5 Beautiful Multi-Day Hiking Adventures in the United States—No Tent Required

Experience national parks and renowned trails without worrying about accommodations.

Clear river showing rocks at the bottom, with blurred mountains in the background

The Wallowa Mountains are one of many natural spaces you can explore on these hikes.

Photo by Mark Lemaire/Shutterstock

Looking for a way to spend time outdoors, crush miles, and explore backcountry wilderness—but aren’t too keen on cooking your meals over a camp stove or sleeping in the dirt? No problem. These five hikes around the United States offer ample time in nature, but you can still kick it in relative luxury and style at the end of the day. That way, you’re practically guaranteed to be rested and rejuvenated for another round of hiking on Day Two (or Three or Four).

Minam River Lodge, Wallowa Mountains

Located in the Eagle Cap Wilderness in Wallowa-Whitman National Forest in Eastern Oregon, the Wallowa Mountains are a popular spot for backpacking among Pacific Northwesterners. Those who want to explore the backcountry without lugging all their gear for a few nights in the woods can enjoy the big views and quiet stillness of the region thanks to the Minam Lodge.

The wilderness lodge is only accessible by foot (via an eight-and-a-half-mile hike on Horse Ranch Trail from Moss Springs Trailhead), horseback riding, or flying in via chartered plane. It offers accommodations like private cabins and lodge rooms, plus wood-fired hot tubs to soak your tired feet and legs. There is a three-night minimum, so take some time to explore the miles of wilderness trails around the lodge, too, including the stunning Backbone Ridge Trail or North Minam Meadows.

A mountain view of verdant green mountain at Shenandoah National Park.

More than 500 miles of trails run through Shenandoah National Park.

Photo by Jon Bilous/Shutterstock

Lodges along the Appalachian Trail, Shenandoah National Park

For a luxurious introduction to the famed Appalachian Trail, head to Shenandoah National Park in Virginia for a two- or three-night self-guided tour along this brief but scenic stretch of the 2,190-mile trail, You’ll hike from Lewis Mountain Cabins to Big Meadows Lodge to Skyland, which are operated by authorized park concessionaire Delaware North Parks and Resorts at Shenandoah.

Each day, you’ll trek between seven to nine miles through deciduous forests and past soft green peaks, traveling from one night’s accommodations to the next. Big Meadows and Skyland offer hikers packed lunches and trail memorabilia if you book a hiking package in advance online or by calling the reservation line. (You can also book each stay individually, but lunch won’t be included.) The reservations office will also share contact info for shuttle services to take you back to your car at the end of the one-way journey.

Sun rays shine on a vineyard at sunset.

Besides visiting vineyards, travelers on the Valley of the Moon Trail will also visit places like Jack London State Historic Park.

Photo by KarenWibbs/Shutterstock

Valley of the Moon, Sonoma Valley

Less of a point-to-point hike and more of a self-guided tour of state and local parks, the Sonoma Valley Hikers Trek offered by California-based Wine Country Trekking is a combination of long hikes in picturesque locations such as Kenwood and Glen Ellen, wine tastings overlooking vineyards, and dinner at local restaurants. And yes, breakfast, wine samples, and luggage transfers are included.

Over five days and four nights, you’ll spend three days hiking (the first and last days are reserved for arrival and relaxing before departure) about eight to nine miles per day up mountains, past lakes, and through orchards. You’ll also partake in picnic lunches, sip wine from local vineyards, and relax at luxury inns along the way. Depending on the day, you may be transported to and from trailheads for occasionally strenuous hikes, or you may hoof it to each destination. Either way, you’ll have earned your libations at the end of the day.

House made of wood and stones surrounded by trees and canyon

Down on the canyon floor—accessible only by foot, mule, or raft—is Phantom Ranch, designed by famed architect of the Southwest Mary Colter.

Photo courtesy of Michael Quinn/Grand Canyon NPS

Phantom Ranch, Grand Canyon National Park

For a truly majestic and worthwhile hiking experience, lace up your boots, stock up on electrolytes, and hike to the bottom of the Grand Canyon in Arizona for a stay alongside the Colorado River at Phantom Ranch. While more rustic than luxurious, these stone cabins still offer essential amenities, including bedding, a private bathroom, and towels, plus heat and air-conditioning. There’s a central shower house, and the Phantom Ranch Canteen is open for breakfast and dinner (you’ll want to order packed lunches for hikes).

While with good physical fitness you can hike down either Bright Angel or North Kaibab Trail in one day and back up the next (though you can also stay a few nights), we recommend you stay longer if you can. The views from the bottom of the canyon, including verdant riparian environments along the creeks and river and towering red cliffs on every side, are arguably more impressive than from the rim. Usually, reservations are available only via lottery, which must be entered months in advance. Prefer a guided trip? Wildland Trekking, a third-party tour operator, offers an all-inclusive two- or three-day hike and stay at Phantom Ranch.

Yellowing leaves covering mountaintops

Explore the 1.2 million acres of the Ozark National Forest on this trail.

Photo by JB Manning/Shutterstock

Ozark Highlands Trail, White Rock Mountain and Lake Fort Smith State Park

Located in Northwest Arkansas, the 270-mile Ozark Highlands Trail is brimming with hiking opportunities that run through state parks and the Ozark National Forest. While the whole trail can be completed as a thru-hike over a few weeks, visitors can tackle a section or two and still see plenty of waterfalls, rivers, and forested trails.

Book a private cabin at Lake Fort Smith State Park (operated by the park), the trail’s starting point in Northwest Arkansas, and you can experience 17 miles of the trail before stopping at a private cabin at White Rock Mountain Lodge and Cabins, operated by White Rock Recreation Management. Both destinations are fully equipped with kitchens and private bathrooms, but you’ll have to bring your own linens to White Rock Mountain. (Note: You’ll need to arrange your own transportation back to the starting trailhead.)

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