Natural Retreats is proof that green doesn't have to mean grunge. Its first development opened early last year, a collection of eight lodges set in 50 scenic, privately owned, acres of North Yorkshire countryside. Built from sustainable timber and glass, with insulation made from recycled paper, living-plant roofs and solar and green energy, the lodges also come with sleek open-plan kitchen and dining areas, solid oak flooring, cedar decking, flat-screen TVs, CD and DVD players and rain showers.

Between now and July, the company is adding nine new, improved, buildings to the North Yorkshire site and upgrading its existing properties with even more ecological features. When that is complete, work will then start on two new sites, one in Snowdonia and one in the Lake District; and over the next few years, Natural Retreats hopes to roll out its vision across Britain's 14 national parks. Rhiannon Batten

Two-night breaks from £325 per lodge (sleeping six), 0161 242 2970, www.natural Rhiannon Batten is the author of 'Higher Ground: How to Travel Responsibly Without Roughing It' (£12.99, Virgin Books)