Some trips are all about exciting adventure, recreational activity, and having fun. Others concentrate on relaxation. Here is the list of the quietest places to escape, including the astonishing landscape of Landmannalaugar in Iceland, a far-flung tea plantation in India, and a tiny Canary Island. Some of these locations are remote; others shut themselves off from the world through their location and environment.
The breathtaking landscape of Landmannalaugar, its mountains lined in diverse shades of orange and brown (sometimes blue and green), still looks extremely off-the-beaten trail in Iceland. Nature Reserves here are impressive examples of astonishing nature. Bathe in a natural geothermal pool, ride in a super jeep, and enjoy the landscape. At Landmannalaugar you can also take a short hike around the beautiful surroundings. Here you can stroll and climb different hiking routes. They are painted in various colors depending on the complexity of the route. If you choose the hardest, a blue one, you should be ready for a long and tough trip. But it is worth it. The panoramas are fantastic, leaving nobody indifferent. Here, in Landmannalaugara, it is all about nature – scalding water emerges from underneath lava to meet a cold water flow – creating ideal conditions for a scenic soak.
Glenburn Tea Estate, Darjeeling, India
Getting to Glenburn Tea Estate takes enough effort. First, you take an international flight to Calcutta, which you continue with a domestic flight to Bagdogra. After arriving at the nearest airport to your destination, you take a five-hour drive along a rough road. Keep in mind that the most beautiful places are often hard to reach, and Glenburn is no exception.
It’s rather difficult in India to find a good walking place with quiet surroundings, breathtaking landscapes, and fantastic atmosphere. Glenburn, a working tea estate established in 1860 by Scottish tea planters, is a perfect place for relaxing holidays – with 1,600 acres of green grass forests, rolling hills, tea picker villages, and amazing river valleys to explore.
To feel completely one with nature, visit the estate’s River Camp. A three-hour hike down from the tea bungalow brings you to a wooden cabin on the shore of the Rangeet River. The cabin has a simple bathroom and bedroom, and no electricity – lit only by lanterns and candles.
La Palma, Canary Islands, Spain
The pretty little island of La Palma, in the west of the archipelago, is peculiarly attractive in late January and early February when the almond blossom is out. Stroll along lovely hiking trails through dense forests and incredible volcanic landscapes. Here, in the heart of nature, you can feel true relaxation and enjoy the views of imposing volcanoes, dark forests, welcoming beaches, and star-filled night skies.
Moreover, clear skies and strict light pollution laws make La Palma just a fantastic place for stargazing and astronomy that has earned a Starlight Award.
North Mallorca, Spain
The northeast of Mallorca is often overlooked, mainly because of its location far from the airport. However, North Mallorca is perfect for a quiet and relaxing holiday away from the busy shopping malls, noisy nightlife, and crowded attractions with numerous tourists. Home to the Llevant Nature Park with its verdant hills and abundant wildlife, the northeast part of the island is beautiful with wild beaches and coves.
The hilltop villages of Artá and Capdepera are truly charming; there you can visit imposing fortresses or castles and tiny alleyways that hide boutiques and art galleries.
If you go to the far northern part of Mallorca, you’ll find the popular Pollença, Formentor, and Alcudia. Along the way you are surrounded by staggering terrain where the mountains slip into the sea. The land of Formentor is considered one of Mallorca’s main beauty spots; and, don’t forget to visit Pollença – a wonderful little town with diverse boutique hotels and artisan shops hidden in the huddle of cobbled lanes.
Budapest remains one of the grandest of Europe’s capital cities.
The highlight of any tour concentrated on a relaxation program is assuredly visiting one of the city’s restorative spas, fed by thermal waters from subterranean springs. The Art Nouveau Gellért Baths offer an air of revelation among its mosaics and stained glass, while the Széchenyi Baths are the hottest ones in the city, offering outdoor pools and water rapids.
Szechenyi bath spa in Budapest (Hungary). Photo: depositphotos.com