14 Amazing Vacations to Cure What Ails You
10:00 am, July 22nd | by Beth Collins, LearnVest
We all have reasons for craving some R&R. But instead of booking another standard-fare vacation, why not plan a getaway that’s tailor-made to help address what ails you?
From mental-detox trips to the perfect escape for couples in need of a break from the kids, these 14 destinations may be just what the vacation doctor ordered.
The Complaint: You’ve battled one cold after another
The Cure: A body-and-mind escape
Esalen, Big Sur, Calif.
This holistic retreat center offers a huge range of workshops, such as health and healing, creative expression, yoga and writing. The personal-growth opportunities are the primary draw, of course, but the setting is pretty spectacular too: 120 acres of gorgeously untamed land in coastal Big Sur, complete with hot springs and a canyon stream that winds into the Pacific Ocean.
Details: Weekend workshops start at $405, including accommodations and meals.
The Body Holiday by Le Sport, St. Lucia
It’s hard to resist the motto at this luxury resort: “Give us your body for a week, and we’ll give you back your mind.” You choose your activities, so you can fill your days with active pursuits—yoga, scuba and Tai Chi, to name a few—or take the restorative route, going from massage to acupuncture to coconut-milk body wrap. Either way, you’ll leave feeling infinitely better than when you arrived.
Details: From $450 per day, including three meals, all drinks, afternoon tea, a 50-minute spa treatment and fitness classes.
The Complaint: You’ve been worked to the bone
The Cure: A trip where everything is done for you
Seabourn South American Stars Cruise
The only thing more relaxing than soaking up the sun? Soaking it up on a cruise ship in which your every need is attended to. Seabourn is so focused on providing outstanding service that it claims you’ll “never lift a finger while you’re a guest of ours, unless it’s to signal a waiter for another bottle of vintage Bordeaux from the fully stocked wine cellar.” This seven-day sail takes you to the South American biggies, including Brazil, Argentina and Uruguay.
Details: From $2,999 per person.
Twin Farms, Barnard, Vt.
Some all-inclusive resorts are tricky: They lure you in with a base price—and then tempt you with costly extras and upgrades during your stay. At the 5-star Twin Farms, the initial price might induce sticker shock … until you see that this place truly includes everything. Among the offerings: packing and unpacking services; all meals, including dinner and customized picnic lunches; fine wines and spirits any time of day; oodles of such outdoor activities as canoeing on a private pond and mountain biking (plus all the gear you’ll need for them); warm cookies and milk delivered to your room; access to a 104-degree Japanese furo soaking tub; and private airport transfer around the clock.
Details: Nightly rates start at $1,260.
The Complaint: You’re tired of living in a concrete jungle
The Cure: A healthy dose of nature
Travaasa Austin, Austin, Tex.
Set in the Balcones Canyonlands Preserve, this resort gets you so immersed in Texas Hill Country activities that you’ll forget city life entirely. In addition to a mechanical bull workout and Texas two-step instruction, Travassa just debuted a new onsite farm, with more than 100 chickens, orchards and gardens. Guests can take chicken-care courses and learn harvest-to-table cooking. And if all of that doesn’t help you unwind, the spa treatments (think offerings like a sacred stones massage) and such healing rituals as chakra-clearing likely will.
Details: From $200 per night.
La Cabane en l’Air, France
The nearly 200 treehouses owned by this company throughout France—like the Loire Valley and Provence—give new meaning to the word “skyscrapers.” Instead of cubicle mates, your neighbors here are singing birds. And those harsh fluorescent bulbs have been replaced with sunlight streaming through the leafy branches. Since each treehouse was built to fit into a specific tree (or, in some cases, trees), no two structures are alike—although all them will remind you of the Swiss Family Robinson in the best possible way.
Details: From $127 per night; treehouses sleep from two to seven people.
The Complaint: You need to reconnect with the kids
The Cure: A family getaway that isn’t Disney
Park Hyatt Beaver Creek, Avon, Co.
Located in the heart of the Colorado Rockies, this place is like summer camp for the whole family—minus the uncomfortable bunk beds. Among the reasons why your kids won’t want to leave: nightly s’mores throughout the summer; slopeside lawn games, like bocce, mini golf and disc golf; and the Beaver Creek Rodeo, which features bull riding, barrel racing and hearty western fare.
Details: From $127 per night.
