Globetrotting just got even more interesting with the bevy of Airbnb options hitting the market. With the touch of an app, you can book a stay anywhere from a historic château in the French countryside to a medieval tower in Italy. Why settle on a simple hotel room when you could cozy up in the lodging of your liking–memorable experience included. Here are 10 of our favorites across Europe.
Stay in a houseboat on Amsterdam's canals — Photo courtesy of Airbnb
One of Amsterdam's most iconic features is the houseboats lining the city's many canals. Stay like a local on the water in a specially designed barge that looks like a contemporary loft, complete with Scandinavian-style furniture and a Jacuzzi tub to soak in. Light floods in from all sides of the glass-encased houseboat on the Amstel River that has a terrace set right on the water and underfloor heating, all walking distance from the city center.
This stay comes with free boat rides to a private island — Photo courtesy of Airbnb
This four-room lighthouse in the Croatian town of Medulin seems to have all the right ingredients for a seaside escape that you may never want to come back from. Not far from the 3,000-year-old town of Pula, the lighthouse, which dates back to 1875, has a summer kitchen, stunning seafront terrace perfect for catching the sunset, and an outdoor king-size bed where you can sit back and sip a cool glass of local white wine. Your hosts, Slaven and Tijana, can also whisk you over on a free boat ride to their family island of Levan, home to the beach bar and restaurant, Dreams & Sand.
The former Victorian pub dates back to 1860 — Photo courtesy of Airbnb
Close enough to the center of London while still feeling like a cozy retreat at a friend's place, the former Victorian pub in Peckham, the southeast part of the city, has a history dating back to 1860 and the bones to prove it. From the outside, it still has the look of your neighborhood pub, inviting locals to come inside for a pint. Inside, however, is a different story, with four bedrooms and a living room with high ceilings and exposed brick that looks like an urban loft in London. The selling point, hands down, is the rooftop terrace overlooking the garden.
Sleep like royalty in your own French château — Photo courtesy of Airbnb
It's not everyday you can live like royalty, but at this 17th century château, you can at least pretend over the course of your vacation. The five-bedroom, five-bath château is listed as a historical monument in the Brittany region of France, about 12 miles from the city of Rennes, and can fit up to 13 of your favorite friends or family members. Some of the rooms are what you'd expect to find from a historic estate in the French countryside–chandeliers, heavily patterned wallpaper and four-poster beds, with Downton Abbey-style seating in the dining room.
Stay in a medieval tower in the center of Asti — Photo courtesy of Airbnb
From inside the 18th century Roero di Monteu building, with its exposed brick and industrial-style mezzanine, you'd never guess you were sleeping in a medieval tower perfectly placed in the middle of Asti's old town. Located in the Piedmont region of Italy, just half an hour from Milan and Genoa, the apartment's main bedroom is in the heart of the tower, with bifora windows framing the bed and a terrace sitting on the rooftop looking over the center of Asti.
Catch spectacular views of the Sierra Nevada Mountains from your treehouse perch — Photo courtesy of Airbnb
It's not exactly easy to get to this bedroom in the sky. The 10-foot-high treehouse is suspended in the trees in the Sierra de Huétor and la Alfaguara Natural Park in Andalusia, Spain, and the only way to get up there is by crossing a hanging bridge. But once you're up, it's worth the trek just for the views of the Sierra Nevada Mountains. Granada is the closest city, and there are no shops or modern conveniences nearby, but not to worry–you'll learn how to live off the land here in no time with lessons on everything from composting to constructing your very own treehouse.
Sleep in a countryside windmill not far from the sea — Photo courtesy of Airbnb
About 45 minutes away from Gatwick, the four-story Old Smock Mill in Kent brings elements of the rural landscape inside the 18-inch-thick brick walls of the restored windmill. The top three floors open up to a one-bedroom apartment with a French king-size bed, standing tub and copper basin sink, connecting the bedroom to the bathroom by a spiral staircase. While cozying up in the romantic lodging is one way to spend your time, you can also head out and explore the local Camber Sands beach or the port town of Rye.
Stay at the foot of a medieval village in France — Photo courtesy of Airbnb
Live like a modern-day gypsy in a vintage wagon sleeping two on a hilltop in the countryside of Burgundy. Less than three hours from Paris, the cozy wagon looks like an Anthropologie spread inside, outfitted with French country chic décor, an electric log fire, charcoal BBQ and a sink and kettle. Perfect for couples seeking a bit of togetherness, the garden is filled with reading nooks and spots for sunbathing, with a château a short stroll away in the medieval town of Mont St. Jean.
Live off the land in a Mongolian yurt in Germany — Photo courtesy of Airbnb
There's no need to make your way all the way to Mongolia to experience staying in an authentic yurt. Decked out with Central Asian décor, this ger in Lower Saxony, Germany, is made entirely of natural materials and warmed by a wood-burning oven and chimney. Open for stays in springtime in Altes Land, the largest fruit-growing region in northern Europe, the yurt is surrounded by apple and plum trees with a small beach on the Elbe River less than a mile away.
Spend time in nature on a farm in the Netherlands — Photo courtesy of Airbnb
Besides the wooden ceiling, there's nothing about this farmhouse that resembles the red barns you’d find in the U.S. Set in a small village called Heeten, this Grondulow, or earthhouse, may be in the middle of a meadow, but the lodging is as modern as you'd find in a city like nearby Amsterdam, just an hour and 20 minutes away. If you're looking for a digital detox, you've come to the right place–help the farmer tend to the cows or set off on a cycle trip in one of the national parks just next door.