Travelers looking for a vacation in the great outdoors are turning to a nostalgic source of comfort and solitude: treehouses.

But these aren’t the treehouses of their childhood. Like the travelers who are booking them, the treehouses have matured too.

Modern treehouses are more luxury homes than kid hangouts — with a price to match. Treehouses constructed by professionals can easily cost six figures to build.

“A fully appointed treehouse with kitchen, bathroom, heat and air conditioning … we’re building those around $200,000,” Pete Nelson, the star of Animal Planet’s TV show “Treehouse Masters,” told CNBC in 2014.

Treehouses that are built for people to live in now average around $240,000, according to HomeAdvisor, a website that connects homeowners with home services.

Since then, prices have risen along with demand, a situation further propelled by the global pandemic and a desire for offbeat, outdoor accommodations.

Grand entrances

Aside from a worn-out patch of grass in the backyard, old-school treehouses didn’t typically incorporate much of an entrance. Modern ones do, some with gated walkways, stone staircases and ramps built for wheelchairs and pets.

The Chez’ Tree Rest treehouse is near New York’s Finger Lakes’ region.

Anthony Costello | Bluenose Studios

New heights

The Punta Jaguar treehouse has three open-design elevated levels, plus a ground-level bungalow.

Courtesy of Punta Jaguar

What the house lacks in walls, it makes up in style. Sinks and water faucets are made of seashells, and a separate ground-level bungalow comes with colorful swivel windows and electric drawbridge-style dropdown decks. It has a caretaker and private path to the beach, according to the website. Guests are encouraged to be 7 years old and above.

Rates start at $255 per night.

Guests at Peru’s Inkaterra Reserva Amazonica treehouse sleep 70 feet above the rainforest floor.

Courtesy of Inkaterra Hotels

Thrill-seekers can sleep in the Amazon rainforest at Peru’s Inkaterra Reserva Amazonica ecolodge. The lodge’s sole treehouse is located more than 70 feet above the rainforest floor at the end of a series of seven suspended bridges.

Programs start from $492 for a two-night stay, plus an additional $660 to sleep in the treehouse.

Fabulous views

Childhood treehouses may have granted views of neighbors’ backyards, but nothing as spectacular as Australia’s Blue Mountains.

In a twist on childhood clubhouse rules, this treehouse in Australia’s Blue Mountains can accommodate two adults, but no kids or pets.

Jochen Spenser

Sophisticated decor

Sports pennants and sticker-adorned walls have been sidelined for plush interiors that resemble modern homes.

The Aerohouse at the Treeful Treehouse Sustainable Resort in Okinawa, Japan.

Courtesy of the Treeful Treehouse Sustainable Resort

The interior of Okinawa’s Aerohouse.

Courtesy of Treeful Treehouse Sustainable Resort

Rates are 100,000 Japanese yen ($905) per night for up to three people; a fourth person is an extra $225 per night. Bookings are currently 33% off the regular rates. 

Kitted out kitchens

While cooking and treehouses once rarely meshed, treehouses now come with full kitchens outfitted with Nespresso coffee machines and kitchen islands.

The contemporary kitchen in Trinity Treehouse, outside of Atlanta, has a wine rack and bar area.

Courtesy of

Features to stoke the imagination

Though it doesn’t allow kids, the Wanderlust Treehouse incorporates imaginative features into its design.

Levi Kelly

The Wanderlust Treehouse in Crane Hill, Alabama, doesn’t allow kids, but that didn’t stop its owner from installing a playground-style suspension bridge to connect two parts of the house. The treehouse, which has received perfect scores in all of its 85 Airbnb reviews, has outdoor side-by-side showers, a swinging bed and a fire pit.

Rates start at $350 per night.

Want to build your own modern treehouse?

Item Cost
Vacation rental treehouse From $30,000
Bathroom $4,500
Zipline $2,200
Spiral staircase $5,900
Suspended bridge $2,900
Trapdoor $500
Classic slide $1,200
Fireman’s pole $575
Source: Treehouse Experts

Gourmet food

Loire Valley Lodges leans heavily upon local produce and grows herbs and fruit on-site, according to its website.

Courtesy of Loire Valley Lodges

The French treehouse hotel opened in July 2020, with the interiors of each of its 18 structures designed by a different contemporary artist.

Rates start at 395 euros ($428) per night.

*Rates are accurate as of publication date.



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Where to rent treehouses in U.S., Japan, Australia and Costa Rica