Mark my words, 2020 will be all about the rustic retreats and embracing the great outdoors. And guess what? They are all GORGEOUS. I promise, once you visit one, all of the others will be on your list. Here are the ones we’re dying to visit over the next twelve months.
If you think one of these places are a great fit for you and your family, let us know so we can start planning your next getaway!
The 10 Best Rustic Retreats in The U.S.
Bar Harbor, Maine
A new type of outdoor-luxe experience is coming to the Acadia National Park area this summer 2020 with the opening of Terramor Outdoor Resort in Bar Harbor, Maine. A first-of-its-kind, this glamping resort is located on the west side of Mount Desert Island, and the 60-acre property features 64 luxury canvas tents. Your tent is just a short walk to the lodge with bar, restaurant, store and equipment rentals to meet all your needs.
The property also features a nature-inspired pool and outdoor recreation areas where guests can relax and socialize. This luxury hideaway in the woods have en suite bathrooms, and some have private outdoor showers for those who want to enjoy a steamy shower in the open air under the white birch trees. The rustic-luxe tents – with exposed, finished wood beams, premium beds and linens, and upscale amenities such as in-room Chemex pour-over coffeemakers – all have their own verandas, private campfire rings, and outdoor patio seating.
Big Sky, Montana
For over 100 years, Lone Mountain Ranch has given travelers the true experience of Yellowstone Country. Just 18 miles beyond the northwest border of the park, tucked amidst the Montana Rockies, rivers and grasslands, and only 50 minutes from the Bozeman Airport, I fell for this place the minute I first read about it.
Opportunities include horseback riding, year-round fly fishing, and all-access tours of Yellowstone National Park with lodge naturalists. Ski over 80 kilometers of world-class Nordic trails, make powder turns or carve snowboard arcs on the alpine slopes next door at Big Sky Resort. Stay in a restored historic private cabin with luxury comforts and modern upgrades that embody elegance with a western spirit.
Lone Mountain Ranch offers overnight stays and week-long adventures guided by the lodge’s resident expert naturalists. Guests can explore the prime wildlife habitats of the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem by horse, mountain bike, scenic drive, and on foot, learning about local wildlife like wolves, bison, and elk. Horses have long been essential to the way of life in Yellowstone Country. For over a century, Lone Mountain Ranch’s team of horses has brought ranchers and visitors into parts of the backcountry that are otherwise unseen and untouched.
Big Sky’s newest premier dining experience is located right on the ranch at the Horn & Cantle Restaurant, featuring a mix of Western favorites and modern originals. Acclaimed Executive Chef Eric Gruber oversees all menus, from breakfast and brunch at the restaurant to happy hour at the Saloon, to the historic sleigh ride dinners, sourcing the freshest and most local ingredients possible Montana and the Northwest. Check out the ultra-local cocktails at the saloon.
Colorado Springs, Colorado
What happens when you mix the luxe accommodations and service of The Broadmoor, with 100,000 acres of mountain wilderness? That’s easy, you get the quintessential glamping experience of a lifetime at The Broadmoor’s Ranch at Emerald Valley. Perfect for tweens and teens, families can come face-to-face with cows, a horse, and join in that all-American journey called a cattle drive.
Guests of the Ranch at Emerald Valley can also fly fish, hike, mountain bike, canoe, explore mountains on horseback, lounge in hammocks, or unwind in outdoor hot tubs. Activities aside, everyone can enjoy gourmet Rocky Mountain cuisine in the comfortable lodge and cups of “cowboy coffee” or s’mores around the campfire.
Family-owned, The Resort at Paws Up, outside of Missoula, Montana, is a luxury wilderness retreat and working cattle ranch resort on 37,000-acres. The property prides itself on continuously pushing the envelope when it comes to family travel, experiential travel, nature immersion, wellness, and adventure.
