This article first appeared on QuietRev.com
When introverts do want to get away, they want to get away really. You’re unlikely to find them crammed on a bus with other tourists or even playing drinking games by a cruise-ship pool.
Be a flaneur in France
To be a flneur is to enjoy the great theater of the street. Historian Anas Bazin once wrote that the only, the true sovereign of Paris is the flneur. In other words, in Paris, flneurs rule! So settle into a sidewalk cafperhaps Caf de Deux Moulins in Montmartre, made famous in the movie Amelieand let the world go on around you. For more info, check out the Paris tourist bureau.
Relinquish control on the Queen Mary 2
If your image of a real cruise is a frenzy of fun and too much food, youre not entirely wrong. But thats only one kind of cruise. A transatlantic crossing on the beautiful Queen Mary 2 is something else entirely. There are few places that are as no place as halfway between the continents in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean. Look aroundbooks lie open but forgotten in laps; conversations have trailed off.
Contemplate your place in the universe in Oregon
The Oregon coast is not the seashore of umbrella type drinks and limbo contests. It has got a fun vibe, with waves dramatically crashing along the rocks, sandy beaches which do invite long thoughtful walks, and dense rich forests that march right up to the ocean. In high season, its popular with families, and iconic Cannon Beach.
Take a long view in Pontresina
With access to three of Switzerlands most famous ski resorts, the town of Pontresinanestled in a valley in the Bernina Range, one of the Alps rangesis skiers paradise. But as the snow gives way to green and wildflowers (except on the most towering peaks), the skiers give way to hikersand Pontresina is certainly no less inviting. Take a cable car or tram up the mountain to lunch al fresco with some magnificent views, then hike back down on some impeccably groomed trails through pine-scented forests. There are more than 350 miles of trails, and you are unlikely to encounter crowds, yet you will find benches with long valley views which are perfect for rest and reflection.
Enjoy the beach without the bustle on the BVI
The U.S. Virgin Islands are among the Caribbeans most visited; some days, St. Thomas is like a shopping mall on Black Friday. But on the British Virgin Islands, a particular favorite of boaters, you will not have to fight for a nice space on tranquil beaches. Skip the bustling crowds at the capital of Tortola, and opt instead to rub elbows with yachters. Ensconce yourself to a luxurious villa or resort on Virgin Gorda. Enjoy the casual barefoot beachfront life at tiny Jost Van Dyke 3 by 4-mile island with fewer than 300 inhabitants as well as a cluster of smaller islands off its east end when you want to get away from your current getaway. Or pack your snorkel or even dive gear to meet the sea creatures who make their own home in Horseshoe Reef, surrounding the island of Anegada, which also has some of the best in lifestyle travel.
Kick back with the kids at the Grand Canyon
Take the kids to the North Rim of the Grand Canyon in northern Arizona, via Flagstaff and then show them nature. It is more remote and less populous than the canyons South Rim (no tour buses!), the North Rim has only one lodge. It is open May through October, so you’ll need to book a year in advance. The rim may be visited after October, yet services are limited. Once snow does start falling, the roads are closed. Or reserve a campsite, and sleep amidst the Ponderosa pines. Along with soaking in views of astonishing scale, you can explore the woods (look for black-and-white Kaibab squirrels, unique to the area). Mule trips and free ranger programs are available.
Only very small cruise ships ply the Galapagos Islands, and tour groups are limited to 20 patrons at a time, so the only crowds you’ll encounter here will be blue-footed boobies, cormorants, iguanas, seals, and the finches that inspired Darwins theory of natural selection. This fearlessness of these protected creatures, which have never ever been hunted, adds to the sensation of entering a land which is untouched by time. These volcanic islands are stark as well as scrubby but dense with biology, geology, and history. Tourism is now threatening this sensitive ecosystem, so do visit, but also do the world a favor, and choose a ship that has earned the Smart Voyager certification.
Let your mind just roll across the United States
If you have never driven across the U.S., then you do not really know how big it is. Go it alone, or grab a friend and hit the highways. A road-trip playlist is fun, but silence can indeed be soothing. Open the window, and just let your brain air out. And be sure to stop often to visit roadside attractions, to see the major sites (Grand Canyon required viewing), or just to get out of the vehicle and then smell the soft moist south, the hot tang of the hot desert, and the bracing piney air of the mountains. Flying might be travel, but a road trip is a real journey.