Courtesy of Airbnb
Courtesy of Airbnb
This off-the-grid cabin in Vermont is made for roughing it—but with a roof over your head.
News cycle got you down? Rent one of these Airbnb cabins and get off the grid.
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Over the years, numerous studies have highlighted the health benefits of spending time in nature. And what better time to escape to the woods than when you just can’t handle reading one more story about coronavirus?
But not every outdoorsy traveler likes to sleep in a tent. Thankfully, Airbnb lists hundreds of cabins throughout the United States where you can explore the forest by day and relax in front of a fireplace or in a hot tub on the deck at night. From rustic log cabins fit for solo retreats to midcentury modern A-frames that are great for your entire family, there’s something here for every type of trip, whether you’re looking for a place in the Blue Ridge Mountains or in Big Bear, California.
Even better? Most of these Airbnb cabins cost less than $200 per night to rent. So go ahead—grab your weekend getaway bag and take some time to go off grid in the woods.
West Bolton, Vermont
After a 30-minute drive east from Burlington and a 10-minute hike from this off-the-grid log cabin’s driveway, you’ll find yourself surrounded by trees and little else. There is no electricity at this rustic spot, but there are battery-powered lights. During long summer days, maximize your time in the open air with the outdoor solar-heated shower and wood cook stove. On colder nights, there’s a wood stove indoors to keep you cozy and a clean and comfy bed up in the loft. It’s a secluded spot, but once you arrive you can easily hike to Libby’s Look for panoramic views or walk to the nearby swimming hole.
The Little Owl Cabin—so-named by the owners of this rustic A-frame—is about a 2.5-hour drive south of Seattle and 20 minutes from the entrance to Mount Rainier National Park. After a full day exploring the area’s hiking trails in the summer or the runs at White Pass Ski Resort in the winter, you can relax in the cedar soaking tub on the cabin’s deck.
Big Island, Virginia
Fans of the modern farmhouse aesthetic (think white subway tile in the bathroom and lots of shiplap everywhere else) will fall in love with this 300-square-foot tiny house just minutes from the Blue Ridge Parkway. Despite its small footprint, this cabin has room for a queen bed in the loft and three bunk beds in the bedroom. Another two people can sleep on the pullout couch in the living room next to the wood-burning stove.
For those who want to go truly off the grid, this cabin on the banks of Kenai Lake is about as remote as you can get in southern Alaska without spending the night in a tent. While you won’t have electricity or running water, you’ll have access to propane lights, a wood stove, and a hand-pump well for water. There’s also a lakeside sauna a few steps away that guests can enjoy during their stay.
Big Bear, California
About 100 miles directly east of downtown Los Angeles, Big Bear Lake and the surrounding National Forest land is a popular year-round getaway for Angelenos. This two-bedroom cabin is only 200 feet from the closest trailhead, making it an ideal spot for those who prefer their post-hike relaxation to take place underneath a rain shower or in front of a large stone fireplace rather than in a tent.
Tivoli, New York
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Located about two hours north of New York City in the village of Tivoli on the Hudson River, this converted barn features a loft-like open floor plan spread across three levels that is great for groups of friends traveling together. In warm weather, you can enjoy the outdoor shower and a fire pit, which is perfect for s’mores. Once the leaves change, a wood-burning stove in the living room keeps things cozy. Be sure to make the five-minute walk into town to explore Tivoli’s charming main street.
According to Airbnb, this three-room tree house connected by rope bridges is its most wish-listed property in the world. This comes as no surprise, considering the number of times it’s gone viral over the years. Its location, however, is a shock: Minutes from downtown Atlanta, this one-bedroom urban cabin is tucked into the trees to make you feel like you’ve traveled much farther away from it all. The treehouse’s popularity means you’ll have to plan ahead to stay here—there is scattered weekday availability now, but the next open weekend is in July 2021.
Built in the 1970s and located about an hour’s drive from Denver in the Rocky Mountains, this bright-teal A-frame cabin was recently remodeled and features clean, light-filled interiors that are reminiscent of Scandinavian minimalist design. The ultimate hygge touch is the barrel-shaped steam sauna sitting outside the cabin’s front door.
Situated between the Stratton and Mount Snow ski resorts in southern Vermont, this cabin has three bedrooms and two bathrooms, making it a great spot for families or groups of friends to spend a long weekend together. A vintage Preway fireplace in the living room keeps things cozy during winter ski trips, while a backyard fire pit brings those vibes outdoors in the summer and fall.
If your design sensibilities skew modern, this spacious three-bedroom house 30 miles east of Portland is about as far from rustic as you can get while still being surrounded by five acres of forest. Spend your days here exploring the nearby Columbia River Gorge and Mount Hood. Then in the evenings, return to the cabin to relax in the six-person hot tub on the deck. For an additional $100, you can access the glassed-in outdoor dining area some 200 feet from the main house, where you can host a dinner for up to 12 people.
West Cornwall, Connecticut
This three-story Victorian house in the woods of northwestern Connecticut was built around 1870. Thanks to an extensive restoration, guests enjoy modern conveniences like electricity, but the house maintains historic charm with antiques sourced from local shops. Be sure to walk over the covered bridge for dinner at RSVP, a French BYOB restaurant in town.
Overlooking Pere Marquette River in western Michigan’s Manistee National Forest, this two-bedroom cabin has central air-conditioning and heat to keep things comfortable no matter the season. But the lack of TV and Wi-Fi means you can enjoy your time in nature away from digital devices. Instead, take advantage of the canoe, tandem kayak, and fishing poles that are free for guests to use. Another highlight? The floor-to-ceiling windows on three walls of the living room that let the outdoors in long after you’ve gone inside for the day.
Tahoe City, California
There are thousands of cabin rentals to pick from in Lake Tahoe, but it doesn’t get more picturesque and convenient than this renovated double A-frame two miles south of Tahoe City. Only 11 homes up from the lake itself, this spot is also within walking distance of restaurants, coffee shops, and a grocery store. Inside you’ll find a spacious open-concept kitchen and dining room as well as four bedrooms, making this a great place for large groups.
This article originally appeared online on July 19, 2019; it was updated on March 3, 2020, to include current information. Products we write about are independently vetted and recommended by our editors. AFAR may earn a commission if you buy through our links, which helps support our independent publication.
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