Aside from a portfolio of 70+ wilderness activities that range from authentic ranch-style cattle drives to fly fishing excursions, Paws Up features an amazing culinary program of celebrity chef weekends throughout the year and interactive adventure and wilderness workshops. They have a kid’s camp “Little Discoverers starts at age 3, and also have “Adventure Club” for children 5-12.
In true Paws Up style, the ranch is just as wonderful in the winter as it is in the summer. May we recommend a few hours riding the range with the Garnet Mountains as your sidekick? Or rustling up some trout from the beautiful Blackfoot River? Unique workshops and classes for kids + grown-ups give everyone the opportunity to learn new skills amidst unspoiled Montana wilderness.
Families will enjoy a plethora of winter activities including dog sledding, skijoring, snowmobiling, tubing, and winter horseback rides. And in the springtime, the heart of the Blackfoot Valley is alive as you race ATVs around, experience RZR tours, or participate in some raging whitewater rafting.
Park City, Utah
For a fun and luxurious “rustic” trip, Park City’s Montage Deer Valley has something for the whole family to enjoy all-year-round. For the ski fanatics, guests will love the ski-in/ski-out accessibility just steps from the slopes. Directly adjacent to three high-speed chairlifts, the resort offers guests access to six mountains, more than 20 lifts, 100 trails, private ski tutorials to polish one’s skills.
Families can enjoy other winter recreation activities such as dog sledding, snowmobiling, and exploring Utah’s Olympic Park, which was built ahead of the 2002 Olympic Winter Games and offers guided tours and thrilling rides on the Comet Bobsled. For the children, guests ages 5-12 can spend their time at Paintbox, Montage’s signature children’s program offering activities such as mountainside scavenger hunts to arts and crafts. This winter, guests can book the Stay & Play For Winter special offer to receive a $500 resort credit when staying for five or more nights.
Our next destination is perfect for affluent outdoor enthusiasts, families or national park’ers. Sage Lodge is a stunning new resort, open just over a year, just a quick one hour drive from Bozeman, and 30-minutes from Yellowstone. Located in Pray, Montana, Sage Lodge sits on over 1,200 acres of rural landscape right on the banks of the Yellowstone River and provides breathtaking views of the ruggedly beautiful Paradise Valley and Emigrant Peak.
The soothing comfort and rustic charm of the lodge provides the ideal home away from home while with plenty of fun activities for the whole family. Sage Lodge offers a spa, beautiful rustic rooms, and standalone Ranch Houses, with unique outdoor excursions. From llama treks to private backcountry picnics, the opportunities at Sage Lodge are endless.
Some must-do/see while visiting are wine tasting, and our favorite, “arrival by water” where you will experience a scenic float on the Yellowstone River to a private side beach, complete with campfire and refreshments with cheese and charcuterie. During the winter, you can participate in a tour focusing on conservation, cultural history, geology, outdoor recreation, and wildlife. Guests will have the opportunity to pick their interests and activity level – i.e. whether they would like to use skis or snowshoes to explore Yellowstone National Park’s backcountry or leisurely stop at points of interest.
The standalone Ranch Houses are ideal for large groups of family and friends (room for up for 16 people). Bring your furry friend along for the adventure, as they are completely dog-friendly too. With 2,783 square feet, each Ranch House includes four separate bedrooms, each with a private bathroom, full kitchen, dining area, living room, double-sided gas fireplace and private patio with an outdoor fireplace.
Expert tip: Yellowstone tourism drastically decreases during the winter, resulting in all of the park’s wildlife coming out of hiding and roaming the snowy fields freely. It is the ideal time to observe elk, bison, grizzly bears, gray wolves and many other majestic creatures out in their natural habitat. Sage Lodge partners with Yellowstone Forever to offer many exclusive day trips and activities to explore the park including private tours, llama treks, and animal tracking. View more Yellowstone tours here.
