The aptly named Tiger Lodge is a one-of-a-kind boutique hotel situated on the Port Lympne Reserve in Kent, England. The lodge is embedded inside a live tiger den with large, panoramic windows through which hotel guests can survey the wild cat’s daily goings-on. Just to be clear: sleeping guests can literally crash within feet of one of the world’s most fearsome apex predators. The exclusive two-bedroom space is available to just four guests at a time. However, the purpose-built lodge is kitted out with a beautiful rustic decor, plus luxury amenities like a log-burning fireplace, a reading library, a 4K TV, and a unique raw-wood-and-tile bathroom with Bamford toiletries. A private balcony (not inside the tiger’s den, incidentally) affords views that stretch more than 30 miles across the reserve, all the way to the English Channel.
Port Lympne Reserve is a first-class wildlife reserve in one of England’s most beautiful regions. More than 700 animals from 88 species call the massive property home. It’s a full-service property that offers photography walks, Segway tours, fishing expeditions, and hot air balloon rides, plus all-day restaurants cafes, and bars. Overnight guests are afforded additional VIP access that includes after-hours tours before the park opens in the morning and after it closes each evening. A golf cart is also provided to Lodge guests, as are night-vision binoculars for after-dark safaris.
On paper, the park might boast an “amusement park/zoo/safari” vibe, but there’s a lot of good going on behind the scenes. The Port Lympne reserve is part of The Aspinall Foundation — a well-respected international conservation charity that has worked since 1984 to save endangered species in the United Kingdom and abroad. They’re especially well-renowned for their work in releasing captive and bred animals into safe wilderness preserves throughout the world.
This bucket list-worthy experience doesn’t come cheap. Low season rates start at £375 (approximately $500 USD) nightly, while peak season runs up to £800 (more than $1,000 USD) per night. If it helps ease the financial pain, though, know that all profits at Port Lympne Reserve help spare rare wildlife species around the world.