Tree Escape
Away from buzzing Ubud, Buahan, A Banyan Tree Escape is a secluded escape where time passes at a different pace. A wellness sanctuary, Buahan offers a truly authentic encounter with nature’s frequency and one’s interconnectedness, with a ‘No walls, no doors’ concept that immerses guests into its sweeping 180-degree views of lush Balinese jungles and mountain peaks, amid undisturbed sounds of nature.
Buahan offers exclusive access to resort adventures and a holistic wellbeing reset, from the resort’s predominantly plant-based food menu to healing experiences available on the grounds. For busy professionals needing that much needed reset, Buahan’s breathtaking experiences are tailored to nurture positivity from within. Guests can look forward to booking various activities focused on improving health and wellbeing, while reconnecting with nature, such as the Moon Yoga and Aerial Silk Yoga, which are guided by in-house expert practitioners.
For guests keen to discover a true disconnection from the outside world and gain a deeper understanding of self, Buahan’s Enlightenment Journey is a profound ceremony to purify and reconnect with one’s divine energy within, where guests will receive a blessing and astrological sign readings by a priest in the local village temple.
Napasai, A Belmond Hotel, Koh Samui
On Koh Samui’s northern shore, Napasai, A Belmond Hotel invites guests to retreat from the everyday. Nestled among 43 acres of palm-shaded gardens between jungle and sea, this tranquil tropical paradise offers guests an easy breath with the heady scent of frangipani blossom, while gazing out across the golden sands, in the atmosphere of true serenity. Full of traditional touches, Napasai’s bamboo interiors open onto sun-drenched balconies with sweeping sea views, bringing the outdoors inwards with charming teak furnishings and traditional weavings.
Napasai offers endless opportunities for leisurely relaxation in the great outdoors, set amongst lush gardens of cashew and coconut groves, between hibiscus and bougainvillea, and grazing resident water buffaloes. From Thai tranquillity beside golden sands of the resort’s private beach, or action-packed resort activities from jungle bike tours to windsurfing, and Muay Thai boxing, guests of Napasai find an easy way with peace or buzz adrenaline, as personally desired. Nature lovers can join the resident photographer on a jungle trek and uncover the secrets of capturing Koh Samui‘s leafy hues; or visit Samui Elephant Sanctuary, the island’s ethical retreat and interact with these beautiful gentle giants in their natural environment. For sessions of well-deserved wellness, Napasai’s Spa offers botanical secrets of Asia with treatments that use blends of local herbs and the timeless principles of Thai medicine, in a holistic approach that will leave guests glowing.
On responsible tourism, Napasai’s care for the environment extends well beyond their grounds and continued commitment towards reducing waste and conserving energy. A proud recipient of the Green Hotel Award from the Thai Department of Environmental Quality and Promotion, in honour of the hotel’s environmental initiatives, Napasai’s recent projects include planting mangrove and coconut trees in areas once depleted by infestation. Out by the reef, Napasai has also released crabs and fish in a bid to help the ecosystem thrive, and cooperates with local communities to raise awareness of conservation issues and encourage every effort towards protecting planet earth.