Seven Cities of Solitude and Rejuvenation in the Southwest

©istockphoto/fotoVoyagerFind­ing peace and qui­et in the 21st cen­tu­ry is almost impos­si­ble with GPS devices, cell­phones, and satel­lite phones, but there are still loca­tions where you can find soli­tude and reju­ve­nate. Check out some of these peace­ful places where you can recharge your inner Zen.

Gard­ner Canyon, Tuc­son, AZ
In the Col­orado Moun­tains out­side of Tuc­son, you will find a lone­ly road that seems to go on for­ev­er, until it stops at a prim­i­tive camp­ground along a stream. You can hike on the Ari­zona Trail at the base of the Mus­tang Moun­tains or relax in the icy stream. It’s so peace­ful that the sound of a whip­poor­will might star­tle you, but rest easy; it’s not your cell phone ringing.

Mys­tic Hot Springs, Mon­roe, UT
Step back in time to the 1960s at this remote hot springs resort that is funky, yet func­tion­al. This 100-year-old prop­er­ty offers tent and RV camp­ing and 15 refur­bished pio­neer cab­ins. You can’t get much clos­er to nature than sit­ting in these ancient hot pools once used by nomadic bands from the Ute, Shoshone, or Piute tribes. Find your hip­pie-spir­it in this remote hot springs resort, but keep your clothes on, as nudi­ty is against the rules.

Pecos Bene­dic­tine Monastery, San­ta Fe, NM
You don’t have to be reli­gious to stay in a monastery, and just maybe it’s the change of pace you need. The peace and qui­et you will find here is designed to keep out the sounds of the city. For more than 1500 years monas­ter­ies have been pro­vid­ing hos­pi­tal­i­ty to trav­el­ers and this retreat is nes­tled in a scenic val­ley of the Pecos Riv­er at the base of the San­ta Fe Moun­tains You will be invit­ed to pray—but there’s no pres­sure. Wal­low in the qui­et and open your mind to all things peaceful.

Cliff Riv­er Springs, Ojo Caliente, NM
Only four miles from the famed Ojo Caliente Min­er­al Springs is a small bed and break­fast on 1,200 acres with a spring-fed pond. There are sev­en casitas that have kitchens, pri­vate baths and a patio where you can prac­ti­cal­ly hear the sound of a hummingbird’s wings. There is no cell­phone ser­vice, but you’d prob­a­bly drop your phone in the pond or hot springs anyway—you’ll be that relaxed. This is the per­fect place to rethink your career path or rela­tion­ship or just not think of any­thing at all.

Oxbow Camp­ground, BLM Lands, AZ
Col­orado Riv­er camp­grounds can be filled with par­ty ani­mals most week­ends in the spring and fall, but there are still a few off-the-beat­en places where you can put in your boat and camp with­out any­one both­er­ing you. Oxbow Camp­ground is adja­cent to the Cibo­la Nation­al Wildlife Refuge and has its share of campers, but you can push your boat into the reeds and float away. Camp­sites are not marked or des­ig­nat­ed and use is on a first-come-first-served basis so try and get here on a Thurs­day to find the most peace­ful riv­er site.

Red Moun­tain Resort, St. George, UT
Prac­tic­ing yoga among the red rocks of South­west Utah can relax your core and mind, but if unwind­ing to you means an adren­a­lin rush, you can also use the zip line with a view of Zion Nation­al Park in the dis­tance. If you are in the mood, there is also a spa, because what’s more relax­ing than a massage?

Sedona Mago Retreat, Sedona, AZ
Peo­ple from all over the world come to Sedona to have their soul hugged by the swirling vor­tex­es. In oth­er words, this is the place to put on your Birken­stocks and reju­ve­nate your mind, body, and spir­it. This retreat is no Hilton Hotel—it’s a retreat sit­ting on 160 acres the Coconi­no Nation­al For­est and oper­at­ed by the by Tao Fel­low­ship, whose mis­sion is “Love Human­i­ty, Love the Earth.” You’ll find class­es on stress reduc­tion and med­i­ta­tion. If Moth­er Earth took a vaca­tion, this is where she could be found.