Sleeping in castles, clock towers, and carriages used to be the stuff of childhood fantasies. Now Airbnb is making those dreams a reality. The home-sharing company isn’t just helpful for finding a cozy apartment in Paris for a weekend getaway, or a ski house for the family over holiday break. These days the site allows you to find one-of-a-kind accommodations that are so unique even the photographs don’t do them justice.
Here, we round up the nine of the coolest, craziest, and most unique rentals available through Airbnb.
If you didn’t see our story on soccer legend Ronaldhino’s mansion, available for $15,500 a day on Airbnb, and other great World Cup rentals, you can check it out here.
Clock Tower Guest Suite - London, England
Have your own quasi Quasimodo experience by spending the night in a clock tower turned apartment at St. Pancras Station. This 32-foot-tall home offers the perfect blend of modern conveniences — flat screen TVs, Internet,and contemporary furnishings — all housed in a landmark building dating to 1868. The view from the top looks out on many of London’s landmarks, such as St Paul’s Cathedral and Kings Cross Station. For rates starting at $258 a night you can shack up in one of the two double bedrooms, flip through the books in the library, and peer out the clock from your perch in the sky.
Historic Beer Barrel - Ostbevern, Germany
Falling asleep in a keg of beer sounds more like a college nightmare than a dream. But, this one-of-a-kind rental is actually a 19th century beer barrel that was converted into a sleeping alcove. In conjunction with the local Pott’s Brewery, guests can stay in one of three rooms for prices starting at $140 a night. Make it a brew-tiful night with a visit to the barrel sauna on the property.
A 19th Century Firehouse - Lambertville, New Jersey
Go off duty for the weekend in a private two-bedroom 19th century converted firehouse in the center of historical Lambertville, New Jersey. Though the pole and ladders are sadly gone, you can still enjoy the gourmet kitchen, original antique gingerbread woodwork and roof deck for $275 a night. Create your own romantic spark by stocking up on wine from local wineries or heading to one of the 25 restaurants within walking distance.
Royal Train Carriage - Pokolbin, Australia
Those Boxcar Children made living on a train seem so enchanting. Bring your favorite childhood novel to life by staying in a train carriage at The Royal. These unique themed carriages are surrounded by vineyards and feature beautifully finished rosewood walls, French antiques, and a spa bath starting at $134 a night. The onsite tennis court, outdoor spa, and above-ground pool are the icing on the cake at this already-dreamy getaway.
Borgia Castle - Tuscany, Italy
Feel like royalty by staying in a Tuscan castle. Fair warning: It will cost you a steep $1,541 a night! This palace, which once belonged to the infamous Borgia family, transports you back in time with its antique furnishings and beautiful frescoes. Take in the historic view from one of seven bedrooms or on the terrace, which looks out onto the property’s lake.
Desert Tent - Rajasthan, India
Living in a desert might not be on the top of your list, but after seeing these luxury tents in India you’re sure to change your mind. Panoramic views from comfortably furnished and completely private rooms capture the essence of exotic romance. From $438 per night you can stay in one of 11 guest tents, which include three meals prepared in the family kitchen; there are also tours of the village and bird-watching expeditions.
Floating House - San Diego, California
A house by the water is something to boast about. A house floating on the water takes your #TravelBrag to an entirely new level. Pelican Place is two-story home that is literally set in San Diego Bay. It features a large bedroom, kitchen, washer/dryer, and outdoor patio with views of the harbor and downtown. Want to explore? Kayaks and bikes are included in the $199-a-night rate.
The Boot - Tasman, New Zealand
There was an old woman who lived in a shoe — and for rates starting at $262 a night, you can, too. Jump right into the pages of the beloved nursery rhyme in this cottage shaped like a giant boot. Furnished for two, the one-bedroom home creates a fairy-tale ambiance, with its open fireplace, breakfast service, and Juliet balcony overlooking a grove of hazelnut trees.
Lighthouse - Port Washington, New York
This may not be Gilligan’s Island, but the three-bedroom Execution Rocks Lighthouse provides a safely stranded vacation. From $350 per night, you not only get a private island, but also an 1867 lighthouse to call your own. Guests must bring their own food and take a 15-minute boat ride to reach the property. Onsite ghosts are included in the nightly rate.
Want to know more about Airbnb? In World 3.0, a new Yahoo series from Global News Anchor Katie Couric, Airbnb CEO and co-founder Brian Chesky reveals how he plans to take over the travel industry, the lessons he’s learned along the way and even offers tips on how to create the perfect listing. Check out the story here.