Photo: Hulu/National Geographic

5 Awesome Nature Shows To Watch Right Now

Move over Planet Earth.

If the hot weather has you cornered inside (let’s be real, there are times when fending off an army of mosquitos just isn’t worth it, no matter how beautiful that mountain top) but you still want to feel like you’re out in nature, we’ve got the perfect list of offerings. Herewith are our summer picks for the most entertaining nature documentary shows on TV now. Crank up the AC and read on!

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If you love architecture + design…Treehouse Masters (Animal Planet)

Currently in its fifth season, Treehouse Masters airs on Animal Planet and follows “tree whisperer” Pete Nelson as he designs and builds some of the wildest treehouses you’ve ever seen or dared imagine. Name a feature– ziplines, loft-style, secret entrances, vines– and Nelson has probably built it. Episodes run about 40 to 45 minutes and are chock full of childhood fantasies coming true. (Your Pinterest board dream house is about to get a makeover).

If you want a wild ride…Nature’s Weirdest Events (BBC)

Since 2012, Nature’s Weirdest Events has been gathering some of planet Earth’s stranger episodes, like cars cocooned by caterpillars or chimps with rock dolls. The hour long episodes wander through several mysteries and are narrated by Chris Packham, another British naturalist. While Nature’s Weirdest Events certainly isn’t at Attenborough levels (is anything?), the segments spark curiousity and make you feel like your time isn’t totally wasted– you’re learning something, right? Plus, when you finally decide to leave the comfort of your air conditioned room, you’ll be full of cocktail party tidbits.

If you want your nature bite-sized…National Geographic Environment (Hulu Plus)

Nature porn at its finest, National Geographic’s Environment channel on Hulu offers up short clips from around the world centered on different topics, from a 124-mile long cave (terrifying but awesome) to a fire tornado (also terrifying but awesome). Clips run from under a minute to about six minutes and provide informed segments that’ll leave you a little more worldly than you were a few minutes before.

If you love a classic…Nature (PBS)

Of course, you can always throw it back with your nature viewing. The aptly titled Nature has been airing since 1982 on PBS (it’s currently in its 35th season), bringing the wonders of wildlife to the American public. Episodes are available online and explore a wide range of topics like the penguin post office in Antartica (which once a year gets swarmed by penguins) or an entire episode devoted to “bionic pets” (try to make it through the whole episode without crying– we’ll wait). The quintessential nature show is the perfect kind of comfort TV.

If you love performance art…Green Porno (Netflix)

Our lives were irrevocably changed after watching a clip of Green Porno. Made with the utmost sincerity (we’re pretty sure), Green Porno seems like a Portlandia skit come to life and is currently in its third season; each of its episodes investigates the mating rituals of different creatures from the natural world. Creator Isabella Rossellini dons different elaborate costumes to re-enact the mating rituals, explaining them to the viewer and providing well-researched information. Really, you just have to go watch it for yourself.

In the mood for food? Check out our guide to the best foodie shows Netflix currently has to offer.

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