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The Short Version: To fully immerse themselves in nature, couples should view the outdoors from every angle — including from above. Cypress Valley offers an exhilarating way to experience the environment from the treetops while helping promote sustainability in the process. Couples can book a romantic night together in a Cypress Valley treehouse, and then enjoy an unforgettable zipline experience over and through the forest. The tours take place near Austin, Texas, which is home to many types of unique flora and fauna. For providing couples with intimate, natural experiences, Cypress Valley earns our Editor’s Choice Award.
Couples who enjoy getting out in nature have likely been on many hikes through the countryside, camping in a nearby state park or spending the day birdwatching. That’s because getting away from people and experiencing the peace of nature can be fun and romantic.
But nature can be even more exciting when viewed from new perspectives.
That’s why many couples make the trip to Cypress Valley, just west of Austin, Texas. There, they can spend the weekend together in one of the property’s romantic treehouses or just spend the day having a blast on its ziplines.
The ziplines allow couples to glide through and over the treetops together and enjoy the well-preserved environment below. It’s safe, but it also feels exhilarating — and a little risky.
That rush of dopamine — the feel-good hormone — guests may feel as they glide on a zipline through the forest can keep them reliving the ride with their partner well into the evening. And the entire experience is aimed at promoting sustainable eco-tourism through which people can enjoy nature with little impact.
“Cypress Valley is a beautiful example of a small business finding ways to protect the environment and offer guests a truly memorable experience in nature,” said Co-Founder Amy Beilharz. “Since 2005, Cypress Valley has been using profits to steward a beautiful piece of the Texas Hill Country and provide guests eco-friendly adventures in nature.”
The tour includes five ziplines, two sky bridges, and a rappel, along with all the safety equipment guests need. The experiences last between 90 minutes and two hours, but couples can enjoy the property all night if they reserve one of its five treehouses.
Some couples even get married there, choosing a unique view from the property’s Wedding and Event Center. For providing couples with exhilarating experiences and romantic natural escapes, Cypress Valley earns our Editor’s Choice Award.
Cypress Valley started in 1998 when Amy and her partner David decided to move with their three children to a hilly, undeveloped plot of land in the Texas countryside. They became stewards of the property, building gently while learning the pace of life, and enjoying the beauty of nature.
In 2005, Amy said they decided to expand their homestead to share it with others. David had visited a zipline experience in Costa Rica and loved it. So, the couple decided to create a zipline course throughout the property. It was the first zipline tours in the continental U.S. to travel through the trees.
“This adventure starts with guests gearing up and participating in a short tutorial before they embark into the trees,” Amy said. “Cypress Valley remains committed to helping people get outdoors in unique ways that create lifetime memories, and, hopefully, inspire their love of nature.”
Some couples have made the zipline even more memorable by popping the big question at one of the platforms along the way. Amy said she met a couple who came to the zipline on their first date. Then, two years later, they came again with friends. The man called before to get the guides in on his plan, so they lingered behind just long enough for him to get down on one knee.
After they zipped along, freshly engaged, they announced the news to their friends, who were waiting at the end.
“Shared adventures, beautiful scenery, a romantic atmosphere, and epic love stories — need I say more?” Amy said.
Another popular spot for engagements and romantic getaways are the five treehouses on the property. And Cypress Valley is one of the few treehouse resorts in the world.
Guests stay in the middle of an old-growth cypress tree forest, accompanied only by the sounds of the creek that runs through the property and an occasional firefly display.
Each of the treehouses is unique. The Yoki, Lofthaven, Juniper, and Willow treehouses are perfect for couples, while The Nest sleeps four to six guests.
For larger events, the property’s Ranch House, which is on the ground, sleeps up to 14 and features a main room overlooking the ravine.
“It is an intimate experience with a five-billion-star view; our treehouses offer lovers, families, and friends an incredible opportunity to take a break from their daily stress and reconnect to themselves, each other, and nature,” Amy said. “Imagine spending your first night together as partners in life in the embrace of an ancient cypress tree. No television, no wifi, no distractions other than the sweet songs of birds flitting between the trees.”
Cypress Valley is also a gathering place for friends, families, co-workers, and anyone who loves nature. Although the zipline may seem scary, it’s accessible to people of different experience levels and abilities.
Amy said the one thing guests share is a feeling of increased enthusiasm and excitement for life.
Over the years, Amy and David have continued to expand their business as more couples have shared their experiences at Cypress Valley. Just two years ago, they opened Cypress Valley’s Wedding and Event Center for weddings and other special celebrations.
“Guests loved the experience so much that more than a few wanted to stay overnight in the trees, which gave us the idea for the treehouses,” Amy said. “Then, treehouse guests had such fond memories that more than a few wished out loud for a place here where they could be married.”
That was the inspiration for building the 3,000-square-foot Event Center among the trees. It features a natural amphitheater and a ceremony platform suspended above the valley. It’s a wistful, magical setting for a fairytale wedding.
Amy said the entire staff feels like family, which adds to the good feeling that comes from forests and fun. They all love the work they’re doing to preserve nature, and their individual specialties include ornithology, art, climbing, and landscape design, she said.
Beyond weddings and engagements, guests often come to Cypress Valley for honeymoons, anniversaries, and babymoons. And the thrill of the zipline may even feel like the butterflies in your stomach on a first date.
“Then pair that energy with an epic adventure that allows both you and your partner to connect at a level that you won’t find sitting around the dinner table,” Amy said.
The result is an unforgettable experience that pairs excitement and lasting memories to build connections and strengthen friendships and relationships. Best of all, it happens all in the treetops.