Peaks ’n Swells Surf Camp, Montezuma, Costa Rica
This isn’t one of those resorts where the adults spend all day lounging by the pool while the kids are stuck with an activity director. Here, the whole family has a single goal: learn to surf on the warm, gentle breaks of the Nicoya Peninsula. In addition to catching waves, you also get yoga sessions, bonfire dinners on the beach, and lodging in one of three incredible beach houses, where you’re sure to spot white-faced monkeys every day.
Details: Seven-day family camps from $2,450 per person ($1,195 for children between ages one and five not surfing).
The Complaint: You need a break from your (and everyone else’s) kids
Cure: A restorative, adults-only getaway
Cocobay Resort, Antigua
Any place that claims to be the most romantic Antigua resort has a lot to live up to—and this resort certainly delivers. For starters, children under 12 aren’t allowed (except during Christmastime), so you don’t have to worry about getting splashed by rowdy kids while you’re soaking up the rays poolside. Also, the rooms (choose from 59 cottages and four plantation houses) don’t have TVs—so instead of getting sucked in by an HGTV House Hunters marathon, you’ll be more likely to take advantage of the kayaking, snorkeling, Hobie Cat sailing and guided nature walks.
Details: Daily rates from $288, including all meals; beer, non-premium spirits and house wine; and taxes and gratuities.
Barcelo Hotels & Resorts, Spain
This hotel group’s five adults-only properties—Menorca, Mallorca, Estepona and two in Fuerteventura—have everything you could ever want from a romantic getaway (pools, Jacuzzis, candlelit restaurants) and none of what you don’t (kids). Each one is highly appealing in its own right, but our favorite is the Barcelo Estepona Thalasso Spa. The water used at its Thalasso U-Spa is extracted directly from the Mediterranean Sea—and chock full of vitamins, minerals, proteins and iron. You can spend time soaking up those curing properties in the Marine Therapeutic Circuit, or get an individual treatment in one of the 19 Thalasso suites.
Details: From $205 per night.
The Complaint: You’ve seriously lost your mojo
The Cure: A vacation with a wow factor
Alaskan Dream Cruises
Forget everything you thought you knew about cruises. These ships accommodate a maximum of 66 people (a refreshing contrast from the thousands that many ships squeeze onboard), and the focus is on all things nature, like whales breaching within feet of the boat, and glaciers at arm’s reach. It has all the makings for a once-in-a-lifetime experience—except that passengers may be so blown away after one tour that they book again.
Details: Nine-day cruises from $4,199 per person.
Sheraton Kona, Big Island, Hawaii
Consider this oceanside resort base camp for all of the incredible things that the Big Island has to offer: Volcanoes National Park, black sand beaches, surfing and stand-up paddleboarding. For one of the coolest experiences, you don’t even need to leave the property: Almost every night, giant Manta Rays swim up to the hotel, illuminated by the same lights that attract the plankton that they feed on. If you’re feeling adventurous, you can even book a spot on the Hula Kai, a boat that leads snorkel excursions among the rays.
Details: From $169 per night.
The Complaint: You haven’t seen your friends … in forever
The Cure: Some serious girl time
Big Sky Yoga Retreats, Bozeman, Mt.
When a place offers retreats with names like “Cowgirl Yoga,” you know it’s going to be fun. Set in gorgeously rugged cattle country, this women-only getaway combines daily yoga classes with blissfully drawn-out horseback riding excursions, where you’ll take in views of the vast vistas and snow-covered peaks around the ranch. And while you’ll definitely feel a million miles away from your day-to-day world, the goal here is not to escape your life—but to find yourself.
Details: Three-night retreats from $925 per person.
Sanctuary on Camelback Mountain Resort & Spa, Paradise Valley, Ariz.
There’s not a group of girlfriends on the planet who wouldn’t relish this luxury resort. You could spend all of your time in the spa alone, where treatments range from standard massage to more exotic offerings, like toksen, a healing treatment from Thailand that mixes Thai yoga with vibration. Afterward, complete your path to nirvana by relaxing in the Zen meditation garden, the reflecting pool or the watsu pool. But do try to tear yourself away from the spa to enjoy everything else the resort has to offer, like tennis, hiking on Camelback Mountain, and a restaurant with Food Network celeb chef Beau MacMillan at the helm.
Details: From $179 per night.
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