Star Rating:


Gaija Hostel  Hot
Hotels 4 Green Stars
Eco Stars: 4 star
Stars: unrated
Location: Europe
Country: Finland

Gaija Hostel

The Hostel is one part of Gaija Organic Farm and community with approximately 25 permanent inhabitants. The community members and other international volunteer workers grow vegetables and other nutritious plants in ecological way. The farm has also hens, roosters, sheep, horses, dogs and cats.

The stone house from 1940 has 8 cozy two-bed guest rooms all viewing the lake surrounding the house. Every room has two beds or a twin bed, a small table and a chair. They have one room especially for parents with a small baby and one room for 2 adults and 2 children. The pet-room has a twin bunk-bed and a single bed, which allows 4 persons in one room for a lower prices.

They offer bed and breakfast accommodation, working holidays and other activities such as horseback-riding, kayaks or rowing boat and bicycles for rent. The lake sauna is for rent for guests. The lake is pure and perfect for swimming especially during the summer. In the winter there is also the opportunity to dip into the snow or icy water after a sauna. Also hiking, snowshoeing and skiing can be arranged (activities must be ordered in advance).

The hostel's kitchen and dining room are free to use, there is a small dining area, fridge and all utensils. The shower and toilets are situated on the hostel corridor. Hostel has one pet-room, just at the end of the corridor. Pets are not allowed to enter the kitchen or dining area and thus the hostel remains free of animals and allergy-friendly in general.

Green Star Rating Results:
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Overall Rating: ★★★★ (4)

Energy Rating: ★★★ (3)
Staff Comment - During the cold-winter saison, hostel rooms are heated up by the central heating system, using renewable resources- timber from regional forests. In the summer time water gets heated by solar panels and in cloudy days heated by wood only if requested. For saving the electricity, we use only energy light bulbs in our hostel. All community members and the staff are informed and aware about energy saving initiatives. Through green information boards about sustainable living, our guests are kindly made aware of our energy saving philosphy. By cleaning acitvities in the hostel, we systematically are seeking alternative ways to avoid the overuse of energy. For example rugs are not cleaned by electric hoover, but brought outside the house and cleaned manually. Floors are cleaned by using efficient mops and vipers.

Water Rating: ★★★★ (4)
Staff Comment - All community members and the staff are informed and aware about water saving and encouraged, for example, to use the extra usable water left from kitchen for watering the indoor plants. Through signs and greenboard about sustainable living, our guests are kindly made aware of water saving principles. There is also a tank for selecting rain water for watering the Gaijas own garden. If neccessary, lake water could also be used for watering plants in the summer. All hostel cleaning products are ecological and are not containing chemical indegrients.

Disposal Rating: ★★★★★ (5)
Staff Comment - Through regular meetings and discussions, all members and staff are informed and made aware about disposal seperation and reusing. For example, toilet paper canes are used as seed plots, milk and other cans are mostly used for soap making and other handicrafts. Old fabrics and clothes are recycled or reused as cleaning suppliers. As far as possible, the leftovers from food are given to the animals of the organic farm. The part of ecological practice is the self build bio waste compost for leftovers in the kitchen. Gaija Hostel has separated waste disposals for all recyclable wastes. The ideology of recycling is also displayed to our guests through the information on the Greenboard. They are encouraged to follow the green advices and think sustainable.

Eco-Active Rating: ★★★★ (4)
Staff Comment - Our hostel is the part of eco-community. The members of this community and also the hostel staff is commited to ecological way of living with the nature. Gaija community and hostel staff is constantly looking for more ecological solutions to any kind of issue. In Gaija hostel we take in recycled material for further use. We also are planning to develop our flea-market to produce donations directly to charity in the third world. Instead of passing on used material we use it until the end of its days in different purposes. Also the hostel management is strongly commited to ecologicaly sustainable tourism. Educational part of the eco-activities contains opportunity for hostel guests to learn eco-way of life and organic farming and taking care of the domestic animals. There are possibilties for them to lend a helping hand in all kind of farming activities through working holiday or volunteering opportunities.

Protection Rating: ★★★ (3)
Staff Comment - All the guests in Gaija can enjoy the environment of our 10 ha area. They can also participate in all day work. The guests will learn some ideas of sustainable living and meaning of organic farming for the earth. Gaija Hostel takes in trainees from local schools and arranges activities to local kindergardens. Community maintains and protects the heritage culture and landscape (Biotopes/heritage landscape, EU certificate). Animals living in Gaija-organic farm are original finnish breed. Also the food culture and traditions are very rare and special. In Gaija Organic Farm you can observe the 100 years old recepies of bread making. Gaija hostel uses only organically grown products and seeks for more local production. We use as much as possible local products in our cooking and support organic production all over the world. The traditional way of living is shown also harvest food storage -techniques for winter and for example in heritage handicrafts (yarn made from own sheep’s whool).

Contact Details

Gaija Hostel
Kaijantie 283
63700 Ähtäri
+358 45 2034 787
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