Digital detox spots that stand out
Planning a vacation is fun, but sometimes you need to think of it from a more intentional point of view. If you really need to get away from the chaos, the responsibilities, and the general feeling that you’re always a little bit exhausted, then you may want to look into one of the top off-the-grid destinations in the country. These are the digital detox spots that stand out for their beauty, scenery, and ability to tear you away from your everyday tech routine.
Tassajara Zen Mountain Center
Situated in the Ventana Wilderness within Los Padres National Forest, the Tassajara Zen Mountain Center in Carmel Valley, CA all but forces you outside your comfort zone. That may sound alarming, but if your mission is to truly disconnect from the trappings of everyday life, then you won’t find a better place to escape. It has the distinction of being the oldest Japanese Buddhist Sōtō Zen monastery in the country. The secluded location is open to visitors from late April into early September and is renowned in particular for its proximity to the Tassajara Hot Springs.
The environment is rustic and relaxed, and guests can opt to stay in either a private cabin or a shared dorm. You’ll receive three vegetarian meals a day, as well an endless supply of tea and coffee. The entire property is equipped with a single public phone — there’s no Internet access or cell phone reception available. This is truly one of the top off-the-grid destinations in the country for its complete break from electronic equipment. Although you’re permitted to bring your devices, the facility does charge an hourly fee to charge batteries and laptops. In all, it’s a quiet, serene spot to break free of your daily technological responsibilities — and that can be incredibly freeing once you experience it for yourself.
The Golden Door
Is it real? Is it too good to be true? The Golden Door almost sounds like a fairytale when you first hear about it. The legendary retreat in San Marcos, CA, is situated some 40 miles north of San Diego. In the Escondido hillside, it’s as luxuriously life-changing and affirming as you might expect. As you arrive, you’ll be whisked through ornate gates that lead you to an actual golden door. The atmosphere here is completely serene and tranquil. You’ll walk along smooth pathways surrounded by flowing streams and Zen gardens. There’s even a mesmerizing koi pond on the premises. While guests do have Internet access here, it’s unlikely that you’ll find a need to reach for your phone or laptop. There’s simply too much to do. For starters, there’s the welcome package containing a chic tote bag, a journal, and a fanny pack. They even provide shorts, tees, and robes if you want to pack light. After your early-morning hike at 6 a.m., you can enjoy in-room breakfast. Workout classes begin at 9 a.m., and you’ll have your pick of numerous courses that range from minimal to intensive.
The on-site spa is a dream when you need to unwind and restore your body and soul. Take your pick of everything: massages, manicures, blowouts, facials, and body wraps are all on the menu, along with other services you probably didn’t realize that you needed. Many spend their time here wandering the gardens and breathing in the fresh air. Most impressive of all? The Golden Door practices philanthropy in every sense of the word: 100 percent of its net profits are donated to different causes, including the San Francisco Child Abuse Prevention Center, the New York Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children, and the Whole Planet Foundation.
Just call it a little piece of paradise. Cumberland Island is everything you could possibly expect of an outdoor retreat. Georgia’s beautiful barrier island is an exceptional study in both nature and history, and there’s much to experience here if you’re willing to put your uncertainties aside and delve into island living with zeal. To visit here is to break ties with your phone and all other electronic items; service is spotty at best. The good news is that you’re likely to be far too enchanted by the sight of wild horses, manatees, whitetail deer, armadillos, bobcats, and other beautiful creatures as they wander freely. The horses have a direct tie to the island’s history — although there’s general confusion as to the person responsible for bringing the original horses to the region centuries ago. Some believe it was Ponce de Leon, while others claim it was 18th-century English settlers. No matter their origination, the horses now rule the island, and it’s humbling to be in their magnificent presence.
Offering 17 miles of pure white-sand beaches, you’re almost guaranteed to enjoy peaceful solo time on the shore while you’re here. To reach Cumberland Island, however, you’ll need to book a reservation for a 45-minute ferry excursion. Once you arrive, you can rent a bike at the Sea Camp ranger station and bike along the main road. Don’t forget to pack your hiking gear; the island offers at least 50 miles of trails situated within wetlands, marshlands, and forests.
Post Ranch Inn
Make your digital detox easy on you. A destination that offers complimentary breakfast, daily yoga, guided nature walks, and sound meditation is unlikely to be anything but completely peaceful. On the Big Sur cliffside, it’s the ultimate hideout — the type of place that you visit when you’re planning something special with your significant other or need to get away from it all and indulge in some quality solo travel time. Not only is the ambiance serene, but the offerings are spectacular. There seems to be a direct connection between your mood and the surroundings; it’s difficult not to feel at ease as the sun rises in the distance, with views so pristine and greenery so picture-perfect that it almost resembles artwork directly ahead of you.
While you can expect the usual holiday offerings — a fabulous restaurant and an amazing infinity pool among them — there are also plenty of other amenities that set this spot apart from other California resorts. You can partake in an edible tour of the gardens, where the chef sources fresh ingredients to prepare meals every day of the week. Stay up late and with the on-site telescope as you gaze at the gleaming stars above. Enjoy the art gallery with the facility’s director. You can even enjoy complimentary use of the luxury house vehicle if you need to head out. The property offers Internet access, but with multiple relaxing features at your fingertips, including a heated pool and a full-service spa that offers a series of healing, nourishing treatments, you won’t even remember that you own a cell phone.
Book Your Digital Detox Today
If you’ve had enough of the daily grind and the stresses of everyday life, it’s time to get away from it all. Start planning your digital detox today. What better way to escape than to travel to one of these top off-the-grid destinations — where, for just a while, your digital footprint ceases to exist? Head to BusTickets.com and enjoy the getaway you didn’t realize you needed.