lighthouse on beach

Taking a vacation to a sunny beach does not necessarily mean that you will have a relaxing time, especially if it is a popular crowded vacation destination in a tourist hot spot. If you are looking for a more stress-free holiday, here is a list of ten places in the USA you can go to be at peace and get away from it all.

1. The Outer Banks and Wild Horses of Carova Beach, North Carolina

carova beach

Carova Beach is at the northernmost point of the state, with no tourists to be found. It is so remote that you need a 4X4 vehicle to navigate the stretches of sand called The Outer Banks.  Majestic wild Spanish mustangs roam along the shore, providing exceptional photo opportunities.

2. Fishing and Boat Cruises In Crater Lake, Oregon

crater lake

This is one of the deepest lakes in the US that has been created by a meteor hit and it is known for its startling blue color and ample rainbow trout. You can take a volcano boat cruise, camp and hike, or relax at the 1920s style Crater Lake Lodge.

3. Shipwrecks and Turtles in Dry Tortugas, Florida

Dry Tortugas

Dry Tortugas is an island located 70 miles west of Key West. Accessible only by boat or seaplane, the park is known as home to the magnificent Fort Jefferson, picturesque blue water, superlative coral reefs, and marine life. Lined with scores of shipwrecks that litter the coastline, it is a great opportunity for some world-class snorkeling, allowing you to view the turtles and a multitude of tropical fish

4. Fishing and Sailing on Flathead Lake, Montana

Flathead Lake

Flathead Lake is the largest freshwater lake west of the Mississippi and is a haven for boaters and fishermen. Camping and investigating the nearby Flathead Indian Reservation are some of the many activities available. If you don’t want to rough it, you can stay at the Flathead Lake Lodge.

5. Camping and Kayaking along Olympic Coast Beaches, Washington

Olympic Coast Beaches

The Olympic Coast Beaches offer clean swimming along 73 miles of beautiful beaches along with bird watching, kayaking, and hiking.  There are also a few rustic coastal retreats, such as the rustic Kalaloch Lodge in Olympic National Park if “glamping” is more your style.

6. Agritourism and Gambling in the Poconos, Pennsylvania

Poconos

The Poconos is a campy, old-fashioned place with kitschy old hotels and casinos and a NASCAR track. However, it is very affordable compared to most wellness retreats and features hotels with heart-shaped tubs and an agritourism trail that includes breweries and wineries.

7. Scenic Drives and Wine Tasting in Santa Barbara Wine Country, California

Santa Barbara Wine Country

Traditionally an escape from smoggy Los Angeles and known for being the location for the movie Sideways, the hilly landscape of Santa Barbara wine country offers a fun scenic road trip. Expect to see horse ranchers and many wineries with five-star dining and tasting rooms. Just don’t drive or ride horses while inebriated.

8. Boating and camping at Sebago Lake, Maine

Sebago Lake

Sebago Lake is a large, deep cold lake with hundreds of islands and scores of places, where you can pitch a tent and claim a small beach as your own. You can avoid the crowds along Maine’s coast, yet still dine on lobster at Migos Lodge, a luxe cabin retreat with tennis courts.

9. Horseback Riding and Ski Resorts in Stowe, Vermont

Stowe, Vermont

Stowe is one of the friendliest cities in New England, that will remind you of pre-Covid times, with rivers, covered bridges, mountains, horseback riding, spas, farmer’s markets and modern breweries. In the winter it offers skiing, lavish Thanksgiving feasts and an annual Christmas tree lighting.

10. Picnics and Wine Tasting in Virginia Wine Country, Virginia

Virginia Wine Country

Virginia wine country extends from the Chesapeake Bay to Blue Ridge. This is not a crowded tour yet as the region’s Chardonnay viticulture is only 20 years old. Stop along the way and wander to nearby creeks and ponds for a bucolic date with nature and a bottle of wine.

Whether choosing to rough it or stay in a lodge, these unique destinations can help you get away, find some tranquility and melt away stress.