It's not common to find a place that's built specifically for us to be in stillness and harmony, but this tree hut located in Elk, California was exactly that. We found peace among the redwoods this past weekend as we celebrated my husband's birthday.
If you didn't know, I'm a sucker for glamping spots especially treehouses (Glamping is glamorous camping - ya girl is not a camper! hehe). When we told our friends where we were going, they'd say, "Another treehouse?" Ha ha, but we can't get enough of them! I am always so in awe of the individuals who build these treehouse experiences because they think of every little hidden detail. We have gone glamping many times, but this tree hut was special in many ways.
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The Elk Forest Retreat is owned by a couple, Rob & Elsa, and is located in Elk, California which is three hours away from the Bay Area and four hours away from Sacramento. It's a bit of a drive but the road trip to get there and back is scenic and fun. Another plus: This town is so underrated which means it's not crowded! Check out our road trip & Elk itinerary in this blog post here.
As soon as we arrived to the address listed, there were arrows pointing us to the "Hut" as they also have another glamping spot they own called the "Water Tower". When we parked, these two chairs under the trees greeted us and we opened up the gate to serenity.
They built a beautiful, serene path and a little bridge to another gate. The walk itself to the second gate was already peaceful and mysterious. It made us more excited to get to the end of the path! When we opened the second gate, we saw the gorgeous tree hut and the smell of the trees invited us in.
When we walked up, we were greeted with a note and large windows for us to peek into the bedroom. It was already so magical, but when we opened the door, we were welcomed with the most relaxing music that made us feel like we were in a dream.
Rob & Elsa thought of every little detail! They left little notes all over the room (and the entire place) to explain how to use specific things. For example, there was a little window inside the room for us to open if we get too hot inside. We used that window for Matt to pass me a pop tart he heated up in the kitchen... haha. There was a heater inside that worked super well too!
Here's a quick view from the bedroom as we looked out:
We dropped our bags in the room and were so excited to roam around! Their outdoor kitchen was equipped with cute wooden-like plates and utensils, coffee and tea, a single butane burner and a small pot and pan. I wasn't expecting hot water but luckily they did have it, so it was a lot easier to wash our faces at night! Oh, and their soap smells so good. Ha ha, I'm a picky person when it comes to soap so I was happy with what they provided.
That little hut next to the kitchen is where their compost toilet is located. They really made their restroom comfortable with sprays, incense, and instructions on how to use the compost toilet properly.
On the other side of the tree hut were these stairs that led to two incredible spots that led to more trees. It was even more beautiful at night because of the string lights they added.
The tank top I'm wearing here is from Bossy Philosophy and it was the perfect shirt to wear. It says "Love. Understanding. Growth. Up & Onward." and it was everything I was reflecting on during my stay here. Support local and purchase your tank top on her website!
The stairs led to two beautiful areas:
1. A meditation room: When you sit on the single chair there, you are able to look out at the lush greenery and tall trees. It was so serene and quiet.
2. An outdoor bath tub: Literal #forestbathing on a whole 'notha level. We loved this area so much, we showered every day we were there. Haha. How often do you find yourself just showering outdoors in the woods? It was so unique and extremely relaxing. As if bathing or showering among the trees wasn't enough, Rob & Elsa also provided eucalyptus oil for you to drop in the tub as you shower and bath tea as you enjoy a hot bath. Like WHAT?! We didn't know we booked a whole spa day! This was such a nice surprise.
We made a charcuterie plate and drank wine in the hot tub to add to our relaxation. View my blog post here to create your own charcuterie using Trader Joe's products!
Going down the stairs of the tree hut was this fun hammock under the trees that is hella comfortable for naps!
At night, we used the butane burner for s'mores (of course) and to heat up sandwiches. We also played a few games of 2-player Catan. I had to let Matt win once since it was his birthday... =) If you want to purchase Catan, please use my link on Amazon here. We have the Game of Thrones version. Oh and yes, that is Hershey's Cookies & Cream chocolate in our s'mores. Bomb AF.
Here's a view of the treehouse from the front:
I shared so many photos but honestly, these pictures don't give justice to how peaceful and inviting our stay was. It was super clean, remote, and peaceful. We booked this stay to celebrate his birthday but I felt like I gained so much out of it myself. We disconnected from social media, the news, and our crazy world we live in only to reconnect with ourselves and each other with no distractions.
This may not be for you if you get scared easily since there's mostly no service. We had one bar with AT&T and T-Mobile. At one point before we went to bed on our first night, this was our conversation -
Me: "This is so beautiful."
Matt: "This is spooky."
Me literally unable to sleep after that and all the thoughts in my head:
"This is cool. But I guess it is kinda spooky. Man it's so hot. It's cold outside though. What is that? I think I hear a coyote. Or is it a wolf? Do I hear birds? No, maybe bats. Flying. Dragon. Dracarys. If it was snowing, we'd look like we're in the North. White walkers are crazy. I wanna go pee but it's too dark out. Do I wake up Matt to walk with me? I need to sleep."
LOL. We were fine, y'all. We live in a city where there's always noise so the silence was too different. Ha ha. Here are a few favorite photos of us:
We had a TREEmendous weekend and we were sad to leaf.
One takeaway I had was that you can really create your own space to practice mindfulness and self-care. Rob & Elsa inspired me to do that for myself - whether it's creating a section in my home or setting the mood at night for me to relax. It's important to make space for yourself and be intentional with your setting.
If you want a getaway that's only a few hours drive away, stay at the Elk Forest Retreat. You won't regret it! It's perfect for as a pair or solo. Want to stay at this Airbnb? View their listing here and make sure to make a reservation as soon as possible! We booked two months in advance.
Other tips: Bring a small cooler for your drinks, water and cheese if you're doing simple snacks. Plan other things to do around Elk but limit it to two because you're really going to want to stay in this Airbnb to soak it all in. We cancelled our dinner reservation to eat in. Dress warmly! It gets hella cold at night!
Let me know if you have any questions, party people. Have a good time glamping!
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With love & confetti,