There is never enough time to take time out in our daily lives. This makes our vacations all the more important as they become oases in the hubbub of work, schooling and family obligations. Stress management seems to be something that other people find time to get to grips with but slips through our fingers at each new challenge that presents itself to us. By the time that precious holiday time comes round we are in need of that space. There are so many different types of vacation to choose from; some people like to go and relax in the luxury of a vegan spa; many people look for environmentally friendly vacations. Lewis Harrison’s Catskill Bed and Breakfast and Spa, in Stamford NY, offers us the chance to get the best of both worlds.
Taking the chance to unwind and relax in a spa helps to wash away the veneer of stress and tiredness we have accumulated over the time since our last vacation. Combining massage, stress management workshops and meditation with the opportunity to change our lifestyles in ways which are beneficial to us all work to bring about a new lease of life, both mentally and physically.
Of course exercise and fresh air is as important to our bodies as the chance to rest and recharge our batteries. Whether we like to play golf, swim or walk and hike, having the time to engage in these activities helps to bring back muscle tone and improves our sleeping and eating patterns.
Getting into the Great Outdoors
The phrase “Nature is the best therapy” has become something of a cliché over the years, although it is still as true as ever. We all know and recognize that moment when we have arrived somewhere away from civilization, stepped out of the car and instantly felt that stillness and enduring quality of the landscape as our tension and stress melts away.
The combination of trees and water is irresistible for many people looking for a green vacation and there are plenty of both in the Stamford area. Right on the town limits are the Rexmere lakes, only a few steps over the road from the Harrison Center. The two connected lakes make for great walking, bordered with extensive woodlands – just perfect to wander through the shade on a warm day and absolutely stunning in the fall with the trees decked out in vibrant color.
Avid golfers can tee off at Stamford Golf Club, which is just off Route 10, taking Route 45, Taylor Road, by Utsuyantha Lake. This is a great golf course to play and they are open to the public, so swinging by on vacation to play a round is fine.
More energetic visitors might prefer to go the extra mile with Catskills hiking or climbing and there is plenty to be had in the area. The Catskills are a 700,000 acre forest preserve with a fantastic hiking trail network. Make sure you are suitably clothed and equipped for the terrain you are going into. The Mount Utsuyantha hiking trail is a good family hike, not too difficult, and makes for a pleasant walk. The 360 degree views from the top are amazing, especially if you go up into the viewing tower. Vromans Nose is a little more demanding, so possibly not a good hike to take younger children on; it’s a two mile loop with some steep gradients although you probably won’t have to resort to handholds on the route up. A little further afield at West Kill, there are several hiking trails worth visiting. The Hunter Mountain trail is 7.2 miles of quite demanding hiking, but worth the effort when you reach the top of the peak. The Southwest Hunter Bushwack trail should only be attempted by experienced hikers equipped with the right safety gear, including a map and compass. There are a few different routes up to the peak which has an elevation of more than 3500ft. Snowshoes, crampons and full winter gear are essential for this hike in the winter months.
Another great way to let all the tension out is to enjoy some quiet time for meditation or yoga; massage is great for unknotting those stubborn muscles; and at the end of a day of fresh air and exercise, what could be better than to relax on the porch and watch the sun go down, sit with a good book or watch a movie; just enjoying the chance to have time for yourselves and winding down to a good night’s sleep.