A change is as good as a rest.
Sometimes the urge to travel is strong but the time just isn’t available. The solution is a brief trip to someplace which is significantly different from home. Even a few days away can leave you feeling refreshed and ready to return to life as you usually know it.
Readers in New England have easy access to the places I suggest below. If you are farther afield, think about what equivalent locations could serve the same restorative purpose for you.
Portland, Maine – Everyone seems to like the revitalized Portland, less than two hours from the Boston area. The Eastern Promenade offers great views and a walking path to downtown’s wonderful farm to table restaurants. There are a wonderful art museum and THE iconic lighthouse of New England, Portland Head Light. Further south along the coast you can visit Two Lights and the Lobster Shack. This small city is one of our favorite quick escapes, but I don’t mind sharing the secret with you. The Inn by the Sea on Cape Elizabeth is a wonderful place to stay on the less occupied beaches.
Berkshires – The foothills of western Massachusetts offer Tanglewood in the summer, charming towns and college campuses all year. You can imagine the daily lives of Edith Wharton and Emily Dickinson in their museum homes. If you want to drop out totally for a few days, sink into radical self-care at Canyon Ranch Spa (which I can book for you). The Norman Rockwell museum offers images accessible to all ages so take the kids too.
Newport, Rhode Island – The city of mansions and yachts is America’s own little patch to rival the likes of Downton Abbey. Mansion guides will recount the histories and point out the spectacular furnishings of the “summer cottages” for touring guests. The Cliff Walk offers spectacular oceanfront freshness for walkers. Taking your car along Ocean Drive provides some of the same prospect for the less hardy. For a quick but very luxurious stay I can book you into The Chanler at Cliff Walk or Ocean House in nearby Watch Hill.
Nantucket Island – If Martha Stewart were to design an island, the result would look like Nantucket. You can get there by ferry (with or without your car) or by plane. The “gray lady of the sea” is like an historic theme park dedicated to its premier industry, whaling. Imagine yourself an unseen passenger on the Pequod, fresh out of New Bedford. If you stay on the island, though, you will have much better food and accommodations than Ishmael and Queequeg ever had.
Boston – Even if you deal with Beantown on a daily basis, taking time to see the city as a visitor can refresh your perspective on life. Soon the swan boats will be out again, as they have been since 1877! Take a break from your usual rounds and visit attractions which you have never seen: the Black Heritage Trail, the Computer Museum of Boston, or the Harbor Islands. Bypass the MFA and go next door to see whether the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum is covering the spaces left by the theft 25 years ago. (Yes, 25 years already!) Find history and the navy at the USS Constitution, both the ship and the museum. Boston can feed and accommodate you with world-class options too.
Declare your own independence from everyday life and treat yourself to new discoveries in a place you thought you knew.
Let me know if I can help you discover nearby treasures for the first or fifteenth time.
Boundaries divide. Travel unites.
19 March 2015