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Five Ultimate Mountain Town Retreats in America

For those who live in the city, the mountains offer the perfect place to take a retreat. Out among the hills, you can fully take in nature with a hike, a bike ride, or even a climb. Fortunately for the mountain lover, the United States has a number of beautiful mountains and mountain ranges, from the Rocky Mountains to the Appalachian Mountains. These places are perfect for the ultimate mountain town retreat.

mountain town retreats

Leafcanoer, Kim Fish, recently posted about her visit to Gatlinburg, TN in the leaf titled, “Gatlinburg: The Gateway to the Smokey Mountains.” It’s full of interesting tid bits about the area, as well as tips and tricks related to travel in Gatlinburg.

If you are looking for a place to spend a mountain retreat, we’ve compiled a list of five of the ultimate mountain town retreats in the United States.

Gatlinburg, Tennessee
The town of Gatlinburg is undoubtedly the quintessential American mountain town. Located 39 miles southeast of Knoxville, the town is a common starting off point for a visit to the Great Smoky Mountains. Gatlinburg has a number of popular attraction including a Ripley’s museum, as well as Dolly Parton’s Dollywood, located near the town.

mountain town retreats

Taos, New Mexico
In the heart of the New Mexican desert is a mountain town like no other. The mountain town of Taos offers a beautiful setting and a thriving community for artists. Near the modern town of Taos is a traditional Native American Pueblo that has been occupied for over a thousand years. Visitors can come to Taos Pueblo and learn about traditional Native American culture, as well as catch a glimpse of how life is like in a pueblo.

mountain town retreats

Estes Park, Colorado
Colorado in general is an excellent place to spend a mountain retreat. But the town of Estes Park is by far the most beautiful and most popular among visitors to the Rocky Mountains. One of the highlights of the Estes Park is the historic Stanley Hotel, which offers panoramic views of Lake Estes, and was also the location for the famous horror movie, The Shining.

mountain town retreats

Stowe, Vermont
The town of Stowe offers a number of picturesque views. In addition, it is a popular spot for arts and craft shows, festivals, and car shows such as the British Invasion, a showcase of British cars held annually in the month of September. Stowe is a known for its skiing, and some of the points of interest in the town include the Trapp Family Lodge, owned by the famous von Trapp family, and the Vermont Ski and Snowboard Museum.

mountain town retreats

Leavenworth, Washington
For a quirky mountain town experience, head to Leavenworth, a mountain town with a decidedly Bavarian feel. The town of Leavenworth was officially incorporated in 1906, but it wasn’t until 1962 that members of the community decided to give the town a Bavarian theme. Since then, many of the buildings have been remodeled to resemble a German town in the Alps, and Leavenworth now hosts an annual Oktoberfest celebration. It’s also home to the Nutcracker Museum, which holds a large collection of nutcrackers. The perfect time to visit Leavenworth is actually in the winter, when the whole town is decked out in holiday decorations.

mountain town retreats

No matter where you are in the world, sometimes it’s nice to take a retreat into the mountains to reconnect with nature. In mythology, mountains symbolize strength and stability, and spending time in the mountains can certainly help you channel your own strength and stability. With these five ultimate mountain town retreats, the mountain experience is now well within your reach.

Looking to discover your own perfect mountain town retreat? Download the LeafCanoe app for more travel ideas and inspiration.

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Why You Need to Visit the Canadian Rockies

Experiencing the great outdoors is something that can be enjoyed any time of year. In spite of the cold winter months, a visit to a place like the Canadian Rockies can be jam-packed with outdoor activities. LeafCanoer, sociokathy’s leaf, “Canadian Rockies Summer Guide,” talks about the many things visitors can do when visiting the Canadian Rockies in the summer. But even in the dead of winter, there are plenty of other reasons to visit the Canadian Rockies.

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Natural Wonders
Majestic snow-peaked mountains dominate the scenery of the Canadian Rockies. Accentuated by bright blue lakes and lush evergreens, this mountain range, running from the Canadian prairies to the Pacific Coast, boasts stunning scenery all year round. The Canadian Rockies’ mountains impress all those who come to visit. From high peaks like Mount Robson and Mount Columbia, to smaller ones like the Snow Dome, these mountains certainly stand tall along the Canadian Rockies’ skyline. Aside from mountains, the Canadian Rockies also serves as the source of many rivers including the Fraser, the Columbia, The North Saskatchewan, the Bow, and the Athabasca Rivers.

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National Parks
The Canadian Rockies consist of five national parks: Jasper, Banff, Kootenay, Yoho, and Waterton. All five of these parks were declared a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1984 due to its mountain landscapes. Additionally, they all offer a wide range of activities year-round for visitors of all types.

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Outdoor Activities
For the outdoor enthusiast, the Canadian Rockies is a dream come true. In the summer months, visitors can raft the white water rapids of rivers like the Sunwapta and Athabasca Rivers. Alternatively, visitors can stick to dry land activities like rock climbing or hiking. In the winter months, places like Banff National Park offers back country skiing. And if you are of the more adventurous sort, you can try your hand at mountaineering, or even ice climbing.

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Festivals Galore
An abundance of events and festivals fill the calendar for the Canadian Rockies. Winterstart Festival kicks off the season with events in Banff and Lake Louise, running from mid-November to mid-December. Other winter festivals in the Canadian Rockies include Jasper in January, happening in mid to late January in Jasper, and the Winter Magic Festival, happening in the town of Hinton, Alberta in the month of February. The highlight of the spring season is the Canmore Uncorked Food and Drink Festival, a new culinary festival in the town of Canmore. The summer months, on the other hand, are packed with events and festivals, including Performance in the Park at Banff, the Wild Mountain Music Festival in Hinton, and the Canadian Death Race, a challenging adventure race taking place in August in Grande Cache, Alberta.

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Retreat from Urban Living
City life has its perks, but sometimes you need to get away and disconnect. For those who visit the Canadian Rockies, it’s more than just an opportunity to be close to nature, it’s also a retreat from the pressures of urban living. A peaceful hike among the trees, or soaking in the beauty of nature on the banks of Lake Louise can help bring you more perspective on what’s important in life.

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Fulfilling A Challenge
For many who come to the Canadian Rockies, a visit there is also a chance to fulfill a challenge. Whether it involves climbing some of the highest peaks, like Mount Robson, tackling the rapids on the Kicking Horse River, or backcountry camping at Banff National Park, there are plenty of opportunities for visitors to challenge themselves and test their limits.

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From hiking to mountain biking, skiing to whitewater rafting, there is always something to do when you visit the Canadian Rockies, no matter what time of year. For more ideas on travel to Canada and to other destinations, download the LeafCanoe app.

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