grand teton at sunset

The Grand Tetons are like a slice of heaven in Wyoming. (Photo: Getty Images)


Pampering Preferred: Go Luxe on These Secluded Outdoor Getaways

Escaping the everyday — as well as crowded spaces — on an outdoor adventure doesn’t mean leaving creature comforts behind. With proper planning, you’ll find luxury amenities in the midst of nature’s finest five-star landscapes and unforgettable, in-the-wild experiences.

No matter your travel interests, there’s a secluded outdoor escape where indulgence is within arm’s reach.

As with any trip, check for a destination’s travel restrictions and attractions’ changes in hours before departing.

For the Parks Lover: Jackson, Wyoming

bison in front of grand tetons
Dive deep into nature at Grand Teton National Park. (Photo: Getty Images)

Warning: Jackson’s postcard-perfect locale and ample charms might ruin other mountain towns for you. The rugged spot offers access to the vertiginous peaks of Grand Teton National Park, as well as Yellowstone National Park‘s eastern gateway (only 60 miles west) and the world-class mountain resort of Jackson Hole, just 20 minutes from town.

Start within city limits and wander past art galleries and boutique shops, and then get a photo in front of one of the famed elk antler arches in the town square. From there, first-timers should drive through Teton Pass to experience the inimitable beauty of Wyoming’s towering granite peaks. For a deeper dive into either of the national parks, consider booking a private tour with one of the area’s many high-end outfitters.

Recharge with belly-warming fare (think root vegetable gratin and bone marrow) at Café Genevieve, a cozy, log-cabin-style restaurant known for its outdoor dining, home-cooked fare and barrel-aged cocktails.

For the Stargazer: Sonoran Desert, Arizona

astronomy observatory under starry sky
Reach for the stars. (Photo: Getty Images)

With open spaces and telescope-ready mountains, the Sonoran Desert is one of the top U.S. stargazing destinations. One reason is the Kitt Peak National Observatory, which boasts the largest collection of optical and radio telescopes in the world.

Nearby, in the foothills of the Tortolita Mountains, the desert atmosphere at The Ritz-Carlton, Dove Mountain provides the perfect setting for Arizona Star Tours to engage guests during on-property events. A visiting astronomer might point out a star cluster 8,000 light-years away or introduce you to constellations you’ve never seen. Check with the resort to learn more about the schedule of events.

For the Beachgoer: Alamere Falls and Wildcat Beach, California

waterfall on beach
It’s easy to find solace at Alamere Falls. (Photo: Getty Images)

Escape the bustling city in favor of an invigorating hike on a pristine stretch of coastline. About an hour north of The Ritz-Carlton, San Francisco, the Point Reyes National Seashore is a 71,000-acre expanse of protected coastline in Marin Country.

Avid hikers can tackle the 13-mile round-trip trail within the Phillip Burton Wilderness Area to arrive at Alamere Falls, the stunning site of a 30-foot waterfall cascading down onto Wildcat Beach. If this trek isn’t in the cards, the area offers 80 miles of shoreline with plenty of lesser-traveled gems to discover.

For the Mountaineer: Aspen, Colorado

man fly fishing in river
Try your hand at fly fishing. (Photo: Getty Images)

Aspen Snowmass is home to four different mountains with hundreds of skiing and snowboarding trails, attracting all levels of powderhounds. The Aspen Snowmass Nordic Trail System includes more than 60 miles of trails for cross-county and snowshoe enthusiasts.

In the summer, the Roaring Fork Valley is a prime hiking spot (if you’re looking for a challenge with a sweet payoff, head up to Conundrum Hot Springs), while the Roaring Fork River is popular for whitewater rafting and casting a line for brown, cutthroat and rainbow trout. Ride the Silver Queen Gondola to the top of Aspen Mountain and play a round of disc golf on one of the highest official courses in the world.

Cathedral and American lakes are great for seeing wildflowers (the second half of July is the best time to go), while the best place for fall foliage is, hands-down, Maroon Bells, one of the most photographed spots in the state of Colorado.

For the Golfer: Lake Oconee, Georgia

Great Waters golf course
Check out one of Georgia’s finest greens. (Photo: Getty Images)

Tucked away amid towering Georgia oaks, fragrant magnolias and peekaboo views of the water, The Ritz-Carlton Reynolds, Lake Oconee is also home to five golf courses designed by four of the game’s best-known architects: Rees Jones, Jack Nicklaus, Tom Fazio and Bob Cupp.

With 99 holes of golf, custom club-fitting and private instruction available, Lake Oconee is a must for golfers of all levels. In fact, the Jack Nicklaus–designed course, Great Waters, has been named one of the best courses in Georgia, second only to Augusta National.