Set on 37 acres in Mendocino’s “rock-n-roll” redwoods, Mendocino Grove graces visitors with expansive views of the sea and is the ideal Instagram postcard. With 60 safari-style tents and picture-perfect pups, and just pour some Pinot Noir and enjoy your time.
Capture the essence of glamping with a Mendocino zeitgeist – colorful yogis in a group tree pose in the Meadow Common, cozy toes peeking out of a tent flap or the obligatory s’mores shot, heralding all that summer has to savor.
Ready to glamp in the Ozarks? The great state of Missouri just jumped a couple of notches thanks to this glamping site! Complete with an infinity pool and 65-foot boat named, Lady Liberty, it doesn’t get much more luxe than this. So get your yacht rock playlist ready, because it’s the perfect soundtrack to this Ozark escape.
Big Cedar Lodge, located on Table Rock Lake in Missouri’s Ozark Mountains, opened in May 2019 to rave reviews. Their Camp Long Creek glampsite has 40 canvas tents all with King-sized canopy beds and a gorgeous chandelier. Tents include a private bathroom, shower, small dining area, fridge and stone patio with fire pit and outdoor tub. Talk about swoon-worthy. They glampsite offers “beach” access, but has an infinity pool on-site for those not up for swimming in a lake.
The Lodge & Spa at Brush Creek Ranch has been a family-focused destination since opening, with every element curated to encourage family connection and shared experiences. Unlimited early winter activities including indoor arena riding, horseback riding, fishing, Gun Club, archery, trail adventures, fitness and wellness, indoor recreation program, challenge pursuits, and immersive Farm experiences. Kids can enjoy the Lil’ Wranglers Club while parents get out and explore.
Brush Creek Ranch is a grand western destination offering an ultra-private collection of historic guest ranches set on a 30,000-acre working cattle ranch outside of Saratoga in south-central Wyoming’s North Platte River Valley. The property includes The Lodge & Spa at Brush Creek Ranch, Magee Homestead and French Creek Sportsmen’s Club, each of which appeals uniquely to family vacations, adult romantic and wellness escapes, destination weddings, and private corporate events.
The Farm at Brush Creek opened, offering nine immersive culinary experiences steeped in a seed-to-table philosophy. Offering an unsurpassed, all-inclusive luxury dude ranch adventure experience, Brush Creek Ranch provides a genuine Western spirit of hospitality and a vast array of outdoor activities that, coupled with an inspiring landscape and a dedication to sustainable ranching, come together to create a new icon in International luxury resort destinations.
Utah Valley, Utah
Located less than a half-hour south of Salt Lake City, you’ll find Robert Redford’s stunning Sundance Mountain Resort. This historic location satisfies even the most discerning travelers offering lux accommodations and a variety of things to do. A week-long escape will bring a whole new meaning to rustic mountain retreats with rooms ranging from quaint and cozy cottages to lavish, 7-bedroom mountain retreats.
The lush mountain trails beckon to nature lovers, hikers, and mountain bikers, seeking new adventures. Visitors can also try their hand out at some fly fishing, horseback riding, and the thrilling ZipTour. Crisp evenings are accented with gourmet meals at the resort’s romantic Tree Room restaurant which is the recipient of the Forbes Travel Guide’s Four-Star Rating and the Wine Spectator Award of Excellence.
Don’t forget to soothe those activity-weary muscles with a hot stone massage at the world-class Spa at Sundance. Then cap off the night with a cocktail and live entertainment at the historic Owl Bar.
Less adventurous visitors seeking a respite can enjoy the meditative powers of mountaintop yoga and day-long wellness retreats. De-stress even further by channeling your inner artist in pottery, painting, jewelry or journal making class in Sundance’s art studio.
Are You a Fan of Rustic Retreats?
We would love to know more about your experience. By sharing your tips, recommendations and memories in our comment section below, you help fellow members of The JetSet Family community decide the best fit for them and their families. Let us know what you liked most, or if you have any questions about these destinations.