Feynan EcoLodge: A regenerative oasis

sustainable travel
A bright, sustainable star shines in the heart of Jordan’s Dana Biosphere Reserve. A regenerative paradise perfected by the visionary Nabil Tarazi. Check-in at Feynan Ecolodge and check out of the cluttered world we live in today.

Enjoy the rare opportunity to disconnect as you reconnect with nature and reacquaint yourself with the simplicity of life at Feynan. Savor the joy of waking up to birds chirping, the sun rising over the mountains, and feast on a nourishing Arabic breakfast. Find a good reading spot at one of the serene terraces and marvel at the surroundings, or indulge in one of the many activities offered in the Dana Biosphere Reserve. And at night, unwind as the candlelit lodge flickers, then count the shooting stars as you lay under an endless blanket of galaxies.

The sight of the lodge by night is genuinely jaw-dropping. Illuminated only by stars and flickering flames, it looked as impenetrable as the crusader forts you can visit all over Jordan. When you look at the impressive atmosphere created by the shimmering lights of the candles, one may wonder why we use electricity in the first place. 

“Our operation here supports around eighty families or roughly four hundred individuals, in one of Jordan’s poverty pockets. This is something that makes me exceptionally proud”

Solar Powered

“Hahaha. Well, for hot showering, it comes in pretty handy,” Nabil Tarazi, the owner of EcoHotels, which operates the Feynan Lodge, laughs. “We have solar collectors for all of our rooms, so each room has its own hot water supply for the bathroom. We generate electricity via solar panels for bathrooms, kitchen and offices. But even the rooms themselves we light up with candles.”

From a sustainable, or even a regenerative, point of view, Feynan is almost even more magical and sets an example for other eco-lodges around the globe. 

Community-based

For example, Feynan is genuinely community-based. “We try to source everything we need within a sixty-kilometer radius,” Nabil says proudly. “Forty drivers from the community shuttle our guests in their free time, our bread is baked fresh daily by Umm Khalid who runs her business from her goat hair tent, and has only one client; the lodge. We even helped one of the Bedouins to start a bike rental business. We give him our bikes and we refer our guests to him for any biking excursions. Our operation here supports around eighty families or roughly four hundred individuals, in one of Jordan’s poverty pockets. This is something that makes me exceptionally proud.”

Minimal environmental footprint

Feynan Ecolodge was designed to operate in harmony with its habitat. “We try to operate in a way which minimizes the impact of tourism on the surrounding natural environment,” says Nabil. “It is the most advanced eco accommodation in Jordan and employs many technologies to leave the smallest possible environmental footprint.

 

Funding conservation

A portion of Feynan’s income is spent on conservation efforts at the Dana Biosphere Reserve, managed by the Royal Society for the Conservation of Nature (RSCN). Established in 1989, Dana Biosphere Reserve is Jordan’s second-largest nature reserve, covering some 320km2 of the rugged and beautiful landscape along the face of the Great Rift Valley. Dana Reserve is important because it contains Jordan’s highest level of biodiversity.

“We try to operate in a way which minimizes the impact of tourism on the surrounding natural environment”

Multicultural exchange

The historical caravanserai inspired the concept and design of Feynan Ecolodge. These were camel caravans taking long journeys across China, Central Asia, and Europe who would stop and rest at these inns along the silk route, restocking on their supplies and resting before embarking on the next journey. These staging posts were the world’s first global overland network, standing as a testament to the flourishing period of multicultural exchange in the Muslim world, a platform where travelers and pilgrims shared stories, discoveries, and knowledge. What stories will you share?

Dana, Petra, Wadi Rum, Jordan, April 2019. A local Bedouin man shows the fina art of bedouin coffee making. The crown jewel of the Jordan trail is the famed Dana to Petra Trek. It truly is a great hike with varying landscapes each day and finishes at the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Petra. The Jordan Trail is a walking trail crossing and connecting the length of the country of Jordan from Um Qais in the north to Aqaba and the Red Sea in the south. Offering 40 days of trekking across more than 600 kilometers of trail, it traverses the diverse landscapes and vistas of the country. The Kingdom of Jordan is hosts one of the most accessible desert wildernesses of the Middle East, with a rich Bedouin culture. Photo by Frits Meyst / Meystphoto.com

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