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Eco escapes: mountain retreat

Check out this ethically sound mountain retreat. Could it be your next getaway?

by Psychologies

Our Contributing Travel Editor, green girl and SPA.Kitchen founder, Daisy Finder, rounds up the world's best ethical holidays. 

Mountain retreat: Kasbah Du Toubkal, Morocco

Staff exude a genuine commitment to the vision of the modest Englishman who bought a ruined castle in the shadow of Jbel Toubkal, the highest peak in northern Africa, and turned it into this delightful, quirky, ethically sound hotel. But what Mike McHugo and his team have achieved goes way beyond converting a crumbling ruin into another tourist hotel. Not only is the Kasbah a major employer of local staff, and uses local produce, materials and craftsmen, but the real deal is a charity set up to help the impoverished local population.

This inspirational organisation has seen numerous projects materialise – from refuse collection throughout the valley, to the purchase of a 4x4 ambulance, and setting up hostels so local girls can attend secondary school. But it is the hotel that will be the focus for the visitor. There is a room to suit all budgets, from backpackers’ shared bunkrooms to the Garden Suite, a charming apartment with huge windows overlooking the villages and valleys. Breakfast is perfect; homemade yogurt, pancakes, local eggs; while lunch and dinner are traditional Moroccan fare. Tea and coffee are available without charge all day, as is the hammam (steam room). Djellabas (long robes) are available in your room for the chilly evenings, and some rooms have log fires. Days are spent enjoying numerous mountain treks. When you return to your room after dinner, there will be a hot-water bottle in your bed. DF

From £109 per room per night, including breakfast. For more information, visit kasbahdutoubkal.com; or call their UK reservation office on 01883 744667

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