The rural reaches of New England have been the safety value for urbanites to blow off steam for generations. With bucolic hills, stretches of silent forests, lonely beaches, and lakeside cabins, the northeast continues to attract those looking to unwind. Although modern amenities have made inroads, there are still plenty of opportunities to escape, unplug, and recharge before getting back to the daily grind. Here are some of the most remote, and beautiful, places to go off grid for a while.
Canoe down the Allagash Wilderness Waterway
This 92-mile band of rivers and lakes stretches through one of Maine’s most rural, wild regions. Established by the state as a place of refuge and solace from “the pressures of society,” the solitude here is unique, even within a state renowned for getting away from it all. There are no houses, people, or roads, only canoes navigating the waterway for days on end. Travel with outfitters who will take care of the details and camp along the shores as you unwind and the world slips away, paddle stroke by paddle stroke.
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Looking for an expert's perspective?Uncover my top 3 recommended places from each continent on the map.
1. GuatemalaAn express adventure for those with limited time off. Prepare yourself incredible experiences. You will hike a volcano, visit mayan temples and witness a ceremony and take in beautiful colonial Antigua.
2. BelizeA quick trip not too far away for those seeking a relaxing mini break. You will have plenty of free time to relax but also some awesome activities to experience the rainforest and the caribbean sea.
3. MexicoAn exciting mini trip exploring the lesser known colonial towns of central Mexico. This is hte perfect trip for someone with limited time off and still wants to turn on explorer mode and do something different.
1. EcuadorA remarkable 8 days adventure through the Andes and the Amazon rainforest. The best choice for adventure seekers wishing to visit the 2 most iconic areas of South America, in only 1 week and no flights.
2. PeruAn alternative itinerary to classic Peru, from Cusco to Arequipa. This itinerary is great combination of highlights Cusco and Machu Picchu with the lesser known Arequipa and Colca Canyon.
1. ItalyThe ultimate Italian experience from the vibrant streets of Naples to the breathtaking sceneries of the Amalfi Coast followed by Matera and down to Puglia with its golden beaches, intense flavours and fascinating destinations.
2. ScotlandEmbark on this great adventure starting from London all the way to Scotland with a true Scottish experience made of breathtaking sceneries, whisky tasting and ..lots of fun! Ideal for train lovers and explorers.
3. PortugalA wonderful train journey around Portugal, from the romantic city of Porto to the Douro Valley, to the beautiful Aveiro all the way to Lisbon and Sintra. The perfect trip to train, culinary and culture lovers.
1. South KoreaDiscover incredible temples, mountains and modern cities on this 10 day adventure. This trip is perfect for those seeking immersion in the cuisine, culture and natural wonders of South Korea.
2. ThailandFrom Bankgok to Angkor Wat to Ho Chi Minh City and everything in between - adventure through the heart of South-East Asia. Taste the delights, see history brought to life and unwind on a Mekong River cruise.
3. Sri LankaA fantastic adventure that showcases Sri Lanka's fantastic landscapes, wildlife and flavours. With 3 epic rail journeys, 3 UNESCO heritage sites and time to relax, this trip has loads to offer at a great price
1. MoroccoAn epic journey across Morocco: from Casablanca to Marrakech, through the blue city of Chefchaouen to the wonders of the desert and deep to the High Atlas Mountains - this trip has it all! Ideal for true explorers!
2. EgyptFrom Cairo to Aswan, this trip brings the land of the pharaohs to life. You'll visit the Pyramids, Valley of the Kings and Luxor Temple and cruise down the Nile in style. This is the perfect way to explore Egypt.
Hike the Cutler Coast Public Reserved Land
A true coastal retreat, this stretch of Downeast Maine’s Bold Coast runs for 4.5 miles along the Bay of Fundy. Forever set aside from development, here rocky cliffs end abruptly at the Atlantic, with almost no houses or people in sight. Trails criss-cross the blueberry fields, peat bogs, and pine barrens, connecting tent sites with dramatic ocean views.
Trek through the 100 Mile Wilderness
This portion of the Appalachain Trail is considered one of the wildest and toughest parts of the trek. Stretching from the town of Monson, southeast of Moosehead Lake, to Mt. Katadhin, Maine’s largest mountain, the wilderness is frequented by paper companies but few others, offering true solitude (not to mention excellent fishing opportunities) at the likes of Gulf Hagas, known as the Grand Canyon of the East. Any hardship is worth the journey, as the end of the trail offers stunning views of the surrounding countryside, mostly woods and rivers.
Stay at tree houses and Tiny Houses
The trendiest way to stay in New England at the moment is to stay in compact, charming rentals set amid bucolic surroundings on the coast or in the woods. Not just for kids, adults are getting in on the tree house act and getting away, sitting (literally) above it all in one-of-a-kind abodes that cater to true nature enthusiasts. Some stylish tree houses are on their own private islands or have rope bridges between landings. All run the gamut between rustic getaways and modern glamping (glamour camping) retreats, some with no electricity and others with a full kitchen. While firmly on the ground, Tiny Houses offer the comforts of home without the excess space, perfect for single travelers or couples.
See the stars in a yurt
New England has no shortage of lodging options, but for the modern nomad, yurts are a popular way of blending into the scenery. Simple and airy, yurts offer basic amenities in one large, tent-like room and not much more. Some have electricity and gas stoves, while yurt compounds are likely to have showers and even saunas. The best part, though, is the transparent tops, perfect for star gazing or listening to the rain. Most yurts are located in the woods and along mountains, letting you leave the world behind.
Channel Thoreau at a lake cabin
Travelers have migrated from cities to cabins on New England’s lakes for so many years now that residents have a phrase for it: “Goin’ up to camp.” Cabins conjure images of contemplation, and the rural regions of New England are some of the most secluded, remote refuges. The region’s cabins, many of them rustic and off-grid, will help you relax and rejuvenate, whether you stay in the woods of Western Massachusetts, or an off-the-grid cabin with an outdoor kitchen in Vermont’s Green Mountains.
Retreat to a remote island
Few places are as remote as New England’s islands. Summer’s tourist retreats are winter’s independent communities, cut off from everything else save for a ferry that might come once a day. Anyone looking to get away and unwind will find the slow, steady island life attractive. Minimal cell phone reception and little internet connection makes these islands feel like you’ve stepped back in time. Coupled with the sun—well, you’ve got all you need for a relaxing place to unwind.
Venture onto the Appalachian Trail
Solitude abounds on the roughly 2,180-mile journey from Georgia to Maine. The trail is as much a spiritual feat as a physical one, winding up mountain and down valley. New England’s portion offers some of the most scenic locales the region has to offer, including the Massachusetts’ Berkshires, Vermont’s Green Mountains and New Hampshire’s White Mountains.
Journey to Vermont’s Northeast Kingdom
Vermont’s Northeast Kingdom—just the “Kingdom” to locals—comprises three counties nestled between the Green Mountains and the Connecticut River. Quaint towns, breathtaking scenery and a way of life that resembles the state’s oldest traditions, anyone looking to unplug and get away can find the peace of solitude here.
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Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.
Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.
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